Beckett and the team go back to their old training grounds to investigate the death of an NYPD recruitment officer; Castle struggles with a decision that could ultimately have profound consequences for himself and Beckett.
Written by: Chad Creasey | Directed by: Rob Bowman
Where are we at in the story
“Fidelis Ad Mortem” picks up the morning after Castle returns from his trip to Los Angeles. In the previous episode, “The G.D.S.,” Castle was originally heading to the West Coast to find out more about his missing time after saving the world (see “The Sleeper”) but ending up getting involved in a murder investigation. The mystery writer turned private investigator learned he asked to have his memory wiped because he learned that the arrest of Senator William H. Bracken didn’t crash his drug network. He had a partner within the CIA codenamed Loksat. At this point in the story, Castle and Beckett have an understanding about the investigation of Loksat but the news puts Castle into a big bind. He must tell Beckett what he learned, but in doing so—that could unravel their relationship again and maybe for good.
A nice change of pace
“Fidelis Ad Mortem” added a nice change of pace for the season. This episode was a Beckett-centric episode. The Locksat investigation and what Castle learned in L.A. are clearly present and this episode presented several parallels with the case of the week and what is happening her personal life with Castle and the secret investigation.
The short of it: when there’s something big happening, you have to rely on those close to you to get through it all.
The case of the week
This case is personal for the detectives: a recruit named Daniel Bardot who was in training at the academy is killed. This brings Captain Beckett and Detectives Esposito and Ryan back to their old stomping grounds. We learn that Beckett was the academy all-star breaking every record possible and all of them still stand—which is amazing, considering she’s been a cop for close to 15 years. But it also served as a reminder not only to the audience, but to Beckett as well just who she really is as a cop.
Lanie traces a fragment (must have been a big one) back to a 9mm gun registered to the academy and more specifically, to the company Bardot belonged. That means, at least in theory, the killer is one of his fellow academy mates.
While the boys investigate leads back at the precinct, Beckett stays at the academy to teach an impromptu course on interrogations to try find the murderer. Not much luck there. Their lead turns out to be a dead-end with a recruit just scoring steroids but he puts Beckett and the boys on the trail of Bardot’s girlfriend: a fellow recruit, Decker.
Turns out, the victim was trying to get cash for something: black software so he could hack into the NYPD database to get case information on a mafia boss. Bardot was working for the mob, or at least appears to be. Turns out, Decker is connected to the mafia boss and is his illegitimate daughter.
The mob boss was trying to squeeze Decker to be his mole but Bardot was going to pay off the mob boss to protect Decker. But it went sideways and Bardot was killed. Since it’stoo easy to pin it on the mob boss, it’s back to the drawing board. He tells everyone Bardot was being followed by a dark-colored sedan which is then traced to the academy motor pool.
At first, Beckett thinks it her old academy training sergeant. After a tense situation in the gun range, the real killer emerges: the academy commandant. He was siphoning funds from the academy to cover his debts. Bardot found out about the scheme when he hacked into the NYPD database.
As for Decker, she wants to take her father down but Beckett says you can’t do it alone. But she can do it by staying with the NYPD and helping them take down a father.
The conversation is a parallel to what has been happening with Beckett and Castle. Up until this point, Castle was willing to stand on the sidelines until Beckett was ready to make the move. But this case proved to Beckett that she needed Castle’s help.
The Locksat Investigation
Castle finally tells Beckett what he learned in L.A., and as he suspected she doesn’t take it well. In fact, they don’t even talk about when Beckett comes back to the loft that night. They just drink their problems away. And contrary to what some believe, they didn’t have sex—even Castle tells Hayley they just spent the not drinking. Of odd note, Beckett’s better at holding her booze down than Castle.
At the end of the episode, Beckett returns to the loft where she admits to Castle she needs him. And from that they’ll go after Loksat together.
Things we learned: Castle was shot in L.A. and the plane the discovered at the beginning of the season, took off from City of Angels.
A not-so-funny scene
It’s not as funny as it could have been if it wasn’t done say at the beginning of season five in “After the Storm.” The whole Beckett sneaking out of the loft to avoid running into Martha is old. It felt out of place.