Castle Recap Season 8 Episode 15

Castle Recap: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

When it comes to Castle‘s Ryan-, Esposito- or RySpo-centric episodes, the reactions tend to be mixed — those who judge the episode based on its own merits versus those who bristle against anything that steals Caskett time. But given how Season 8 as a whole has been a, um, special animal when it comes to  Rick/Kate interactions, perhaps this look at a romantic blast from Javy’s past will be assessed more fairly.

Because once you get the past notion that in all their years as partners, that during all their travels and late-night stakeouts, Espo never mentioned to Ryan (or onetime girlfriend Lanie, for that matter) that he was once engaged, Jon Huertas was here to sell you on the rush of emotions his character was experiencing with ex-fiancée Sonia (Constantine‘s Angélica Celaya) thrust back into his orbit.

The set-up for the reunion: Investigating the murder of a guard during a heist, it is discovered that the thieves used the same (goofy?) security countermeasure that Sonia’s crew used back in the day, before fiance Javi got wise to her illicit activities and arrested her himself. To help suss out the leader of this new crew, Sonia angles to be let out of prison with three months left to go before making parole.

Her first stop is a bar in Spanish Harlem, so she promptly rejects the idea of being paired with Ryan for the look-see. Instead, Espo agrees to hang with his ex some, and soon enough sparks are flying anew. First chance she gets, Sonia appears to make a(n ill-fated) break for it, though she claims she was just racing to phone 911. But later, just as evidence emerges that connects Sonia to the crew that murdered the guard, she gives Espo the slip, ducking out the bathroom window at his mother’s apartment where she was being offered a proper meal and shower before returning to the clink.

Throughout it all, the question looms: Why was Sonia in such a rush to orchestrate a prison furlough, give the cops the slip and seek out the stash of ill-gotten gold she left behind before being arrested? Turns out her father was actually her crew boss aka Great White, and he is on death’s doorstep — and he is the only one who knows where their haul is hidden. With Espo as a hostage, Sonia and a goon head to the abandoned ConEd facility where the coins are hidden. When the henchman goes to snuff Espo, Sonia stops him, saying, “I cannot let you do that…. Because I love him.” Javi then overpowers the henchman (with some sweet moves) and beseeches Sonia to surrender.

What followed was a helluva bit of work by Huertas and Celaya, as Javi revealed how years ago he came thisclose to letting Sonia skate, and running away with her instead. He, however, loves the badge just that much more. (“If I threw that away, I wouldn’t even deserve you.”) He then gently deflects her invitation to be with her now, on the run, rich and in love. “If I was strong enough to arrest the love of my life, you’re strong enough to face what comes next” — including an additional two years added to her sentence. After Javi is suspended for a week without pay (for letting Sonia pull one over on him), he and Ryan head out to soothe the assorted stings with a night of drinking.

Elsewhere in the episode, Kate sensed some hostility from Rick’s household AI, “Lucy,” so by hour’s end she has reprogrammed the gizmo to “man up” — as in, he now goes by the name “Linus.”

What did you think of the episode “Heartbreaker”?

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46 Comments
  1. brad says:

    alot better then his last episode also iam pretty sure linus is voiced by seth green and linus was the name of his lion painting

    • Hayley says:

      Yes it is Seth Green! I think they named it Linus because in Peanuts, Lucy’s brother’s name is Linus,

  2. Teri says:

    Seeing the group work together brings back cases seen in earlier seasons. I liked the team humor and how they tease each other. Seeing Espo get some backstory was great. Long overdue. Why can’t we see more of his mom? This episode made me laugh, which proved it was entertaining and that is why I watch Castle!

  3. Louis E. says:

    Actually,Sonia had been sentenced to 15 years for the earlier heist and expected to be paroled after 9…she just went down the parole list,any additional sentence would delay parole further.Probably not coming back while the series is still on the air!

  4. jay says:

    I was thoroughly entertained. In fact, I thought it was one of the best of the season. Loved seeing the gang working the case together. — special shoutout to Jon who showed both his acting chops and great comedic timing. All in all great episode.

  5. peterwdawson says:

    Shocking revelations about Ryan and Espo’s past that really should have come up by now is pretty much par for the course at this point. Ryan’s years undercover are probably the most infamous. To that end, yeah, getting over that really annoying trend (which isn’t easy) does help with the enjoyment of the episode a lot.

  6. Marguerite Petrizzi says:

    I really enjoyed this episode. Anytime Jon Huertas gets to be center stage is alright by me. Plus, I laughed out loud in many places. I loved that the gang was all together fighting crime.

  7. Plecodave says:

    Jon Huertas owned this episode. After almost 8 seasons we finally get some backstory on him. If the showrunners had given us this quality in the fall we might be talking a renewal. However the lack of Loksat story arc was a bonus. Lucy/Linus has run it’s course. Now it seems that Espo gets annoying phone calls at the wrong time. It must be some type of Caskett curse.

  8. Alichat says:

    Did Seth Green do the voice of ‘Linus’? I would swear that it was him.

  9. James D says:

    Enjoyed it a lot. Angelica and Jon had very good chemistry if there is a season 9 I hope they bring her back. I’ve generally liked the Ryan and Esposito centric episodes but I think this was my favorite. and the interactions between all involved felt very old time Castle. 8b continues to be a marked improvement over the first half. hoping for a strong finish and a renewal. As much as I’ve had problems with this show I know I will miss it like crazy when it is gone, so if they can milk one or two more season out of it I will gladly sign up.

  10. Paige says:

    FINALLY! An episode I actually could watch without cursing the showrunners for destroying a solid show with good supporting cast in their efforts to make their mark on it. The whole LockSat mystery is horrible and is responsible for how awful the season has been. Hopefully, this episode is a sign that the season is going to get better.

  11. Disappointed says:

    That was the closest to the old show that they have managed so far this season, especially the four of them at the precinct, and I liked it better than the two previous Espo centric episodes. Beckett as Captain still doesn’t really work for me, but Castle leaving off his P.I. hat did. Absolutely no mention of Hayley or the Lokthingy, and Alexis just their as the daughter helped my enjoyment considerably.

  12. BenM says:

    Legit one of my fav episodes of the season. Then again, the boys going to college was probably my favorite moment. I would definitely watch a white collar version of Javier and Sonja.

  13. Just one thing says:

    Pros:
    * Castle, Beckett, Ryan and Espo doing their thing together
    * Castle/Ryan & Beckett/Espo doing their thing separately
    * Beckett, Martha and Alexis interacting like they might possibly, maybe, be a family – without Castle(!)
    * An itty bitty insight into Espo’s familia and Ryan’s inclusion in said familia
    * Beckett wasn’t so much jealous of Lucy as she was perturbed by Lucy’s jealousy
    .
    Most of the things listed above could have been sprinkled in throughout the last three seasons. I’m not sure why some of it needed to wait until the eighth season – and the fun quad of Castle/Ryan and Beckett/Espo could have been utilized more instead of Lame Hayley and Snarky Alexis.
    .
    Cons:
    * More subversive Beckett bashing with little, subtle niggling in “Move B!tch.” Not a good look to see so much shade sent Beckett’s way in one season. Gross. And not funny.
    * Javi’s ex was too convenient and got off WAY too easily. It was an interesting insight, but contrived.
    * Beckett and Castle spoke pre-breakfast just last episode, and Lucy was either conveniently sleeping or secure in the belief that her human nemesis(?) would likely never come home again.
    .
    Either way, like the magical door that now leads from Castle’s bedroom to the hallway, it’s contrived. Kind of like Castle and Beckett preparing to eat a hot meal and being interrupted by a case – can’t they take 30 so the food isn’t wasted? – or being lip-blocked by songs and phone calls and people and solar eclipses, etc.
    .
    The episode had some fun spots and some lame spots. It’s always more enjoyable when everyone has something to contribute. I’d always appreciate more Beckett, but I’ll take what I can get in that department.

    • Suzy says:

      Yes the Move Bitch song bothered me. It was inappropriate. They could have done a much better job with that scene using a different song that didn’t refer to Beckett as a bitch.

      • Suzy says:

        Overall I did enjoy the episode and really liked seeing Espositos family.

      • Just one thing says:

        I’m sure everyone associated with the show will say it was strictly for comedy, and not how they view Beckett. But… About 15 eps of this season suggest differently.

  14. DarkDefender says:

    I thought it was okay. I’m not a fan of the Javi centric episodes, but of all of them, this was the best.
    .
    Seeing Angelica Celaya made me miss Constantine again. 🙁
    .
    I have decided I do not like Kate as Captain. I like any time Martha is in a scene and I wish we weren’t just now getting back to the original team dynamic with only 6 episodes left in the season (and possibly the series). Lots of Twitter nostalgia from SK and throw backs like last season when she thought she was leaving. I hate to see this show go, but I can’t say I’d be surprised if the top secret final episode currently in production isn’t a series finale.
    .
    At least I have Lucifer.

  15. N says:

    Fun eppy! Loved Espo

  16. Grey says:

    Matt, Season 8 as a whole hasn’t been a special animal when it comes to Rick/Kate interactions, it has been an EXTINCT animal.

  17. jj says:

    It was a good episode. It helps that Sonia is smoking hot so I can see why Espo falls for her. I can do without Lucy do. That was just stupid, and now Linus.

  18. Axelle says:

    Castle flirting with his machine that he programmed to compliment him … Wasn’t the guy a charming playboy in the first seasons ? How pathetic has he become ? There’s absolutely nothing atttactive about him anymore, this is sad, and embarrassing to watch. He’s in his late 40’s but is acting less and less mature.
    I think I can’t possibly dislike him more now, when he used to be one of my favorite male TV character until S4 😕

    • Just one thing says:

      This season has proven that Castle suffers from New Female Sidekick syndrome.
      .
      Every once in a while, an episode will dictate that he works alongside a New Female Sidekick (Who Isn’t Beckett), whether it’s The Nose, Hayley, Alexis, some special detective lady from The GDS, some genie (?!) in next week’s episode, or Lucy.
      .
      The New Female Sidekick will help Castle solve mysteries with “fun,” witty dialogue, and may occasionally challenge him.
      .
      She might stroke his ego, be his BFF or simply help make him look cooler or sexier by association. However, the New Female Sidekick will never, ever upstage him.
      .
      Just as Beckett will make her requisite 8-10 minutes of airtime, never overshadowing Castle’s story or mission, now that Lucy has been changed to Linus, I think we can rest assured that the spunky, little pyramid will never be seen or heard from again.
      .
      Hello, Season 9? Guess so.

      • Grey says:

        Is this from TV tropes or Nathan Fillion’s contract?

        • Just one thing says:

          Definitely a film trope that I haven’t seen too much in the intellectually superior TV space – not even on the often intellectually defunct CBS fare.
          .
          I doubt it’s officially in a binding contract. Probably just part of the way these particular male writers and producers create “fun” and interesting stories.

        • Just one thing says:

          Scratch that: I guess Doctor Who has fallen into this trope. But they’ve been on for decades, so…

    • Annie says:

      This! Rick Castle has gone from a hot, suave, dynamic leading man to a childish idiot. I am constantly amazed at how badly this season has been handled. From, can’t miss to “oh, was Castle on tonight” in less than 10 episodes.

  19. Boiler says:

    Was not on in Chicago due to Cubs so didn’t read article. Would guess will have very good initial ratings

  20. christopher bee says:

    Can i have the Mofongo Recipe of Espo´s Mom? Please.

  21. Tom-VA49 says:

    I thought it was a good episode. It was refreshing to see Jon working the lead.

  22. tom says:

    most shows struggle with the notion of keeping it fresh. In this episode we get to enjoy more about the characters we all like and expand the potentials for future story lines. Overall, a well done hour of entertainment

  23. KLS says:

    What? No Friends of Fillion (FOF) backlash? (Seth Green is a member) I am shocked!

    • Just one thing says:

      What’s the point in complaining about that anymore? :-P

      • lkh says:

        Hi JOT–I like your analysis above–well done.
        .

        Thought I might throw a little gasoline on this fire tho, just for giggles. Don’t know if anyone has mentioned that Darby Stanchfield (Alexis’ Mum) was NF’s wife in Waitress. Don’t want to leave any actor ‘unturned’ so to speak. :]
        .

        In the old days, wouldn’t there be about 150 comments on a Castle episode by now?

        • Just one thing says:

          When an actor is so very prolific, it’s difficult to find actors with whom he HASN’T worked. You understand. 😋
          .
          As for the comments section of any TVLine article that mentions Castle, yeah I guess it’s just not as buzzy these days.

          • lkh says:

            yes, I understand there is actually only 25 or 30 actors in Hollywood–it’s really the magic of makeup.

  24. Julie Lamb says:

    it was a good episode. I think never talking about how he was engaged helped Javi maintain his image. It could explain why he and Lanie didn’t get engaged either. He won’t let his heart get broken again, he won’t go there. But maybe now he can since he revisited his past.
    Linus is the lion in the painting… too funny!

  25. DMK says:

    Reminds me a bit of the classic Due South episodes featuring Victoria.

  26. Leo says:

    It was a fun episode thanks to Jon Huertas willingness to knock his character. I liked it, I wish the sub plot [caskett] had been filled out more. I know this may be petty but more detail of Casa Esposito and Casa Castle could’ve raised the episode to the upper echelon of season 8. Like I said, petty.

  27. Ree says:

    Enjoyed this episode more than any other in the last couple of seasons. It reminded me of why I began watching “Castle” in the beginning. I agree with a previous poster that if they had done this earlier, maybe the series might not be on death watch now. I don’t even care about Locksat anymore, if I ever really did. I hope that whoever wrote this has been writing the remaining episodes for this season. I also hope it’s not the final season.

  28. Leo says:

    When there are only forty comments it indicates a loss of interest, in what was once a place of intense and or ribald opinions. There is a sense of loss.

  29. Jo says:

    It was good as usual. Would like to know who did the voice of Linus?

  30. Ana Rubio says:

    It was a good episode!!! Probably my favorite Espo centric episode! and it was nice to meet Espo’s family