‘Castle’ Review: It’s the NYPD against the FBI in ‘Need to Know’

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ABC/Richard Cartwright

Need to Know” is the kind of Castle episode we love and would like to see every week: there was plenty of humor, the case was interesting, but not too serious, and we still got to see Castle and Beckett together. The ending took us by surprise, not because it happened, but the way it happened.

First, let’s talk about the case. A former child actor, who played a role on a cheesy 90s high school sitcom Saved by the Bell 2 Cool for School, was murdered. He was found hanging from a construction hook and Castle and Martha happened to see it on the news. Since Beckett’s in D.C., Castle decided to offer up his services to Ryan and Esposito, but oops, Esposito ignored his call (burn!).

ABC/Richard Cartwright

ABC/Richard Cartwright

Naturally, Castle headed down there and convinced them to let him play too. They weren’t supposed to let Gates find out, but she came back early from her trip and wasn’t thrilled to see Castle. Before she had the chance to kick him out, Beckett and McCord showed up and announced that they were taking over the case, but still wanted the NYPD to do the legwork.

Everything about what followed was funny: the territory wars, the fact that everything was on a ‘need to know’ basis and poor Castle being forced to prove his loyalty by attempting to bribe Beckett with a cappuccino. She wasn’t impressed by the bribe, but it was obvious she felt guilty about working against her old colleagues, even if she had to keep those thoughts to herself.

The case took some twists and turns and at one point, a CIA agent stepped in and took over when it turned out that the actor was actually helping them infiltrate the Russian mob (just go with it). The D.C. higher-ups gave the order to shut down the investigation, but that didn’t sit well with Beckett and she slipped Castle a USB drive to help them solve the murder.

ABC/Richard Cartwright

ABC/Richard Cartwright

It turned out that the killer was actually the former costar (Antonio Sabato, Jr.), which really, was not a shock at all, but the case was so entertaining that it didn’t matter that we know all along. However, the CIA wasn’t done yet. They wanted to use the murder victim’s Russian girlfriend to spy on her family, which would have put her in harm’s way. Beckett was severely bothered by that and McCord told her again that they don’t always have the whole picture.

But that didn’t sit well with Beckett and she gave an anonymous tip to a reporter that the Russian woman was being investigated so her family would disown her and the government would have to put her in protective custody instead of being their spy. Castle was super proud of his fiancée (guys, let’s remember that Castle and Beckett are ENGAGED) and told her that seeing her help someone get justice only makes him love her more.

ABC/Richard Cartwright

ABC/Richard Cartwright

Now let’s get to that unexpected part. Castle let Beckett know that long distance was not working for him and it wasn’t enough. We suspect the show wanted us to panic and think a breakup was coming, but we weren’t worried. Instead, Castle told Beckett that he rented a D.C. apartment for the two of them since he can write anywhere. Beckett was thrilled and they kissed and then there was a knock at the door.

It was Agent McCord. The bureau figured out that Beckett had been the one to leak the information and McCord was there to fire her. WHOA. We knew Lisa Edelstein was only signed for three episodes (we miss you already!) so we were expecting Beckett to make the decision on her own that the FBI was not right for her after all. But fired?!? How dare they fire our girl?

Okay, fine, it’s for the best because we know everyone will stay in New York and Gates will welcome her back with open arms (or a firm handshake because Captain is not sentimental, aside from those weird dolls she collected). But we’re still a little outraged that Kate was fired and the decision was made for her instead of having her realize that the FBI was not all it was cracked up to be.

Did you guys enjoy the episode? How awesome was it for Ryan and Esposito to get some decent screen time once again? Is anyone surprised Ryan was a big 2 Cool for School fan? Or that Esposito (aka Mario Lopez – excellent shout out, show) secretly watched too? Hit the comments and tell us what you thought of the episode!

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About The Author

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Editorial Director since 2012. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.

  • Fitch

    What was unacceptable about the CIA and the Russian girl was this: The CIA Agent said he would give out information that would have her killed if she didn’t spy for him. She was pretty sure that if she did spy for him she would be killed. Beckett understood that the CIA Agent was knowingly sentencing an innocent person to death for an accident of birth and she couldn’t go along with that. So she tipped off the press to save the young woman’s life.