This episode was basically National Treasure, and I don't mean that in a bad way. God, that movie is full of more stupidity than I could possibly enumerate for you here, but it's still ridiculously entertaining. And that's the same thing that's going on in this episode. The main case of the week is very silly, but very fun to watch.
So, basically this woman is found dead in a Crucifixion position, and while trying to solve the murder, Beckett and Castle get caught up in this giant Freemasons treasure hunt. Castle is of course very excited, and Beckett is rolling her eyes at all the conspiracies. Partway through, Castle and Beckett learn that the entire thing is just a scavenger hunt set up as a fundraiser. Or... is it? Castle puts together the clues and learns that the treasure hunt might be real after all.
It turns out, the murder victim had found a bunch of old coins worth millions of dollars. She wanted to give them to a museum, but her cousin was desperate for the money. He killed her so that he could get the money.
A rather simple case, with a couple of silly twists and turns. This one really tested my suspension of disbelief. Some of the clues were a tad bit easy to put together, especially if you take into consideration how long this treasure has been hidden. I know Castle's a smart guy, but the fact that he pieced together the clues so immediately was a bit silly. However, it was still all really fun to watch. Castle's childlike glee while working the case was a joy to experience. I think it worked better than in last week's episode with the time traveling, because this was silly, but a plausible sort of silly. The sort of nonsense that Beckett could let herself get caught up in. Especially since, as it turns out, Castle was right.
Probably the cutest thing about this episode, though, was a moment early on when Beckett starts throwing out crazy theories about the case. Castle looks confused and upset by this, since he says it's Beckett's job to follow the logical progression of the case, and it's Castle's job to come up with the crazy theories.
So, in all, the main plot of this one was a delightful if totally ridiculous adventure. But now we have to talk about the subplot, which was actually very serious. And maybe that was my biggest problem with it? I'm cool with Castle being serious, it often is, but this subplot was just such a tonal shift from the main plot of the episode that it felt very unsettling. In fact, even the way they cut the scenes together was bothersome. The subplot came at the very beginning and very end of the episode, sort of as really serious bookends to a very lighthearted episode. It just didn't work for me.
The basic premise is this: Castle and Martha are invited to go have dinner over at Alexis and Pi's new place. Castle is being all grumpy about it, and he does a very bad job of hiding his disdain for the apartment, and for Pi's job, which involves looking after bees.
Here's the thing though... first of all, bees are freakin' important and the world needs to be a lot more worried about them going extinct. Secondly, the apartment was actually really nice. It was all decorated and clean and they used creative methods to cut down on spending, such as using an old door as a table. In fact, the only "bad" thing in the place was that the couch was old and lumpy. Seriously? That's a way nicer apartment than the one I'm living in right now as a college student.
And then at the end, Castle goes to talk to Alexis, to apologize for his behavior at the dinner. Alexis doesn't forgive him. She tells him that she supports her dad's engagement to Beckett, and she's just looking for the same support and acceptance in return. She tells him she needs time to forgive him, and she closes the door in his face. I'm not sure how I feel about this... even if it fit in with the tone of the episode better, it still seemed sorta out of character for Alexis to do something like this. Castle is having a hard time coming to terms with his daughter's actions. I know my father would react much worse than this if I had decided to move in with a guy I barely knew at the age of nineteen. I'm guessing they're trying to find a way to keep Alexis off of the show for a while? Maybe the actress has something else going on? I don't know.
Regardless, this whole subplot just felt very off for me. If the episode had been just the case, I would have filed this one under good and fluffy. But with all the Alexis stuff, I was left really unsure about how to feel. Because of that, it gets an iffy rating from me.