Castle: 5.15 “Target” Review

Luciana Mangas February 19, 2013 15

0992Last night we finally got to see the first part of the highly anticipated two-parter on Castle. I had the chance to watch a screener a few days earlier and it was killing me that I couldn’t discuss it with anyone. So I am so glad you all finally got to watch it because there is so much to talk about!

So first things first, was that amazing or what? It had been a really, really long time since I had considered a Castle episode mindblowing. As much as it pains me to say this as a fan of the show, things haven’t been all that great in the past couple of seasons, even if the leads are finally together and that tiring will-they-won’t-they dance is over. However, “Target” was the exception this season so far and, when it was over, my heart was still racing and I was at the edge of my seat, suffering already that I still had another week to go until I could find out what was going to happen next.

The episode started out as any other Castle, and it wasn’t until we found out that Alexis had been taken as well that things started to really get interesting. I don’t know if you guys had the same impression, but for me it was like the episode lasted all of five minutes. It was so action packed, so tense and heartbreaking that those 43 minutes completely flew by.

The case seemed simple at first, but by the end of the episode I was scratching my head, completely confused, saying “Paris? What the hell?”. I knew they wouldn’t be in the US anymore because of the warning at the beggining of the screener not to reveal the country/location at the end, but I had just assumed that maybe they would be in Egypt or somewhere like that. That was the logical outcome in my head. So when it turned out that Alexis was being held hostage in Paris, I was just really confused. From what I have read online, a lot of people guessed the location because apparently it was known that they had been filming on location in Paris, but it had never been divulged which cast member had been there. But I have been out of the loop lately, spoilers wise, and you know what? It’s been a completely refreshing experience because I didn’t know anything about this episode going in, except for the fact that Alexis was going to be kidnapped. So the twists and the cliffhanger were that much better.

1311Anyway, back on topic. The star of the night was most definitely Nathan Fillion. His performance was just beyond anything I had ever seen him do on the show. Really, standing ovation, Nathan. Amazing job. From the moment he finds out Alexis has been taken, through all the scenes, he completely sold the image of the desperate father. Gone was the playful writer we have all gotten so used to and in his place was Alexis’ dad, completely distraught over the abduction of his little girl. Lots of scenes come to mind, but I’d like to talk about two scenes in particular that completely stood out for me from the entire episode.

First, when they find the driver and Kate can’t get through to him, so Castle asks for a moment alone with him. Right there at that moment, he was so devastated, so completely against what he would have to do when the guy didn’t talk, but at the same time the coldness, that far off tone in his voice showed he was willing to do anything to get his daughter back. I have seen diverging opinions about this scene over the internet, but I have to say that the way they played it was just excellent. I don’t condone violence in any way, but right there it was all about that  primal parent instinct that will make you do anything for your child and Nathan played that scene beautifully.

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  • Courtney

    For the past 4 years, Beckett has pushed Castle away. Says he doesn’t understand, and that it’s not his life. He has no right to be angry with her or ask her to stop. She had no idea the pain he felt watching the woman he loves go through what she was going through. But now, she knows. She knows what it feels like to be so desperate to stop the pain Castle feels like, but also knowing that there is nothing she can do. She knows what it feels like to be the one who has to stay strong. She now knows what Castle has been going through with her for the past four years. I think Beckett in Target finally got a glimpse of all the worry/pain Castle went through when he tried to get her to back off her mothers case. I have no idea why the kidnappers went to Paris but I think the kidnappers don’t want ransom but this is more of case of human trafficking

  • Bev

    Either Castle’s father is involved and actually carried out the kidnapping or he is a mercenary that Castle goes to in order to get Alexis’ back. I don’t think he’s CIA – I think he’s outside the CIA.

    • Thomas

      I think that his dad is going to be the one who needs of helping rescue Alexis once he hears about the kidnapping.

  • mj9000jeanne

    Luciana, loved your review as always. You asked for theories well remember when one of the bad guys was tortured but our crime fighters and the FBI didn’t know who would have done it? My first thought was Castle’s dad. I think all of this might have to do with him. Maybe Alexis was taken because of something he has done and he tortured the guy to get information to help get her back. Why they took the girl’s to Paris? Your guess is good as mine. I wonder if Kate might go to Paris to help Castle out.

  • lame

    This is why the series is built around Nathan Fillion. He’s been asked for years to harness in his skills only giving us small emotions that at moments are huge. In 5.15 he is at his dramatic best a true tour de force.
    AWM and Co, David Amann, are at the top of their game here, holy freaking crap, what a storyline, Kudos David, Kudos. It calls for the entire cast to be on the edge of desperation they delivered beautifully.
    My question to theorists, who tortured and killed the kidnapper, and why? Does that mean Sara wasn’t the real target? Is this a scheme to expose a certain CIA spy? And if so, is it meant to start the dominoes falling ending with the termination of Beckett’s investigation of Bracken and the elimination of all those involved.
    Probably not HA! But it sure is fun.
    Another question, with this loss of innocence does Alexis view of life change along with her major in school. Will we see a much more serious person with a harder edge, someone more willing to confide in Kate as much as she once had with her dad.

    • http://twitter.com/#!/lucianamangas Luciana Mangas

      You know, I hadn’t even thought about the loss of Alexis’ innocence. Spot on, lame. And practically the same age as Kate too. I wonder just how much this is going to change her, if we can expect to see a more jaded, closed off Alexis in the near future.

      • lame

        How totally intreguing would it be to see Alexis follow a path similar to Kate’s. What turmoil would that create in the Castle household and how carefully would Kate have to toe the line in keeping Rick from exploding or convincing him Alexis will be just fine.

  • lame

    Some of us have been asking for the background development of Richard Castle. It seems we’re getting that view surreptitiously. Remember in “recoil” Rick tell Brackens he would have let him walk into the explosion and certain death. Now we see Rick torture one of the kidnappers. Will we next learn that Rick is truly his father’s son.
    And if there was any doubt, Gates knows everything.

  • ElSol

    I think someone discovered who Castle’s father is and going after Alexis is how they flushed him out. Castle’s father is the torturer of the other falls guy (IMO). I think Castle’s dad will convince Castle not to tell Alexis that he helped and to let everyone believe that the kidnapping was about Sara and not Alexis. Later, this will come back to haunt everyone because Castle is keeping secrets… I just can’t imagine them wasting the Castle Dad mystery on a two-parter.

  • http://www.poetrypoem.com/richcarlton Richard

    It’s all about Castle’s father. Paris is the key. If this had been another middle eastern plot to exact revenge on some Saudi rich guy, the end of the episode would have been in the mideast. Someone wants Castle’s dad for whatever reason and Alexis is who they wanted to snatch. As for Castle in the room alone with the guy…as a father who has a daughter, I understood all elements here. And we had a clue as to what Castle did when he told Beckett “I appealed to his humanity.” Which to me meant he grabbed him by his…I was exhausted and believe this may be one of my all time Castle favorites, at least until I see part 2.

  • http://www.poetrypoem.com/richcarlton Richard

    P.S. As to the question of whether this changes Alexis? This changes everyone involved, at the Castle household, Rick & Kate, and all at the precinct. We’ve seen the dark side of Castle…watch out 3x killer and Senator Bracken :)

    • lame

      Exactly Richard, that’a what I’ve been waiting for “The Rise Of The King Of The Macabre”. Now we learn where all those ghastly murder stories came from, and you are absolutely, positively right, dont’t look over your shoulder Jery Tyson, your worst nightmare is on your trail.

  • Martha

    I loved the episode and your review, but maybe I missed the moment – how does Gates know?

    • ash

      Gates knows two ways…the first was the hug which she played off like Kate was just trying to provide comfort for one of her coworkers. And the second was the scene where Castle is talking about Alexis’s birth and Gates sees them holding hands. She had to turn away as to not notice the affection that was taking place (imo). I think she let a lot of the affection slide due to the nature of the episode.

  • Angie

    The line about no one knowing who went to film in Paris for the author may not had known but it was revealed by Molly Quinn on Twitter. She told all her followers she was heading to Paris the same week they were filming the episode. She needs to put Spoiler alert on many of her tweets.