‘Castle’: Love Lifts Us Up

Published 10 months ago by

Sam Anderson in Castle Smells Like Teen Spirit 570x294 Castle: Love Lifts Us Up

[This is a review of Castle Season 6, Episode 15. There will be SPOILERS.]

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After a week away to let the Olympics hype wear off a bit, Castle returns tonight in good form. And while Valentine’s Day may have come and gone, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” is all about the things we do for love (albeit, with a supernatural twist).

Yes, love is in the air and there are three types of love on display this time around. The obvious one is the maturing love between Castle (Nathan Fillion) and Beckett (Stana Katic) as they march ever closer to their wedding. Then there’s the unlikely prep school teen whose innocent, protective love of a girl lands him in a world of trouble. The third grazes the surface of the cruel, inward, twisting self-love the cliquish girls demonstrate and whose only intent is to look out for number one.

The poster child for this selfish love is Madison Beaumont (Natasha Hall). A mashup of any and all entitled female prep school kids, she manages the social scene at school and her extracurriculars include several counts of breaking and entering. Intimidation is her weapon of choice, though it turns around to bite her in the end. Ex-boyfriend, Riley (Sam Towers, pictured below) is the only guy smart enough to get out before she can suck him under, too.

Sam Towers in Castle Smells Like Teen Spirit Castle: Love Lifts Us Up

Not quite so valiant is Lucas (Leigh Parker). The telekinetic special effects are his attempt to ward off Madison’s attacks on his crush, Jordan Gibbs (Hannah Marks). Unfortunately for him, Madison is the only one not buying his tricks and he becomes her next blackmail victim. Kudos to the writers for keeping him around as a believable red herring for the murderer until the end reveal that it’s Madison’s “friend” who killed her.

Woven through all of this are the show’s leads doing what they do best.

Castle and Beckett in Smells Like Teen Spirit Castle: Love Lifts Us Up

Castle, of course, is in seventh heaven with the more supernatural elements of the case and gets bonus points for namedropping the Hulk and Stephen King in the same breath. He’s also feeling a bit nostalgic, going back to his former stomping grounds. The scenes with he and Headmaster Duncan (Sam Anderson) are comic gold.

Neither of our two lovebirds, however, attended their respective senior proms. Kate chose poetry over boys, while Castle got expelled for putting a cow on the roof of the school. Obviously they are going to end up dancing at the Winter Ball, and obviously they’re going to find “their song” before the credits roll.

But the final minutes manage to avoid most cliched pitfalls, the acting is spectacular, and Andrew Belle’s “In My Veins” is the perfect song for the moment.

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Castle returns next Monday with “Room 147″ @10pm on ABC.

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  1. A smart & fun episode, just like all other CASTLE episodes. CASTLE is one of the few shows I have to watch when it airs and one I enjoy watching reruns, both in season and in syndication.

  2. Castle isn’t as enjoyable as it use to be. I find that a lot of the episodes recently are generic and have been done before . This latest episode I actually enjoyed but they really need to do something to keep the show interesting.

    • True, they are combating the same pitfalls of any show that’s in its 6th year. I have to say though that they are doing well to avoid the Moonlighting curse and keep the banter between the leads moving along. Between this and Bones, they seem to have set a new template for getting the leads together and maintaining the soul of the show.

  3. This was a great episode, far superior to the actual Carrie release last year ha. Been a fan of Castle since it started an personally I don’t think it has differed in quality all that much. I thought by if it ever got this far the premise would get a little stale but I was wrong the show is still as fresh and fun as ever.

  4. Episode Grade: A+

    It has been a while since we have seen that Castle magic and this was one episode where everything was perfect… simply perfect. I think the new writing dual are figuring out that Castle is at a much higher level then many TV shows. It was magical! Great job!