Castle Recap: What Made You Geek Out Most?

This week, ABC’s Castle served up a crime as well as a bit of a love letter to sci-fi fans, with an episode set in and around a Comic-Con-like fan convention.

The murder vic: Annabelle, a fan of the mythical Nebula-9 series who ran a lucrative “fan experience” event at SuperNovaCon. The murder weapon: a working “Thorian blaster.”

The suspects: Gabe Winters (Eureka‘s Ed Quinn), the former lead of Nebula-9 who stood to lose his only income if Annabelle kicked his drunken, carousing ass out of the Fan Experience; Audrey, Annabelle’s bestie who sold the rights to Nebula-9 for $2.5 million after the murder; David, Audrey’s beau who made an unsuccessful pass at Annabelle the night she died; Simon, Annabelle’s “same time, next year” hook-up from the Con; and Stephanie, another Nebula-9 alum who was seen with the vic before she died.

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The outcome: Though David, and then Audrey, were looking good for the murder to the very end, a superficial hand burn left by the Thorian blaster prop outed Stephanie as the killer. The motive: If Annabelle sold the Nebula-9 rights, a TV reboot or movie would dredge up that cheesy role from the now “serious” actress’ past. But just as Steph pulled a blaster on Gabe, the erstwhile captain flipped her and disarmed her. With Castle, he recited the show’s motto — “May fortune guide your journey” — as the pretty perp was led away.

But really, “The Final Frontier” was more about the sci-fi nods (including but not limited to Beckett’s secret fandom for Nebula-9, though over the course of the hour she developed a distaste for some of its stars). Among the winks, and feel free to add your own observations:

* Castle director/Star Trek TNG alum Jonathan Frakes, as a Richard Castle superfan, collecting the author’s autograph — and Rick sighing, “How the mighty have fallen” as he walked away.

* Castle meeting the news of a murder at the ‘Con with “shiny”

* Castle declaring himself a fan of “good sci-fi” such as “Star Trek, Battlestar… that Joss Whedon show…”

* Apparently Castle has a life-size Boba Fett in his bathroom?

* Castle mimicking two Enterprise captains, Kirk and Picard.

* Alexis touring the ‘Con in an elaborate costume — much as her portrayer, Molly Quinn does, in real life.

* Deep Space 9‘s Armin Shimmerman as the designer of sci-fi replicas.

* Esposito responding to a Beckett request with “As you wish” (since The Princess Bride falls within the sci-fi/fantasy realm).

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The hour closed with Beckett not disillusioned by Stephanie’s arrest, saying, “She was never my idol; Lieutenant Chloe was,” as a woman who taught co-ed Kate that she “could be anything.” (Plus, she notes, “It doesn’t hurt that my legs looked great in that outfit.”) Then, with the promise that Rick would sit through a Nebula-9 marathon with her, Kate fulfilled his request for a bit of sexy cosplay fun… though Beckett capped the knockout Chloe outfit with an alien creature mask, unsettling Castle.

“Are we going to make out…?” she fretted, as William Shatner’s “Ideal Woman” played over the closing credits.

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What was your favorite part of “the Final Frontier”?

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  1. ollie says:


  2. Alyssa says:

    All the Firefly references I caught:

    Ariel, “shiny”, Creavers (like Reavers), “that Joss Whedon show”, cancelled for a decade, 12 epsiodes, Captain Max’s gunflip (Mal did that a lot), discussion on reboot to series, and buying rights of the show (often discussed by fans).

    Did I miss anything? :)

  3. SVUnCI says:

    Never watched Castle a day in my life, but when I saw the promo during 666 Park Ave I was most definitely going to watch tonight, just for the scifi theme. (And it also helped that Revolution was preempted by the Saints game tonight)

  4. Cecilia Martin says:

    I have to agree with the first comment, everything, but, if I really have to pick one, it would be when Kate tells Castle why she loves Nebula 9 so much ans asked him not to make fun of it anymore, I love those very ral moments between them!

  5. Mari says:

    Really funny! I was laughing the whole time.

  6. April says:

    I need more Armin Shimerman in my life. He was delightful. His shop, his sales pitch… I was having Quark flashbacks in the best way.

  7. martina says:

    Oh my god, can I just say that the last scene caught me completely off guard? I was ready for a sexy Caskett moment but instead I was surprised by Beckett’s mask and found myself laughing on the floor for 10 whole minutes!

    Really amazing episode! kinda wished Beckett reacted a little bit more to Castle bringing up kids, though.

    • luli says:

      I thought the same thing about the kids, maybe they’ll bring up again that topic later on the season

      • Nichole says:

        Well, I did notice that she kept wearing her coat inside and when she wasn’t wearing it, she was holding it on her arm in front of her. Classic signs of a show trying to hide an actress’ pregnancy. Wouldn’t surprise me if the topic comes up very soon.

  8. Symce says:

    You missed out on a nod to Buffy (especially Nathan’s role in it) too, there was someone dressed up as Caleb (priest outfit) walking in front of castle/beckett around the 5;30-6 minute hallmark.

    • Eli says:

      Nice catch. Completely missed that.

    • Alichat says:

      I can’t seem to find that scene. I did notice the woman in the book signing line behind Beckett looked like Kaylee. Long sandy blonde hair and wearing a mechanics jumpsuit.

    • PPPG says:

      I felt when Castle said, “…. that Joss Whedon Show”, Kate should have said. I had a crush on the guy who played Xander.” then Nicholas Brendon. at a near by table, said “Cool! Nikki Heat had a crush on me!”. she walks off and says, “Guess the clever clown-ish type has always turned me on.”

  9. SVUnCI says:

    Just because of this episode I’m going to pop in my Serenity BluRay soon as I’m done watching these Saints press conferences.

  10. Kevin says:

    The only way this episode could’ve been better was if the killer was played by Katherine Heigl. The movie star who once starred on a sci-fi show, played by a movie star who once starred on a sci-fi show.

  11. Beverley Williams says:

    Hard to choose, there were so many! Nathan’s (bad) Picard imitation, Stana’s monologue about fandom; Stana’s facial expressions through all of it (she is a genius) and her fangirling over Captain Max… until she realizes he’s a complete jerk. All the Avengers references and the nifty costumes. It was a sci-fi convention, all right.

  12. DarkDefender says:


  13. eridapo says:

    I loved this episode. liked this episode because it never pretended to be something other than what it was… a cheesy salute to the fans of the sci fi genre.

    • eridapo says:

      What one can not deny about this episode is that it was a fun hour of television. I laugh so many times that I lost count, and my geek side went into overdrive. It was tongue and cheek. It was cheesy. It was geeky. It was a full on nerdgasm.

      • april-ann says:

        I totally agree! I actually really enjoyed this episode. Very well done, Castle. Purposely cheesy yes, but I never threw one single cheese doodle at my screen the entire time! (By the time Castle started, I was all out anyway, after having thrown every one of them at my screen during Gossip Girl, but even if I had some left I wouldn’t have thrown them at my Castle screen last night.)

  14. James says:

    Glorious. Marlowe didn’t have to do that, but he actually respects his fans to give them a love letter which makes him the coolest showrunner ever. what was with that only 12 episodes castle comment, Joss Weadon is going to be Pissseeed. nathan you aint gonna be in avengers two, luckily he saved himself so possible he can be an extra or ant-man lol. by the by seeing beckett totally geek out, so hot.

    • Alichat says:

      I think Castle was repeating some of the comments that have been said about Firefly….so in that moment, he was the Firefly bashing troll and Becket was the Browncoat. LOL! I’m sure Whedon saw the humor in it as well.

  15. guest says:

    omg, best episode EVER! “shiny” ! “only 12 episodes” (there was more..I geeked out a lot)so freaking awesome.

  16. wordsmith says:

    Am I crazy, or did Stana do the voice of the Nebula-9 ship computer?

  17. Shannon Quinn says:

    The ending was hilarious! Totally unexpected! That ship set was FRACKIN’ SOMETHING!!

    • Alan says:

      someone needs to save that and use it for an actual sci fi show, its better than some of the sets ive seen in the past

  18. Sara says:

    “* Deep Space 9‘s Armin Shimmerman as the designer of sci-fi replicas.”
    Fantastic episode!

  19. adam says:

    FIREFLY </3

  20. Julio says:

    Armin Shimmerman’s character was SO Quark-like, it was awesome. And loved the really subtle bit in Jonathan Frakes’ cameo, in which he said he was Richard Castle’s No. 1 … fan. (‘Cause Picard always called Riker “No. 1,” natch.)

  21. tvdiva says:

    I loved everything about the episode from Jonathan Frakes at the beginning (as the super fan) to Ed Quinn playing the egotistical Gabriel Winters. I miss Ed Quinn (Eureka/True Blood) and wish he would find a regular series again.

    • Alan says:

      it seemed like frakes was playing himself based on castle’s “how the mighty have fallen”, if so that makes it even more hilarious

  22. airhead says:

    it would have just made my day if the guy who made the weapons had a replica freeze ray.

  23. Lisa says:

    Great ep!!!! Will need to rewatch, lets say 10 times, to catch everything. My cross to bear I guess.

  24. Michelle says:

    Armin Shimmerman’s ‘Han shot first’ t-shirt… Loved it!

  25. Jim says:

    Ed Quinn needs a show! i miss Nathan Stark. may fortune guide his journey.

  26. Ashley says:

    So I know this is a tired rumor, but am I the only one who thought Stana looked pregnant during the hour? They never showed her without a coat or something in front of her stomach, except for one scene when they are walking through the convention and she really does look like she has a little belly. Not to mention while she was in the sexy outfit at the end you never see her face, so it could have easily been a stand-in. I am a super super loyal fan of Castle and I am not one of those who hops on the pregnancy train whenever someone puts on 2 pounds, but I really thought the camerawork and clothing choices were suspicious. Am I nuts?

    • She doesn´t look pregant to me at all! There was at least one scene when she had the coat buttoned and tied at her waist, and it was very marked… and in the final scene I´m sure it was her, seemed to it were her legs and hands:)
      And in last week´s episode, wich I believe was filmed next to this one, her stomach was absolutely flat:)

    • Andrea says:

      If you look at picures from the event at USC she did this weekend, she looks tiny!

    • Alan says:

      those were her legs, i would recognise them anywhere. good god that sounds creepy when i read it back

    • Nichole says:

      I wouldn’t say she looked pregnant, but I definitely noticed the clothing choices and camera angles. It looked like they were trying to hide a pregnancy. Time will tell.

  27. mdb says:

    The whole episode was fun & a great way to honor all us scifi fans. :) My favorite part of the episode had to be the end with Shatner’s “Ideal Woman”, talk about perfect way to close the episode. Well done Marlow, Frakes & crew!!! Hopefully Frakes will be back for more I love the way he directs.

  28. mia says:

    as a convention-going fangirl, I LOVED the episode. It really felt like a hommage to us and wasn’t making fun of fan culture like some other shows have done. Its definitely on par with the Psych episode at a con.
    I also loved how it showed Beckett as a fangirl and WHY she loved Lt Chloe. She really represented us .

  29. Raevin says:

    For the OLTL fans, we also had 2 Joey Buchanan’s on tonight’s episode – Nathan and Chris McKenna (played Simon).

  30. Amanda says:

    Don’t forget this was also the episode with two Joey Buchanans!!

  31. Andrea says:

    I really enjoyed this episode. It was so funny!! Season 5 just keeps getting better!

  32. Sam says:

    I also think Stephanie Frye was a nod to Kaylee Frye.

  33. Tom says:

    This is the kind of show Marlowe does best. I enjoyed the whole show. My only complaint is if you’re going to put Stana Katic in a sexy outfit, come up with something better than what was used. Seriously, that was the sexiest outfit you could find?

  34. Sierra says:

    If this was a sci-fi dedicated episode, then they completely ignored Doctor Who, which is disapointing.

    • Katie D says:

      I completely agree! That saddened me! All these amazing references and they couldn’t even make one doctor who reference? (Seriously, just stick a blue police box in the background somewhere. Or have Nathan say, “Bowties are cool!” Or something. Just a little love letter to whovians?! But I still loved the episode regardless.

  35. Only the unwashed masses and poseurs use the term ‘sci fi.’ It is science fiction or SF.

  36. Eli says:

    I guess I’m gonna have to be “that guy” again.
    Molly Quinn looked frakkin HOT tonight.

    • Alan says:

      finally found someone who posted that, i fully agree. ive got to wonder does she dress like that when going to cons in real life or is she a bit more reserved?

  37. Ange says:

    Did I also hear strains of the Star Trek theme song woven within the sound track? Loved it!

  38. Susan says:

    This episode was FANtastic! After last week’s show (which gave me nightmares), it was so good to be able to watch a truly enjoyable episode. Writing, direction, acting, sets – loved it!!

  39. M. says:

    I have to say it: I was disappointed.

    I’m not into sci-fi-shows, so maybe that’s the reason or maybe it was because of misleading & blown out of proportion spoilers by people who had seen the episode in advance. Can’t tell.

    My highlight though was Perlmutter. (And Ryan.)

    I’m looking forward to next week & hope that that will be my cup of tea again.

    • John says:

      That reaction may be why the episode didn’t do well in the ratings, people were given a lot of notice on the Con theme….

  40. Maria says:

    This Castle/Firefly/Nathan fan couldn’t be happier. Shiny, indeed!

  41. troop says:

    For all you Browncoats out there, don’t miss the 10 year firefly reunion special Sunday night on Sci channel

  42. KCC says:

    Great episode! Aside from the things mentioned above, I liked
    – when Javi accused Kevin of liking intellectual boring sci-fi like Gattica and 2001
    – when one of the witnesses would not speak English when he was being questioned
    – Beckett’s and Javi’s enthusiasm for Nebula 9

    Also, Audrey is on the SyFy show Alphas

  43. arial2 says:

    I expected (and liked) all the Firefly references, but loved Castle’s hopeful comment about “Cylon skinjobs?” and enjoyed Castle’s mumbled comment (in response to Jonathan Frakes fanboy) “How far they’ve fallen.” Really loved the Battlestar Galactica references. And I liked Nathan Fillion’s sense of humor/humility, going along with the “arrogant actor as Captain Max” portrayal. And now I have to research Armin Shimerman’s “Han shot first” t-shirt. The cantina or all the other times? ; )

    • Alan says:

      how do you not know about “han shot first”, massive amounts of nerd rage have been expended due to it. it even has its own wikipedia article

  44. Elle says:

    Loved the episode. Great to see Beckett as the “geek”. The entire cast was o funny.

    Gotta say that NF is just so great with these episodes.

  45. purplelizard says:

    Any show that, within the first 10 minutes, has a cameo by Jonathan Frakes, uses the term “shiny”, and refers to Joss Whedon by name, is bound to be amazing!! Loved it all!!

  46. Tracy Sims says:

    Jonathan Frakes telling Castle he’s his #1 fan.

  47. Sheldon W. says:

    That was the shiniest!

  48. Rain says:

    I was so excited when I heard they were doing a convention episode, and I have to say it didn’t disappoint! Def. going to have yet another Firefly marathon this weekend!!

  49. Castlerock says:

    It was great, unlike the fan stuff Supernatural does, which is hugely disrespectful and sneering of fandom. And the Han Shot First shirt stole the show for me!

  50. taliesin says:

    Castle works best when the shows are relatively serious and the humor comes from Castle and how we looks at things; rather then Castle and Beckett being in zany situations. The show is losing its edge because it’s constantly trying to be funny now rather then a crime drama with a humorous character in it.

    Let Castle be what it is: a cop show were the non-cop is funny and is in love with the cop. The shipper moments are the same whether they’re a couple or almost a couple, but the drama in the background is quickly drifting away this season. Bring back the drama and maybe we’ll come back from Revolution and H5O.

    • Alan says:

      constantly trying to be funny, huh? so last weeks was laugh a minute then?

      • taliesin says:

        Look at the season as a whole. One dark episode does not a season make. And when I said drama that doesn’t mean dark. Look at the episodes in seasons 1 through 3. They were primarily drama with Castle bringing comedy to lighten the situation. The original 3xk, all Beckett’s mother episodes. They were drama. The foundation Castle was built up was drama, with some Ric Castle humor. Big chunks of season 4, and now season 5, are about putting them into funny situations and trying to let them both be funny. That’s really not what the show was about in its heyday. Focus on the drama and you’ll see the ratings start to go back up. How long will Castle last as the #3 show for its time slot?