Pull out the big black sharpie and mark off No. 1 on the Castle fandom bucket list. RICHARD CASTLE AND KATE BECKETT ARE MARRIED. Now the name of the show has double the meaning.
The wedding closed out the final five minutes of the episode and it was pretty much perfection. After the atrocious Season 6 finale, with the failed wedding and contrived “Where is Castle?” business, it seems the writers of Castle finally got it, finally gave the Castle fandom what they deserved.
But in true Castle fashion, there was a lot going on leading up to the wedding. Most notably, the seemingly alternate universe Castle (Nathan Fillion) gets sent to, but there was an intriguing few moments leading up to his trip to a parallel universe.
Beckett (Stana Katic) is cutting cantaloupe for breakfast and notes Castle’s bout of insomnia as we see them for the first time in the episode. Castle sees a wedding invitation on the counter and Beckett tells him it is from her old boyfriend, FBI agent Will Sorenson. Castle jokes about how boring Sorenson was and how he saved her from him and she says jokingly that if Castle wasn’t there to distract her, she might be Captain of the 12th.
The case-of-the-week involves two victims murdered after a robbery and a missing briefcase.
One of the most profound moments is during Castle and Beckett’s investigation of an old warehouse; Castle asks Beckett if she will go to Sorenson’s wedding. She replies that she just isn’t ready to witness someone else’s perfect day. You could tell her comment was a dagger to Castle and what his abduction robbed from Beckett.
When Castle finds the briefcase, he sees an old round golden artifact. When he picks it up, he sets off a chain reaction, including alerting the people involved. After an explosion, Castle awakens without the artifact or Beckett.
Back at the precinct, Castle discovers Ryan (Seamus Dever) and Esposito (Jon Huertas) don’t know him. Oh, and Beckett doesn’t know him either and she is Captain Beckett and not Detective Beckett.
This sets off a journey of discovery for Castle as he tries to navigate his way through this strange universe. What does he find?
- After killing off Derrick Storm, Castle tried to write the great American novel and it flopped and he never got over it making bad investments.
- Martha found her career re-energized and made enough money to share the mortgage for the loft.
- Castle’s wayward attitude forced Alexis to move to Los Angeles and live with her mother.
- Ryan let Jenny get away and they never married.
- Esposito never found his way back to Lanie.
- Kate Beckett was a success in her profession, but she never solved her mother’s murder and she feels like a failure … Married to her work and forever alone.
As the episode moves along at a frantic pace, Castle cajoles his way into helping with the investigation, believing if he can find the artifact he can go back home.
Why does Captain Beckett let him help? It is viewed that Kate Beckett, in any universe, is fated to be drawn to Richard Castle. The subtle looks Stana Katic uses as Beckett when Castle is spouting his theory and knowledge truly sold that this version of Beckett found a connection and attraction to Castle no matter the universe.
The alternate universe was like flipping the first few seasons of the series on its ear. Twisting and turning the characters but also showing they all work better together, Castle included.
The biggest reveal, in the alternate universe, is another Castle fandom bucket list wish. Yes, in the alternate universe Beckett lets slip she used to read Castle’s work and she stood in line for hours to get his autograph on a Derrick Storm novel. Castle was shocked to hear this, answering the question on whether Beckett had ever told him the story.
As for closing the episode, Castle is kidnapped by the group that believes he knows how to use the artifact. Beckett shows up. As a gunfight ensues, Castle steps in front of Beckett when one of the suspects tries to shoot her.
How is Castle jumping in front of Beckett when she is about to get shot relevant? It mirrors what he tried to do in the Season 3 finale, when Beckett was shot at Montgomery’s funeral. It also harkens back to what Castle’s character Jameson Rook did for Nikki Heat in the novel Heat Rises when Rook took a bullet for Heat. Also, as Castle lies dying, he tells her he loves her and Beckett says the same words to Castle he said to her when she was shot – asking him not to go.
Dying in the alternate universe, Castle awakens back in his world. Like George Bailey in “It’s A Wonderful Life” or Scrooge in “A Christmas Carol” Castle realizes how precious life is and how short it can be. He now knows why he hasn’t been able to sleep, unable to forgive himself for being abducted and leaving Beckett at the altar.
Holding her hand, rubbing his engagement ring on her finger, Castle suggests they get married right now. Beckett smiles and agrees.
As for the wedding, it occurs at Castle’s Hamptons home as the sun is setting. Beckett’s father, Jim, gives her away with Martha and Alexis standing up for Castle. It is intimate and spectacular and I love it was just immediate family and they didn’t try to cram in Esposito, Ryan and everyone else. It seemed to make it more special.
Beckett and Castle’s wedding vows
Beckett: “The moment that I met you my life became extraordinary. You taught me to be my best self. To look forward to tomorrow’s adventures. And when I was vulnerable, you were strong. I love you Richard Castle. And I want to live my life in the warmth of your smile and the strength of your embrace. I promise you I will love you. I will be your friend and your partner in crime and in life. Always.”
Castle: “The moment we met my life became extraordinary. You taught me more about myself then I knew there was to learn. You are the joy in my heart. You are the last person I want to see at night when I close my eyes. I love you Katherine Beckett and the mystery of you is the one I want to spend the rest of my life exploring. I promise to love you, to be your friend and your partner in crime and in life. To death do us part and for the time of our lives.”
When Castle takes Beckett out for a drink in the alternate universe and she casually mentions she thought they were on a date.
Lanie is pregnant in the alternate universe.
And finally, Castle calling Beckett “Mrs. Castle” after they marry and then dancing to their song “In My Veins”.
The Season 6 finale still stings, and there are still moments I felt cheated by that episode, but this episode was everything the show Castle was and is about – two people solving crime and bringing out the best in one another.