I first started following Nathan Fillion’s career when he starred as handsome Malcolm Reynolds, the shoot first ask questions later Captain of the Serenity in the television series, Firefly. Now he’s starring in the hit ABC series, Castle based on a series of books by Richard Castle.
Nathan plays accomplished New York City mystery writer, Rick Castle who gets permission to shadow one of New York’s finest detectives for research purposes. He is introduced to the beautiful detective Kate Beckett (Stana Katic) and is inspired to focus on her as a lead character in his upcoming book, Nikki Heat. At first Beckett disapproves of his tagging along on cases, but soon begins to appreciate his unique methods of solving crimes. Rounding out Beckett’s team are Detectives Javier Esposito (Jon Huertas) and Kevin Ryan (Seamus Dever) who perform a lot of the legwork and enjoy kidding Beckett about Castle.
Susan Sullivan, best known for her roles in Falcon Crest and Dharma and Greg, plays Rick’s Broadway actress mother, Martha Rodgers, who has moved in with her son after losing her assets to her ex-husband. Martha helps Rick in raising his teenage daughter played by the lovely, Molly Quinn.
Unlike most television detective series, “Castle” mixes a lot creative humour along with the drama. The cases are unusual to say the least. On one episode, the team investigates a body found burned in a restaurant’s pizza oven. Fortunately, they discover early on that the person was dead before being placed in the oven, which eased some of the gruesomeness for me. (Although, it was a while before I wanted to eat pizza). Additional quirkiness came when the team found out that the restaurant owner had an enemy in the form of an ex-employee who had left to start his own pizza restaurant across the street. In addition, this owner also had an ex-employee enemy who also opened a pizza restaurant in the next block. I usually pride myself on my ability to figure out the murderer, but this particular episode kept me guessing until the very end.
Of course, the sexual tension between Beckett and Castle is one of the main draws of the show. The characters are seriously attracted to one another, but each is a little afraid of letting the other know. Much to the writers’ credit, the tension has been sustained for 4 seasons without becoming boring or uncomfortable. I’m not sure what most fans want, but judging from television history, if Castle and Beckett finally get together, it could mean the end of the series. I think it’s interesting though that in the books, they are very much together and enjoy intimacy but in television, it seems to work best with the sexual tension.
At any rate, “Castle” is a great television show with interesting characters and exciting plots. As of this writing, it has not yet been picked up for season 5, but things look hopeful. Unlike Fox, which cancelled Firefly prematurely, lets hope the execs at ABC recognize a good show when they have it.
Written by Joyce Parnell