Castle: Crossfire

“Everything ends in tragedy, even an epic love story like yours.”

Watching this episode reminded me of running into an old boyfriend.

As I spent time with these people I had loved so much, I was shocked that I had once had such strong feelings for them. Now, all I could feel was a mild nostalgia for what had been, a mild distaste of what they had all become, and an enormous sense of relief that I had jumped ship when I did.

This was a terrible season finale; it was a worse series finale. To be fair, Castle is a show that historically ends its seasons with a mythology episode. Because I had bailed about a season and a half ago, I did not know who LokSat, Caleb Brown, Vikram, or Hayley were. But, as I watched the episode, I didn’t grow to care that I didn’t know.

As the show progressed, I was dismayed at how the characters were used, especially the supporting characters. Martha and Alexis were only there to fret over Castle -- they added nothing to the story. Lanie was on screen for a total of a minute if I’m being generous. Esposito and Ryan were interacting only with Beckett -- it was their bromance with Castle that was so much to watch.

This was the biggest problem for me. The show has lost all its fun. The one time that the writers tried to give Castle his usual quip (cooking in the Korean taco van), it fell flat. Fillion just couldn’t pull it off any more. The snark between Castle and Beckett was gone, replaced with “I love yous” that were so forced they bordered on comical.

Not to mention the lazy writing. Truth serum so that we can hear that Castle loves Beckett? Really? This is the best the writing team could come up with? That trope has been around since forever and it only works if we learn something we don’t already know. We’ve known about Castle’s love for Beckett for nearly seven years. Come on, you guys. You are better than this.

The original ending was meant to be a cliffhanger. Would Castle and Beckett survive? Well, no. Katic had been written out of the show, a move from the studio and the showrunners that infuriated me. Look, none of us has any allusions about Katic’s (in)ability to act, but she was certainly as much a part of this show as Fillion. That TPTB would choose to fire the women was a decision that took a step too far for my feminist sensibilities.

Karma is a nasty little thing, however, and the boys are now without work as well. ABC waited until the last possible moment to cancel the show, which I am sure is part of the reason the finale was so dire. A shame, because a show that has been on the air for eight years deserves a better ending than this one got.

How awful was that final scene? I understand that the writers were trying to give the fans a HEA, but seriously it was bad. The voiceover from the pilot was incongruous with what was happening on the screen and the final “Always” should have brought a tear. It brought a cheer that this mess was finally behind me.

Like that old boyfriend, this show will always have a place in my heart for its early years. But, it did not end well.

One out four magnetic ceilings that steal guns.

ChrisB was a Castle fan for a very long time.

6 comments:

Billie Doux said...

That's so sad. I wonder if Nathan is relieved that he didn't have to do a ninth season, after all.

mazephoenix said...

I echo all your sentiments here..that was a lame finale..at least they didn't kill Beckett like they were planning to do.
I checked out after s5..seems like a wise move now.
Why wasn't there more of Martha and Alexis? They and Beckett are family..
The flash foward to seven years later..aggh..of course they have three kids..one would have been enough..or you know some couples are happpy without kids.. Rick already has a grown daughter..
Yeah, too bad about the finale..

jencat said...

I've been dithering over whether to even watch this episode, aaaaand, well, I still haven't. I read spoilers to see how bad the ending was, and did end up deleting the last few episodes of this season sitting on the DVR without even watching them because it has been fricking painful trying to be a fan of this show recently (why would a show seriously keep making choices that end up making viewers *wish* for a cancelllation?? Aside from its lead actor behaving like an egomaniac, by all accounts...).

But - without having actually watched it yet - I'm pretty sure there had to be three kids in the happy ending as a call-back to the predictions from the time travel episode from season six? They made a big thing about the fact Beckett was a senator, Castle was a serious literary author and they had three kids... (and then there was the damn coffee stain at the end).

FannyValentine said...

I spent the last few days binge watching the last season and now I'm kinda bummed that they cancelled it.
I agree with what all of you say about the last couple of seasons not being all the fun the show used to be (which is why it took until I heard that it was cancelled for me to watching season 8).
Watching the last season I felt like a lot of the old magic was back, Alexis had a much bigger role working with Castle at his PI business (his latest hobby), and Hayley brought a whole lot of wonderful British snark and challenged Castle the way Beckett used to (also I do adore the actress playing her). Castle also got to play with Ryan and Esposito more this season which was fun.

The last episode sucked (a lot) but I do felt like they made up for it with a truly fun season leading up to it :)

Remco said...

Wow this episode was bad. Unavoidable, really, because of the real-life interference, but they really didn't plan for cancellation. The Loksat story was never given enough development to begin with, so there would have been no way to end it in a satisfying way in one episode. They really should have revealed him earlier in the season and fleshed out the confrontation more.

Loksat aside, this season was a lot of fun. It wasn't like the early years, but at least it was more entertaining than those boring last few seasons. I'm glad they didn't drag it out more though.

Anonymous said...

Well, I for one loved the finale... My take is they both died and the whole future thing was a dream/hallucination.