Episode 21: The Squab and the Quail
By: Carlos Uribe
Castle is a show about a mystery writer who helps his lover solve crimes.
According to comedy, there comes a time in every relationship where there is a test for any gamer. It's a time when the hot, sexy girlfriend offers to have sex with you right when you're in the middle of an intense battle. Do you pick the girl that you love or the game that you're finally winning? I have a funny t-shirt that states “Commitment: When you're girlfriend asks you 'It's me or the video game' and you say 'We'll talk right after this level'” It's the idea that video games are so important that they can actually impact your real-life relationships. Is this really true? I'm not sure if it is. I could see the argument for it in theory but I doubt there's been actual study on it. What this does show is that there's a perception out there that it might be the case. That's why the joke is able to work-because gamers are dedicated to what they're playing. They take it seriously. This “choice” comes up in this episode of Castle. It begins with Castle playing a multiplayer game. He's finally gotten the edge over another player when Beckett offers herself to him. Only he doesn't know which one to pick until it's made for him. He loses in his game and she gets annoyed with him. This is basically all to set up the recurring theme of Castle being insecure in his relationship. The episode begins wit him starting to take Kate for granted. This is so that when Beckett has to protect this week's intended victim that he feels jealous and starts to appreciate her again. To what end? There's a brief scene where Martha points out that Kate isn't 100% committed to their relationship. She's not wearing a ring after all. There is no doubt that the writers used this episode to lay the idea of Castle asking Beckett to marry him in that scene. I wouldn't be surprised if the season ends with that question as the cliff-hanger.
The actual weekly case of the Squab and the Quail is predictable and a bit dull. It begins with a wealthy businessman dying in the city's hottest restaurant. He was poisoned. The cops come in and they start investigating but they quickly figure out that the wrong guy was poisoned. The real target is a mega-billionaire inventor that everybody likes. I mean everybody. Castle refers to him as the guy that he wants to be. Lanie considers his accent to be very charming while even Beckett thinks that he's attractive. This billionaire has basically been built to be the perfect person to make Castle jealous. Here's the first stumble that the episode made: it casted Ioan Gruffudd. Ioan Gruffudd is a pretty good actor and I like him. So if he's good then why is this a mistake? This is because his chemistry with Stana Katic was off the charts. Nathan Fillion and Stana have some decent sexual chemistry but there's a reason why almost everybody I talks to prefer Bones. At the risk of offending the shippers, it's honestly not that good. There's been moments where I wanted Castle and Beckett to get together or just to kiss already but never that I would be close to being considered a shipper. On the other hand, I really wanted Beckett to leave Castle and be with this billionaire. That's how strong the chemistry was-it overwhelmed the chemistry that Castle and Beckett are supposed to have. That's very bad especially in a show that revolves so much around the attraction (and love) that Castle and Beckett share. I'm sure that anyone who ships them will disagree with me but I'm sure I wasn't alone in my desire for Beckett and the billionaire to kiss.
The killer turns out to be the billionaire's lawyer. The lawyer had gambled or something so he needed money. He basically started running a scheme where he would steal investments that were supposed to be going to a Mexican factory. When the businessman that died wanted to go visit him, the lawyer decides to kill his boss to make it look like he was the committing fraud. Here's a small question: why didn't the lawyer just kill the wealthy businessman? I don't think this show established that anyone else was trying to dig deeper and it was convoluted to go after his boss. Anyways, the lawyer hired hitmen in order to avoid going to jail. It was a nice move that the billionaire wasn't the killer but I did see it coming that the whole factory was a fake from a mile away.
Overall, the whole “Castle-being-jealous” jokes were funny but the investigation itself wasn't very interesting. I'll remember this episode because of the billionaire but I doubt I'll remember the case that it was actually built around. The Squab and the Quail was a pretty standard episode of Castle. It had a lot of moments that were funny but it was also rather forgettable. The weekly case was a bit predictable and it wasn't good that the special guest star had more sexual chemistry with Beckett than Castle has with her. Still, if you like Castle then you'll like this episode.