Castle S6 Ep17 – In The Belly Of The Beast

They said this week would be intense, and they were correct. They also ruined any chance of anyone who was paying attention being even slightly surprised at who the real bad guy was, by putting Jack Coleman’s name in the opening credits – but we probably would have guessed anyway, wouldn’t we?

Hmm, Markov and Beckett look kind of similar. I'm sure that isn't relevant at all.

Hmm, Markov and Beckett look similar. I’m sure that isn’t relevant at all.

So this week, some high-ranking cop from narcotics wants Beckett to impersonate Elena Markov, a low-level drug runner for a new cartel in town; Markov’s in the hospital after a suicide attempt, and Beckett happens to both look like Markov and be fluent in Russian. (Good continuity there, show. I’m pretty sure Beckett’s ability to speak Russian hasn’t been mentioned in seasons, so it’s always nice when things like that get remembered.) Gates isn’t pleased at her detective being strong-armed into this, but of course Markov’s only going for a short meeting in a public place. Beckett won’t be in any real danger. Not any danger at all…

Except it turns out Markov was actually the cartel’s assassin. So Beckett ends up doing a hit for a man known as Mr. Jones, in exchange for the right to meet “Lazarus,” the man in charge. Of course the shadowy figure they take her to meet (who’s apparently someone we’ve met on the show before? I guess my memory isn’t as good as I thought) recognizes her immediately as Detective Beckett. But as she’s about to be shot in the woods, unexpectedly her rescuer is the real Elena, who tells Beckett that Lazarus wanted her to stay alive because he owed her. Thankfully, Beckett doesn’t take long to figure out that this means all of that money she saw being laundered is actually going toward Senator Bracken – who has presidential ambitions.

I was pleased with Beckett staying as on top of the situation as she could, even not really knowing what was going on: getting rid of the wire, catching on that she shouldn’t act like a lowly underling, contacting her precinct when possible, staging the hit on the lawyer (although how she concocted the ketchup and beet juice so fast is a little suspicious). I also liked Castle’s quiet anxiety: no over-the-top freaking out, just genuine fear for his fiancee. It would have been nice if Ryan and Espo had more to do this week, but I’m sure they’ll get a bit more screentime in other eps, as they usually do. Beckett’s letter to Castle was sweet and heartfelt without being too much, I thought.

She's thinking about Castle right here. Aw.

She’s thinking about Castle right here. Aw.

So, what do you think will happen when Beckett and Senator Bracken do meet up again? Guessing whatever it is, it will happen during sweeps or the end of the season. And it seems like now that they’re even, neither can live while the other survives– or maybe I have the wrong series here.