Castle S5 Ep22 – The Squab and the Quail

Ah yes, the episode that almost – almost – made me dislike Ioan Gruffudd.

Not amused

The boys are not impressed by your jealousy and desperation, Castle.

This week centers on Ioan Gruffudd’s character, Eric Vaughn’s, apparent attempted murder in a fancy restaurant (which ended up getting an investor of Vaughn’s poisoned instead). Vaughn, the wealthy, charming, genius inventor with the posh accent, decides he wants Beckett as his bodyguard while the killer is still on the loose. The police commissioner is fine with this request, apparently, so Captain Gates orders Beckett to go along with it. This does not please Castle – especially since he and Beckett have just quarreled about Castle taking Beckett for granted. It doesn’t really make Beckett happy, either, since she’d rather be investigating the case … but she can’t help admitting that Vaughn is smokin’ hot.

So while Castle desperately and jealously tries to hurry Espo & Ryan in their investigation (the sooner they solve the case, the sooner they’ll get Beckett out of Vaughn’s clutches), Beckett watches over the rich guy – in the presidential suite of a ritzy hotel. Vaughn is, in fact, interested in Beckett: not just because she’s gorgeous, but because she’s such a great cop. Had it been established before that she was the youngest woman to ever make NYPD detective? Maybe way back in season 1? Anyway, it’s not hard to tell why Vaughn would be intrigued. But – to the relief of Castle/Beckett fans everywhere – when Vaughn moves in for a kiss, not only does Beckett gently but firmly push him away, but the moment is also completely ruined by a sniper shot through the hotel window, narrowly missing Vaughn’s pretty, pretty face.

The murderer ends up being Vaughn’s lawyer, who was deep in debt and embezzling money from his boss. He hired the hitman who poisoned Vaughn’s investor and then tried to shoot Vaughn. Before Vaughn goes, he makes Beckett realize that she doesn’t know where her relationship with Castle is going. So although Castle tries to apologize for his jerky behavior and taking her for granted earlier by preparing a romantic evening for the two of them, Kate is left uncertain. “Where are we going?” she asks, and we don’t get an answer this episode.

Beckett to the rescue

Okay, we’re glad he didn’t get shot, but we’re also glad he left.

Despite a bit of anxiety when I heard about Ioan Gruffudd’s character and a near-kiss between him and Beckett, I thought this was a good ep. It’s true, what was pointed out at the end: without some forward motion, Kate & Rick’s relationship could stall. I’ll be waiting to find out what the last two episodes bring to their story. Incidentally, remember that this week’s ep was originally supposed to air next week, but was rescheduled due to the Boston Marathon bombings. What effect this will have on the chronology of events, we’ll have to see next Monday.

Random final thoughts: Penny Johnson Jerald looked especially fantastic this ep in her purple jacket. Also, it was good to see the clever and gorgeous tech woman again. Thanks, continuity!