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ABC’s hit show ‘Castle’ returned to the airwaves Monday, September 24, 2012 at 10PM EST with its fifth season premiere, “After the Storm.” The police procedural dramedy posted great ratings with over 11 million viewers during the season opener, which teased at the glorious and long-awaited hookup of the titular Richard Castle (Nathan Fillion) and the beautiful Kate Beckett (Stana Katic).
For those new to the series, ‘Castle’ is about a rich crime novelist named Richard Castle who grows tired of the fictional character, Derrick Storm, who brought him to fame. After killing the character off, Castle seeks a new muse to inspire him. Coincidentally, homicide detective Kate Beckett brings him in for questioning on a case where the murders are staged the same way he has killed several characters in his novels.
Intrigued by the murders and by Beckett’s loveliness, Castle consults on the case, much to Beckett’s resentment. However, she finds out that his extensive knowledge of criminology and his outside-the-box thinking are quite useful for catching bad guys. Castle finagles his way into shadowing her through his friendship with the Mayor and the pair set off on a tumultuous but fun partnership.
In the previous season, Castle and Beckett dealt with the aftermath of Kate’s shooting, which she barely survived. Castle blurted out that he loved her as she lay bleeding in his arms and while Beckett reciprocated his feelings, she chose to tell him she had amnesia because she was not ready to commit to a relationship yet. However, in the season four finale, Castle confronts her about it as they are thrown back into the dangerous case of her mother’s murder, which drove her to be a detective in the first place.
Castle reveals that the conspirators who had her shot forced him to coerce her out of investigating the case so they would not have to kill her. When Beckett finds out, she is furious and runs headfirst into the case, which causes Castle to walk out on her. She catches up with her shooter but he overpowers her and leaves her dangling off a skyscraper.
Thankfully, Beckett’s team member Det. Kevin Ryan (Seamus Dever) and her superior Captain Victoria Gates (Penny Johnson Jerald) show up in the nick of time to rescue her. Due to her instability and disobeying orders, Capt. Gates suspends Beckett and her fellow teammate, Javier Esposito, (Jon Huertas) and Beckett resigns. She then goes to Castle and confesses that she no longer cares about the case and that she wants him instead.
The season five premiere picks up “the morning after” with Castle and Beckett having a brief chat about finally consummating their relationship. However, the tender moment is interrupted when Castle’s mother, Martha Rodgers (Susan Sullivan) and daughter Alexis (Molly Quinn) return home and he has to sneak Beckett out of the apartment without them finding out. He later explains that he wants to keep their relationship private for a while and she begrudgingly agrees.
Soon afterward, Detective Ryan shows up with a new lead on her mother’s murder. Reluctantly, Beckett continues forward with them as they try to track down Cole Maddox (Tahmoh Penikett) and Mr. Smith (Geoff Pierson), who met with Castle to protect Beckett. They find Mr. Smith shortly after Maddox tortured him to find a file with the information about the man responsible for her mother’s murder. They find out Senator William Brecken (Jack Coleman) is the man behind it all and Beckett confronts him, telling him not to send anyone else after her or her loved ones or she’ll release the evidence she has gathered against him.
The premiere is one of the best of the series, showcasing amazing acting from Fillion and Katic, both as they tease each other and as they push forward investigating the case. Katic is on fire as a furious Beckett who has come to terms with her feelings for Castle but realizes that she must find justice for her mother in a way she never could have predicted. Furthermore, the tension between Det. Ryan and Esposito is palpable as Esposito feels Ryan betrayed them by telling Gates where they went. It is a scary thing to see these two best friends at war with each other and it will certainly be an interesting subject to tackle in future episodes.
It is also satisfying to put a face to Beckett’s mother’s murderer as Beckett has been chasing this man for four years. Fans have been coming up with theories and speculation ever since it was first brought up in season one and they were ecstatic to see the showdown between the detective and the Senator in the final ten minutes of the episode.
‘Castle’ premieres Mondays at 10PM EST on ABC. Be sure to catch the next one.