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Castle Round Table: Season Finale Review, Reaction

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Welcome to the first-ever edition of the Castle Round Table.

Following a truly astounding season finale, our staff was left with no choice but to debut this popular TV Fanatic feature in honor of the ABC hit.

Below, critics Christine Orlando, Jeffrey Kirkpatrick, Courtney Morrison and Chandel Charles pick apart "Knockout." As always, reader feedback on the following topics is encouraged...

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What did you think of Montgomery's involvement in Beckett's mother's murder?

Christine: I thought they did a fantastic job of showing how he made a serious mistake in his younger days and spent the rest of his career trying to atone for it. It added a wonderful complexity to his relationship with Beckett and showed Montgomery as a flawed hero instead of a villain. Ruben Santiago Hudson is such a pro. I'm really going to miss him.

Jeffrey: Completely shocked. Never entered my mind that he would be a part of it. Loved it because rarely on a procedural does a member of the core cast get offed like this and in both villanous and heroic fashion. It opens the series up a bit to taking risks when you remove the barrier that assumes everyone is safe. Watch out, Ryan and Esposito!

Courtney: I was shocked! Montgomery’s always been so good to her, I never would have thought it was to make up for something. I realized he was hiding something but I didn’t think it was that he was the third cop! Have to say, one of the best twists I have seen all season on any show.

Chandel: It was surprising, yet I somehow expected it given the story about how they met, there was a hint of something I couldn't quite place on Montgomery's face and I just knew. What was best about it was how much we learned about Montgomery in his final episode. There was redemption in his actions and it will be sad to continue this journey without him. He was young and made a mistake, but spent his entire career trying to correct it by making Beckett the best detective he could.

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What would you like to see in a new Captain next season?

Christine: Someone who isn't a fan of either Castle or Beckett. That type of thing can be used for drama and comedy. Beckett will have to prove all over again that she's earned her place as the head of the team. Maybe even have Beckett go to the mayor and ask to have Castle remain at the precinct when the new Captain wants him gone. Have Beckett fight to keep Castle around for once. That would be a great twist.

Jeffrey: Breasts. Seriously, I actually would like to see a female captain. It would introduce a different dynamic for the series.

Courtney: I wouldn’t mind seeing Ryan take the job, then we could see a rougher side of him.The new Captain definitely needs to be on board with Castle hanging around. Maybe a woman? Even up the playing field a bit while giving Kate a challenge.

Chandel: Someone wary of Castle's involvement with the department to give the show another angle to work plot wise. Maybe a woman just to get some more girl power in the NYPD, plus I think it would present an opportunity for Beckett to maybe make a female friend in the department. Marlowe has presented himself with a wide array of storytelling opportunities with this sudden vacancy.

How will Castle's confession (that he loves Kate) be handled?

Christine: I'd love for them to handle it straight on but that just isn't Castle. I think Kate has issues she needs to work out before she can openly reciprocate those feelings but I think she needs to give him some hope to stick around.

Jeffrey: Oh, they'll find some way to draw it out. Coupling on a procedural is dicey, particularly with your two leads. The will they or won't they is part of what keeps Castle fans simultaneously excited and frustrated. Why ruin a good thing (ratings-wise)?

Courtney: Hopefully the writers won’t go the typical route in that Beckett never heard him because she was unconscious. The perfect scenario would be Kate waking up in the hospital and saying “I love you too, Rick.” One can only dream...

Chandel: In a way that's very true to their relationship. I think it should be handled in the break room over coffee or something; coffee has always been their subtle sign of affection for one another. Give them some time to get Kate through her recovery so that his confession and their discussion isn't just something said in the moment Castle thought he was losing her. Adds a little bit of credibility.

Do you want to see Castle and Beckett get together in season four?

Christine: Absolutely.  I'm tired of every show keeping their leads apart. It's so boring! Castle and Beckett have amazing chemistry. They'll make such a fun couple with lots of new story avenues to mine. I'm okay with the show taking its time and I'm all for enjoying the ride, but I'll be horribly disappointed if we don't see them move this relationship forward by mid-season. Watching these two date will be sweet, funny, and really entertaining.

Jeffrey: No. I really don't ever want them to get together. (Gonna get hate for that one.) I love that they care for each other, but would rather it be as best friends rather than anything amorous.Why does every show HAVE to couple its main characters?

Courtney: I understand the writers' hesitation to build up the relationship before making them a couple, but come on, it’s season four! Even if they don’t get together in a full-on relationship, they need to move a little forward. I wouldn’t mind some between the sheets action. I’m just saying.

Chandel: They aren't ready yet. Plot-wise, it seems that Castle is going to come into some information that he'll be keeping from Beckett regarding her mother's murder. I don't know if they can really be together until Beckett's mother's murder is solved. What they can do is continue to maintain their strong partnership, deal with Castle's confession, and then build from there in a way that's true to them, which I know Andrew Marlowe will pursue with great care. Great love stories take time.

Which secondary character(s) had the best scene and which scene?

Christine: Martha's scene with Rick when she calls him out on how he can't voice his feelings was such a powerful moment. Susan Sullivan maybe gets one scene an episode, but boy does she know how to make it count. 

Jeffrey: When Ryan and Esposito found out about Montgomery's involvement. Their opposing reactions and near throwdown over it was fantastic.

Courtney: A definite tie for Ryan and Esposito. Their scene outside the bar after discovering Montgomery’s role in the case was outstanding. Their bromance is always a highlight on the show, but these two displayed some real acting, both emotionally and physically.

Chandel: I think Ryan and Esposito's moment in the alley was another favorite moment because they were so torn up about the possibility of Montgomery being the third man that they got into a little skirmish. Neither one of them really wanted to admit the possibility. Even though they roughed each other up, their relationship is so strong that it only took a single look between the two of them to convey understanding and forgiveness. It's a rare thing for two people to have that kind of relationship, so I appreciate it's portrayal in the episode.

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I think that Rise was phenomenal as far the premieres go. It touched upon all the important aspects of Caskett relationship. For the last 2 season premieres, it was always Castle who had to do the chasing up to get back in to the precinct and play detective. This was really the first time, we saw Kate seek Castle out and make him come back. It also showed how Castle was more openly pissed that Kate had not contacted him for 3 months. (Remember last time round it was Kate who was angry but she was more subtle in questioning him). The relationship/bond between the two has grown stronger. Whether Beckett realizes it or not, she has never before lost control over her emotions in front of Castle but this time she does. She is at her vulnerable best. Stana Katic is not just beautiful but a fantastic actress and so is Nathan Fillion. These guys say so much with their eyes and their expressions. I am just crazy about the show and the characters have such depth. They have both evolved so much - Castle has become more mature and responsible and Kate has shown that she too, has a fun / wild side to her. They both have rubbed off each other. I am hoping for at least a kiss between the two. I do hope they get together this season. I would really like to see an episode where Kate helps Castle out emotionally and is basically "there for him". It happened just once before in the Final Nail. I am so happy that the show has started again. The wait was a long and arduous one.

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I'd love to see Castle and Beckett together but unfortunately it's not time as yet, I agree with the gentleman of having Beckett for once fight to keep Castle around and them both not ignoring the fact that they really care for one another. And because Castle has more info on who is behind the killing of Becketts mother and associates please don't let this season turn into a I hate you and never want to see you again thing. This is one of my favorite shows besides bones, rizzoli & isle, chase, the profiler etc...

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Loved #24. But the mystery only deepens. The shooters that came after Beckett only wanted her and wouldn't have taken out Montgomery. And the conspiracy is way bigger than a few cops. And what if Montgomery and the other two Why would anyone want Beckett bad enough to take her in public at a funeral/ This series' storyline is awesome. And Montgomery? His prescence was a key element in this story. I know it's hokie x-filey, but I hope we see him back in perhaps a deeper role that brings the team into the deeper conspiracy that is there. New Capt. is part of conspiracy and sent to keep an eye on Beckett, for example.

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-The Captain being part of the murder conspiracy was an amazing twist. I never saw it coming. -I hear the new Captain is going to be a woman. That's OK as long as she isn't some sort of a love interest. We've had enough of that but I agree I'd love to see Beckett have to fight to keep Castle on her team. He deserves that. -I don't know how they'll handle Castle's confession but I hope they use it to move their relationship forward. Kate needs to dump Josh and get to a place where she's ready for a real relationship with Castle. -Dear God YES! I've been waiting three years for this. It's season 4 already. It's time to get these two together. I want to see them dating and having fun. Maybe trying to hide it from everyone or dealing with going public. I can't imagine a better TV courtship than Castle and Beckett. They're a combination of too cute and really hot. -Hard to choose. Ryan and Esposito's fight was intense. Martha and Rick at the loft was great too but my favorite was Montgomery's last stand at the hangar. If he had to go out, it was a powerful way to go. I can't wait for season 4 to start!

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I Loved the season 3 finale-but i was worried if Kate got killed.I reasoned she couldn't.That is equal to ending this show.
I have only watched only season 3 of Castle, but i know a bit more,too.
I agree with all of you,but I don't think i want them dating,yet.Beckett trying to make castle get back to his writing and thus showing her affection seems a great idea.She's a girl of action-not words!
From all the episodes i have watched so far,I like Ryan and Esposito just as well.I would really miss Montgomery too.But the twist in the plot was superb,I have to agree-and also was the reaction of Ryan & Esposito when the found out who the third cop was.
The prospect of a new female captain seemed good-and i like the idea of Beckett trying to keep Castle working with her.But I don't think there is a chance for Castle trying to impress the new female cap.-when he knows Kate is there.The new cap. needs to be tough on the team[at least initially]-someone like Fallon-but should be good inside.This is because i would like to relish the feeling of a team among the 4,again and again,when they try to keep together-like that part in L.A. episode where R & E work for Beckett under cover,hiding from Cap.[It was in this episode i really got soft on Montgomery-when he asks R & Y who the worse liar was.] I am looking forward to the next season-but September is too long a wait.

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You Know, I wouldn't mind Ryan or Esposito taking the Captains job and struggle with it for a while, and then they realize that they really want to be on the Beckett/Castle team and by Midseason, introduce a new female Captain, who makes Beckett fight for Castle to stay with the team. Perhaps then the season finale will be when castle finally looks in the files, Beckett reciprocates his feelings and Ryan and Esposito are going to be sent away, each to different teams. I feel season 3 saved Castle and Beckett but destroyed the team through Montgomery's death. I think something needs to reinforce that whole relationship and the writers could add a new layer to all the other relationships including Lanie. I wouldn't mind seeing Doc. Purlmudder again.

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I like the idea that Castle and Beckett are still struggling with their relationship - because it is complicated. What I want to see is Kate standing up for Castle or reminding him who he is. This one-way deal of Castle going after her needs something going the other way. Some things I can see that could be part of next season: One, the return of Rick Castle, novelist. Face it, that guy hasn't been 'about the book (writing) since he said as much to both Martha and Kate in 'Knockdown' at S3E13. Tossing the drink at the Heat Rising Cover Art is a lot bigger than people seem to think. I think the writers recognize this - the sub-text for the Derrick Storm Graphic Novel is that Derrick Storm is DEAD (or as dead as a fictional character can get). Having Kate remind him of his talent would be a coy way of admitting (without admitting on it face) her affection for him until that time when she can. It would be a way to get some of the fun back in a series that, like it or not shippers, is light-hearted at its core. Two: For ths shippers, a return of 3XK to put Castle at risk, could be a great way for Kate to go at him as he went after her in her apartment in the finale. That's what I want: More of Castle's story, more of what he's invested in the relationship so far, to put Kate at a place where she has to reveal more affection - or else there is no show.

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Comments are much more healthy here with over 30, a good number for a well rated show. I for one was not surprised by Montgomery being killed off. When the show runners said someone was going to die, and then in the second to last episode of season 3 Montgomrey talks about retirement plans and his wife shows up at work - which has nearly never happened in the show's history - all the clues were there as to who was going to die the following week. Howerver, to see Beckett shot - that did catch me by surprise.

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@Jeffery no, not every show has to have their two main leads wantint to get together, but that's the way they've written castle. if you're going to make them best friends you have to do that from the start. You can't add in sexual tension, and jealousy and hints and then be like nah, they're best friends. they need to get them together b/c i'm already over Bones, and thus need Castle's cute relationship. i'm telling you now, if Kate RANDOMLY gets pregnancy i will stop watching!

Castle Season 3 Episode 24 Quotes

Unless you're a lot dumber than you look, you care about her too. Don't let her throw her life away.

Mr. Beckett

I've been going to that prison for the past four months to have a staring contest with the devil, and the devil just blinked.

Beckett
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