Castle Review: “Murder Most Fowl”

C: This week’s was a fascinating episode, completely defying prediction.  But before we get to the meat of things, I just have to share my favorite dialogue exchange of the night. After Alexis brings home her boyfriend’s rat to babysit, Castle is inspired to ask Beckett: “Strangest pet you ever had?” Her reply? “You.”

M: Classic line.  How much you want to bet that’s part of the opening montage next year, along with the “I really am ruggedly handsome” line?

E: They totally should put that in.  It’s much funnier than “Do I look like a killer to you?” – at least on multiple repeat.

M: What a weird episode.  It started out as a light, fun romp, turned into a gut wrenching episode that was tough to watch as a parent, then switched back at the conclusion to light and fun, especially the “Found him!” line.

E: I’m with you.  What’s with this sudden desire to be dark and serious?  Not a fan.

C: As my housemates and I watched the rather amusing opening – okay, someone was shot and killed, but they certainly weren’t treating it seriously – one of them commented, “Didn’t we say after the trailer last week that this one looked gut-wrenching? Why was that?”  Well, the photos revealing that a child had been kidnapped certainly snapped the tone of this around 180 degrees.

E: Thankfully, however, there was a lot to like in this episode.

M: Like the fact that once again they came up with a plot that we couldn’t figure out easily!  Although, I don’t think we could have figured out who the bad guys were based on the info given, so it wasn’t really the same, but still.  And I have to say, when I saw the actor who they got to play the father, John Pyper-Ferguson, I assumed it was going to be him, since I’ve seen him in both Caprica and Flashpoint recently, and didn’t recognize anyone else.

C: Except his hair was too long for him to be the man in the photo, an obvious flaw our team for some reason missed.

E: It’s funny – I love recognizing the guest stars, but it has been nice not to be able to identify the killer by their resume, so to speak.   I’m not caught up on Caprica, so I didn’t recognize Woolly Bear Dad at all.

M: Oh, I’m not completely caught up on Caprica either, but he was in the “first half” of the season, as Tomas Verges.

E: Get out of town — seriously?  I didn’t recognize him at all?  Are you sure that’s the same guy?

M: Yep, and he was quite good in Flashpoint too, which is FAR AND AWAY the best summer show, and the best Canadian show, like, ever.  You should watch.

E: What, even better than Silk Stalkings?  I’m amazed, bro.

M: First off, I was in college and was in the target demographic for that show.  Secondly, there will be no mocking or insulting CBS’ early 90’s “Crimetime After Primetime”.  Silk Stalkings and Forever Knight were both immensely watchable.  Flashpoint, on the other hand, is a truly GREAT show. Like, the best police procedural on TV.  Better than CSI or NCIS or any of them (and no, I don’t consider Castle a “police procedural”, it’s more comedic).  Now, moving on and avoiding the kidnapping part, let’s get back to the fun part of the episode.  I loved the red-tailed hawk subplot.  Castle’s elaborate theory and his “that’s why you’re not a best-selling author” crack?  Good stuff.  The interview with the bird guy, and Castle and Beckett jumping to conclusions that were so obviously wrong to us viewers?  Awesome.

C: I don’t know, it was really clear he was not talking about a cheating lover, so that felt like too much of an obvious set-up for a joke. The birdwatching stuff was amusing overall, though.

E: I love the whole feather killer bit, and how Len turns out to be this bird watching, circuit-breaking, king of the subway humanitarian.  I didn’t expect any of that.

M: Yeah, that was all fun.  The co-worker that adored him was funny, too.

E: And when they circled back to it in the end?  I actually got a little misty.

M: I didn’t get misty, but I LOVED that they had Castle actually point out the “coincidence”.  Most shows/writers would lazily add something like that in and then make a corny remark after the fact, where as they put it right out there and made Castle react with joyful surprise, the way anyone would really react to a bizarre coincidence like that.

E: And that’s one of the many reasons we love watching Richard Castle; his child-like glee.

C: To end with my favorite thing about this episode, small though it was — a friend who joined me for the episode commented on why, though they’re similar, he enjoys this show more than Bones:  because the Bones crew relies so much on imaginary technology. “Enhance. Enhance. Enhance. There!” my friend mimicked.  What happened ten minutes later? Castle suggests that Beckett blow up a photo from the crime scene to see if the murder’s reflection can be seen in the rear-view mirror. We all groaned. But then, when they do — says Rick: “You can’t see anything, it’s all pixelated!” “This is real life, Castle,” says Beckett.

This is why I love the writers of Castle.

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