Fall TV Preview

Castle Shocker: Penny Johnson Jerald Not Returning for Season 8

Castle Exit Penny Johnson Jerald

When Castle returns for Season 8, at least one familiar face will be missing from the 12th.

An ABC spokesperson confirms that Penny Johnson Jerald, who joined the procedural in Season 4, will not be returning as Captain Victoria Gates.

TVLine hears from sources that Jerald’s exit is one of several creative tweaks that Castle will be making for Season 8, under new co-showrunners Terence Paul Winter and Alexi Hawley.

In a message posted via Twitter, Jerald said, “To my Castle fans around the world, as of late yesterday I am surprised and saddened to learn that I will no longer be a part of the Castle family. Thank you all for your support and love. Hugs from PJJ.”

Possibly, maybe, perhaps laying the groundwork for Gates’ departure: In the Season 7 finale, it was revealed that Beckett had “aced” her captain’s exam — while she also fielded an overture to run for the New York State Senate.

Prior to her four-season run as “Sir,” Jerald’s TV credits included NCIS, October Road, The 4400, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and, of course, 24, where she played fierce First Lady Sherry Palmer.

Want more scoop on Castle, or for any other show? Email insideline@tvline.com and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Laura says:

    Knee-jerk assumption: Beckett takes over as Captain? Can’t be that quick, can it?

    Either way, pretty bummed about this :(

    • Just one thing says:

      The notion of Beckett going straight from detective to captain is so very preposterous. I cannot take that creative decision seriously, if that’s how it goes down. Lame.
      Sorry to see Johnson Jerald go. :-(

      • GREGO366 says:

        A detective bypasses the rank of Sergeant and goes straight to Captain? Oh, well. Too often ‘Hollywood’ forgets that viewers are very often more realistic than writers.

        • Laura Odjebati Dunstan says:

          The thing you CLEARLY don’t understand is that Beckett is a Lieutenant. Remember in the 70’s episode where she was in charge of the precinct when Gates was out of town? That would only happen if she was a Lieutenant the rank directly under department Captain. CLEARLY the show hasn’t shown Beckett’s rank ascension from the grades of detective (there are three just so you know) because they are superfluous to the story. And despite being a Lieutenant, Beckett still does detect and investigate murders so it would make sense she would be addressed as ‘Detective’ maybe think of that before you go off HMMMMMM?

          • J.Norman says:

            Yes, your suggestion that Beckett has really been a Lt. for years without it ever being mentioned is perfectly logical. . . in the minds of writers looking for a shift in story line and in the minds of extreme fans.

            Oh well, it IS AFTER ALL a TV show

          • Kathy A says:

            Detective is not a title — it’s a rank. If Beckett were a lieutenant, she would have addressed herself as such, and would have been referred to that way, as well. And at that rank, she would have more responsibilities and more detectives reporting to her than just Javy and Ryan.

          • Kathy A says:

            Sheesh. Make that ‘introduced herself’ — my tea hasn’t kicked in yet.

          • Louis E. says:

            That they have never alluded to her being a Lieutenant,always Detective,indicates that she isn’t one.A Lieutenant Commanding Detective Squad is called Lieutenant,not Detective,and has a badge that SAYS Lieutenant…you won’t have found Kate flashing one.She is presumably a Detective First Grade,but just like Olivia Benson on SVU she would need to test to Sergeant before she could issue orders to any patrol officer,and then Lieutenant before Captain.

        • John NYC says:

          As some have mentioned: time jump. That can cover a lot of changes should the new PTB have other shifts in mind.

        • Tj says:

          It’s a fiction TV show…

          Not reality.

      • Laura Odjebati Dunstan says:

        The thing you CLEARLY don’t understand is that Beckett is a Lieutenant. Remember in the 70’s episode where she was in charge of the precinct when Gates was out of town? That would only happen if she was a Lieutenant the rank directly under department Captain. CLEARLY the show hasn’t shown Beckett’s rank ascension from the grades of detective (there are three just so you know) because they are superfluous to the story. And despite being a Lieutenant Beckett still does detect and investigate murders so it would make sense she would be addressed as ‘Detective’. That’s ot lame its realidtic. Just because its not shown on TV doesn’t mean Beckett hasn’t ascended through the ranks of her job.

        • Grey says:

          I’ve sort of assumed she’s already at the rank of Lieutenant too especially since she’s always been the lead detective to Esposito and Rayn. They’ve always been in a supporting roll to *her* investigations and taken orders from her as well as from Montgomery and Gates. And in real life (and yes, I know this isn’t real life) in some police stations people of different ranks are also detectives. Sergeants for example. It all depends on what works best for that precinct or city. Where I live often “regular uniform officers” function as homicide detectives. Also in the Nikki Heat Books, prior to the last one released, Nikki had made it to the rank of Lieutenant but was still functioning as a detective by choice so maybe Castle got that idea from Beckett’s *real life* situation.

          • Louis E. says:

            The NYPD has three grades of Detective,but even the most veteran Detective First Grade has less command authority than a just-promoted Sergeant.One can be a Sergeant or Lieutenant who commands detectives,or in a uniformed bureau,but if only a Detective one must go through the Sergeant and Lieutenant tests/ranks to get to Captain (and each rank change puts you in a different union on NYPD procedure as well as giving you a different badge).

          • CastleBuzz says:

            Louis E. is correct re the designation of detective grades and the command ranks in the NYPD. As a detective, Beckett would have to not only take the Sgt and Lt exams, but actively serve as Sgt and Lt, each for a designated period, before being eligible to take the Captain exam. BUT this is Castle we’re talking about so most realism goes out the window. If TPTB want Beckett to be a captain in Season 8, she will be a captain.

        • John NYC says:

          Then her shield will read “Lieutenant” and not “Detective” right above the number. Now we just need a closeup of her flashing her credentials.

      • Laura Odjebati Dunstan says:

        The thing you CLEARLY don’t understand is that Beckett is a Lieutenant. Remember in the 70’s episode where she was in charge of the precinct when Gates was out of town? That would only happen if she was a Lieutenant the rank directly under department Captain. CLEARLY the show hasn’t shown Beckett’s rank ascension from the grades of detective (there are three just so you know) because they are superfluous to the story. And despite being a Lieutenant Beckett still does detect and investigate murders so it would make sense she would be addressed as ‘Detective’. That’s ot lame its realidtic. Just because its not shown on TV doesn’t mean Beckett hasn’t ascended through the ranks of her job.

        • Guest says:

          Depending on the department you usually have from lowest to highest; officer, corporal, sergeant, lieutenant, captain (or assistant chief), and chief of police. When it comes to detectives there are, detectives, sergeant detective, and lieutenant detective

          • Cassie says:

            Detective is also an appointed position.

          • Louis E. says:

            in the NYPD the Patrol Officer,Sergeant,Lieutenant,and Captain ranks are achieved by testing.Detective Third,Second,and First Grade can be appointed from the Patrol Officer rank,while Deputy Inspector,Inspector,Deputy Chief Inspector,Assistant Chief,Bureau Chief,and Chief of Department are appointed from veteran Captains.
            A Detective First Grade still has to test to the other tested ranks in order to get to the command ranks…they can’t skip any tests.

        • cdhaskell says:

          I wanted to thank Laura for remaining me that Beckett is a Lieutenant and in her heart that she is a detective who love to solve crime and mystery. I am sorry that Penny Johnson Jerald won’t return as Victoria Gates in the 8th season. I can’t wait to see who will replace Gates in the 8th season.

          • Louis E. says:

            Laura made up an excuse…there’s no on-screen indication that Beckett is really a Lieutenant,she’s simply been shown doing what a Lieutenant would have to be doing if the showrunners cared about being realistic (which based on past treatment of the road on which I have lived since before the show creator was born,and the county I live in,they do not).

        • Just one thing says:

          They’ve never commented on Beckett getting a promotion. So, either she’s been at that rank since she was 30/31, when the show started, or they didn’t think it was necessary to address during the show’s run.
          Both concepts are lame.

        • John NYC says:

          Can you locate an image of her badge, 41319, which shows something other than “Detective”? I haven’t been able to.

      • doodle bug says:

        Sounds like the show “jumping the shark” to me!

    • hud says:

      WHO CARES ABOUT HER RANK? The entire premise of this show is satire. Really believe a police dept. would allow a writer to go to the lengths Castle does? Enjoy it for what it is, a group of pro’s working well together, witty banter, and the LOOKS, always the LOOKS.Beckett is fantastic, has come a long way since ep.1. Be grateful, another reality show around the corner.

      • Limoman181 says:

        Agreed! It’s a happy-go-lucky TV dramas.

      • I agree….why always looking for a little negative point, like hud says …..enjoy Castlee for what it is. Appreciate the fact we have a season 8 like I do.

        • SO says:

          Glad for season 8 & hope for more. Sad to see Gates go, but I wondered about this before. Beckett had to be Captain of the 12th or no Ryan or Espo. Why didn’t they just promote Gates somewhere else & still be in contact at times? Just a thought.

          • cece says:

            Agree I was reading a fanfiction story that had both Gates and Beckett as Captains
            only Beckett was heading a new unit it was Special Crimes and Gates still headed Homicide and Kate kept her team. This could work writers!

      • mike says:

        Agree as well. This show is funny smart. Don’t over analyze it. Just enjoy it.

      • Grey says:

        Well said Hud! Thank you! People analyze too much sometimes (myself included). It’s a freak’n TV show. Entertainment, a distraction from everyday life. Just enjoy it for what it is and if it’s no longer enjoyable for you there are literally hundreds of other channels and shows to chose from not to mention books, plays, and movies. If we all analyzed the things that are truly important in life the way we do this show we would all have wonderful jobs, no mortgages and credit card debts, and *perfect* relationships with friends and family. Relax and just enjoy the ride. LOL!

      • CastleBuzz says:

        Thank you, hud. Well said. People take every little detail of this show so damn seriously, it’s crazy.

    • Cheryl says:

      Beckett needs to become a senator and knock out three children and Castle needs to become a serious writer. I figure that’s the last episode or so in Season 8.

    • davej13 says:

      Not surprised PJJ is gone. She was used so little compared to Reuben Santiago-Hudson, the previous captain. Plus, Gates was written as a tough nut, so there was little room for her character other than being the bad guy.

      Regarding Beckett’s future, is all the stuff the guy “from the future” said going to come true? Beckett as a senator and Castle writing non-fiction – plus their 3 kids?

      If Beckett gets made captain, how does she still work cases? Maybe she declines the promotion and they have her work cases every other week while showing campaign episodes – or Beckett being pregnant – every other week.

    • nooooooooooooooooooooo. too soon for stana, too soon for penny to leave.

  2. Denise says:

    Can the next two creative tweak be making Beckett Captain and sending Alexis to Europe for her final year of college?

    • Telo says:

      I like this idea. Unless they can fix the dynamic between Alexis and Beckett to make it more organic, they can send Alexis off to a far place. We need more Martha/Beckett interactions. The relationships between the characters were the reasons I tuned into this show in earlier seasons. I hope they can bring back the fun yet grounded show like it once was. And please, we have had enough CIA involvements on the show.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        I would so much rather see more Martha than Alexis. I have nothing against the Alexis character, but she needs to grow up and grow away. Having not gone away for college, the girl needs to develop some independence if only off-screen. Let her come back for holiday visits like regular 21 or 22-year-olds do. As for Martha, Susan Sullivan and Stana Katic have such an incredible dynamic onscreen, I’d like to see more of it.

        • Jess says:

          I love Alexis! At 21, I was a caregiver of my grandfather and going to college, played an orchestra, and having a full time job outside of caregiving. I also spent a lot time with my family too. Yes I lived down at my grandparents but still I had my own independence, I could go to any event I wanted to go to. I went to many and I also brought along my grandpa from time to time. So having Alexis there, she is being a normal young adult. Not all young adults have to be across the country and doing a lot stuff. I love how her character has developed from season 1! We are lucky that the actress wants to still do her role. She young and got amazing talent, she could go anywhere. So let us be grateful she still wants to portray her character.

          So I hope there is more interactions with Castle’s family and Kate…especially if they are going to have be captain and running for senate. She will need strong family support. I hope this season we will see A LOT more of that. I’m sad that Captain Gates won’t be back, I liked her character. It took me awhile to like her but did like her. I also want to know when we might see Kate and Rick starting their own little family…or at least talking about it. Even if its half way towards the middle of the season. Most marry couples do talk about children. So there is a lot of creative points we can hopefully see with the next season.

          • Chloe says:

            I love Alexis, too. She’s smart, sweet & fully capable of keeping up with her slightly off-centered father [and I mean that in the nicest way]. I’d hate to see her leave.

            I’m sorry PJJ is being given the boot but not completely surprised. When Kate passed her captain’s exam, it only made sense that she would have to take over that precinct in order to keep the “gang” intact. But I’ll miss PJJ. She’s a great actress & I’ve been a fan since Sherry Palmer.

          • CastleBuzz says:

            Sorry, I didn’t mean to suggest Alexis should disappear completely. I just think if she weren’t in most episodes for a minute or two, she could be in a few eps for a bit longer with more of an impact. In other words, have a more meaningful role than she has had the past two years.

          • rftallent says:

            I preferred Alexis as a young teenager. She was always the smartest person in the room, and I loved to watch her keep Castle in line. I was disappointed that she went from sensible teen, to inviting Pi to stay over (in her father’s house). I know that people enjoy watching her grow up, but to me it felt rushed, and more like lazy writing.

    • mooshki says:

      How about send Beckett off to Europe and have Alexis become Castle’s partner in crime-solving?

      • Beckstle says:

        I know I shouldn’t feed the trolls, but sometimes they’re so much fun – so I’ll state the obvious. Considering the show is about Castle and Beckett this would be show suicide.

      • Telo says:

        I’ll throw you a bone. Since Beckett is now Mrs. CASTLE, they can kill off Rick and Alexis and still have the show called “Castle”.

        What a troll. Move along.

        • lkh says:

          You may be kidding, but I support this. :D

          • sam says:

            Yeah, do that and bring back Josh or the billionaire Eric Vaughn.
            Now those are two handsome men that would be complement long, lean Beckett and worth tuning in for to watch the interaction with Beckett. Speaking of eye candy, forget COTW or Captain or Senator.
            Castle acts like Beckett’s uncle anyway. .

          • CastleBuzz says:

            Sam says: “Castle acts like Beckett’s uncle anyway. .” ……………. I agree. The new show runners have got to light a fire under Nathan/Castle in the romance department. Stop telling us she’s the love of is life and show us for once…or twice…or thrice…

      • arial2 says:

        Chill y’all; I’m pretty sure it was meant to be humorous. I like Rick and Kate, but I like finding a laugh where I wasn’t expecting one. Thanks, mooshki.

    • Lizo says:

      Shh. I love Alexis. I want more Alexis/Kate scenes

      • John NYC says:

        Just after more Alexis Rick scenes, they do often used that character to ground Rick. Plus the two actors work well together.

        • CastleBuzz says:

          We’ve seen enough Alexis-Rick scenes. We know what they mean to each other. It’s time for the Kate-Alexis dynamic to be explored as well as the Kate-Rick-Alexis threesome.

    • Just one thing says:

      I suspect Molly Quinn is untouchable.

      • Cassie says:

        Too bad. It’s a contest between Alexis and Tory for the most obnoxious/annoying character of the show.

      • Jane says:

        Nah she’s not untouchable. No one is in the secondary dept. but I like Alexis, want her in the show, just would rather learn more about a budding Kate Alexis dynamic. Castle and Alexis are great but it’s not new or exciting or entertaining, it’s just the same thing for 7 years…but a Kate Alexis relationship will be new and exciting for viewers, so if they want to incorporate Alexis more, it should be with Kate IMO. I definitely think they’d attract more positive feedback instead of the constant negative feedback about Alexis and the Alexis hate would reduce, as that hate started with her uncalled for behaviour towards Beckett etc.

    • GREGO366 says:

      We Dads would rather have an intelligent, attractive Daughter remain at home (On Set) !

  3. Rick Katze says:

    She seemed to disappear near the end of the season so I am not totally surprised. But it does not open the show to a Beckett promotion to Captain since she is only a Detective and a double jump would be totally unreasonable.

    • rowan77 says:

      Except she took and aced the captain’s exam, which she never would’ve been allowed to take if she wasn’t eligible. Obviously, in the real world, she wouldn’t be eligible, considering she’s not even a lieutenant, but Castle is not based in the real world.

      • jahoney1 says:

        During the episode where they dressed up in 70’s style of clothing Gates was gone and Beckett was left in charge of the 12th. That would more than likely have made Beckett a Detective – lieutenant or a Sergeant of Detective squads. They more than likely never showed her promotions on the tv show.

        • Louis E. says:

          These promotions would have given her a new badge and a new title…they simply failed to be realistic,there is no sense making up excuses.

    • DarkDefender says:

      I could see them bring in the guy Beckett talked about who was in the academy with her.. Which prompted her to take the Captains exam. Could be a nice basis for conflict (ie: drama). Plus, Beckett told Cadtle at the swings she could be Captain of her own precinct “in as quick as a year” which I take as a Season 8 finale/Season 9 thing and not immediate (without a time jump).

      • John NYC says:

        I’d like that but the swings scene may have been written before the new brooms “decided to go in another direction” with Gates. Though another precinct and Aesop and Ryan are gone. And I wouldn’t like that.

    • Laura Odjebati Dunstan says:

      The thing you don’t understand is that Beckett is a Lieutenant. Remember in the 70’s episode where she was in charge of the precinct when Gates was out of town? That would only happen if she was a Lieutenant the rank directly under department Captain. CLEARLY the show hasn’t shown Beckett’s rank ascension from the grades of detective (there are three just so you know) because they are superfluous to the story. And despite being a Lieutenant Beckett still does detect and investigate murders so it would make sense she would be addressed as ‘Detective’. That’s ot lame its realidtic. Just because its not shown on TV doesn’t mean Beckett hasn’t ascended through the ranks of her job.

      • retsim says:

        For Gods sake ! we get the point.OK.Stop posting the same thing over and over .

      • Louis E. says:

        No,it is NOT realistic that a Lieutenant would be addressed as or introduce herself as Detective.Stop making excuses for the inaccurate pretense that a Detective would be allowed to do a Lieutenant’s job.

    • Louis E. says:

      It’s a triple jump (Sergeant,Lieutenant,Captain).Over on Law & Order SVU,Olivia Benson began the show as a Detective 3rd Grade,became 2nd Grade in Season 2,1st Grade by Season 13,a Sergeant in Season 15,and will start Season 17 as a Lieutenant.
      The Castle universe has less respect for reality.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        I wouldn’t say it has “less respect” for reality, just less need of reality. Castle is not trying to teach the world how the NYPD works for heaven’s sake. It’s for fun and entertainment. It has a completely different premise than the Law & Order franchise shows.

  4. i like her but this last season she wasn’t used as much and didn’t really stand out. hope to see her in an intriguing role next fall and i hope her replacement is an interesting actor or maybe Kate can be her replacement and Rick can work with Esposito, Ryan and someone new.

  5. lolo says:

    This actually saddens me, I liked her character and thought she did a great job portraying her. Too bad.

  6. S. says:

    This is sad. Penny’s so great and a kind person to her fans. It’s a shame she doesn’t get to say a goodbye. I assume it’s costs related. They can tell us it’s creative all they want but that’s probably ABC doing the talking. The writers would’ve written her off in grand fashion if it had been their idea. It’s not their m.o. to just have that kind of thing happen without thinking things through. They had an arc for getting rid of Pi for God’s sake. Alexi Hawley and TPW are making the best of a lower budget situation, I’m sure. Maybe we can have her guest star if that’s possible.

  7. twink says:

    I really liked her character. She was terrific. I will miss her.

  8. knd24 says:

    Not surprising they barely utilized her.

  9. leigh says:

    What? Wow. Just when I was getting used to Captain Gates. Nothing but the best to Penny. She will be missed.

  10. Julie says:

    Gonna miss ‘Sir’. She was a great addition to the Castle family. I want to wish her luck wherever she lands up doing next. Penny was great in 24 too.

  11. Kate says:

    This is too bad. I grew to really like her character, and she seems to really love the show and the fans! Care to share any of the other “creative tweaks” that are being made?

  12. Sad to hear this. I like the character and the actress. As many are probably wondering, could this be a clue that Beckett will take over as Captain?

    • John NYC says:

      More likely a clue they had to cut the budget. For Beckett to be as active as she is now they can’t drop her behind the captain’s desk.

  13. ScrubsGuy says:

    Not even bumped down to recurring…that is cold.

  14. Lysh says:

    Not all that shocking since it seemed she wasn’t making that many appearances last season. Although it seemed like she was fired, which is lame. I’m looking forward to however they write her out.

  15. Wendy says:

    If Beckett is Captain already, it’ll be ridiculous. How can one be Captain before, at least, rising to Lieutenant first? I know, I know. Castle has no basis in reality. But…it is still stupid, assuming Captain Beckett is the way this is going to go.

    • Laura Odjebati Dunstan says:

      The thing you don’t understand is that Beckett is a Lieutenant. Remember in the 70’s episode where she was in charge of the precinct when Gates was out of town? That would only happen if she was a Lieutenant the rank directly under department Captain. CLEARLY the show hasn’t shown Beckett’s rank ascension from the grades of detective (there are three just so you know) because they are superfluous to the story. And despite being a Lieutenant Beckett still does detect and investigate murders so it would make sense she would be addressed as ‘Detective’. That’s ot lame its realidtic. Just because its not shown on TV doesn’t mean Beckett hasn’t ascended through the ranks of her job.

      • Louis E. says:

        What you refuse to understand is that in presenting someone as being a Detective yet doing a Lieutenant’s job,the showrunners are simply disregarding reality.She has been INTRODUCING herself as “Detective” and showing a Detective’s badge while you pretend she has become a Lieutenant.

    • Grev says:

      We’ve never actually seen Beckett’s rank. She might already be a Sergeant or a Lieutenant. She clearly heads the homicide division of the 12th, so I’d assume she’s at least a Sergeant.

      • John NYC says:

        Hmm I wonder if her rank insignia would have been visible that day at the funeral when she was shot?

        • John NYC says:

          OR a closeup of herbage: which will have “Lieutenant”, “Detective: etc. on it right above the number.

          • John NYC says:

            In any I have seen badge 42319 has ” Detective” on it and not “Lieutenant”.

            Time for some suspension of belief. It’s entertainment television after all. Like George Lucas reportedly said about there being no sounds in space: Sure, but don’t they sound cool!

          • CastleBuzz says:

            Let’s suspend disbelief, OK?

          • John NYC says:

            Yes, that’s the conclusion I reached as well. Puzzles are fine and all but I don’t want to let them get in the way of my enjoyment of a fine show.

          • Louis E. says:

            Patrol Officer,Detective,and Sergeant badges have numbers,but Lieutenant and above do not…there is nothing below the rank title.

  16. abz says:

    Would probably never have even noticed. She’s barely apart of the show anyways and she wasn’t really a significant presence. The character said her two lines each episode (typically a question) and scolded someone (usually Castle) and that was it. I’m glad these new showrunners are making some changes. I enjoyed the supporting cast in the early seasons, however, for several seasons now I just don’t like or enjoy them as much and they are often annoying. And also episodes focused around them tend to be very weaking and boring. Now if they can replace Ryan and Esposito with some fresh actors/characters, season 8 might be something interesting to look forward to. I look at Grey’s as an example sometimes. Yeah, the show has its share of casting drama and still has an issue for a while with an over-populated casts, but they added many new characters several seasons into the show’s run that have become fan favourites (e.g., Lexie, April, Jackson, Arizona, etc.) and kept the show fresh. Castle has mostly stuck with this same supporting cast for so long. They are not that interesting. And characters like Tory and Gates who were added later in the show’s run do nothing for the show really other than serve their purpose of giving their lines about the case. I think the show needs a bit of a shake-up. Castle and Beckett of course have to stay and naturally so would Alexis and Martha (because they’re his family), but the rest of the characters should be fair game for removal IMO.

    • Beckstle says:

      I liked the dynamic between Gates and Beckett. I wish they’d keep her around because I liked that Kate had a female mentor/colleague to work with. On Tory though, I absolutely agree. I think the actress is a lovely person, but there’s no point for her character being there at all. Ryan and Esposito were covering her job tasks just fine.

      We need Martha, not just because she’s Castle’s family, but she now serves as someone who can talk to Castle or Beckett when there’s an issue or dispute between them – and she’s fabulous comic relief. Really, she’s just fabulous – and she adds a dynamic to the show that’s irreplaceable. However,Alexis can leave for a university in a state or country far, far, away – and come home for the family holiday episodes. Castle and Beckett can still talk about what she’s doing without her being there and we know Castle adores his daughter. A few episodes a season with loving scenes between Alexis and Castle, plus a couple with the Castle, Beckett, Martha and Alexis and it’s all good. That’s a guest cast role. At the 12th I love Ryan and Esposito. Ryan in particular has a strongly build character and interesting relationships with Castle and Beckett. Lanie needs to be there because Beckett needs an ally that’s not connected to Castle. Plus you need a M.E. for a murder-mystery show – for obvious reasons..

      • abz says:

        I agree that Martha is a funny character and I don’t hate Alexis as much as many others do, but yeah they can begin using those characters as guest stars. They don’t need to be in every episode. And while I like the loving relationship Castle has with Martha and Alexis, one thing the show could do is work more on actually portraying more of a relationship between Beckett and Martha/Alexis now that she’s been a member of the family……The problem with many of the things you wrote about the other characters, however is that the show isn’t effective at portraying them. Gates had her purpose when she was first brought on creating conflict for Castle and Beckett has a good relationship with her, but it’s never really shown well. From the writing, you can’t really see Gates as a mentor. She’s just Beckett’s boss and colleague and they’ve come to like each other. Yes, you need an M.E. for this type of show, but whenever Beckett refers to Lanie as her best friend, I have to roll my eyes, because they never show it. In seven seasons, I can recall few moments between them as friends. All Lanie does is fulfill her purpose as M.E. They rarely show moments between Beckett and Lanie, like going out for drinks, talking on the phone, etc. So they can have Kate say that Lanie is her best friend and ally or whatever, but that doesn’t mean much. I personally can no longer stand Ryan. I just find his character annoying and nosy and Esposito is just a douche a lot of the time. I would love for them to be replaced or have Beckett moved to a new precinct. Bring on some fresh meat to the show. It definitely needs a significant shake-up from cast, writing, format, everything, otherwise, I really don’t see it going beyond the next season.

    • GREGO366 says:

      Dear abz, you’d be better understood if only 1 or 2 items were addressed.

      • abz says:

        When it comes to commenting on this site, I’ve learned to just type out whatever I want to comment about because chances are I won’t be able to comment or reply again sometimes because the site will just eat up my comments or tell me there is a duplicate comment when my comment never actually shows up. Aside from that, I don’t think my comment was difficult to understand.

  17. M says:

    This sucks… I love PJJ!!!

  18. Telo says:

    Actually, now that I think back to one of the Nikki Heat books, Heat passed on the promotion to be captain because it’d take her out of the field. I hope that if Beckett is to become captain, we’ll get to see as much of her as when she is a detective, not less.

    • leigh says:

      In the new book Nikki Heat is Captain. And if Beckett is made Captain it may allow for Stana Katic to have some time to address issues in her personal life. She did just get married and may want to start a family. It is hard to play a role like Beckett if she were to start a family in real life. I’m not saying that’s the reason for Penny to be let go but it is a practical reason. She will be missed.

  19. m3rcnate says:

    Shes alright (hard to look at her and not see the 24 character who i hated like she was Cersei Lannister) but i am happy with this move. She was no where NEAR close to as awesome as Captain Montgomery.
    My question is; If Beckett becomes the Captain, doesn’t that hurt the show? How can you put her at Captain and keep her and Castle investigating murders? That position is basically a desk job so its hard for me to imagine her getting that job. Then again its hard for me to imagine with what they have setup (Beckett advancing her career, most likely politics) she will still be a detective in season 8.
    In regards to characters they need to find something to do with, Alexis is a huge one. Her only connection on the show is her father, and she isn’t 16 years old anymore she is a grown woman who should be moved out, working or in college. So her hanging out at her dads loft as he is newly married is kinda weird….find something for her to do. Get her an interning job at the department or working for Beckett’s campaign or SOMEthing that involves her heavier in the show. Technically they could get her more involved by having her have a BF that’s serious that she gets engaged to but it would kinda suck for her to be more involved with the show just because of her love life. (would be cool if the BF/fiancee was a new young cop/detective so she had that connection to the department).

    • Qwerty says:

      She’s in college and she did intern at the morgue in the department. Although I do agree, her character doesn’t seem to have much of a purpose anymore. I would like to see her stay on the show but only if they can come up with a meaningful purpose for her.

    • abz says:

      I agree about giving her some purpose or something significant to do or maybe using her as a guest star altogether (she doesn’t need to be in every episode), but she’s still in college. Many people live at home while going to college. It’s not something new. And also that loft is her home too. Just because her father is newly married doesn’t mean she has to be kicked out or feel uncomfortable. She’s still young and in school. Beckett is her new step-mom. She should feel comfortable around her and being in her own home.

      • m3rcnate says:

        Lol what 20 year old girl wants to be at home when her young father who is newly married to a smokin hot woman who he had the super hots for YEARS for there too? What i meant by them being newly married is a 20 year old is going to want to give them space (especially in a NY apartment, thats a huge place relative to NY but if that was a house outside the city that would be medium-to-small sized).
        Besides she is a beautiful single 20 year old woman in NYC (born into money, in a prestigious college)…you really think she’d be home much?
        I’d like to either see her guest star when they need her, or give her a real story line that makes her character’s purpose meaningful and impactful to the season. A new detective BF? A part time job at the police department? helping Beckett’s election campaign or if we pick up with her having won, working for Beckett at the Governors office? SOMEthing more than her just randomly walking up to her dad at night and asking him how hes doing.

        • abz says:

          Well I mean, it’s not like we see her at home all the time and the majority of the times we see her from what I recall (aside from episodes like the plane one where she played a larger role) are typically in the morning as a lot of the episodes often start in the mornings. Everyone’s eating breakfast or on their way out. I don’t think she’s home much, it’s probably just that that’s the only time we get to see her because the show insists on keeping her, but they’re not going to start an Alexis’s adventures arc showing her in class or hanging out with friends and a whole perspective of her own. It’s through Castle and Beckett’s perspectives mainly and that how we see her usually. Castle sees her in the morning before she leaves or speaks with her on the phone or sees her at night when everyone’s home. Typical dad interaction with daughter still living at home while in school. But yeah I agree, they should start showing her doing other, more interesting stuff like what you mentioned if they insist on keeping her. I think she and Martha should be guest stars as needed and the show should bring some fresh new interesting characters to fill a void if need be

        • AnnieC says:

          I agree m3rcnate. Alexis still living at home when we all know she has the means to afford her own place is ridiculous. The entire “there are too many adults living in the loft” and Alexis “how do I find my passion” speech last season should have resulted with Alexis moving out and getting her own life. A 20-something with money and a newly remarried father would want to get out of the loft.

          • m3rcnate says:

            Exactly. What 20 year old who is attractive, “rich”, and in college wants to hang around home with her newly married father? She would be out with friends doing stuff. Yeah the “idk what i want to do, i want to find my passion” thing was “meh”…hopefully they have her find that passion in the next season and that is her story-line.

  20. DarkDefender says:

    Sad to see her go, but creatively it makes perfect sense. She was brought in to be antagonistic to Castle and by the end of season 7 she was definitely on his side. Conflict done, character purpose done. My guess is now a new Capt. will become a Beckett conflict.. And we will see the boys and whomever they cast as the new Capt. in less conflict with Castle.

    • DarkDefender says:

      P.S. I am excited at the idea of a creative shake-up.. It is usually a sign of trying to bring life back into a show (for a continued run) versus a kind of “final send off” in ending a series. Let’s hope they get it right.. And bring back all the elements that made Castle a great show.

      • Matt says:

        Ya but it feels like they might be gutting out the show people love caskett and how will it work is she’s a captain or a senator

  21. Kate says:

    Should we read into it that the article says “at least” one familiar face will be missing? I wonder if there are more announcements still to come…

  22. Lori says:

    I’m going to miss her.

  23. Betisa says:

    Sad news but I agree with the decision TPW and AH made. Peeny is a great person but the show needs a stronger character and an antagonist in the precinct.

  24. K says:

    I was expecting Susan or Tamala to leave not Penny. We barely saw Penny in season 7, but she will be missed. I am thinking that Beckett will be captain

  25. GeoDiva says:

    You figured someone had to be sacrificed to pay for the new contracts.

  26. CastleBuzz says:

    Not surprised but a bit sad. I was hoping Beckett would choose the captaincy route instead of the political one and that the first few episodes at least would cover the transfer of power at the 12th from Gates to Beckett — a promotion for Gates to, say, Deputy Chief of Detectives and lots of mentoring of Kate before she moved on. Guess that won’t be happening. Since Jon and Seamus have been re-signed, I doubt there’ll be a huge shake-up of taking the action completely out of the precinct so I’m predicting there’ll be a bit of a time jump to explain the changes and the season will start with Beckett as Captain.

    • Louis E. says:

      Just as a Captain is three test grades above any Detective,a Captain is below a Deputy Inspector,which is below an Inspector,which is three ranks below the Chief of Detectives.
      These wild jumps don’t square with a realistic portrayal of the NYPD,I find the show lacking in respect for reality.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        So you have said repeatedly and I agree you’re correct in real life NYPD. BUT Castle has NEVER been realistic so why start now? I used Deputy Chief of Detectives only b/c it has been mentioned before on the show, whereas the Inspector ranks never have been. These petty details shouldn’t really matter when it comes to being entertained by this show. If they do matter to you, you need to find something else to watch.

        • Louis E. says:

          The show doesn’t gain anything by not caring to get details right.
          So do you expect me to watch Blue Bloods,which is letting a newly minted Lieutenant function as if he were Chief of Department?

  27. Mike Q says:

    Further justifying my decision to stop watching and treat the season finale as the series finale.

  28. LadyG says:

    To be honest, and no offense to PJJ, I never felt her mesh with the cast. I don’t know if I want Beckett to be the captain but Penny just never worked for me.

  29. nathan says:

    Always thought it was stupid for the writers to call her “‘Sir.” So stupid and useless. Even the military says “Mam ” for women leaders. This show should be cancelled. The story lines are
    not very good.

  30. Matt says:

    Neither captain or senator for Kate works for the show the heart of the show is Beckett and castle solving cases together

  31. Jooshua says:

    I think Beckett will have ended up suggesting Gates for the New York State Senate run. Having an incorruptible Gates as a Senator, Beckett takes over as Captain, and now has even more political support in case she decides to run at a later date.

    Although, I would love to see a season of Beckett running for Senator, could be interesting.

  32. Steve says:

    Send Alexis out of the country and say she found her calling there. Please!!! Get rid of her and her little girl tantrum antics. If I ever talked to my Dad the way she talks to hers I wouldn’t be alive to write this comment.

  33. Penny Johnson Jerald also had a recurring role in Star Trek: Deep Space 9, as Kasidy Yates, who is wooed by Captain Benjamin Sisko (Avery Brooks), beginning in season three.

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Sorry, that was in my head and I meant to include it, but… it was nearing midnight/I was on fumes. Added!

  34. arial2 says:

    I like the dynamic between Kate and Captain Gates (although I’ve always found the “call me sir” thing grating and demeaning; even the military doesn’t do that), and will miss PJJ.

  35. Ron says:

    Loved Penny as Captain Cisco’s girlfriend in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

  36. April Moisant says:

    Sorry to see you go (Sir).

  37. Marc says:

    “Shocker”? That’s a bit extreme. Farming out headline writing to the New York Post?

  38. Debbie Schnackenbeck says:

    Hey Penny was in Star Trek DS9,they forgot about that show,how rude

  39. Alex says:

    Who takes a decision like this ? ABC or TPW/Hawley ?
    Sad for Penny because she seemed to really loved working on Castle but Gates wasn’t even used so …
    I don’t know what to think about Beckett being captain, I hope this doesn’t mean she will be stuck at the precinct while Castle is out there doing his things. We’ve just had a season like that, not a second please.

  40. 4theloveoffilm says:

    Bummer. I like Iron Gates. She grew on me and on the team over the seasons, and re-watching episodes like the one in which Rick gives her a rare figurine and then proceeds to destroy it and another one she owns makes me wish they had used her more. A Gates-centric episode would’ve been nice. We didn’t get to know her as well as I would have liked. Good luck to Penny on landing another gig and soon.

  41. Facts are tricky things. says:

    Sherry Palmer was never the First Lady on “24.” David Palmer divorced her after his election and before his inauguration.

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Oh, you totally busted me, Facts Are Tricky Things! I will endeavor to do better next time.

  42. Missy says:

    Penny was fantastic! And she will be missed.

    Totally surprised by this news

  43. trishtlc says:

    Get Back to the original murder-solving! Don’t bring in politics because you just know they will be Democrats! Ugh! Let’s just have a good story line. And keep them in the precinct. The two guys NEED to STAY!!! Espo and Ryan need to have more this year. They are a great duo otherwise let’s have a spin off with those two. Their chemistry as partners is perfect! And NO Beckett shouldn’t be a captain either. Just back to basics guys!!!

  44. Not a shock, she was appearing in less and less episodes.

  45. NotAnselAdams says:

    Come on, Matt — how could you possibly neglect to mention Ms. Jerald’s fabulous work on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine as Captain Sisko’s intelligent, strong-willed and wonderful romantic interest Kasidy Yates??

  46. Holly says:

    This is sad but given how she was not really used last season, I’m not really surprised. Also as much as I like Gates and PJJ did a fantastic job, Montgomery will always be my captain. I was upset we lost him way more than gates going.

    Also didn’t Beckett say that she was told she could have her own precinct in a year? So I highly doubt she’s taking over per se, maybe more of a training ground with a visiting captain of sorts. My only issue would be, if they pursue the captain route for Beckett, how is she gonna be working cases on the field? Because anything can change but ABSOLUTELY NOT the dynamic and premise of the show- castle and Beckett solving crime. They’ve got to investigate together. S6 saw a lot of separation which had me tuning out halfway almost 2/3 of the season. No more of that for christs sake.

    I did enjoy the girl power camaraderie of Beckett and gates and will miss that. Hoping for more interactions with Beckett and Martha, another strong dynamic.

    Alexis needs to not be such a bore. She needs to be a regular teen. Go partying, have a bf, talk about her university, cook with Kate and Rick…something, anything…just NOT solve crime. That was an eye roll and a half.

    Personally I’d love to see Beckett pursuing politics but it’s tricky for the writers because she’s also got to be working with castle. I’d so watch a spin off with Beckett being a senator and castle writing a political thriller. So he shadows her still but a completely different setting.

    Anyway I hated the Sir thing too but Penny is a good actress and I wish her the best.

    • Louis E. says:

      Actually I want to see a murder where Alexis is directly involved…witness or expert (say the victim is killed Havacura style) or even suspect.
      I certainly hated the calling-a-female-Sir.

  47. Lizo says:

    WHAT?!!?? I love Captain Gates. Also, let’s not overlook PJJ’s work on Star Trek Deep Space Nine, lol where she played a Captain of a different kind.

  48. Dan says:

    I guess someone needed to go to shake things up and it’d have to be a supporting character. They got rid of Monty to progress the show, so they’re doing it again. I’m extremely interested to see where they take Beckett next season. But yes I agree with the sentiment that whatever route they take, captain or senator, it’s crucial that Beckett and Castle are a team investigating crime. That has to be present first and foremost. That is the bread and butter of the show. Caskett.

    Could it be that they had to cut out a supporting role to cover Nathan and Stanas new contract. Pretty sure both are making a tonne more so you never know. Either way, Gates wasn’t as memorable to me as Monty was so I’m not particularly perturbed by this. Wish Monty would come back somehow.

  49. Nancy Anne says:

    I realize what a dramatic story the Manson murders were. However, this person does not deserve any more minutes of fame by being memorialized in a television series. I think this series is inexcusable!

  50. Harry says:

    Hhmm well ok then. Though if they were gonna cut out a secondary character, couldn’t it have been Alexis? Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike her at all, I just don’t see a point for her. She works better as a guest star coming in periodically. Would love to see more Kate Martha scenes and if they wanna involve Alexis more, then I’d prefer it to be with Kate…not castle. Kate Alexis scenes are rare but would make for more compelling storytelling. It’s already established from the pilot that castle and Alexis have a great parent child relationship, so really it’s not new or interesting or even compelling to watch them…however Kate and Alexis relationship? Now that would be fun, and interesting and very much compelling…seeing how they bond and grow and work around any issues.