Not long into Castle‘s Season 8 premiere, viewers will learn what Kate Beckett decided about her career, having been courted to run for the New York state senate just as she passed the NYPD captain’s exam.
But if you can’t wait another seven weeks, the ABC drama’s new showrunners are here to resolve that small mystery. By sharing that — spoiler alert! — you may now address Rick’s missus as Captain Kate Beckett.
“At the end of the day, we came into this season wanting to shake things up,” new co-showrunner Alexi Hawley told TVLine at ABC’s Television Critics Association press tour party. “The show has been doing a great job with what’s its been doing, but now we’ve been given an opportunity to really sort of add some energy into it” — in part by putting Beckett (played by Stana Katic) in the captain’s office, but also by introducing both a new series regular (The Neighbors‘ Toks Olagundoye, as security specialist Hayley Shipton) and a recurring player (The Walking Dead’s Sunkrish Bala, as tech analyst Vikram Singh).
Terence Paul Winter, Castle‘s other new showrunner, said that having Beckett run for office is “something we absolutely considered, and it’s not like it’s off the table.” But for the foreseeable future, it is. Because in deciding Beckett’s career path, “What we realized is that the best way to tell Castle‘s stories is to have Castle investigating twisty, fun cases. And the best way to do that is to keep Beckett in the precinct.”
That said, promoting Beckett to captain could mean dialing down her time spent working cases firsthand, alongside Rick on the streets of New York City. And that could threaten to “shake things up” for a couple whose bond was born of the writer/muse relationship.
“The important thing to say about [Rick and Kate] is that the show has always been and will always be about their love affair,” Hawley attests. “But we’re looking to add some drama to it, some spark to it. We’re going to have fun. It’s going to be emotional at times, it will be romantic…. It will be everything.”
Castle Season 8 premieres Monday, Sept. 21 at 10/c.