Castle: Nikki Heat

It has been a long time since I’ve written recaps for specific episodes, but this week, with the return of a bunch of shows, there have been a number of fantastic episodes and I feel compelled to write about them.

I will always have a soft spot for Castle because of Nathan Fillion (Firefly/Serenity/Dr. Horrible), but this week’s episode really cemented why this show is so clever.

The premise of Castle, if you have been living under a rock and somehow missed it, is that Rick Castle is a popular crime novelist who shadows Kate Beckett and her team as they solve murders for inspiration of his newest book series. In this week’s episode, they are making Castle’s book Nikki Heat into a movie and the actress playing Nikki has come to study Beckett so she can get the character just right.

When books are made into movies-
Among other things, the show points out how little input the original author has when it comes to the movie. For one thing, he completely hated the actress who was chosen to play his title character, but ultimately it wasn’t up to him. (Granted, he changed his mind later, but at the time you could understand why he didn’t want her.) The script itself is not up to his standards. The rush of solving a crime doesn’t come across in the script, but should. Some of the writing seems a bit corny (though again, ultimately worked). Ultimately, it begs the question: is the movie version better or worse off with minimal author involvement?

Character studies-
One of the best parts of this episode was the dissection of Beckett’s character: She tucks her hair behind her ear to give herself a moment to think. She wears heels to establish her feminine authority in a male-dominated workplace. Her stance changes when they have a suspect. She has a tense-sexual relationship with Castle that they both can’t seem to accept or know how to act on. And of course, the moment she puts on the wig, clothes, and starts talking like Beckett…it’s fantastic.

Laura Prepon did an excellent job here and I truly hope she will show up again at some point in the future. Maybe the movie’s opening? On set?

We also got to see a bit more of one of Beckett’s partners. I would love to learn even more about them, since they are more than a little underused. I did miss Alexis this week, but otherwise, no complaints about this week.

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