Episode Review: Zombies Seemed like a No-Brainer

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Undead Again in one (run-on) sentence: Castle works his “last case” with Beckett when a currency-trader is murdered by someone who appears to be a zombie but who turns out to be living “Zombie-walker” who had been drugged by the fiancé of the woman who the victim was having an affair with and when Beckett reveals that she's been in therapy and that her wall is coming down Castle agrees to continue shadowing her while back at home Alexis is trying to decide between Stanford and Oxford and Castle tries to hang onto her youth through their decade-long laser tag game, which will continue due to the fact that Alexis chooses the more local Columbia for college.

The Case:

This was a fun one from the word go. But then again, combining Castle and zombies from the get-go just seemed like a no-brainer for awesomeness (pun intended). The idea of using the “zombie drug” to get a zombie enthusiast to do your killing for you was pretty great. Even better was the way they played with the zombie genre, giving us a heart-stopping moment like the morgue scene but with the Castle flair of asking if there was a “police code for zombie on the loose.”

The side characters were particularly entertaining. Charlie the eccentric co-worker who chained himself in his apartment and begged Beckett to shoot him was all sorts of hilarious. As was the high zombie interview.

Ryan and Esposito were once again excellent as the counterpoints for the Beckett-Castle debate over zombies. Props to Seamus Dever for his befuddled expression throughout. He's too adorable.

I know some people don't like Perlmutter, but he tickles me like no one else. As much as we'd all love to see more Lanie, this was the perfect episode for the more surly Perlmutter to get some screen time.

One other little touch that I loved – for all her insistence that zombies absolutely aren't real, Beckett seemed to be the most freaked out by what was going on. Well played by Stana Katic, who's facial expressions still tell a story in and of themselves. (Though I will say I think she overplayed her hand in some places.)

The Family:

Is there anything cuter than that picture of Alexis and Castle? Seriously. I loved all their little moments. They were so genuine. Castle's depression over no more laser tag was heartbreaking, especially in the face of Alexis' comments about growing up. It's been a consistent dilemma for Castle and for many – how do you balance the necessary maturity while still holding onto the joys of youth? And even though they played it off as Alexis baiting him, it was still a conversation they had to have. Kudos to Nathan Fillion and Molly Quinn. Their chemistry is undeniable.

But really, it all came down to that picture. It summed everything up. Father and daughter, happy and adorable.

I can't go any further without mentioning Susan Sullivan's Martha in this episode. She's more and more become the voice of the fans, urging Castle to communicate in much the same way Lanie has become that voice for Beckett. And Susan was just wonderful doing it.

The Couple:

Where to begin....I got to rewatch the episode with my parents, who have been married 30 years, and sometime early in the episode my mom threw up her hands and said: “Why don't they just talk to each other!” I laughed, because I think that's what a lot of fans have been saying for awhile now. Personally, I've enjoyed the drama that their insecurity and lack of communication has created, it raises the stakes and I like that - because we all know these two people are perfect for each other, so that one fatal flaw is interesting to me. Having said that, I loved that we finally got some clear conversation between these two.

Beckett got a chance to explain her silence and Castle got a chance to understand why she chose to lie (and no it's not because she doesn't love you Mr.). All because they communicated. It was still vague and round about. But it was communication nonetheless.

Even better was the promise of “tomorrow.”

Best Moments:

“But who will play with me?” – Nathan broke my heart with this line delivery.

“Our killer's a zombie.” Random high five – So random, so funny.

“No. You know what I do believe in? Driving Beckett crazy. ” – As we knew all along.

“Is there police code for zombie on the loose?” – More Nathan, more awesome line delivery.


  1. says

    Excellent review. I LOVED this episode. It’s one of my favorites in a while. Castle was back to being himself, not a stilted, hurt, and exaggerated version of himself. He and Beckett spoke honestly, albiet vague and round about, like you said, but still… and all the family stuff with Castle was fantastic. Plus we got some good Ryan & Espisito. It was a great, great episode, and next week looks AMAZING.

  2. Anita says

    Always love your “in one (run- on) sentence” reviews.

    As you said “Penguin” the scenes with Rick and Alexis seemed genuine. Nathan and Molly have both talked about how close they are off stage – Nathan being a second father to Molly. Molly is going off to college just like Alexis. I’m sure that feelings of sadness over the upcoming separation in the “real life” of the actors contributed to that genuineness.

  3. alanapaints says

    Did anyone else notice that when B&C burst into Charlie’s apartment, Castle said “We’re cops.” I really think it was a Freudian slip on Rick’s part. He needs to earn a badge; it’s more than just Beckett, it’s more than just solving cases. He wants to be on an equal footing. That’s my gut feeling.

    Also LOVED the very last and extremely creepy shot shown above. Just before Rick turned to the screen, his eyes were normal and his teeth were white, and then… oh, the squirms and squeals on my couch when he broke the fourth wall. Everyone freaked a little.

    No, it isn’t over, is it, Rick? Bwa hahahaha

    • Just4fun says

      I noticed it (“We’re cops!)! He also said, “Sorry, Charlie!” when they broke in. That cracked me up!

  4. Just4fun says

    I really had doubts as to whether I would enjoy this whole zombie ep or not. What was I thinking? By the time I go to bed tonight I will have watched it three times! Forgive me for ever doubting! Thanks to all the writers and actors (and the makeup artist) for making it fun to watch, and for making Monday nights my favorite night of the week!!

  5. Shena says

    Penguin, as “always”, an excellent and entertaining review! I absolutely adored the scenes between Rick and Alexis in this episode — so poignant yet also very fun.

    Furthermore, only in “Castle” could you pull off — not one but two — very emotionally driven scenes (between Castle and Beckett at the end, and between Castle and Alexis at the end) and have the lead actor in zombie make-up. Actually, I love the fact that though his face was so grotesque, it was Rick’s eyes that became the focus of the two ladies as well as the audience… they were so intense that you (momentarily) forgot what he looked like.

    LastlyI do have one more line to add to your “Best Moments”:

    “Stop it!… You’re creeping me out!” — just because it came from Espo (and not Ryan)

  6. TracyLee55 says

    Great Review Penguin. This brought back the Rick Castle we know and love: Protector, Father, Eyes still only for Kate, Funny. When he pointed to the screen with the pointer and said “That my friends…. is a zombie”, and then walks out leaving his 3 colleagues still staring at the screen, proclaiming “Our killer’s a Zombie” and high fives the woman walking by, I just laughed out loud. and said “That’s my Rick”. As you pointed out, the poignant scene at the beginning w/ Alexis, when she said the eastern colleges would be to close. To see Rick’s eyes, just change, his face drop, as if saying: “She wants so be away from me? But I’m the cool dad”. I wanted to reach into my TV screen and hug him. and say, she’ll be back Rick, she will play again, she’s just growing as our children do, finding their own way. She is still your little girl.

    Oh the scenes w/Kate and Rick, the garage, when he tells Perlmutter (whom I agree, adds such a different texture to the show, and this was a great epi for his character) “Ah Perlmutter, I will treasure these special moments…” and Kate just flinches, not sure if what she is hearing is correct or the meaning, yet never throughout the show asks Rick about what he said to Perlmutter. Rick watches her in the garage, the longing so deep in his expression. When the go after the little weasel that is responsible, Rick and Kate do it together!

    Rick’s compassion on the young man used to do the killing, saying “he’ll need therapy”. Kate finally sharing that it will help, and at first it will be he can do to put one foot in front of the other. Without saying it, Rick knew she meant herself, and Kate saying how she needed it, but did not want an excuse, to “put in the time, and the work”. Rick: “I think I understand”. They were connecting again… finally. As your mom said it brilliantly, “Why don’t they just talk to each other?” And now they are beginning the conversation again. This time openly, with understanding.

    Alexis, comes back to Rick, ready to play, and she will stay in NY! She asks for boundaries, Rick promises he’ll promise to try.

    “Always” will be even more gut wrenching I think, but will open a door finally to let us see what Rick and Kate can and will become. They are meant for each other. The are each other’s True Love. Kate: “Tomorrow?” Rick: Forgiveness and Love fully in his eyes and smile..”Tomorrow”.

  7. TracyLee55 says

    I just posted this on Trueheart’s article, and it is off topic, but I was just gone for a half hour, and came back and “Forums” is not on home page. Does anyone know what happened? Will it be back?

  8. TracyLee55 says

    Gotcha, just sent you an email. Probably part of the fix of what has been happening with kicking people out. At first thought it was my computer freaking out. Thanks Anita!

  9. Kellie says

    The thing that struck me was when they were gathered around the first crime scene and the way Castle watched Beckett as she summed things up and asked the pertinent questions. The way the camera focused on Castle, not Beckett and lingered there on Castle’s reaction to watching her tick off the usual questions. You could see a sense of “my last case. I will miss this”, complete pride in watching Kate do her work and a sense of admiration. Well directed on that shot, and Nathan, incredibly well acted throughout.

    • TracyLee55 says

      I noticed that to Kellie. Even though he was still kinda “mad” at her, you could still see the love on his face.

      But at the end, after Beckett revealed she was in therapy you could see when Rick said “I think I understand” forgiveness too. And then when it was Beckett who said “Tomorrow?” I saw his love for her blossom ever more.

  10. TracyLee55 says

    Forums are still kicking me out periodically. Even though back up. Just wanted to let you know Admin.