Fridge Brilliance: In "Knockdown", Beckett confronts Castle and tells him to stop shadowing her for his own safety. He promptly tells her no and that he's not going anywhere because he's her plucky side kick. Beckett says the plucky sidekick always gets killed and Castle responds by sitting down on her couch in front of the window, easily in sight of a sniper if there had been one, and calmly says: "Your partner, then." Thus proving that Castle understands the weight of his decision to continue with such a dangerous case and that he's not afraid of dying.
Castle and Beckett often seem to wear clothing that coordinates together very well in style, but tends to look quite different in fabric and color; a subtle way of establishing and underscoring that while they're quite different on the surface, once you look closer they nevertheless mesh together very well in many ways. In addition, Beckett usually wears something red and Castle something blue, but when you see her sporting blue, sit tight, because the episode will be a serious one
In "Law and Murder", after Captain Montgomery has arrested the District Attorney, an old friend, for perverting the course of justice in tampering with evidence in a case, Castle makes an offhand comment about how unfortunate it is that this one wrong act will overshadow all the genuine good the District Attorney otherwise did for the city. Montgomery seems lost in thought, and we assume that he's mulling over what his friend did. However, in "Knockout", it's revealed Montgomery was one of the three rogue cops who, after accidentally killing an undercover FBI agent while attempting to kidnap a mobster, inadvertently started the dominoes falling that ended with Beckett's mother's murder. On reflection, it suddenly becomes more likely that Montgomery was considering his own wrong act and how that could overshadow all the good he's tried to do since then.
It also explains why Montgomery puts up with all the things Beckett does. A combination of guilt and redemption; Beckett is his way of making amends even if no one ever finds out.
In "Knockout", Kate isn't so determined to save the Cap because he's her boss. It's not because he's her friend. It's because he's effectively her father. She feels the same way about losing him as she would about losing a parent, again, only this time she could save them, but they won't let her.
Not just a parent but a personal hero as well. Montgomery was one of a few people that Kate really looked up to. Royce, her mom, Montgomery. And all three of them taken away from her violently and suddenly. Only with Montgomery, as mentioned, she could have saved him.
And that's exactly why Castle was whispering, "I'm sorry" so fiercely to her after he carried her out of the warehouse. He knew that she wanted to save Montgomery more than anything, but it would risk her life and neither of them could let it happen.
There's also the fact that Castle easily carries Beckett away. Sure, he is bigger and heavier than her, but he's a writer, she's a trained cop, and she was shown in previous episodes easily overpowering suspects much bigger than her. At first it seems to be a usual case of Chickification, until you realize that Castle is desperately trying to save her life. She undoubtedly knows that, which means that she knows that he won't let her go and unless she knocks him out cold or inflicts crippling pain, he'll just go back and try to grab her to safety again. Sure, she's physically capable of doing just that - except that it means that to have a shot at saving her mentor she would have to give Castlethe beating of a lifetime. Think how agonizing it must be.
Beckett is usually very skilled in self-defense, whereas Castle often gets beaten up and intimidated by crooks and even Beckett. However, episodes dealing with Beckett's Mom, Castle is often the one who brings in the beatdown on the bad guys, even as Beckett gets nerfed. In Sucker Punch, he fights off trained assassin Dick Coonan so Beckett can shoot him. In Knockdown, he beats up the hypercompetent super assassin Hal Lockwood. He has a few other moments as well, but he only appears to be able to Limit Break when Beckett's life is in immediate danger. So overpowering and carrying Beckett off makes perfect sense, even though she can kick his ass the rest of the time.
On the flip-side of this, why is Beckett less capable in these situations? Because her judgement is being clouded and her common-sense blinded by her all-consuming obsession with her mother's case.
Since we're talking Fridge Brilliance here, don't forget: Montgomery also is the only friend she has who knows the entire solution to the mystery of her mother's murder. His death isn't just the loss of a friend/boss/mentor, it's also her best chance at solving the case that defines her.
Not quite as horrible as the other examples here. In Season 1, Episode 4 (Hell Hath No Fury) the usual catchy modern pop song is playing over the opening. Now this would just seem like the typical Castle Cold Open, shows off the body, plays the cool song, but then the lyrics start. 'You're supposed to be my friend.' Who was it who shot the victim again?
Richard Castle seems to have partly foreshadowed developments in his real life with his earlier works; the blurb for Storm Fall on his website seems remarkably prescient for what would happen in "Pandora" / "Linchpin": specifically, the bit about Clara Strike possibly being a rogue agent. Remember who Clara Strike was based on...?
Also on the subject of Castle's 'bibliography'; one of the reasons Castle gives for killing off his previous character, Derrick Storm, was that he was getting bored with him. Looking through the blurbs of several of the Derrick Storm novels on the website, a bit of Creator Breakdown centered around this seems to become increasingly apparent; several of the (presumably later) novels either involve Storm either trying to leave the life only to get drawn back in somehow or are written / titled in such a way that suggests that it should be the last story (Storm's Last Stand). One gets the feeling that after trying to drop several increasingly unsubtle hints that he's a bit tired of Derrick Storm and would like to stop now, please, with the last one Castle's just thrown up his hands and gone "hell with it, I'll just put a bullet in his head."
Another Linchpin one. Remember when Castle was talking about 'law of averages' saying he'll eventually be right about government conspiracy? He was this time. At least, a little.
Sophia Turner's last name references the fact that she will "turn" from loyal agent to secret communist mole. Originally, she was credited as Sophia Conrad. Which sounds suspiciously like "comrade", a term stereotypical communists use with one another. Both names subtly foreshadow that she's not who she appears to be, but she's credited with a name she never uses in the episodes. Which is itself foreshadowing.
Still another: when Sophia talks to Beckett about her relationship with Castle, the viewer is supposed to see Sophia playing on all of Beckett's fears about Castle being shallow and immature. And eventually Beckett realizes this and even says so in the end. Castle never says anything, but he comes away from the episode realizing that this muse who he'd gone on adventures with and who he fell in love with, was really just toying with him all along and had never really loved him. It makes his behavior — when, from his perspective, Beckett has pretty much done the same thing — a few episodes later much more understandable.
In Season 3, it's revealed that Johanna Beckett's murder was the culmination of a series of events surrounding the activities of three cops who began working outside of the law to deliver justice to those they considered deserving of it. In Season 4 that's exactly what Beckett, Esposito and Ryan become when they launch their own unofficial investigation into the circumstances behind Johanna Beckett's murder and Kate Beckett's shooting, particularly in "Always". However, there's also a couple of notable differences that ultimately serve to break the chain; one, they have a civilian (Castle) involved, who acts as a voice of caution and conscience, and two in "Always" one of the cops (Ryan) realizes that things have gone too far and elects to reveal all rather than have tragedy result.
Another difference is that their focus was to bring the criminals in to face justice; the other set of cops didn't and focused their efforts towards showing those outside the law that they were, in fact, touchable.
Another parallel is that both teams of cops were, initially at least, devoted to justice. Raglan and McAllister appear to have been good cops who got sick of seeing criminals get away with their crimes and took efforts into their own hands, with Montgomery as the slightly starry-eyed and naive younger officer who followed in their footsteps, but when tragedy ensued Raglan and McAllister descended into bitterness and corruption while the third became The Atoner to try and repent for his actions. This also fits the dynamic between Beckett, Esposito and Ryan — Beckett and Esposito are the two experienced cops devoted to the pursuit of justice to the point of at times getting blinded by by their quest for it, while Ryan is the slightly naive and less-experienced younger officer who follows their lead. Except where Montgomery couldn't get past his naiveté and bring a stop to things before it all went too far, Ryan is able to see where the line is and pull everyone back before tragedy results.
Beckett's epiphany regarding her feelings about Castle in "Always" is triggered when she almost dies after confronting the man who shot her. She's almost died previously, however, without experiencing such an epiphany; what's different this time? Well, every other time she's faced death on the show so far, Castle's been right there beside her; not only was she alone this time, but when she expected him to show up to save her... he didn't turn up. Not only did she almost die alone, but she almost died without Castle — and not only that, but she finally realized that she'd lost Castle for real this time unless she turned things around.
Castle has shown himself to be a bit of a Grammar Nazi on several occasions. This is to be expected of someone that makes their living with the written word and is possibly subjected to a higher standard by people that possibly fail to meet grade school standards when lambasting him.
There's a particularly brilliant example in "Close Encounters of the Murderous Kind," an episode filled with alien abduction conspiracy theories. It opens with Castle doing a crossword puzzle, where he muses aloud that the answer to a twelve-letter word for "transcendent" is "otherworldly." He goes on to the next one, an eight-letter word for "estrange," but is interrupted by Alexis before the answer can be revealed. An eight-letter word for "estrange"? "Alienate."
A little Fridge Brilliance related to the Meaningful Echo moment in "Knockout": the "you've got it ass-backwards" comment. It is very possible that Montgomery was listening in Beckett's interrogation of Lockwood when he used it on her, and chose to use those same words to needle him.
In the second and third seasons, Beckett was shown open to trying for a relationship with Castle and didn't express the concerns over policy that she does now. There is a key difference between the two time frames. She knew Montgomery wouldn't have enforced the policy unless he had to and only if he couldn't resolve it any other way. Beckett doesn't entirely trust Gates, and they believe Gates would use their relationship as an excuse to get rid of Castle.
Fridge Horror: In "Probable Cause", Jerry Dyson, a.k.a 3xK, when revealing the plot to frame Castle for that week's murder, casually alludes to Castle taking his daughter for a walk and making love to Beckett with the implication that he's been stealthily following Castle and sneaking into his home and life for some time. One is left to wonder with some uncertainty exactly how long and when he's been watching.
Considering how much he set up beforehand, the time frame must be on the order of months. Not that that helps matters. To boot, the implication that he Batman Gambit'ed it all and is still out there? Even if he's dead, he still wins because our heroes are left always wondering.
This also adds the unsettling possibility that he was hiding there during previous episodes, which makes the often funny or touching scenes that take place in Castle's home retroactively terrifying
Consider also that there must inevitably have been times that Martha and Alexis were home alone by themselves — and may, given the above, have had unsavoury company that they were completely unaware of.
Brillance. The end of season 4. Certainly the actions that took place were foreseeable, but the who does what is particularly interesting when you consider the dynamics of Castle/Beckett and Ryan/Esposito. Both Ryan and Castle are the ones that advocated caution and watching the moral and ethical lines they might cross. They both also take rather drastic steps to stop their more aggressive partners. It's a nice meta level reflection of all the relationships in play.
Specially when you consider the pair's the one liable to run with the off-wall and fantastic ideas.
In "After Hours", while they're alone and Beckett is worrying over Castle, Leo at one point out of nowhere offers her relationship advice about enjoying the present rather than worrying over the future, and calmly presses the point despite the fact that Beckett is vocally and noticeably uncomfortable with the conversation and at one point flatly states that she's not comfortable talking about it with him. It's particularly subtle foreshadowing for Leo's reveal that not only is he the killer, but he's a self-described "homicidal sociopath" — sociopaths are incapable of feeling empathy for the feelings of others and often show a lack of remorse for upsetting them. Leo's act of kindness and the old trope of a friendly outsider offering wise counsel from outside the situation is thus given a dark twist.
The reporter who follows and eventually has a relationship with Nikki in the Nikki Heat books is named Jameson Rook. In chess, what's another term for the rook? The castle.
Why did Alexis Skype Castle after her kidnapping instead of straight-up calling him, which would have been faster? Because she knew her father might not pick up if he didn't recognize the number, but by using Skype, he would know it was her reaching out to him.
Also a nice bit of Genius Bonus in that episode that never got lampshaded or referred to. Alexis tried to dial 911 and it didn't work, because in Paris, as in much of Europe, the emergency number is 112.
Viewing "The Lives of Others" knowing the twist at the end — that Beckett staged the 'murder' Castle thought he saw as part of a plan to lure him to a surprise birthday party, and that all his family and friends were in on it — throws up all sorts of wonderful blink-and-you-miss-it moments that hint at what's really going on. Little snippets of dialogue and glances that have double meanings or seem innocent at first but later take on greater significance.
At one point in "The Lives of Others", series creator Andrew Marlowe and his real-life wifer and fellow screenwriter Terri Miller, who co-wrote the episode, appear as two of the people who Castle snoops on when he plays 'Rear Window'. Since this is the 100th episode of the show, it at first is just a cute little cameo in recognition of this — however, the whole episode is a Hitchcock homage. Alfred Hitchcock is famous for having cameo appearances in his movies. It's a reference-within-a-reference.
Waaaay back in the third season (3x15), when Castle is desperately trying to prove his former schoolfriend/mentor isn't guilty of murder, they stop by a place in the city where rich folks can rent "play rooms" (a private place for a nooner with the mistress), where Castle reveals himself as a former customer. Yeah, yeah, just a bit more of Castle's not so covert pervertery, right? Wrong, why would a famous playboy who plays to his reputation need a quiet place on the side? Because Castle didn't want to bring strange women home to Alexis.
In 'Cops and Robbers,' the identity of the killer/robbers's boss should be pretty clear to anyone familiar with Dog Day Afternoon seeing as his assumed name is Sal Martino.
Alexis's behavior makes a lot more sense than it first appears. She's been spending season six acting like a spoiled brat who can't handle not getting what she wants for the first time, which she is. She has always gotten what she wants, but it was fairly unnoticeable because she wanted good things for herself- a nice boyfriend, admittance to a good school, etc. The only thing Alexis has wanted but didn't get was Stanford admission, which ended up working out for the better anyway. So, when her father ends up not on her side, desperately trying to please her for the first time, she has no idea what to do. He might not like her boyfriend, but he's civil, polite, and he let the guy screwing his daughter sleep on his couch for at least two months. He's being reasonable like he's always been, but Alexis just can't tell the difference between her father being disapproving but reasonable and him being disapproving and rude.
Kind of a hilarious if inconsequential and otherwise unimportant piece of Brilliance: in "Time Will Tell", Espo inadvertently outs himself as a Whovian—or at least someone who watches the show—by being able to refer to the Doctor's sonic screwdriver when they recover Doyle's time travel device. However, the script had him say "Doctor Who's sonic screwdriver", which every Whovian would know is a prime method of getting Gannon-Banned as it's the Doctor, not Doctor Who. Major slip of the writers or done deliberately by a detective trying to hide his inner geek?
Or, alternatively, a sop to the wider audience for the sake of clarity on the part of the writers; just referring to the object as 'the Doctor's sonic screwdriver' could be confusing to viewers who aren't that familiar with the show (particularly as the show is still relatively cult in America and 'doctor' by itself is a fairly common and generic title) and calling it 'Doctor Who's sonic screwdriver' merely lets the wider audience know that it's the fictional time traveller being referenced, not some other doctor who may have something called a sonic screwdriver. Plus, let's be honest, it's mainly only Doctor Who fans who get uptight by people referring to the character as 'Doctor Who'.
A third possibility is that he is referring to Doctor Who's (as in the show's) sonic screwdriver.
In other Castle geekery, a minor bit of Fridge Brilliance from the episode "Final Frontier". When Beckett tells Castle about a murder investigation at a comic convention where he was signing copies of a Derrick Storm graphic novel, he asks, "Did Doc Ock finally catch up with Spider-Man?" The episode aired in November of 2012, one month before Amazing Spider-Man 700, the issue that would lead into Superior Spider-Man, where Doctor Octopus had taken over Peter Parker's body to prove he was the better Spider-Man. Given that the episode took place at a comic convention, it's entirely possible that before the investigation started, Castle had attended a Marvel panel where Dan Slott gave away plot points for "Superior", or even spoke with Dan in person.
Throughout the series, Castle has shown that he's a doting father who's more than willing to indulge his daughter yet Alexis is nothing but a sweet girl who rarely misbehaves. Viewers who wonder how she turned out to be so well-adjusted should turn to the Halloween episode where Alexis is fretting about getting her drunk friend in trouble and Castle drops the cool dad persona and becomes unflinchingly stern. In that one moment you realize that Castle has clear boundaries and is more than willing to lay down the law with Alexis when required.
When Alexis grounds herself over jumping a subway turnstile, you realize that the Castles have set rules about what privileges are to be taken away when Alexis steps over the line.