It’s finally here, Castle fans. After a long break, Castle returned in fine form on Monday night and there’s no better way to come off a long hiatus than to drop viewers directly into the action.
And in the action is where we find the cast of characters as the episode opens. Kate and Castle are outside a warehouse that is engulfed in flames, and Kate is on the phone with a frantic and very pregnant Jenny Ryan. Ryan and Espo are conspicuously absent as Kate hesitantly explains to Jenny that something has happened.
Flashback 12 hours to find out how our favorite crew of homicide detectives became involved in a three-alarm fire.
The team is called to a burned out building to investigate a body that was found inside. Since the victim died from a gunshot wound the body is part of a homicide investigation. The building he is found in, however, is part of an arson investigation headed up by FDNY Lt. Delia Burton (Army Wives ‘ Wendy Davis). Burton and Lanie soon conclude that the victim is Burton’s partner. He was investigating a serial arsonist, “The Phantom”, and clues at the crime scene suggest that this is just the latest in his string of fires.
Esposito and Ryan head out to an abandoned warehouse which the victim thought was the arsonist’s next target. They explore the building to find a workshop equipped with accelerants, floor plans, and unfortunately for them, booby traps. Opening the door to the lair, triggers an explosion, and the building bursts into flames with Ryan and Espo trapped inside. Beckett and Castle rush to the scene, but a building inspector explains that the fire department is having trouble getting inside.
After being knocked out from the explosion, Ryan and Espo come-to in a basement that is littered with debris but away from the fire on the main level. Espo pries Ryan’s leg free and they begin to look for an exit. They reach Beckett using a land-line (how do they know her number?), and describe their location. Castle suspects that the building plans have been altered by the arsonist to hide an escape route.
Jenny, Ryan’s wife, arrives on the scene in labor and refuses to leave until they know something about the two missing detectives. Lanie sets her up in an ambulance, and they wait to hear any news. Ryan does get to talk to her for a few moments before they lose the phone line. It’s a great scene for both of the often overlooked characters.
Back at the precinct, the tech team is able to track down a username for a suspicious member of a Pyro fetish website where videos of the fires have been posted. The arsonist has targeted “sick” buildings that have structural issues.
Based on this clue, Lt. Burton draws a connection between Building Inspector Kimball and the destroyed buildings. Burton, Beckett and Castle find Kimball recording his handy work as he as done at previous fires. After some discussion (read: Beckett slamming him into a car), Kimball reveals the alternate exit from the basement.
Ryan and Esposito are reunited with the crew, including Ryan’s new daughter Sarah Grace!
What did you think, Castle fans? Were you hoping for a little, irish Javier? (yes) Do you think Castle and Beckett will ever set a date? If they do, what are the odds it’s the first week in May? (extremely good) Let us know what you thought in the comments!!