Fall TV Preview
Fall TV Spoilers

Castle Bosses Talk Season 8, Reveal How a Scheduling Issue Was a 'Blessing in Disguise' That Begat 'Great Mystery'

Change is coming to ABC’s Castle.

For one, Kate Beckett (played by Stana Katic) is an NYPD detective no more. In turn, as revealed in promos, Nathan Fillion’s Rick is dipping his toe back into the private eye waters. There are also new faces in the mix, including The Neighbors alum Toks Olagundoye as a former Scotland Yard officer who gets pulled into Caskett’s world.

With the Season 8 premiere (airing Monday, Sept. 21 at 10/9c) right around the corner, TVLine presents its complete Fall Preview Q&A with new co-showrunners Alexi Hawley and Terence Paul Winter.

TVLINE | What all are you revealing about Kate’s career choice? Are you confirming that she is now captain of the 12th?
ALEXI HAWLEY | I think we can say that. At the end of the day we came into the season wanting to shake things up — partly because it’s Season 8 and while the show has been doing a great job at what’s it’s been doing, we’ve been given an opportunity to add some energy into it. We want to simplify the cases a bit so we can spend more time getting into our characters. And it’s across the board — it’s Alexis, it’s Ryan and Esposito, it’s Martha, it’s the new characters coming in, [played by] Toks [Olagundoye] and Sunkrish [Bala]…. And then of course you have Castle and Beckett. The important thing to say bout them is: The show has always been and will always be about their love affair, but we’re looking to add some drama to it, some spark to it. So we’re going to have fun. It’s going to be emotional at times, it will be romantic, it will be everything.

TVLINE | Was Kate instead making a senate run anything you ever considered? Like,Castle Finale Beckett Senator maybe she can stay detective and pursue that on the side?
TERENCE PAUL WINTER | It’s something we absolutely considered, and it’s not like it’s off the table. It might come back somewhere down the line, but don’t think it’s going to come back anytime soon. Ultimately what we realized is the best way to tell Castle’s stories is to have Kate and Castle investigating twisty, fun cases, and the best way to do that is to keep her in the precinct, focusing on that.

TVLINE | Meanwhile, what’s going on with the boys?
WINTER | It’s a very interesting story with the boys. After seeing Beckett ascend the ranks, Ryan and Esposito (Seamus Dever and Jon Huertas) are realizing maybe it’s time for them to start looking upwards with their career. But in doing so, they start to butt heads a bit, so the two at times get a bit at odds — but in a fun way.

TVLINE | Well, there was that beat the show played last season during Castle’s disappearance. They were almost being pissy JON HUERTAS, SEAMUS DEVERwith each other as they took sides believing Rick or not.
WINTER | And you’re going to see a little more of that. Again, the dynamic between those two has always been “two brothers,” but we’re playing them at odds with each other and having fun with that. Ultimately it’s all out of love, but… There’s a little trouble in paradise.

TVLINE | Anything on the personal front for either of them?
HAWLEY | Ryan’s family is expanding — Jenny is expecting again — so he needs to make more money, all that kind of stuff, and that pressure will be driving him a bit.

TVLINE | And what’s going on with Lanie (Tamala Jones) and Espo these days?
WINTER | That’s a good question. We’ve got to figure that out. They’ve been on again/off again and we need to figure out what’s the honest next evolution in their relationship.
HAWLEY | We haven’t landed 100 percent on what we want that to be. We’ve gone back and forth as to whether there’s life in that story or whether there’s a different phase. That’s where that is.

TVLINE | What do you want to say TOKS OLAGUNDOYEabout Hayley Shipton, the character being played by new series regular Toks Olagundoye?
WINTER | I’m not going to say she’s a “game changer,” because that’s a cheesy thing to say, but she brings such a fantastic adrenaline shot to the show.
HAWLEY | What’s nice about her and Sunkrish [who’s recurring as tech analyst Vikram Singh] is that their characters, they’re voices we don’t have on the show, so it will give it us some new energy. At the end of the day Toks is playing an independent investigator who gets brought into the [season-opening] two-parter and will play a recurring role sort of helping out with cases along the way.

TVLINE | What’s going on with Alexis (Molly Quinn) this season?
HAWLEY | The exciting thing with Alexis this season was growing her up. Up until now, she has played more of child than a grown up, but she is a grown up, she’s in her early 20s at this point, so it felt like an opportunity for us to have a new relationship with her and Castle, to see her in a different light. We’re definitely presenting her as a young woman as opposed to a child, and there’s fun in that.

TVLINE | And she might see in Hayley a mentor?
WINTER | Absolutely. That’s one of the things we’re going for. This is a different kind of energy [than Alexis and onetime mentor Lanie] because Hayley is much different from Lanie. Hayley is going to help Alexis kind of find herself as she goes into adulthood. It’s an exciting new dynamic that these two have. The scenes we’ve already shot with those two together…. It’s magic, it really is.

TVLINE | Is Martha (Susan Sullivan) still in the loft?
WINTER | No, she’s not! But she’s definitely verrrry much part of Castle’s life. Don’t think that just because she’s moved out, got her own place and is doing well on Broadway, we’re not going to see her sharing her wisdom with her favorite and only son.

TVLINE | What can you reveal about the challenges facing Rick and Kate early in the season? Stana has hinted at “shifts” that set up a “high-velocity” Season 8.
HAWLEY | What we can say about it is that, as a character, Kate Beckett spent her entire adult life obsessed with solving her mother’s murder. STANA KATIC, NATHAN FILLIONAfter that was put to rest, she tried to go on and live as if she could just close that door and not be that person anymore. And what we’re seeing at the beginning of this season is that that obsession, that part of her DNA, is still there, so she needs to deal with that in a way that impacts their relationship.

TVLINE | Stana of course was shooting a movie deep into the summer. Did her late availability steer at all the “dual perspectives” structure of the two-part season premiere? [Katic post-taped her scenes for the Castle-centric Part 1.]
HAWLEY | It did, but it actually ended up being a real opportunity. It allowed us to sort of bookend her in the first episode (which is titled “XY”), create a great mystery of “What’s going on with Beckett?” that ultimately pays off in the second episode (“XX”) in a big way.

TVLINE | The premiere in that respect has a Rashomon-like quality, exploring a mysterious series of events from multiple perspectives.
HAWLEY | Yeah, though for us what’s great is you set up the mystery of what the hell has she been doing, and then you get to go back and watch it happen, and it’s not exactly what you thought. So yeah, [the timing] was a blessing in disguise.
WINTER | It’s fun when little things like that force you to become more creative, and it ultimately paid off with dividends. Because the two-parter, we’re really proud of what we did with this thing. It’s going to be delightful.

VIDEO: Castle‘s Nathan Fillion Talks
Season 8 Rick/Kate: ‘Things Have to Change’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vP9IRjpVK74

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!

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195 Comments
  1. Big Mike says:

    Let me get this straight. They wanted to SIMPLIFY the cases?!? Oooookay……

    • Just one thing says:

      I think they mean that the entire episode’s arc/trajectory won’t solely be driven by the COTW.
      .
      One of the major issues I had with Castle from Seasons 5-7 is that they seemed to have a boatload of story to tell, both on the case side and the character side, and the character story was always sacrificed in favor of a (weakly developed) case.
      .
      I have a hard time believing they’ll dial back on that as much as some people would like – myself included. But even five more minutes devoted to character development would be appreciated. Better late than never.

      • Brad says:

        Yup boring cases and less interesting character story’s

        • Just one thing says:

          I guess we just have differences of opinion on what’s boring.
          .
          There are 43 dramas out there, mostly on CBS, that are high on case and lite on character. I’m fine if Castle stops relying on subtext to tell their character stories.

          • Brad says:

            I mean I want character stories I just more them two not less and not for the other characters

          • Just one thing says:

            Brad, buddy… I’m with ya and so are millions of people worldwide. I think. But I think it’s time we let it go.

      • lkh says:

        I agree with you JOT, but the cases weren’t as clever as in the early seasons. And, along with them not be high quality, the characters were all over the place without any consistency in maintaining who they were or why changes were taking place. (some just totally disappeared, which we’ve discussed before :] ) So I think we’ve sacrificed in both areas. To repeat myself, I’m just looking forward to Beckett being back and not a prop. Guess that not character development it’s character, what, going back :D

      • Big Mike says:

        My point is, the cases are already paper thin to begin with. What’re they gonna investigate now, serial jaywalking?

      • CastleBuzz says:

        I for one still watch for the COTW as well as the characters, mainly Beckett. I don’t mind them dialing back a bit on the complexity and time spent on them if the cases they present are fun, twisty, intriguing, and mysterious, which I think is what they’re aiming for. Simplify does not have to mean boring.

  2. Cassie says:

    The last thing I want to see is Alexis to become a prominent character on the show.

    • emily says:

      she has always been one

      • Vanessa says:

        Alexis has never been a prominent character on the show. She’s always been a minor character, usually on in a small scene in the beginning and end of an episode, with the odd episode thrown in where she played more of a role. In the past few seasons she’s only been in maybe half the season’s episodes. So no, she was not and never has been a prominent character like Castle, Beckett, Espo, and Ryan.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        Agree with Vanessa. Alexis has never been a prominent character. But she has been an important one, especially in the beginning when Castle’s relationship with her as the good dad was about the only mature thing about his character. It was noticing that relationship that first gave Beckett a positive thought about Castle. Now Alexis would be fine as a normal daughter interacting with her father and stepmother while home from college on holidays. I am hoping this gig as a PI assistant to her dad lasts a few episodes at the most. She needs to get her own life.

      • John Lazzaro says:

        She was used for inspiration early on.She’d have a few scenes very short scenes mind you and that was it. They’ve been forcing her down everyone’s throats now making her a white knight in some cases to fix everything and be goody two shoes about everything.

    • Annie says:

      I agree, Alexis has been a boring minor character the last 3-4 years. But, the way to fix that isn’t to make her Castle’s partner but to send her out on her own. She needs to establish a life completely separate.

      • John NYC says:

        But like their decision to keep Kate in the precinct a “completely separate” path for Alexis and they lose the character. And as others have mentioned she’s always been a significant touchstone for Rick.

    • PacIslRocks says:

      I’ve always liked Alexis’ role and character. It’s nice to see a single Dad loving up on his daughter. It’s been good to see her stand up to her Dad when he has been wrong,too. For instance, when he behaved badly re: Alexis and Pi’s living together. Being the adult in their relationship, she told him that he needed to respect her decision as she respected his decisions re: Kate. All parents go through those growing up situations with their kids. Remember when she was concerned that at her age, she hadn’t found her “bliss”? Maybe working with her Dad as a case solver, she will find her “bliss”. I hope during S8, she does find her niche in life and moves on from her Dad. Perhaps, Hailey will play a role in Alexis’ finding out what she wants to be. Looking forward to S8!

      • John Lazzaro says:

        you also forget the part where she admits she was wrong to him. The Pi storyline and everything was garbage. Some of the stupidest things they’ve done on that show. Her character never made sense first she needs space then she’s back home with castle then she’s with the bf and wants control over her life. They never had her serious about anything was the same thing repeated every single time.

  3. Brad says:

    Lol so obsessed Beckett again great

  4. lkh says:

    So hopeful and encouraged about what they have said about Beckett. She has always been involved, proactive, intelligent, competitive and sometimes even an aggressive cop–not a character to take a back seat to anyone, even her husband. Sounds like Beckett is back! Good!

    • Just one thing says:

      That would be nice. And I’m honestly at the point where I don’t care if Castle and Beckett spend that much time together. Just make sure Beckett’s still true to her core.

    • Brad says:

      You mean a aggressive captain sitting behind a desk

      • lkh says:

        yea, gnawing on her pencil and then jumping over the desk and kicking someone’s…something or other :)

        • Brad says:

          And dealing with politics she hates dosent sound like the Beckett we know and love(:

          • lkh says:

            I agree with you Brad, it doesn’t fit with what we know about the character–sitting still all day won’t be good. Bet she’s up and about soon…

        • Just one thing says:

          OMG. That’s quite a picture.

          • PacIslRocks says:

            Quite a picture indeed, JOT. Did anyone of you above JOT read the article? Or have good reading comprehension? Do you really think that the new Showrunners would ruin her character even more than in S7. Do you really think that Stana would agree to do that to her character after she implied that her character development had gone as far as it could. And, that she wasn’t in it for the $$ but for the art? Gnawing on pencils and jumping over desk does not make art! Get a grip guys! BTW, a political career was hinted but I suggest that a career as NYC Attorney General then States AG or a Judgeship would be more appropriate career moves.

      • John NYC says:

        Given they sort of discarded NYPD reality with the big promotion leap who knows what they’ll decide is their version of a Captain Beckett.

    • CastleBuzz says:

      Agree 100% lkh. Go Beckett!

  5. Bonnie says:

    idiots. just idiots.

  6. M. says:

    Soooo, Caskett isn’t the BreakingUp-BlindItem, but that’s about the only thing exciting I read about the coming season.
    .
    New characters. More Alexis. Simplified cases.
    Yeah, sounds about everything I DON’T want to see. Ugh :(

  7. lkh says:

    The problem with Espo and Ryan getting after each other, fans always turn on Espo–actually regardless of whom Espo is opposing… We’ll see, Wasn’t Ryan already a rent-a-cop? What was Beckett’s job–senior something or other? now that spot should be open, no? Maybe they’re competing for that spot.

  8. Beckstle says:

    They might as well just give NBC’s Blindspot the timeslot. These premiere ratings are gonna be something. Ugh!

  9. lkh says:

    I’m familiar with the show The Affair where we see events from 2 perspectives, never seems like people see the same thing the same way, but I don’t think we’ll be seeing different perspectives but just different parts altogether. I’m not interested in arguing about what really happened, hopefully that’s not happening.

  10. Blurgh says:

    I am hoping that simplified doesn’t mean boring. I love all the characters and enjoy seeing the layers of their personalities. However, if there aren’t good mysteries to solve, the show will lose itself.

    • lkh says:

      I agree with you. I liked the more intricate mysteries from the earlier seasons. Last season the episodes were intense, but without the layers of a good mystery.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        Good way of putting it. Layers of a good mystery…if the writers can get back to that plus explore layers to some of the secondary characters without sacrificing Beckett and Castle screen time, we’ll have a great season.

  11. NDFan says:

    Thank you Matt for the interview! I actually think this season sounds great. I’ve always watched for all the characters, not just Castle and Beckett, so I’m cool with all this. I think after 7 seasons some changes are to be expected. As long as Rick and Kate stay together, I’m up for anything.

  12. Eric says:

    The more I hear about this season, the less excited I am. I guess maybe my expectations for what this show can evolve into is largely different from the people actually running it. I for one was incredibly excited at the possibility of Beckett running for Senate. It would completely change the premise of the show, which I generally don’t care for, but I feel like Castle needs something drastic to breathe some new life into the show. Beckett could run for Senate, while Espo and Ryan take the lead on the case of the week, while Castle consults with them and deals with the inter workings of Beckett running for Senate. It could mean a whole new set of storylines for the Beckett/Castle relationship and the evolution of that. Plus, they could even have Alexis interning at the precinct if they were desperate to include her. That might all sounds so messy and/or unappealing, but I think it could be a nice little shakeup. However, they won’t do it. They are content with beating the same, tired formula to death until the show finally starts really sinking in the ratings and then ABC decides to axe it. It’s just the same ole, same ole. No risking taking. Oh well.

    • Blurgh says:

      Changing the show that much sounds like the Good Wife where they have to shake up the dynamics every darn season to the point where you can’t keep track of who is on whose side and you’re not even sure you like any of the characters anymore.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        Agree. Running for political office would have been an entirely new show and not for the better. A better way to have really shaken things up would have been to have Kate head a task force looking into political corruption.

  13. Court says:

    Beckett is still going to to be the woman she always was. Smart, driven and intelligent. She has great instincts. I’m eager and excited to see her being captain of the 12th. Alexis is not a grown up. She will be a grown up when she stops hanging on her dads leg. She needs to move out of the loft and get her own life. She’s entering early adulthood not middle or late adulthood. I hate that Alexis will be involved with the cases more because that’s an easy way to keep her around. Is she going to drop out of college to become a PI?

    • lkh says:

      Alexis hasn’t been my favorite character either–I might like Bracken more, gulp–anyway, maybe if she acts more grown up it will be an addition to the show. The father – daughter clinging gets to me too.

      • Just one thing says:

        I don’t think the clinging is going to change. But I do think I will likely be FF’ing good chunks of this new season. Sorry to say.

      • Blurgh says:

        I’d like Bracken to come back, too. I’m wondering if Bracken will assist Beckett with finding a killer or bring down a corrupt politician.

        I think it’s nice that Castle is devoted to his daughter, but she also has to live her own life. And get a boyfriend who isn’t as annoying as Pi was.

        • lkh says:

          Honestly–that will be next! Bracken as a good guy–believing his own press.

          btw, he is back.

          • Brad says:

            Watch him be a fall guy it’s to easy to say revenge

          • Blurgh says:

            Well there needs to be a villain on the show. 3xK is dead. Bracken is in jail. Either Beckett will have another conflict with Bracken or they need to find a new villain.

          • lkh says:

            Blurgh-you’re right. But I just don’t think I can give him the room to do something good–he’s really a pretty awful guy. I’d vote for a new nasty character.

          • lkh says:

            oh, oh-here’s an idea. The guy chasing her–it’s her ex, wanting spousal support! yes!

    • Vanessa says:

      She definitely needs to get a life separate from her father. At her age, she should be wanting to branch out and find herself separate from her family. But yet she still hangs onto her father, almost becoming his pseudo-wife or parent in how she’s always inserting herself into his life and the decisions he makes. It would have been much better if she were actually going to school to finish what would be her senior year of college, and working or interning, at a place completely separated from the precinct or morgue, with us seeing her character at the beginning or end of an episode, just like in the earlier seasons, and maybe involved in a crime somehow (like knowing the victim) if they want to give her an episode to shine in. Involving her the way they are in Castle’s PI business is too much.

      • CastleBuzz says:

        Exactly right, Vanessa. Hope the show runners listen after the first few eps. Alexis’s role is really the only negative vibe I have going into the season. Everything else sounds pretty good.

        • PacIslRocks says:

          I actually like Alexis. In todays world, a lot of young adults are living in their parents’ homes. And, lots of kids are working in the parent/s’ business. So what’s new or horrible about Alexis living with her Dad and Kate? Alexis has had the vagina (re: Betsy White’s comment on vagina vs balls which was true and hilarious) to stand up to her man/child Dad. I am a parent and grandmother. I think that all parent/s need to grow up with their child/rens help and wisdom from time to time. Man/child Rick, while doing great as a single Dad raising his daughter, has needed her wisdom, too. It has helped him to be who he is now, think about that! Remember when Alexis went to her Dad for advice because she hadn’t found her “bliss”? (which btw is common for many young adults). Perhaps, while working as her Dad’s assistant she’ll find her “bliss”. I hope that during or by the end of S8, she stops working with her Dad to realize her career goals. Even if she still lives with Rick and Kate. Kate has a nice relationship with Alexis. Besides, Kate has a positive thing about families. Unlike some of those in the Fandom. Yeah, I know I am going against the wind but those are my feelings. Look forward to S8!

  14. annek says:

    Great, Kate’s mothers murder will once again ruin her relationship with Castle. Hmmm…nothing new there, except they are married now so it really shouldnt. Sigh. Separated for their one year anniversary. Sounds like the lovestory I invested in for 7 years will be a disappointment.

  15. ndixit says:

    I am so not interested in Beckett’s obsession and need to keep secrets. That basically ruined the character for me at the end of season 5 because it showed that she just can’t help herself. Basically, they need to find another way to portray Beckett as a dynamic character other than as someone who is almost stupidly obsessed. I tune out for anything related to Beckett’s mother’s murder. That story ran out its course a long time ago. I think it might be a little late for them to start developing the side characters more. They should have done that a few years ago.. At this point, people really only watch for the Castle/Beckett dynamic.

    • Jim says:

      Nixdit, I do agree to some of your points. Its too late to make me care for the other characters the way I do caskett. I don’t mind focus on Ryan and Espo a bit more, but that’s it. I also agree that Beckett should not be reverting to keeping secrets, not from her husband. Hope it does not come to that. Though unlike you I really do enjoy the Bracken storyline. And the JB case was intriguing to me and felt realistic. I’m looking forward to Jack Coleman. That man makes a great villain.

      • ndixit says:

        Look, I like Jack Coleman as much as the next guy and he had potential to be a great villain. But the whole plot became highly silly. He was a presidential candidate who was secretly a drug king pin and was using the drug money to fund his campaign. I mean how ridiculous was that?

        • Just one thing says:

          I don’t know. After watching Narcos, which details then rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, maybe it’s not so crazy.

        • lkh says:

          and yet no mention of the number of people he killed ndixit. actually, it sounds kinda realistic to me. :[

          • ndixit says:

            I don’t think its remotely realistic. Not in the US where a Presidential candidate personal finances are scrutinized with a magnifying glass. And the whole plot dealing with him was full of holes. As much as people claim to say that “In the Belly of the Beast’ and ‘Veritas’ were great episodes, I look at them and I see how full of holes both episodes were.

        • Harry says:

          Actually this is not ridiculous at all. Just look at politics in certain parts of South America. Its very realistic. You’d be surprised how twisted and dark some of these politicians secrets can be. Also, if you want to talk about realism in the US, well the fact that a writer has been following around a cop forever is in itself not realistic. Neither was Alexis, a teen with no medical background being allowed to intern and handle murdered victims. If all this happened in real life, well then the NYPD and US police force has got to be the worst in the world:) So as always with this show, you have to suspend your disbelief.

          Kingpin drug money funding politics- more common than you know. This has happened for years in countries around the world.

          Castle foiling Al Qaeda – now that was a ridiculous plot and not remotely possible. He’s a nobody, yet he, someone with no powers in any political arena or military force, experience or knowledge can foil an entire terrorist attack and save the world. LOL.

          • John NYC says:

            Jack Kennedy shared a mistress with a mobbed up individual. Today there’s a little more scrutiny but for lower levels what with PACs able to keep their donors secret? And elections are expensive…

            As to castle and that al Qaeda story: he had a school connection with a source. Not all that hard to envision given how many foreign people are educated in the U.S. and many of those do go back home to leverage that U.S. education into significant positions.

    • Brad says:

      So true yet castle keeps falling for her

    • annek says:

      Exactly!!

  16. Teri says:

    I want less case and more of the characters. Hooray for that. I love Castle, it’s cast, and the outstanding pleasure it brings to me. Alexi and Terrance will add spice to Castle and if that includes more romance and Caskett, then I am super excited!

  17. Jim says:

    So far all the interviews have been very very lukewarm to me. I’m still very cautious of this season and am ready to drop it if caskett is not working together. I have huge pet peeves with the 2 new showrunners. They have almost nothing to say about Lanie who has been with the show for 7 seasons yet so much for Hayley, a newbie. I’m already overwhelmed with this Hayleyness and the show hasn’t even aired. ENOUGH WITH HAYLEY! Focus on the original characters please.

    And Alexis, please get that child a normal life. Its bordering on some psychological separation anxiety disorder with her. For goodness sake, she’s 22, she should be studying and not hanging out with daddy anymore. She still wants to spend every moment with her dad?! That is not realistic at all, and not to mention extremely unhealthy. Since when does a 22 year old spend her days with her dad doing his work instead of being with her own peers and finishing her studies??! The Alexis obsessing with her dad is frankly becoming disgusting. It was fine when she was younger because well she had nothing else to do, but as she grew into an adult teen and now a “supposedly” young woman, its just not healthy.

    Here’s a novel idea showrunners…you want to showcase an adult Alexis…get her friends! Simple right! or a boyfriend or girlfriend. She needs to let go of her dad and find her own passion for life.

    I’m a 45 year old man of 3 kids and if my daughter was hanging off me like that I’d be concerned. I’d tell her go to school, meet friends, socialize.

    • lkh says:

      I dunno–saw that promo where they caught Hayley in the apt. Told her to put her hands up and get on the floor. She put her hands up. Ryan says, get on the floor. She looks up and says, have you seen the floor? See, I like that. She’s already got attitude.

      • Harry says:

        You know who has got attitude? Lanie. She certainly deserves more screentime and deserves to be explored as opposed to Hayley.

        • lkh says:

          yup, but Lanie is the best friend, a doc hanging in the morgue and we rarely see her out and about fighting crime. She does go out and say so and so is dead because…

    • Maria says:

      Agree 100%. It’s like you took the words right out of my mouth (except I’m a 45-yr-old mother of two).

  18. DarkDefender says:

    I am still excited for Season 8. I am open to any changes and prefer substantive character development over the lengthy COTW stuff.
    .
    To those above.. Beckett ALWAYS hated politics and to a certain extent, paperwork.. But becoming a Precinct Captain is a natural progression for her character. Senate is so far from what she would naturally do (and would keep Caskett apart pretty much all the time).. Which is what no one really wants. It is really (IMHO) just everyone hoping Time Will Tell was about a time traveler and not some crazy dude.
    .
    And.. While I can’t say I am surprised that a lot of the comments are negative, I am shocked at how quickly people turn negative after each reveal is made, leading up to the season openers XY/XX. I was hoping for a his/her perspective of the same events and I am happy that has been confirmed.
    .
    I do hope TVLine continues to cover Castle, in spite of the super negative comments that keep coming after each article. I can’t remember the last time I read such pessimism about something we haven’t even seen play out yet.

    • lkh says:

      I’m voting for ‘some crazy dude’.

    • lkh says:

      hmmm-do you really think it’s a his/her perspective of the SAME events or just the telling of what happened to Castle while hunting for her and Beckett’s experience while on the run?

      • Brad says:

        You probably won’t get much from castles pov just questions like wants going on then while searching for her he gets caught she saves him then runs

      • DarkDefender says:

        lkh: I think it is a little of both.. Like the 2 episodes could technically run simultaneously with each other.. We will see one showing how Castle got through the hour and one on how Beckett got through it AND the interesting part will be how each of them perceived the parts where they are together. It’s sound like a pretty ambitious two-parter.. I can’t wait to see it. I wish they were airing them back to back.. That would be super cool.

  19. RBA says:

    So after reading this I can safely say Castle is trying to morph into Bones 2.0. Is toks Aubrey? Beckett at the precinct is sounding like Brennan at the lab. Castle and Beckett doing their own thing and only sharing 3 to 4 scenes an episode….

    • DarkDefender says:

      Castle will never be Bones, but thanks for playing.

    • alex says:

      “Safely”? Booth and Brennan work cases together, mind you, only last season Brennan was more in the lab and less in the field because Emily Deschanel was pregnant. No reason to bring Bones into this.

  20. Kim says:

    Sounds great! I am excited! Stop complaining before you see it! #castleisback

    • lkh says:

      One person’s complaining is another person’s musing, or another person’s wondering, or another person’s frustration, or another person’s speculating, and so it goes…

  21. JImN says:

    No Caskett = No Castle. That means plenty Stana and Nathan doing that sparkling dialogue with those great closeups together.

  22. Marie says:

    Is it just me or are they making Alexis more weird than she already is? What happened to her education? What happened to her friends? What happened to her wanting independence? I personally don’t see any intrigue or fun in having her join the family business etc. Like seriously? Does she not have her own life/mindset/interest? Its so clichéd and odd. At least with Lanie she was sort of pursuing some medical background which was better than being her dads shadow. First step in being an adult woman, go out and explore the world beyond your family home and father. It’s really pathetic that Winter and Hawley say she is growing up but that growing up is to spend even more time with her father (at home and at work). hahaha. Oh god!
    No matter what this shake up is, all I can say is that if Castle and Beckett are not solving cases together, then I’m out. Forcing me to be interested in new characters at this stage is not gonna work on me. Hayley already feels like an annoyance. Too much info on a character I don’t know and quite honestly don’t care to know. Give me more Caskett, Espo, Ryan, Lanie. And make Alexis have her own life. Growns ups have their own life. She wants to be a grown up, prove it. Show us that she is capable of having friends and being a regular person, not some freak who is clinging to her dad. Give us more wise Martha. Keep the 2 new ones to minimum. We have had more info on Hayley the past 3 months than we have had on Espo the past 7 seasons! Spoilers are almost ALL about Hayley. Why? People are not tuning in for her. We are tuning in for the rest. They are only making fans dislike Hayley more because it seems like she is taking over from characters we love.

    • lkh says:

      Do you think Hayley is related to Pi? Maybe that’s the mystery. Hayley is trying to solve the disappearance of Pi. I see an Emmy

      • DarkDefender says:

        This made me laugh.. Literally out loud. :D

      • Marie says:

        Lol Ikh!! Well I was one of those who actually liked Pi. He was a simple guy. Not a smartass, not fake, not pretentious. He was what he was. I appreaciated that. And guess what, Alexis acted like a normal teen then. You know actually having her own things to do.

    • Lucinda says:

      Since Stana was the last cast member to sign a deal during hiatus, I’m curious if she will spend less time on screen. She was close to walking unless things changed. Well, change is coming. New characters might mean less time for her, which gives her more time to work on other projects. She is a very busy girl and in demand actress outside of Castle. I don’t really care what direction this show takes, I love all the characters. The cast members can act. It is the writing that will sustain or sink the show. If things go badly, blame the writers, not the cast.

  23. ….. Will watch the show for STANA until I don’t see her anymore …. Then will follow her
    In her future endeavors: movies; new TV show or her own production projects. That’s
    What I care about !!!

  24. According to the show runners it seems as if they’re trying to tap into the same obsession that drove Kate in solving her mother’s murder. But that obsession was due to the fact that it was her mother. It was personal. Which leads me to believe that something happens to her in the premiere that will play the major role/arch for her new “obsession” this season. It’s interesting that they think the two new characters will provide an energy to the show. Maybe they’re actually trying to have a more ensemble cast this season. Or to make up for the decrease in Castle and Kate scenes this season.

  25. Harry says:

    “It will be romantic” hhhmm really?? I’d like that but sounds more like wishful thinking on our parts.

    Cases were already weak last season, cant see how much more weaker it can get but nothings impossible.

    I wouldn’t mind a matured Alexis, we all know how childish she has been, but, I would prefer her having her own time and space, not more being around Castle. Also keep her a secondary character please. She really does not have what it takes to be more involved in the show. Alexis is the kind of character you need just a dash of, too much and she becomes a bug you cant get rid off:) irritating!

    I’d love more Bracken. He plays off Beckett of so well.

    • DarkDefender says:

      They need to send her over to Grey+Sloan to be an intern. That’s a crossover that could work for years…

      • lame says:

        I’m all for Alexis going against the grain and following in the footsteps of her grandfahter. With her sweet disposition no one would ever know .

  26. lame says:

    Not knowing of anyone whose actually seen 8.1, this general condemnation is surprising. Granted S 7 had it’s high points but they were few and far between and the pay off episodes landed with a resounding thud.
    Time to give Winter/Hawley their chance to keep this ship afloat.

  27. Ed says:

    Alexis needs a life…one that has nothing to do with daddy. Geez. Funny how this is supposed to be her being an adult and all it screams is big baby that cant leave daddy alone, and must continue to mother him. It was cute in s1-3, then it started getting a bit gross. Boundaries child!

    • DarkDefender says:

      Not a completely fair assessment, Ed. Alexis did spread her wings after Paris, with Pi, but saw the mistake she had made while growing up and apart from her dad. In her world that would have been fine.. But the only real parent she ever had disappeared for 2 months and that was scary for her to think Castle might actually not always be around. She doesn’t know she is in a TV show with writers giving her snotty dialogue. She loves her primary parent and feels protective of him and still hasn’t gotten over him being gone and presumed possibly dead.
      .
      I bet this season she goes back to branching out.. Follows the new detective, starts dating again and learns some cool stuff and then all will be well.
      .
      Or you could keep projecting and speculating and not enjoy the show.
      .
      Totally up to you.

    • Jules says:

      Ed, ditto. I like Alexis but last season she made me cringe..a lot. Alexis is not a kid so I think she needs to give castle and Beckett their space and she should find her own interest, not tag along with her father.

    • KCC says:

      I don’t see it as unusual at all that Alexis is interested in solving mysteries and helping people. It is totally in character for her. Now if Alexis were sitting on Castle’s lap while he wrote his books, that would be weird. People seem to be forgetting that Castle’s profession is a writer. The PI business is a side interest. If Alexis wants to get into that line of work, plenty of kids go into a family business, perhaps she can make it an actually going concern and not just a hobby of her dad’s.
      I think they want to keep the character of Alexis in the show without adding a bunch of new characters, i.e. friends, co-workers, etc. She has to be involved with existing characters and I’m guessing the new Haley character will be as much a part of Alexis’ life as Castle’s.

  28. Louise says:

    Like others, I too think the Castle Alexis clinging needs to go. It was sweet in the beginning but as a teenage girls grows up, she should be less clingi imo. I do love the Kate Jim relationship much more. I think they’ve got that quiet respect and love, witty and not overly affectionate.The Kate and Jim father daughter relationship is very relatable to viewers, what with their love for baseball etc…unlike the Castle and Alexis one. PS, Please bring back Jim Beckett. He is such a lovely addition and I love his sneaky witty remarks. The family dinner with him and Martha was great. More scenes like that.

    I really Hope this Hayley person is just in the background and does not take up much screentime. I’d much rather see our core 4- castle, beckett, ryan and espo.

  29. Nostalgic says:

    Reading comments here and elsewhere there is going to be so much anger and upset after episode 8.02 airs and yet short of hiring a skywriter to say Caskett break up the signs are all there. That and people with access to scripts who really should know better makes them the blind item shoe-in. The really sad part is the writers will get all the blame when I believe the problems lie elsewhere and it’s another Good Wife situation. What a situation to get in to *sigh*

  30. Jules says:

    Nostalgic, can you please post a link of any evidence that you claim people know about8.02? I’m genuinely very interested to see what they have written about it, so please post a link to it. I’m sorry but if this break up is already out there how is it I haven’t seen it so please post the link.

    • AJ says:

      Jules… I’ve seen people ask for a link yet no one can provide one. It seems whoever did post it has since removed their postings. ABC was informed of the leak and apparently took action or something. I find people who claim to have access such as getting scripts as attention seekers. They do it because people will notice them. It is an ego booster.

      • Just one thing says:

        I can’t understand why anyone who legitimately has a script would risk burning their source by telling others on the Internet – unless they want attention and validation.
        .
        But there’s really no point in ant of it. We will all know soon enough in two weeks.

  31. Sara says:

    Why does Alexis need to be part of the cases/ investigation? I just don’t get it. She is an important part of castle and now becketts life but why must it be through cases? It’s a wrong move. Partnership is a caskett thing, don’t mess that up. It’s lame and silly. She’s 22, why isn’t she doing normal 22 year old things? Leave the cases to the experts and adults please. The previews for s8 is really not sounding like the show I love at all. Hawley and winter can blow their horn but I’m sorry the judgement of if the premier is good will be by the viewers comments not the writers praising themselves. They can promise us all sorts of things, romance, the shows about caskett, yes it is but them just saying it doesn’t make it so. I want to watch and see if in fact it still really is about caskett. I’m hearing of a break up which I don’t like. Too much Alexis which I don’t like. Too much Haley which I don’t like. Caskett not solving cases which I don’t like. See…lots I don’t like. So I have to watch it first and I’ll decide if the writers did a good job. Them praising themselves is immature. Let’s see.

  32. KCC says:

    I’m looking forward to the new season of Castle. I’m interested to see where the new show runners take it. My concern, based on the interviews I’ve read, is they seem to be trying to be all things to all people. They only have 40 minutes every week to setup and solve the COTW and develop multiple characters and introduce and develop 2 new characters and still have the Castle & Beckett moments that are at the heart of the show. That’s a lot of balls in the air at the same time. I’m afraid by trying to do it all, everything will suffer. I’ve read comments that want more of this and less of that and other comments that want more of that and less of this. By trying to squeeze this, that and the other thing into 40 minutes everything will suffer. I’d prefer they decided on what type of show they want to do and then do that well.
    Personally I watch for the COTW and character interactions in solving the mystery. I don’t need to know anything about Ryan’s family, Esposito and Laine’s relationship status or what Alexis is doing to enjoy that. My preference would be, write a good mystery and you can still reveal character traits and development in service of solving the mystery. like they did in the beginning of the series. If they want to take it in a more character study direction where the characters happen to work at a police precinct and there is no COTW, that’s fine, just to it well. I’d probably stop watching because that type of show doesn’t interest me, but plenty of other people would love that, so more power to them. I’m afraid by trying to please everyone, no one will be happy. I guess in the coming weeks we’ll see if they’re efforts to energize the show succeeded.

  33. Tim says:

    I really can’t be bothered with Alexis growing up and Haley doing whatever it is she’s doing. Sigh. What made this show was caskett solving crime. I don’t care for castle bantering with Alexis, eww…or castle bantering with Haley.
    Good question Sara. One many are asking. Trying to make Alexis relevant to the show is pointless. She’s castle daughter, that’s it. I don’t need to know if she’s a grown up or a brat. She’s not a vital character in the show. Honestly having her play cop is a major eye role. Can Alexis and Haley tale their magical adventure and go far away? Away from our leads and rysposito.

  34. lkh says:

    Folks seem to be unhappy that the other characters are getting screen time and stories of their own. We don’t live in voids. How real would it be and how interesting would it be if we only saw Beckett and Castle every week with weird, unknown characters in the background mumbling and milling around-I think they will be wearing dark grey or black clothes, hoodies, shoeless, please. I like the other characters (I’m being kind to Alexis–but hopefully, some new writing has been done here), I like knowing their stories and something about their lives. Rarely do their stories overshadow what’s happening with Beckett and Castle. I’ve always liked the boys, they really do add to the precinct and their personal interaction and interaction with B/C can be funny. Ryan backs up Castle, Espo backs up Beckett. It’s nice for Castle to have his family. I’m glad Beckett has a best friend. As a matter of fact, I think there should be more people(cast) and it looks like there will be. We’ll see how that goes. Who’s going to play the stern, line following character now that Gates is gone? They need this. Before Gates, it was Montgomery. Castle needs this (REALLY NEEDS THIS–hope that wasn’t too loud). I don’t want Beckett playing this part. I’m not interested in watching B/C nuzzling and cooing for an hour. I want a good mystery, good personal interaction, support of colleagues and family, at least a little real life. I don’t even mind a fight once in a while.

    • DarkDefender says:

      Aside from the fact that the two leads have been carrying the bulk of the show and need a more healthy schedule. More ensemble stuff gives everyone a break and keeps the leads fresh throughout the entire season.. Most shows with longevity, do it this way.

      • lkh says:

        I don’t know if you’re agreeing with me or not, but I’m agreeing with you. Historically, I understand that SK had the bulk of the dialogue and actually carried the script around in various ways, including using a folder that looked like a case file. I don’t think this is true of last season, where I believe NF had much more. Sometimes I look at both the leads, and actually as hard as they try, they look exhausted to me especially toward the end of the season. Wasn’t there a blooper where Molly had to wake NF–

        • DarkDefender says:

          lkh – I tried a Kagillion times to respond to you, but it keeps getting lost in the ether. Maybe it will post them all tomorrow. :P

          • lkh says:

            DD–same thing happened to me last night–I decided to give up. Guess there’s some spam words we can’t get by-I guessing. I usually say, ‘Well I can see that you aren’t feeling well, see you tomorrow’ This is the approach I use with anything electronic.

            I had some great stuff on the back to back episodes. Is a kagillion more than a zillion?

          • DarkDefender says:

            Like WAY more.

          • Just one thing says:

            So glad I’m not the only on that’s happened to, but sorry it’s happened to you guys, too!

          • lkh says:

            it’s ok JOT–I just figured ‘lkh’ had become spam.

    • Kat says:

      I love that other characters will also get more screen time and better development. Some of the best and funniest scenes, IMO, are when Caskett and Ryan and Esposito riff off of each other. I agree that an hour of just Caskett playing lovebirds would be boring. I want a show where each character is not expendable, not a show that relies only on two characters with no one else I care about.

  35. Barry says:

    Sounds very, very promising — all except the continuation of Espo being a boring, close-minded douche when it comes to having Castle’s back.. Please writers, give the myopic fool a lobotomy or something — he has the same impact on me as counting sheep.

    • John NYC says:

      The subtext to that might be one early interview of Stana’s where she mentioned that while never an officially authorized by the writers thing, she and Jon Huertas had decided to add in some subtext that they had previously been involved. So there’s that.

    • Kat says:

      I like that Espo doubts Castle and is always more on Beckett’s side. The characters aren’t there to kiss Castle’s ass and Espo has always been Beckett’s friend first and foremost. When it comes down to it, Espo would help Castle but that doesn’t mean he has to be his best friend and not question him when he says or does stupid things. We as fans can love Castle but I wouldn’t want characters on the show to act like fans.

      • Jim says:

        Good point Kat. I’ve never had an issue with Espo doubting Castle esp after he seemed like he left Kate at the alter. Not sure why some fans hate Espo for that. In reality if it happened to a friend I would have questions too. No harm in asking questions. And true fact- Espo is and was always Kate’s partner and friend first so it’s natural that he is extra protective of her and takes her side. Again not sure why some fans can’t see this. It’s clear as light. If Alexis can act doubtful over Kate’s love for her dad and her excuse is protectiveness, then Espo is allowed that as well. And love your quote that characters need not act like fans. The reason why castle even feel ld the boys are his real friends is because they don’t suck up, or care who he is…they call him out on his crap. Castle understands it, why can’t fans?

        • Barry says:

          Jim — it’s way more than that episode. Let’s begin with when he got his ass kicked, knocked cold and it led to Beckett hanging off that roof — and she’d be dead if it wasn’t for Ryan. Ryan had to tell Gates and Espo pouted for 2-3 episodes. Then there was Castle’s dream when he said thed guy looked like Chuck Norris. Guess what, Espo was an ass and once again he was proven wrong. Then there’s the whole memory thing of Castle re: Hollander’s Woods and Dr. Holtzman — and guess what, the myopic douche-bag was wrong again.

          I can go on and on — but trust this, for me it’s not about kissing Rick’s ass (who would want that?) — it’s about not flying off half-cocked from the get-go and not having a member of the team’s back who even as a novelist, has solved more cases than he can even dream of.

          • CastleBuzz says:

            I like Espo and agree with most of what Kat and Jim have to say. As for Barry’s take on things, I’ll just say that for the story’s sake, there has to be layers of conflict. That’s frequently Espo’s role in relation to Castle’s. Since in a conflict, one side is right and the other wrong, Espo is going to be the one who’s wrong. No writer is going to have the show’s protagonist wrong on the big items. Castle can be wrong about the killer being a zombie and or a mummy curse, but he can’t be responsible for his own disappearance or wrong about a serial killer from his childhood.

          • Barry says:

            Buzz — This will be my last minor take on his — I don’t want to be redundant or boring. You’re pointing out the “zombie” theory as an example of Castle being wrong. That’s just not true Buzz — as he said to Ryan when Kevin asked “Casle, do you believe in this zombie stuff….” — Castle immediately answered “NO — but do you know what I do believe in — driving Beckett crazy.” Clearly, you must see the difference in that behavior and what Espo does when Castle obviously is convinced he’s right — which by-the-way, he almost always is when he serious.

          • CastleBuzz says:

            Point taken, Barry, on the zombie example. Been a while since I watched that ep. But I still maintain Espo’s skepticism is needed for story conflict. Also, I should admit that his matches mine more than a few times.

  36. Miriam Maurer says:

    My big problem has always been making Rick look like an idiot to make the rest of the cast look good…been doing it for years…as a fan of him and Nathan it really annoys me it really has gotten old.If they break Caskett up the show is over for me and a heck of a lot of people !

    • Lucinda says:

      There might be conflict between Rick/Kate in Season 8 but they will not break up…

    • CastleBuzz says:

      Read the interview. They not breaking up. As for doofus Rick, I blame the actor in part for playing the fool so willingly. Many of his over-the-top court jester moments are “ad libs” by him. Example? Bumbling his way through the saloon doors in the western ep.

  37. Frederick Wheatstone says:

    The writer has introduced a newly imagined word “alum” to describe a person. There is no such word in this context. At a guess I think it is intended to be “alumnus” – the singular form
    of “alumni”. Why people cannot simply ask someone for advice instead of randomly making up nonsense totally beats me!

  38. Fran says:

    Thanks ND fan. Can’t wait for the new season!

  39. Matt Stone says:

    From what I’ve read this sounds like a good two parter. I have two problems. One: How much more trauma can they possibly put her through. Kate was kidnapped not too long ago. Give her a break. Two: You make her Captain and “bam” she has to on the run to stay alive. It just seems like overkill. Just my opinion. Also, if they have her get pregnant do it in April.

    • lkh says:

      did you really say ‘overkill’? :]

      • Matt Stone says:

        Yes I did. No I wasn’t thinking about that episode in particular but that illustrates my point. It seems to me that every time the show runners decide to do something to a cast member they pick her most of the time. In my opinion is they’re turning her into the season 4 and 5 Beckett. At least for these two episodes. I think she won’t tell Castle and she’ll walk into a trap. remember the last time she went alone. Resurrection. She won’t be able to contact Castle when she goes on the run. Maybe she will leave clues that only Castle will understand. This will definitely be interesting.

        • Matt Stone says:

          oops the episode Overkill has nothing to do with my point. I mixed up Overkill with Kill Shot for some reason.

          • lkh says:

            I agree, it does seem like she goes thru a lot. But also, don’t take me seriously, I was just being silly about the word, not your analysis…

        • lurker says:

          For me it will be interesting, definetely. Finally, after some huge time gap Beckett will be doing something, anything but yet another invented (pure plot purpose) dillema about her professional life. And, just to say that you’re not the only one who feels that way, yes, every time the show runners decide to do something to a cast member they pick her most of the time. Beckett’s character is the “usual suspect” for drama and angst in the show. Are they turning her into a season 4 and 5 Beckett? Not to be mean, but Hawley left somewhere during season 4. So, he knows the “Beckett induced angst” quite well. What I’m afraid of the most is that, after a total regression of the main characters (at least for me) in season 7, they go further down that path. On the other hand they want to re-pilot the show like Winter said. So, who knows? It seems it will be “shaken and stirred” at the same time.

          • Matt Stone says:

            I completely agree with your post. I like that they are trying to shake stuff up. When I mentioned season 4 and 5 Beckett, I should have talked more about her actions in this episode. I thought by now they would realize don’t go anywhere alone. I think the show would be better if the characters were not forced too regress.I think she should have called Castle about this tip. She should realized what just leaving would do to Castle. They can re-pilot the show but I think they are not doing anything new. We were told at the beginning of last season that there was a new mythology with Castle. What we got was a confusing and incomplete resolution. So I’m not completely sold on the premiere but I will watch anyway. Hope I’m not disappointed. I hate spiders. lol

    • Just one thing says:

      “You make her Captain and “bam” she has to on the run to stay alive.”
      .
      This detail has been bothering me for a while. It’s definitely a bit of overkill.

  40. J capotosto says:

    everyone knows that when the characters formula changes so ends the series…

  41. Fran says:

    You are right NDFan. The season sounds great!!