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Castle - Hong Kong Hustle - Review:"Interesting Threesome"

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In this week’s Chinese flavored, highly enjoyable, episode, “Hong Kong Hustle,” Beckett seems to find her match in Zhuang, a super-cop from the Hong Kong PD, who admittedly seems to have it all. The Castles (Thanks for that recurring bit, Ryan!) team up with the Chief Inspector who has Beckett in awe, on the murder of Henry Gram, an ex-con, tow-truck driver, specialised in vehicle recovery. The partnership resulting in a threesome, investigatively speaking, that has Castle scrambling for the right words as Beckett questions her priorities, with once again, A+ acting from the entire cast.

One of the reasons I love this cast so much, is in the details, and the facial expressions Nathan, Jon, Seamus and Stana gave us, varying from annoyance and exasperation, to comedic and dramatic, with infamous eye rolls and glaring downs, were, throughout the episode, always spot on, delivered with perfection.

The Asian woman, spotted by a mid-night jogger at the crime scene, hunched over the body, pointing a gun, isn’t a Triad assassin, but decorated officer, investigating the murder of the childhood friend who had her back when she was a stranger in a strange land. Following her trail, Ryan and Esposito are the unlucky duo whom Zhuang, unaware of their title, gets the take on.

And their expressions said it all…

“You weren’t there. She’s fast. She’s like, crazy fast.” –Ryan

“Hong Kong Hustle” hovered over Beckett’s insecurities, and as she pointed out, she’s not usually one to be insecure, or not since she had pimples. Questioning her past choices, and future life, Beckett, hit with what Castle defines as Patterson Syndrome, compares herself, with Zhuang, who seems to have found the perfect balance. “She does it all; she has it all.”

Beckett’s never been competitive, needy for recognition, but she was always good, the best at what she did. She had been driven by the need for justice, the need to solve her mother’s case, by nothing else, and now that it’s solved, she seems in need of another purpose.

She’d measured herself with career women struggling to balance motherhood and the job in Jordan Shaw. She’d measured herself against old high school friends living fabulous lives (Somehow, this episode reminded me of “The Way of the Ninja”), but Kate usually comes out on top. She made a choice of having a career over having a family, buried herself into her work for years, and became the best homicide detective. Faced with Zhuang, who demonstrates it’s possible to have it all, she sees failure, realising it didn't have to be either or.

Kate reacted quite intensely to the news that an old academy friend made Captain, and that she seems to be falling behind. Personally, I think she would be bored out of her mind as a Captain, and would itch to go back in the streets. As for the leadership position, I’ll quote Castle for the pilot “You’re very good at bossing men around.” In the team, she’s pretty much in the leadership position, often delegating the “mindless grunt work” to her male counter-parts.

“And I’m just…” –Beckett
“The best homicide detective in the city?”-Castle
“No. Falling behind.” –Beckett

This episode, once again put light on the amazing relationship and chemistry between Castle and Beckett, as he did everything in his power to convince Beckett she was great, just the way she was, that she needed no one to show her how to live. Her life is pretty great just as it is, especially given everything she's been through. He reminds her the job at the Attorney General’s Office, though prestigious on paper, wasn’t meant for her. She was fired after doing what she was right, and not compromising her beliefs is more important than any job, however prestigious it may be.

Castle dealt with the competitive, jealous side of his wife perfectly, and even though sometimes, I find it annoying when he caves into saying exactly what Beckett wants to hear, I thought it worked beautifully in this context, and loved the way it lead to Kate realising she was insecure. The way they put a lighter twist on her illumination made the storyline go over better.

“This is my third marriage; I think I know what I’m doing.” -Castle

The episode was mostly Beckett centered, but it did showcase, Castle and the boys, with some hilarious bits, and one-liners that cracked me up. “Are you quoting her now?” Especially the scene with the Ryan, Espo and Castle talking about marriage; it was pure TV Gold. It shouldn’t be something to be bragging about, Castle.

When the investigation is paused, on the orders from the FBI, it is demonstrated, once more, how alike Zhuang and Beckett are. Zhuang, fueled by the need to bring her friend’s murderer to justice, continues on, on her own, in a totally Beckett move. (Though, a bit more psycho, than ours truly!) Beckett goes to get her and, playing good cop, bad cop, they manage to extract “hypothetical” information from their suspect.

Kate realises that Zhuang is not as balanced and perfect as she seems, always too busy for everything that really matter, in a scene that was heartbreakingly beautiful as Beckett realised no one’s perfect and that she isn’t doing so bad. Beckett then went to the bat with Gates, for the imperfect inspector, which I am not sure she would have done otherwise, for the perfect woman she envied so. The two super-cop part ways, after the case resolves itself in a twist involving human trafficking which I never saw coming, and Zhuang thanks Kate.

“You cannot leave behind what is always by your side.”-Castle

One thing that surprised me, was the fact that the episode didn’t end with Beckett announcing she wanted to try for little Castle babies. I assumed this was where they were taking the episode, and I can’t help but feel, like the new challenges Beckett mentioned were as much a shot at the show's growth as it was at the character's growth, making my heart ache.

And the episode ended with Beckett indulging Castle’s insecurities, just as he indulged her. (My roommate called it cheezy, but I loved it. What does she know? She's an outsider.)

New episode, new Beckett hairstyle and I still love it. Stana Katic is always gorgeous, but someone should really consider making a poll for “Favorite Beckett Hairstyle”

Agree? Disagree?

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