Castle Season 8 Recap Beckett Academy

Castle Recap: How to Get Away With Quantico-Like Murder

This week on ABC’s Castle, Beckett returned to her old stomping grounds when a police academy recruit officer was found murdered under suspicious circumstances.

As entertaining as it was to see Beckett and the boys back in the police academy hallways, where Kate’s name is apparently on half the plaques and trophies (and evokes great reverence from recruits), that A-story was offset by the maddening unfolding of what is now the Rick’s Missing Time/LokSat Hybrid Mystery. I mean, a couple of things ate at me here, starting with the notion that Rick wouldn’t immediately debrief Kate on his truly remarkable discoveries in Los Angeles the instant he came home — sleep or not. (Reminds me of how Arrow‘s Felicity didn’t carve out two minutes to immediately tell Oliver, “Hey, my lonnnnng-lost father just showed up, and says hi!”)

Secondly, there was Rick’s irrational concern that if he were to tell Kate what he learned, that she would hold it, and her AG team’s deaths, against him — as if the utterly and increasingly wackadoodle chain of events involved in his “missing time” don’t earn him a “free pass.” Worse, when he does come clean, Kate is irked. Maybe I haven’t had enough girlfriends disappear on me for months and then return with mysterious bullet wounds and dengue fever antibodies, but this seems like so much unnecessary drama in the larger scheme of things, when people are “erasing” their own memories and all.

In the end, though, after Beckett gives her Mini Me at the academy a “You can’t do this alone” speech, she races to Rick’s side, where they both declare that they need to team up once and for all and find LokSat together. With, you know, Vikram’s clickety-clack help at the laptop.

All that said….

The police academy storyline was expectedly fun, if heavily (and I imagine pointedly) evocative of ABC’s own Quantico, with a dash of How to Get Away With Murder classroom lecturing/chalkboard “swoooosh!” theatrics thrown in. Recent Gotham guest star Michael Bowen was great as gruff Sergeant Ortiz, though, gosh, he was pretty quick to forgive and forget that his star pupil had just pulled a gun on him! And it was nice to see 24 alum James Morrison as deputy commissioner (Matches?!) Malone, even if his motive for murder wound up being awfully flimsy. (“I had bills to pay after the divorce!” Um, don’t we all?) Cailfornication alum Ellen Woglom made for a formidable, fierce wannabe Beckett, and quite possibly planted a seed in some of your heads about a different kind of Season 9 “spinoff,” with Beckett as a new “Montgomery.”

What did you think of the episode “Fidelis Ad Mortem”?

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!

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106 Comments
  1. A fan for now says:

    What irks me is that things that don’t need to become dramatic end up being dramatic. Things that should be dramatic or at least be dealt with… they just downplay such things as if they’re trivial or simply ignored.

  2. ndixit says:

    Man, everytime I feel that I can’t possibly dislike Beckett any more than I already do, the writers find new ways of surprising me. Its this type of writing that has completely driven me away at this point. I keep checking in to hope things have gotten back on track. But when writers are so self-destructive, it basically becomes a lost cause.

    • bob says:

      wht what did she do now that you didnt like

      • ndixit says:

        As if she has any right to be irked. Remember Castle’s reaction to finding out her lie. How irked did he get? In the end this is just writers trying to do the two wrongs equals right thing.

        • bob says:

          they always make him into a love stick person over her while for her you hardly see it like he was scared she wouldnt forgive her while all she cared about was loosing that lead back in 8×08

          • ndixit says:

            That’s a different complaint. I don’t care for love sick Castle either but Beckett doesn’t get to act irked after everything she did.

        • Castlebuzz says:

          That’s your takeaway from this ep? Go away and stay there.

        • Nerfherder says:

          Castle put Beckett through hell while he chose to chase down Loksat. Do you remember the pain she was in while he was gone? Do you remember her recreating the murderboard, slipping back down into the rabbithole? Ignore the first two weeks of his disappearance if you must, but he gave her six weeks of never knowing if he was alive or dead. Did he ever consider what staying disappeared would be doing to her, to his mother, to his daughter? Of course not. Then he wipes his memory so he can never give her a proper explanation, expecting her to just take him back. If Beckett was emotionally cruel to him by walking out without proper explanation, he was far more emotionally cruel to her. She never made him think she was possibly dead. That cruelty by him exists even if she had not lied this season. When he disappeared he could have arranged to get a message to her, let her know he would be back. Did he not trust her to keep the secret? Castle actually caused her more pain last season than she ever did to him this season.

          • FormerCastleFan says:

            And the pain was not just to Beckett. It was to his mom and daughter, friends, fans, anyone who cared about him. Beckett had every right to be mad at him and I am glad she took the time to process before she confronted him or ran off.
            .
            I wonder how many people will find out the truth behind his disappearance and how each will react. Personally I hope Esposito punches him in the face.

          • I'm going to let you finish but says:

            IMHO Castle caused her more pain ever, than she did ever to him.
            .
            .
            She’s the cop, her job is to protect & serve, not to make sure Castle has material for his books and isn’t bored writing said books. Castle should have called Beckett & the team to investigate and not covered it all up to protect her. He’s the one, like you said that doesn’t trust her with his secrets.

          • Aleks says:

            THIS, THIS AND THIS.

          • Grey says:

            I agree. For 6 weeks, he stayed in LA, on his own, without calling Beckett, his mom or his daughter to let them know that he was alive and that he would be back. All in all, Beckett reacted too well to the news.

        • kath says:

          Castle deciding what is best for Beckett and doing it behind her back even though he knows she wouldn’t want it has been a theme since the first season when he investigated her mother’s murder after she told him it was the one thing that would kick him out of her life.

          After all these years, no wonder she’s sick of it.

      • Dr. Enie says:

        THANKS, WHY DO THESE CREATURES GET SO HYPED JUST QUIT WATCHING AND ZIP IT. GIVE US A BREAK. DR. ENIE

    • Aleks says:

      Oh yeah, it’s true that when Castle does something wrong, Beckett has no right to be angry with him. Double standard like always in this fandom.
      Personally I would have slapped him after that “protect you from yourself” thing he said to her.

      • ndixit says:

        Course you did. Because a woman can slap a guy around all she likes but if the Castle had slapped Beckett for her lying than it would be a sacrilege.

      • Grey says:

        I would have slapped him after he told her that she likes being broken knowing that the reason why it took him too long to get back to Beckett and his family, after saving the world, was because he was investigating Loksat on his own. Beckett needed to be angrier when he finally told her all about it.

        • ndixit says:

          Typical hypocrisy. Beckett does the same thing and far worse and she can’t even be told off in the most dignified manner possible while Castle should be slapped for telling her the truth.

          • Grey says:

            Typical double standards. Bad Beckett.

          • Susan Smith says:

            No leaving someone at the alternative and making your Fiance,Mother,Daughter and your friends believe you are Dead is FAR Worse. Your just mad because she has more stones than he does in so many ways

          • I'm going to let you finish but says:

            One’s a cop, the other is not. It’s mansplaining at it’s worst for a man to tell a Detective no less, that he did it all to protect her from herself. It’s 2016, Beckett doesn’t need to be protected from herself, but from the stupid things Castle did to put her, Martha, & his superhero daughter into danger.

        • Gaby says:

          YES, THANK YOU.

    • Dr. Enie says:

      IT IS HARD TO DISLIKE STANA KATIC WHEN SHE IS A SUPERB ACTOR AND BEAUTIFUL!!! DR. ENIE

  3. brad says:

    about time getting tired of he protect her she protect him fights

  4. aaronalbers says:

    I am more ticked off at the excutive show runners than the actual Cast and crew, and writers. The showrunners are the ones that tell the writers the plan and then approve the scripts. took them too long to get to this point. They could have reached this point by the hiatus back in november. But i am really into the season, and hope it does come back for a ninth season even if it is shorten.

  5. lauri5567 says:

    The plot involved the Irish mob and yet no one asked Ryan if he had any insight. Also, did anyone notice both guys had on traditional suits? I found that to be a departure by they costume department.
    I was a little relieved that Malone was the murder otherwise between Ortiz, Royce and Montgomery, Beckett has a horrible record of dirty cops as mentors.
    Kate was upset that Rick kept the truth about Locksat from her for fear she’s disappear down the rabbit hole, you know like she did. Also, if Kate’s query caused the AGs team death by tipping off Locksat, won’t pulling all the flight records do the same thing? Or is that a plot hole I should ignore?

    • Susan Smith says:

      IF he had been honest and not put Beckett and the rest of his family and friends through the cruel emotional roller coaster of going “missing” Kate and Rick could have investigated (gone down the rabbit hole).LockStat Together. It was Not alright to do what Rick did.And the Hypocrisy is those who argue that Kate was “more wrong” because she had the guts to look him in the face when she investigated LockStat

  6. Teri says:

    This had a Season 4 vibe. Castle and Beckett continue to be the worst communicators on the planet. There connection is so strong until it comes to being honest with each other. I liked this case and Stana Katic/ Beckett used her time to shine very well, as usual. I am not dissecting things like everyone else. I am enjoying every last second of Castle each and every Monday.

  7. KLS says:

    I am so glad that Castle was conflicted about telling Beckett what he knew, but then told her QUICKLY in the same episode. She also took some time to figure out her next move, but then acted QUICKLY in the same episode. So tired that this has been dragged out for 13 eps. Let’s get things moving along! FINALLY! (Ok, sorry, I was venting!)

  8. Ellen says:

    The trouble with Badass Beckett anymore is that the writers feel like they have to top themselves each and every time to the point where it now feels like you’re being hit over the head with a Badass Beckett sledgehammer. It became eye roll inducing after a while. The academy administrators treated her like she was the second coming of Christ. Note to writers – Less is more.

  9. Gaby says:

    Finally an episode of Castle in season 8 that I actually enjoyed watching. It was great seeing Kate Beckett as an actual character on the show, who’s competent, smart, driven, and not just a stupid plot device as she was so many times in the last 12 episodes.

    And Matt: no poll this time?

  10. Lia says:

    Pros: Beckett is back; Badass Beckett is back; Caskett is back.

    Cons: Hayley. Completely unnecessary character. They keep shoving her down our throats.

    • John NYC says:

      Hayley had maybe 30 seconds screen time?

      Hardly “shoved” anywhere.

    • Annie says:

      I agree. Hayley serves no purpose and is an automatic downer every time she’s on the screen. It’s obvious the writers are trying to make her a character to care about but are failing miserably. The ridiculous scene with Hayley “testing” Castle on going after Locksat was ridiculous.

  11. James D says:

    It was a decent episode from the COW standpoint. as for the rest, I’m sort of tired arguing over whose in the right between Rick and Kate I’ve done my far share of that and I get it for those who still feel passionately for one side or the other, but for me, It has run its course and I’ve stopped caring sorry. I will say that I really hope this is the last of the lie to protect twaddle that has plagued this show for way too long. I don’t mind the LOCKSAT story line as long as it’s organic and isn’t used as a means to drum up manufactured drama between Caskett, so if they do it together from now on I’m more than happy to come along for the ride.

    • Anonymous says:

      James D couldn’t have said it better too prolonged protect each other syndrome. As you said hopefully they continue in the vein they are in fighting Loksat together and not drum up unwanted or forced drama between the two.

  12. Reviewer says:

    So it took more than half ep for Beckett or understand castle and forgive him. While castle took less than 30 sec. And whose story was more believing…..

  13. John NYC says:

    Capt. Beckett and rookie Decker? I’d watch that.

  14. lkh says:

    Wow! Just wow! Another member of the watchers sensitized (pun intended) to the presence of Dengue antibodies–and, it’s the boss! Life is good. My work here is done.

  15. N says:

    I really loved Beckett in this eppy! Also, James Morrison Woo!

  16. Just one thing says:

    This was a solid episode. Good drama, really well acted. I found the Quantico/HTGAWM copying to be a bit unnerving – and have no idea why they needed to intercut superimposed dead boyfriend on the same path to Flanagan; that was hokey.
    .
    The dark moments between Beckett and Castle after the LockSat reveal were twisty but also unnerving, because the show has never waded in the murky waters of sexy primetime soaps where main characters use sex and alcohol as weapons against each other. That’s a special kind of subtext the show always seemed to avoid before.
    .
    That bleak morning-after scene, after stark, angry silence, was especially jarring. It felt like Castle and Beckett were broken shells of themselves. So, their ultra fast reconciliation at the end rang a bit false, since we never saw a conversation between them that actually used words and feelings and adulti-ness.
    .
    Anyway, this episode pretty much confirmed for me that I would watch a series that starred Kate Beckett and only Kate Beckett. Have her teach at an academy, have her lead an elite team. Doesn’t matter. I’d watch it.
    .
    It’ll never happen, but that’s alright.

    • Leo says:

      Totally agree, these writers know how to creat conflict, but haven’t a clue how to realize amicable solutions. In the process they make Caskett to be incurably damaged.

    • Roxie says:

      I totally agree but I would guess that Stana has loftier goals than a Beckett spinoff. I would sure as hell watch it!

    • I'm going to let you finish but says:

      +1 I’d watch it also.

    • Annie says:

      As someone said earlier, the writers spend too much time creating false drama (Loksat) and completely ignore organic, interesting drama in the form of a conversation between Beckett and Castle about how they have hurt each other and how they move forward from here. Now THAT would be something to watch.

    • lkh says:

      Dang! you sling them words together great JOT

  17. Leo says:

    This is sooo typical of this stable of writers, they have a thoroughly compelling story and they ruin it by digging up that over used, worn out, dried up crap of Caskett’s incapacity to be truthful with one another. After six years, if this is still the case according to the writers, Caskett should call it quits. Okay, so the light was mercifully turned on in the writers room at the last minute and the Duo was raised out of the depths of stupidity into the light of Dynamism. Now let’s see how the writers explain the acronym Loksat is familiar to RC before KB had ever heard of it and how he knew this would trigger her obsessive mania to the degree it did. It would underscore a deep seede distrust RC has in KB, is that what these writers were aiming for, REALLY!

    • Susan Smith says:

      Kate went down “the LockStat rabbit hole” AFTER her colleagues were murdered by LockStat. If Rick had told her what he Knew a year and a half ago they could have gone after LockStat Together without all the angst and drama.That “mania” wouldn’t have happened because her colleagues wouldn’t have been murdered

  18. FormerCastleFan says:

    I really enjoyed this episode, even though I figured out who did it almost immediately. I love strong, confident Beckett…I’ve missed her this season.
    .
    I am sick to death of LockSnore and could care less about the contrived story. I liked that Beckett told Castle she needed time to process (that’s who she is)instead of just running away in anger.
    .
    While I could see Beckett at the police academy as another line of occasional stories, I don’the see it as interesting enough to spin off into new series….further proof the show IS Caskett working together and other options fall flat IMO.
    .
    This is an episode that I would watch again, which I can’t say about the vast majority of the episodes this seasons.

  19. Ana Rubio says:

    I loved the police academy storyline, Beckett was amazing. Good episode.

  20. gretchen thad says:

    These writers have no idea what made Caskett special. Their relationship now appears to be all about sex of the booty call type. Beckett can’t live with Castle – he’s okay with that as long as she pops over nightly for sex. Beckett’s angry with Rick keeping something from her – she’s okay with that as long as they drink and have sex. What happened to the sexy, smart, witty, urbane couple that I loved?

  21. AnneK says:

    It was a good episode but had its cringe worthy moments.
    Drinking instead of talking? Booty calls? This is the new Caskett of S8. Awful.
    Why does Castle talk to Hayley? Remember his family? He used to talk to them. Aww the good old days.
    They are mad, they arent. Can we see how they arrived there? Nope, too difficult, and that would mean adding more Caskett time. Cant do that.
    Apparently these two have learned nothing since S4, i must have been watching a different show since their wedding.
    Could that last scene have been more rushed or cut off? Kiss- good Lord, cut away!!

  22. Aleks says:

    This was a really good episode, the best from S8 in my opinion (but it’s not really hard). But I would have loved to see Castle and Beckett having a serious conversation for once, not the usual “no more secrets / we’re doing this together” they give us everytime before making them do the opposite again.
    I actually loved the scene where they drink but they should have talked the next morning, or in the final scene.

    • Leo says:

      This episode was a cut above all others of season 8. Yet the damage has been done,1.1 demo with 5.65million viewers. It’s safe to say this will most likely be the high water mark. As much as fans dream of the good old days, this is it, half of what it used to be.

      • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

        [Cue ominous thunderclap]

      • KLS says:

        The unadjusted numbers are 6.64million/1.1 demo for 3/21. Two weeks ago: 5.65/1.1. So the total viewers are going up, but you are right, not as good as a year ago.

        • Leo says:

          It’s a far cry from the 2.4 demo and 12.62 million viewers of season 6.

          • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

            It is, like, half, one might say!

          • Just one thing says:

            I was wondering, do you think you’ll ever get a chance to interview Stana Katic again before Castle goes off-air?

          • Grey says:

            I was wondering the same thing, Matt. Stana has given zero interviews this season.

          • Ellen says:

            Have you looked at all the network averages of now compared to two years ago? They’re about half of what they were then. Just sayin’

          • Leo says:

            I have absolutely no knowledge if this ever happend, just thinking out loud. The lack of interviews have anything to do with the contract, or the shock of the nose dive in the ratings between S7 and S8.

        • Plecodave says:

          Who would have thought that Castle episode 15 had more viewers than Blindspot? It seems that Blindspot is on a downward free fall.

  23. JImN says:

    Agree with you completely as to how maddening it is to have LokSat and Rick’s missing months injected into an episode. Those moments take you right out of the A-story in the episode – mortal sin of story telling. That said there were many good and some great things in this episode.

    First, Katic and Fillion are really first rate dramatic actors and just a superior team when acting with each other. Nothing has change when it comes the great chemistry they have. Second, the director and editor make a big difference in giving the actors time to do their work and in showing that work on the screen. Third, good writing is important.

    A much better episode on many levels than GDS. This one makes that one look so much sillier.

    • KLS says:

      Agreed. The G.D.S. was a train wreck. This was one of Creasey’s (writer) best episodes. And you can tell it was directed by Rob Bowman. His are always better then the others (excluding “PhDead”, 803, of course).

  24. Kristine S says:

    Let me preface this by saying that I never watched the last several episodes (just straight-up deleted from my DVR) and I haven’t paid a lot of attention to numerous episodes before that because I was bored watching them. Believe it or not, this has been my favorite show since it premiered. I can honestly say I haven’t truly enjoyed it for the last few years. I only stick around because I have loved it for so long. I know the characters have to grow and change but they have not done a good job with Castle and Beckett. And they barely interact anymore! Beckett becoming captain was a terrible move and I’m not fond of Castle’s PI business. It is essential that these two characters are constantly interacting on this show. And what about the rest of the great cast? We get more Ryan and Esposito up front investigating, but what about everything else? I want to see more of their lives! Where the hell is Martha? I love her and she’s never around anymore. I love Alexis but she’s supposed to be a college kid not a superslueuth working for her dad. Please bring the old show that I used to love back! If they can’t put Castle and Beckett back together working cases, then just end this show.
    When Ausiello said this show coming back in the fall was “a safe bet”, I was disappointed. It’s not Castle anymore.

  25. DLS says:

    I liked the episode, it wasn’t excellent, but it was good. I’m a fan of Beckett in action and it was nice to see a heavy case focused for a change. The Caskett/Lockstat stuff has just gotten boring. Really wish they’d move on from that.

  26. sunshine says:

    The fans hate all the Lok hydra stuff and the writers don’t get it. This was closer to why we used to love the show, a murder of the week, quips, synergy between the cast and a one episode finished plot. Also, looks like our pair is together again so there’s another stupid plot over with at last.

  27. TvLover says:

    Oh Castle, this shows joined Castle mind erasing and Loksat stupidity continue to amaze me.
    I found the police academy part entertaining, but as much as I enjoyed Badass Beckett from past seasons this episode seemed to go almost too far for me with the real interrogation.
    I didn’t like how the kid repeatedly asked for a lawyer and yet Beckett, Captain Beckett ignored his request and kept on at him. I thought that Detective Beckett would have stopped the interroagtion right then and there.
    I was all for Martha’s book until the dedication. I might have taken it too seriously but it seemed like a backhanded compliment.
    Well, at least Castle and Beckett are on the same page where Loksat is concerned now. And they are hopefully going to be working together again. Finally!

    • Roxie says:

      Are you really ready to trust Hawley once again? Factor in that our stars are still not fond of each other to share more screen time (telephone and Skyping do NOT count asCaskett time working together) and I am very skeptical. I would so like to be wrong but if a new journey is about to begin as SK has indicated on her Instagram, perhaps last nighr’s ep was her swan song to her fans. Please I want to be sooooo wrong.

  28. Terri Spoonemore says:

    Was awesome a change

  29. Bill Reehill says:

    First episode watched since 8×2 as it seemed we were promised a reunion. When Castle went into Beckett’s office to confess, I felt like I was watching the old Patty Duke Show. When he was talking, her back was to the camera and vice versa. Do they even come into the studio on the same day anymore? And that shot of her sitting on the edge of the bed with him sleeping? That was a bad cut-and-past job.

    I did a lot of fast forwarding, because in the end it still wasn’t Castle and Beckett TOGETHER solving crimes.

  30. Me says:

    Lol Matt, thanks for your recap of the gloooorious Locksat / missing time story line. It summarizes the beauty of it perfectly!

  31. Lorisa Chandler says:

    I thought it was finally a good episode beginning to end.Of course I’m ready for this Lok/Missing Rick time was past us.I loved Beckett having a big part like it’s supposed to be.Creasey/Bowman/Katic-Make a heck of a team!I will watch anything they are a part of!!!

  32. jahoney1 says:

    I felt this was the best episode of season 8. That is not saying much because of how bad season 8 has been for the most part. Because of the ratings being in the tank and the advertising dollars being down and more importantly without Paul Lee’s protection normally a show this bad ratings wise would have already cancelled. Syndication money for seasons 1-7 would possible be the only reason why the show logically keeps going. Syndicating season 8 at the price ABC gets from seasons 1-7 is a very hard sell. Over all for season 8 this was a good solid well done and well acted episode. Getting back to the basic’s of how Marlowe and Miller originally told the stories, Through Beckett’s emotional arch and her point of view.

  33. Fran says:

    Great episode!

  34. kath says:

    Thank goodness Castle and Beckett are finally working together again! That separation was the most massive fail since the How I Met Your Mother finale.

    (I bet to differ on Felicity not finding two minutes to tell Oliver not that her father had arrived (she told him that) but that he was trying to steal Palmer technology. Oliver didn’t have those two minutes to spare since he was running around trying to save the kid he didn’t tell Felicity about and getting everyone else’s advice on what to do about him. That line was waving a red cape to a bull, Matt.)

  35. Yo mama says:

    I enjoyed the episode. I never realized how interesting the Kate Beckett character is until this season where she’s mostly gone missing. She’s badass, but I enjoy vulnerable Beckett the most. Her relationship with Castle brings out this side. When they aren’t sharing scenes it isn’t as evident as it was in past seasons. It’s the two of them together that made this show extraordinary. The actors play off each other so well they don’t need words to convey their feelings. Castle and co just aren’t as interesting. I needed Wikipedia to follow the players in Beckett’s mom murder, but Castle’s disappearance/Loksat is even more convoluted. I’m glad they will be back together to solve this mystery. I’ve stuck with the show, but it has become a shell of its former self.