I have to agree with S re: the Castle-Beckett kiss. While the make-out session was wonderful, satisfying, and more than a little smokin’, I think there were other scenes in Knockdown that were more important, intimate, and moving in terms of Castle and Beckett’s relationship.
[Side note: I really appreciated how they handled the actual circumstances of the kiss. It was contrived (in order to distract the guard) and yet at the same time organic. I think this allowed it to be honest both for the situation and the characters.]
But back to the other emotionally-charged scenes. The episode was full of them, basically from beginning to end, but one that stood out for me was when Beckett asks Castle why he continues to follow her around (“Why do you keep coming back, Rick?”) The fact that she earnestly calls Castle by his first name is a big step in their relationship and generated some real swoopy stomach flip-flops for me. In previous episodes, Castle has called her Kate in serious moments (Suckerpunch and Boom! come to mind), but I don’t think she has ever called him Rick except in jest since meeting him in the pilot. This moment, and the sincerity of her appeal, brings Castle to the cusp of admitting his feelings for Beckett. Aaaand though it’s not explicitly voiced, it would be pretty hard for Beckett and the audience not to see the love in his eyes and facial expressions! Way to act, Nathan Fillion!
I also have to mention the scene in the ambulance when Beckett wraps up Castle’s hand. It’s heartfelt, tender, beautifully acted, and all in 10 sentences or less! Seriously, the exchange is only a few words long, but really communicates the depth of their relationship without resorting to schlocky sentimentality or unrealistic denial. Beckett doesn’t even look at Castle after he declares that he will always have her back, but she doesn’t need to.
Which brings me to…Beckett! From the moment I heard Stana Katic’s voice saying “previously on Castle…” I knew we were in for a suspenseful, Beckett-centric episode, but Knockdown peeled back even more layers of the Beckett onion than I was expecting. Katic showed great range in this episode, beginning with a badass Beckett doing chin-ups at home on a Saturday morning and ending with a chilling, steely, super-intense Beckett who would certainly put fear into the hearts of the most hardened criminals. And yet somehow in between those two, we saw Kate’s vulnerability, desperation, sadness, fear, fearlessness (yes, both!), passion, and, for lack of a better word, awesome-cop-ness. Great writing, great performance, and a great multi-dimensional character!
I don’t mean to neglect Castle as a character, but I’ll talk about him another time. And this was such a Beckett episode 🙂