I don’t know what I found more unbelievable on this week’s Castle
: the motives behind the actual murder or the fact that Castle and Becket have not finalised their guest list for their wedding!
Before we get into the recap I would like to say huge congratulations to Penny Johnson Jerald, who plays Captain Gates. She has always been a character pushed to the background--a source of either comic relief or the "hard ass" giving Castle a kick up the butt, but in this episode we actually see her as a real character and her performance was amazing.
We open with a dead body (shocking I know!) and a woman taking a photo of it. This, once again, proves that the trend of selfies needs to die (see what I did there!)
The intersecting story is Castle and Becket's inability to sort out their guest list, which anyone who is getting married knows this is one of the first things you do. Seriously, a few episodes ago they were picking a venue, how do they do that if they don’t know how many people are coming?!
Our victim for this week is Peter Cordero, a Wall Street investor. Apparently, the woman we saw in the opening scene made the 911 call on pay phone down the street. The baffling part: the vic's shirt was open after
he was killed.
The team interviews Peter’s cousin Maria, who says Peter was a nice guy; he was an orphan who came from Venezuela and worked hard to get into his position. The big boss at GP Harding Bank, Mr Burman, looks like the typical corrupt trader we all hear about: slick on the outside, rotten on the inside. He tells Becket everything was fine but saw a “gang banger” handing Peter a package a few days ago.
Laney found a set of numbers on the palm of Peter hand in pen, but also says he had adhesive residue on his chest, indicating he was wearing a wire. The team starts looking for the woman who made the 911 call, but are surprised when she walks into the precinct with the Southern District US Attorney Elizabeth, who is Gates' sister. Elizabeth and Stephanie are here on behalf of the case.
Again, the acting between these two was wonderful to watch. Seeing the tension really sold me. It told me this was a strained relationship between two sisters. It was “a polar vortex” according to Castle and I couldn’t agree more!
Anyway, Peter was an inside operative for the DA's office, and Burman is the target. Peter was forced into giving evidence after he was charged with a drug charge, despite his cousin's instance he never touched the stuff (this is the point I knew exactly who did it and why, and I am sure most of the audience figured it out too).
The gang banger’s name is Hector. He was an old friend of the victim, but the two had lost contact for the past decade. Once Becket confronts him, Hector gets upset when he finds out about Peter's death. Hector was the one who stopped Peter from getting into the gang Hector himself fell into (knowing Peter could do better). Peter called him the week before, saying he needed a weapon for a deal. The deal was not drugs, but bank accounts.
The account is password protected, which of course are the digits Laney found on Peter’s hand. The balance is $0 today, but on the day he was killed, there was over $25 million in the account.
The team come to a dead end. Gates asks her sister for help acquiring the tapes from Peter's wire. But Elizabeth doesn’t want to give Gates the tapes because if Peter was doing anything dirty it will stuff up their case and stop Elizabeth’s track to success. Elizabeth cites the tired old line “the greater good.” It turns out back in 1998 they use to be close: Gates was in Internal Affairs and Liz was a DA. Elizabeth was using an informant who was dirty, and when Gates pursued the truth, it cost her sister the case. The relationship never fully recovered.
After some persuasion, Elizabeth gives the tapes over and Peter is heard making some calls about Armando Garcia.
The money was sent to a bank in Venezuela, and then a call was made to the Venezuelan Embassy. The consulate says Peter called to make a passport request--and Peter and Armando are the same person! They find the coffee shop where he made the money transfer, and the security footage reveals Burman and Peter interacting during the transaction.
Burman was paying him to throw the case. They bring Burman in to try to get him to confess, but he says it is not illegal to know about the investigation and they will never be able to link him to the account. He tells them Peter wasn’t wearing a wire when he was killed because he left it at the dead drop.
The lawyer, Stephanie, turns out to be our murderer. Peter left a recording for Stephanie on his wire explaining how he always tried to play by the rules but when those in power break the rules, he couldn't help them. The recording was recovered from her computer. She got a cop to plant drugs on Peter so they could get an inside man for the case.
She is arrested, but they cannot recover the money. It turns out Peter donated a large amount of the money to his village that was affected by the earthquake and started him on this journey.
Gates and her sister make up and go for a drink.
But what about Castle and Becket's weddings guest list?! They had over 400 people on the guest list, and even when they give it to Martha to help, she just brings her own list! Castle and Becket realise that they should just invite the people that make them happy, and to do it in a minute. They both write down “YOU,” kiss, and then get to the real work.
Ok, a few problems with this episode. The entire DA office would be in a media shit storm the moment it was revealed that a DA planted evidence on a minority person (who was considered as good as gold) just to bring in a corrupt banker (who had done nothing but white collar crime) and then killed for it. This nicely packaged ending really got my goat, because Peter was right. Why should any of us play by the rules if those in power break them so easily? What is the city doing for Peter’s family in way of compensation? All these questions are just left hanging in the wind and are never addressed. All I got from this episode, moral-wise, was to go into stock trading and be careful not to get caught.
Also: the wedding plot line. Really guys? Unless you come from an ethnic family, NOBODY has that many people they need to invite to a wedding. I’m not only getting married myself, but I DO run a DJ company, and have done over 1000 weddings, trust me on this!
Overall I give this episode 3/5. It wasn’t bad, it just became predictable half way through and the lack of justice really left me feeling empty.
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