Monday, October 24, 2011
Premiered October 24, 2011
NYPD consultant and mystery novelist Richard Castle (Nathan Fillion) works with Detective Kate Beckett (Stana Katic) and her team to solve murders in the Big Apple. This Halloween-ish episode, opens with a paranormal investigator for a fictional tv series called "Ghost Wranglers" on location in a spooky old building that is thought to be haunted. Armed with a video camera and an EMF meter (two items commonly used in the ghost hunting business), he is recording his experiences. He sees something that frightens him and is quickly revealed to be our murder victim of the week.
Castle is at home enjoying a zombie movie on "father-daughter zombie night" with his teenage daughter Alexis when he gets a call to come out to the murder scene.
Upon arriving at the scene of the crime, Castle sees the "Ghost Wranglers" van outside the building and reveals that he is a big fan of the show. Beckett is not at all enthused about the concept of the show and calls it "ridiculous". Castle responds that it is "ridiculously aweseome" thus setting up who is going to be the "Mulder" and the "Scully" of the episode. Castle is shocked to learn that Jack Sinclair, the host of the program, is the murder victim but in typical fashion, his writer's brain kicks in with a bit of humor. He remarks that this is "one wraith he (Sinclair) couldn't wrangle" and makes a comment about the ghost hunter becoming the hunted.
We learn that the crime is especially bizarre, the victim's throat was slit causing blood to spatter everywhere but there is no sign of the murderer and the clues on the scene don't seem to add up. Is it possible that this murder is the result of paranormal activity? Castle wants to think so and Beckett thinks there must be a rational explanation. You'll have to watch the episode to find out the solution to the mystery. No spoilers here!
Full disclosure: I am a devoted fan of both Nathan Fillion and of programs like Castle and The Mentalist. I like my modern detective shows with a side of snark and Castle definitely provides a great deal of humor in this vein. For example, I really enjoyed when Castle referred to the murderer as an "Apparition American" after Beckett forbids him to use the word "ghost." Moreover, I am fascinated by ghost stories and paranormal investigations myself, so this show really appealed to my inner ghost geek.
The themes of this episode definitely have a Halloween flavor (haunted house, paranormal activity, etc) and the when we see the title sequence it has been changed a bit to include a spooky organ rendition of the theme music and an orange (rather than the usual blue or grey) background.
This episode is an amusing way to spend an hour and definitely appropriate for the Halloween season. It's also not a bad introduction to a really smart and fun police procedural with a comedic edge, so if you've never seen the show, I recommend checking it out on Hulu or your internet tv source of choice.
3 jack o'lanterns