Last week’s season premiere of Castle painted newly appointed Captain Kate Beckett in a mysterious light. She’s been missing for a few days and, thanks to Alexis’ newfound snooping skills, has been seen stealing insulin for a random dude named Vikram. Castle endured a bag over his head filled with spiders and almost being shot to death, and he still doesn’t have answers. Thank goodness we have Beckett’s side of the story to help fill in the blanks.
Our mystery begins where episode 1 ended — Kate staring out a dirty window as bad guys slowly make their way up a stairwell. She orders Vikram to get some rest as she checks out her gunshot wound in the bathroom. When she hears footprints crunching the broken light bulb glass outside the door, she screams for Vikram to wake up. Luckily there’s a trap door with a bunch of conveniently placed mattresses below. As they try to make a run for it, Beckett is stopped short with a red line across her chest. Suddenly, two mercenaries are down, and a woman begins barking orders.
She shoves Beckett and Vikram into her car. Beckett demands the woman identify herself. Surprise! She’s Rita (Ann Cusack). Rita is also known as Castle’s stepmother, but there’s no time for proper introductions. Anything Beckett asks ends in a curt “that’s classified” response. Rita needs to know all the details, and she needs to know them now. I think this is a great idea. Trade favorite recipes and stories about Castle’s dad later, because I’m confused. Can someone get me the CliffsNotes version?
Beckett explains that the weird phone call she received the morning before was actually from Vikram who used a protocol 7 classification emergency alert set forth by the attorney general’s office. That’s code for life and death. Beckett has not worked for the AG in two years, but she couldn’t leave Vikram to die. She lied to Castle and headed to the theater only to find a freaked-out Vikram with some disturbing news: Her entire former team at the AG’s office is dead. And someone tried to kill him too. Speaking of, the bad guys just walked into the theater and are carrying guns.
We know that Beckett fought her way out and was grazed by a bullet in the process. We also know that she stopped by an industrial dry cleaners to sew up her own wound. (Beckett is so cool.) She strips down to her black, lacy bra, holds a needle to a flame, chugs some Vodka, and begins to cross-stitch her gut as Vikram spills his.
Two years ago at the AG, Beckett used the database to search for any criminal activity involving Senator Bracken. You may recall that this is the guy who killed her mother. An alert was sent to Vikram that this pending search just got a hit. He forwarded one heavily redacted memo involving the senator and a federal officer to Agent McCord. As a result, McCord and four other people are now in body bags and he’s on the run.
Beckett decides to visit Bracken in prison. Vikram tells her that there was a hand-written note in the margin. Perhaps dropping the phrase “LokSat” will help Bracken play ball. When Beckett mentions the name to Bracken, his face falls. Everyone’s life is in danger, and they are all good as dead.
Meanwhile, Hayley and Alexis follow a lead. Hayley’s resources found Vikram on a surveillance camera at a hotel. Using her magical investigative skills, Alexis is able to blow up the image from a mirror behind Vikram and snag a screen shot of the redacted memo Vikram just hacked from a computer using the hotel’s Wi-Fi. I bet she’s proficient with a firearm by now, too. Vikram barely escapes the bad guys who followed him to the hotel. They leave in their bad-guy black van, and Beckett follows. This is the moment in our timeline when she saves Castle from the dude who loves spiders.
NEXT: This is why hidden rooms are awesome[pagebreak]
By this time, Vikram and Beckett are gathered around the kitchen island in Rita’s hideout. As far as Rita knows, there is a dirty analyst inside the CIA. Each time Rita gets a lead, it evaporates. There is an unknown person who’s partners with Bracken. What they do know is that the partner is heavily protected. They also know that CIA resources have been used to import drugs into the country. And if that wasn’t enough, Rita then gets a notification that Bracken was just murdered in prison. The kill list keeps getting shorter and shorter. It sounds like our mystery person is willing to do whatever it takes to protect his or her anonymity.
Beckett and Vikram bounce back and forth trying to figure out the redacted memo just as Castle, Alexis, and Hayley are doing the same thing. All parties notice at the same time that LokSat has a string of numbers and letters after the word. Because this in only an hour-long show, all parties also deduce at the same time that the numbers 2011BD must be the tail number on an airplane. Beckett and Vikram arrive at the hangar that houses a small plane with that exact tail number. WHAT LUCK!
Beckett pulls a gun on the pilot. He claims he doesn’t know anything. She threatens to shoot. He doesn’t listen. Then we see a shadow creeping up from the side as Vikram raises the gun Beckett let him borrow. Castle shouts for his wife and tackles Vikram just as a shot is fired! The pilot is dead. Castle warns Beckett that Assistant AG Allison Hyde, who is helping on the case, shared information on Vikram — he’s not who he says he is and lied on his paperwork. Beckett chooses to trust Vikram. Castle chooses to trust Beckett. Then they make out in the hangar because love conquers all.
Back at his office, Castle reminds Beckett that they are best when they are working together. No more running off to save randos in theaters. He also decides that the best way to fight a faceless enemy in the shadows is to drag them into the light. He arranges for Beckett to do an on-air television interview announcing the disturbing allegations within the CIA. When he returns to the office, two bad guys follow him in, ready to fire. Espo and Ryan jump out of the secret man cave and taser the dudes to the ground. Hooray for day savers!
>Not so fast. Hayley walks in the room with another bad guy holding a weapon to her back. Castle release his spring-locked hidden gun and shoots. Another man down! Day saved again! All the men are handed over to AAG Hyde and Captain Beckett gets her first round of applause for a job well done.
Not so fast again. Vikram cracked the encryption on one of the bad guy’s phones. There’s only one number in the system that the mercenaries have been calling. You guessed it: Allison Hyde. Beckett calls for the building to go on lockdown. But Hyde is already gone.
The team traces her number to an apartment. If she’s not there, she’s in the wind. A gun shot is fired and they all rush in only to find Hyde as committed suicide. To quote Vikram, “Is this really over?”
That answer would be a big fat NO. Rita warns Beckett to go on living her life, even though the real killer is still out there. But if she chooses to meander down that particular rabbit hole, she needs to leave Castle, and everyone else she loves, out of it. Cut to Beckett with a bag in her hand and a tear in her eye telling Castle that she has to go. Castle pleads with Beckett to stay. Leaving is not the answer. She begs him to trust her and walks out the door. Whatever blood is shed at this point is on Beckett’s hands. It’s her fight now.