I am weirdly tempted to watch the new Doctor Who episode. I've carelessly spoiled myself well by reading reviews from all the usual Moffat haters whose main concern is whether women have enough agency, and concludedthat there's a 50% chance I will want to punch the new doctor for his personality rather than his face, but a 50% chance I will find him a delightfully crotchety presence fully divorced from any weird shipping inclinations.
(except maybe with River. OH MAN. I bet I could get down with imagining some River/Twelve literally-old married couple squabbling. I think I mentioned not connecting with her at all in season 4 and being baffled by that due to my love for the actress, but after 3 years of hating Eleven's face with every fiber of my being, I've accidentally fallen in love with River Song, who is clearly way too good for that creep)
There's also like a 94% chance I will be delighted by Clara and make her my third favorite companion of all time. It's taken me over a year, but I've finally made my peace with Capaldi having already been on Torchwood, which previously was 89% of my refusal to give the show a second chance as a third remake after they excised Cumbersnatch's ugly cousin from it. I'm being very precise with my percentages today because I feel it adds gravitas.
But what I actually did was watch more Castle, because I'm in love with love.
"The Squab and the Quail:" I caught this one on TV a while ago when I was feeling rebellious and bored on a Saturday night. The plot is relatively straightforward (who could forget the restaurant mix-up?), with one small zig before it goes on course, but the episode is memorable for its subtitle: QUICK, EVERYONE START SUBTLY PRESSURING THEM TO GET ENGAGED. I actually think it might have been less subtle to start humming "if you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it" every time one of them entered a room.
Most impressed by Martha just blatantly throwing it out there, though. Also, I very much liked Alexis attempting to comfort him that Beckett is over the moon about him, and Beckett's response to the unwelcome kiss (including confession). Lots of complementary jealous!Castle at play. I very much appreciated his voice constantly going all high and squeaky. And his very lovely gesture of a candlelit massage at the end. I'm pretty happy I get to bypass these annoying doubt-casting moments like her unanswered "where are we going?", though.
Another thing that is noteworthy about this episode? The dialogue. It's on FIRE.
Ryan: Don't listen to him, she's loyal to you, she's not gonna be seduced by his charms.
Esposito: Really? So you'd let Jenny hang with him, then?
Ryan: Hell no. I wouldn't let Jenny near that guy.
Castle: I'm not worried.
-insert detectives smirking-
Castle: I'm NOT. I'm just concerned that the department is forcing her to hang out with some womanizing rich guy against her will.
Ryan: Yeah. Unbelievable.
Esposito: Yeah, she's never done that.
Esposito: You've keyed cars, slashed tires...straight out of a Carrie Underwood song.
Ryan: Yeah, but you know what Carrie Underwood never sang about?
Esposito: What's that?
Ryan: Using a chemically enhanced neurotoxin to poison a guy in a restaurant.
Castle: What about pajamas? Only flannel, or skimpy sleep shorts?
Beckett: You're sounding like my dad dropping me off at summer camp.
(apparently aired out of order because of the Boston Marathon bombings, but honestly, it makes more sense coming after the above)
Oh, neat! It's very easy to be annoyed by even partial "clip show" episodes, but speaking as someone who still hasn't really seen season 2 and whose knowledge of the series pre-4x08 is ridiculously foggy and patchy, that was ideal. I recognized only like a quarter of those scenes. But even if you hated it, I hope you stopped hating it after that brilliant kissing montage at the end, because that makes this episode extremely valuable in footage gold. (as an aside, trying to remember your favorite kiss is harder than it sounds. From your own life, I mean. Their best kiss is obviously the pretty one at Christmas)
BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE. I loved the insistently ridiculous tone of their arguments about their history even as scary reality kept trying to creep back in. And when it did, it was magnificent, especially his face when he left.
I even enjoyed getting to appreciate more of that face after he came back, even though I think it bothers me a tiny bit that he came back. Normally I'm all for loving your spouse more than your child, but Alexis is a pretty amazing kid who deserves to retain the #1 spot, especially since she came first. More to the point, I thought their might be more emphasis on Beckett having lost a parent to evil forces at the same age, and, you know, maybe not wanting another person to go through what she did. Especially after she found the moral fortitude to not let The Senator die. I may have casually rewritten the scene so that their communication is by radio and involves him going up to get her, rather than the instant hug. Just because I sense there'd be a tiny bit more collapse at the point of relief if she were alone.
But I am not going to argue what we got, not at all. (maybe a little bit, like "why wasn't the hug right after she stepped off the circle longer? don't you understand that's the MOST INTENSE TIME for thank-god-we're-alive feelings?") I wouldn't have been able to make someone leave me twice.
Still, that glorious end scene with Gates! For a minute I thought she was going to say "Know what?" and just be suggesting they act on their UST (which I guess doesn't make much sense in retrospect), but man. "Go on, kiss him"! PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY! When did she figure this out? Did the Valentine's Day mix-up set some wheels turning, or was it when his daughter was kidnapped? Or was it long before then and she just really relish an excuse to chew Castle out on V-Day?
Everything about that last scene makes my heart very happy. The Esposito/Beckett hug of "did she see?", the pretty new kiss, the zoom-out to view from above...just, a gloriously magnificent episode all around.
P.S. Totally forgot about the breakfast-in-bed opening scene, plus her running back for one last kiss after being called away to the scene of a murder. LITERALLY CANNOT KEEP TRACK OF THEIR SUM TOTAL SWEETNESS.
Also, even though I haven't been spoiled on anything except the Sofia V. gag, I think I might just give up on even watching this year's Emmys, never mind trying to blog it. It's disappointing, but the State Fair took priority. What kind of damn fool network airs those on a Monday, when people have a life, instead of Sunday night, when there's absolutely nothing to do and you're tired from having a fun, busy weekend?