Every Monday from now until the season premiere in September, we’ll be feature a random episode of the week. There’s no method to our madness other than we won’t select an episode twice and it won’t be a recently aired episode on ABC (in the last four weeks). So without further delay, this week’s episode is:
5×01 – After the Storm
Logline: Season 5 picks up on the proverbial morning after, with Castle and Beckett facing new questions — Was this a one-time fling, or are they now a couple? But before they find the answers, they must take on the forces responsible for Beckett’s mother’s murder that now threaten Kate Beckett’s life.
Original Airdate: September 24, 2012
Written by: David Amann
Directed by: Rob Bowman
Jack Coleman as Senator Bracken
Tahmoh Penikett as Cole Maddox
Maurice Warfield as Vice President Russell
Geoff Pierson as Mr. Smith
Amy Vorpahl as Paramedic
WHAT WE LIKED ABOUT THIS EPISODE | It’s been several seasons in the making but Beckett finally gets some closure to her mother’s murder. It may not have been the type of closure she wanted but she at least knows the man who ordered her mother killed along with those of her colleagues. It’s a small bit of a justice for something that continues to haunt Beckett.
CASKETT FINALLY TOGETHER | It only took four years and a lot of personal heartache but Beckett and Castle finally consummated their relationship at the end of season four in “Always.” It was a nice moment when Castle pops in bed thinking it was all a dream—it most certainly wasn’t. It served the episode well to pick up the morning after the events of “Always.”
FUNNIEST MOMENT | One of things that sets the first half of season five apart from the second half is the traditional “Castle” moments that made the series so appealing first appeared. Those moments were largely missing from the second half. But for “After the Storm” it probably contains one of the most hilarious scenes of the entire series—the “Mom’s home” scene. Afraid of being discovered, Castle tells Beckett to hide in the closet. Martha comes home after retrieving Alexis from a night out with friends after graduation from high school. Beckett tries to make a sneak escape from the loft while Castle stalls.
An honorable mentions goes to a mirror scene later on in Beckett’s apartment where she tells Castle to hide when Ryan drops by Beckett’s apartment.
BECKETT’S SHOOTING | Another case that gets neatly wrapped up in a pretty package is the man who shot Beckett. Ryan continues to work the case solo since all of Gates’ people are stuck working some sort of rally for Vice President Russell hosted by Senator William Bracken. Cole Maddox a.k.a. Cedric Marks meets his explosive demise in a building owned by an attorney named Michael Smith. Speaking of Smith, he’s the guy that Montgomery sent the file too. Maddox beats Smith to an inch within his life and destroys the original file. But Smith had made copies and hid another a building he owned.
JOHANNA BECKETT’S MURDER | The second file is destroyed when Maddox opened the safe. However, Ryan was able to get the remains of the file and takes it to Beckett’s apartment. From there the team, working together, is able to piece together some valuable information—a bank account. That account is tracked back to Bracken when he was the ADA for New York. Castle and Beckett go to see Smith—but he won’t help them. He tells them that he has to “disappear” and suggests that Beckett do the same. Bracken is too protected—there’s nothing that can bring him down. Smith later “mysteriously” dies of a heart attack in the hospital.
There’s nothing the team can do to bring Bracken down. Beckett goes off grid she’ll handle Bracken in her own way. This is the ‘scary Beckett’ because we don’t know if she’ll go all the way and take Bracken out. It doesn’t help that Castle immediately zones in the idea that Beckett is going to kill Bracken. It almost seems a little too far-fetched that Castle would go to that line of thinking.
MEMORABLE MOMENT | It’d be easy to say that the loft scene is the memorable moment. But we think that the scene in the basement kitchen between Beckett and Bracken. Beckett makes her stand against Bracken. She bluffs him into thinking she has a copy of the file—she’ll use that file to protect her and keep her safe. She has the power know—even though all she has in a bank account number. Bracken doesn’t know that. At the end, she pistol whips him and tells him that whenever he looks at that scar she just gave him to think of her.
MEMORABLE QUOTE | “I’ll get justice for her, just not today. Until then, I’ll get it for others.” Beckett says this after her meeting with Bracken.
An honorable quote mention goes to the following:
“If anything happens to me or anyone I care about, that file goes public. And one more thing, whoever it is you think I am, whatever it is you think you know about me, you have no idea of what I’m capable of or how far I will go. I am done being afraid. It’s your turn now.”
GOING FORWARD: SEASON SIX AND BEYOND | This episode kicked off the show’s fifth season but elements of this episode will probably be revisited sometime in the new season—especially with the Bracken storyline and how far Beckett will go to protect herself and those she cares about. Since it was mentioned by Bracken was being groomed for the presidential ticket, something that was brought up again in the episode “Recoil”, the JB murder will resurface with a vengeance at some point in the show’s sixth season. And since JB was killed when he started his senatorial run, the gear up for the run for president will once again force Bracken to revisit own enemies and take out those who can destroy him. After all, Bracken said in “Recoil” that the man who tried to kill him was “someone who’s gotten rich making powerful people promises that I needed to keep. What does a kingmaker do when the king no longer follows the rules?”
And let’s be honest, Beckett told Castle at the beginning of season four in “Rise” that she can’t have the type of relationship she wants with someone (Castle) until that wall comes down. That wall went up after her mother’s murder. And only when the Bracken thing and all others (if there are any) involved are either dead or in prison can Beckett move forward.