Castle Buries Caskett and Fans Bury the Show

As it turns out Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion are even better actors than we thought. According to unsubstantiated reports, their relationship has become so acrimonious that ABC required them to attend couples counseling.  For a loyal fan of Castle, this news represents a classic case of TMI. Finding out that your favorite actors are real people with flaws can ruin your favorite show.  Perhaps to reduce the onset tension, ABC made the dollars and cents decision to fire Stana Katic, retain Nathan Fillion, and retool the show without Kate Beckett and without the Caskett pairing. This preposterous move puts fans in the bewildering position of having to explain Castle’s premise to its producers and to conclude with heavy hearts that ABC must Cancel Castle to Save the Show.

castle_season8_poster
Castle Season Eight Poster, tvline.com

Those of us who have never missed an episode know that Castle’s quality has been declining throughout Season Eight. First, writers separated Kate from Rick so she could pursue the It’s-so-boring-just-kill-me-now LOCKSAT investigation. They then reopened Castle’s weakest plot, one that should have remained closed – Rick’s ridiculous disappearance and amnesia storyline. In the midst of this tedium showrunners doubled down on Castle’s private investigation firm and the addition of new cast members. Both moves stink of shark bait. To top it off, Castle’s daughter, Alexis suffered an inexplicable wardrobe change that has her dressing like her grandmother. Evidently she also abandoned college though no clear explanation for her constant presence at Dad’s office has been forthcoming. Internet rumors suggest that writers put distance between Rick and Kate because Fillion and Katic can’t stand one another. Finally – a plausible explanation for bad storytelling.

Despite their off screen acrimony or perhaps because of it, Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic crackle on screen. They always have. Their chemistry forms the core of Castle’s appeal. Without Beckett, Rick’s charm quickly turns smarmy. The two complement each other like few other duos on television. Weekly whodunits rely on their banter, wit, and sex appeal to stay fresh. Neither character can thrive or stay watchable on his own for long.

castle_kiss
thetvaddict.com

Explaining the essence of Castle to ABC exasperates me, but apparently such work is required. Choosing to kill off Kate Beckett’s character and then continue Castle as a carcass of its former-self smacks of Hollywood cluelessness. Do ABC executives live in a bubble? Has anyone associated with Castle ever watched the show? I am no longer sure that live-tweeting while an episode appears on one’s television screen actually counts as viewing.

Let’s review Castle’s premise for the past eight seasons. Mystery writer wants to investigate crimes though has no credentials. Mayor sets him up with the NYPD. Mystery writer meets ace detective who quickly becomes his muse. Detective and mystery writer pal around together and solve crimes. He writes books. She rolls her eyes. They fall in love. End of story. That’s it people. Castle has no hidden depths. The show works well, because the premise is uncomplicated. And [this next part is the most important, so please take notes] the two stars make magic on screen, together. Don’t let the title fool you. Castle has never been a one-man show.

castle season five
Season Five poster

Fans do not know what’s really happening off-screen between Katic and Fillion, though one point is clear. Nathan Fillion still has a job and Stana Katic does not. For good will to persist between Castle and its fans, ABC needs to make an artistic decision, not one based on squeezing the last dying breath out of Castle’s corpse. Wrap up Castle with a happy ending between Rick and Kate. The show has a thriving life in syndication. Why tarnish all of those entertaining episodes with Kate Beckett’s death? Must we know in television perpetuity that the co-stars hated each other so much that one was willing to sell out the other? Castle’s dedicated fans deserve much better than that.

Please, ABC. Make the right decision. Let Rick and Kate live on together and cancel Castle now. Do what Captain Reynolds would do. Keep the crew together.

 

46 Comments »

  1. Totally agree with your idea of how to end the show. I lost interest and even became angry when Kate went off on her own to fight her dragon. The writers are missing the point of Castle. It’s all about chemistry and apparently the writers aren’t very good scientists!

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      • Me too. With Bracken in jail and Castle’s childhood trauma dealt with, the two should have been able to start anew together, work cases together. Instead we got the impossible PI thread (I say impossible because PI licensing is very strict — no way would Castle qualify as a trained detective, likewise Alexis). Too silly for words. And apparently, about to get sillier.

        Liked by 1 person

      • every seasons finale i always wanted or wish that castle will be renewed but i never expected this that it will happened this way… Season 7 finale should be the series finale..

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  2. Absolutely right on! Just cancel the show. Unfortunately you have ruined what was a real joy to watch every week. The filming for the season is already over so the damage has already been done! But to try and squeeze more money out of this situation by dragging the story down with it is a crime.

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  3. I agree. Let this be the final season and end it on a happy note. People will remember this as being an excellent show. Castle and Beckett should be together happily ever after.

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  4. Yes! The legacy of the show is all that matters now. I’d love it if they could get Stana back and continue the show, but if that can’t happen, then it needs to end now. Beckett and Castle need to get their “happily ever after” or else the last eight years will have been for nothing.

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    • Castle is the perfect show to re-watch. It is like comfort food. I often come home from work and find my husband catching the end of an episode on TNT. I don’t want to lose that feeling of comfort. It has already been tainted by this mess. ABC has a chance to salvage the show’s legacy by keeping Beckett alive and ending the series now. Doing anything else would make those old episodes hard to swallow.

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  5. Agree. Should of ended with S7. I didn’t think so then. I have been so sad. Also, it breaks my heart to think they didn’t get along on set or in life. I really really hope that isn’t so.

    #savecastle

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  6. Very well said! Let the show go out with a modicum of dignity. Unfortunately, I think eliminating Kate Beckett was the plan all along, given the negative treatment of her character all season long. It also makes me think that one of the stars is being allowed to take advantage of a fandom that loved both characters together to get his “own” show.

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    • As a fan of said male co-star I would hate for that to be true, but the evidence certainly points in that direction. Season Eight makes a lot more sense now that ABC has ousted Stana Katic. I have little faith that ABC will make the right choice and cancel Castle now, though I wish they would.

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    • I agree. Nathan fought to keep Jon and Seamus on for season nine, I would think he would have fought for Stana, but he obviously did not – very telling on who wanted her out. He is a traitor!

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  7. It is absolutely absurd how ABC executives have no clue of the very premise of Castle and have killed the show we love (well it’s been slowly dying). They should have kept everyone for a truncated S9 (13 eps) to give us the happy ending and called it a day. Then they could have given Nathan his own show. I always considered myself a true fan… I declared I would watch until the wheels fell off–I think that time has come.

    Thanks for this article, really good!

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  8. Totally nailed my feelings with this article. These new writers took a great show and killed it, please at least let it end as great as it began.

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  9. I can’t agree with you more, on all counts! I wrote virtually the same thing you said here in a personalized letter to 6 top Disney/ABC Studios executives, from the Co-Chairman down. I got confirmation that they were delivered yesterday. Having been a “Caskett” fan from the start, a happy ending is what the fans are owed, not the heroine killed in the last episode! In hind-sight, the show should have been cancelled on a high-note the end of last season because this season’s writing was real bad. Hope to see Stana in something good starting real soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am so happy to hear that you sent that letter to the ABC executives. I think real mail makes a big impression. Of course Castle fans deserve a happy ending. Castle’s tone has always been positive and upbeat. Changing that tone now by killing off Kate Beckett will make it nearly impossible to enjoy the show in syndication.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Good article! And with all that, the bottom line has always been: NO BECKETT, NO CASTLE! Besides, Stana’s acting ability, brains and looks are so far above Nathan’s, anyway, that she is really the only one who matters to me. I so enjoyed watching Castle. What ABC did is a travesty, and I will never watch Castle again! ONLY STANA!

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  11. If they decide today to continue Castle I will never watch ABC, Castle or ANYTHING with Nathan Fillion in it unless Stana in humbly and sincerely apologised to and ask back and I don’t see that happening. She probably wouldn’t want to return after the terrible way she has been treated by all of them. The show needs to end and end properly – with a happy ending for Beckett!

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  12. Thank you for your intelligent article, I think Castle started to decline on the last episode of Season 6, after that disastrous final episode, but the last episode of Season 7 was a finale that I was happy with. Reluctanly I watch Season 8 & now this. I am not surprised at ABC & Nathan Fillion arrogance in thinking that they can continued the show with Katic, good luck with that. #cancelCastle

    Like

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