by Michael Seese
"It's Ryan Time!"
I liked "At Close Range," though I didn't take a lot of notes. Perhaps I was too busy enjoying it. The opening pulled us right in: a bloodied Ryan staring into, then punching, the mirror. Then the "6 Hours Earlier" jumpback. They've used that technique before; though, if memory serves, the opening teaser scene winds up being near the end, instead of pretty much at the beginning, as it was this week. (I have to say, a pox on the folks who developed the trailer shown at the end of "Hong Kong Hustle;" I vividly recall the emphasis being on the scene where a bunch of cops draw their guns and order Ryan to drop his, making it look like he did something.)
And, as I have said on other occasions, I enjoy shows which focus on one of the non-Caskett characters. As an added bonus, we got to meet (as far as I remember, it was the first time) Ryan's sister.
This one returned to the tried-and-true formula of "Is it suspect 1? Or 2? Or 3? No! None of the above." They kept us guessing right up to the end.
Boasting aside: I somewhat called it. As soon as I saw Lopez and Carolyn together, I thought, Affair. When Beckett called Ryan from the hospital to say she died, I announced, "They were having an affair, and he wanted her dead to clean up his act before the Presidential run." So I had it half right.
Picky aside: Like last week, I thought the motive was kind of sketchy. "You were going to dump me from your staff, so I killed your girlfriend."
And while I'm at it...
Picky aside #2: The gajillionaire Carl Shelton said in the interrogation that he funds a lot of groups, and can't know the people behind them all. That makes sense. So why was he talking to Chambers? Especially since, he would have had no way of knowing Chambers would be there, since he (Shelton) wasn't the one who arranged it.
Oh well. I still liked it.
Before finishing up here, I wanted to take a second and call out the scene where Beckett goes through Carolyn's purse. I just liked the way she waxed poetic about getting to know a woman's life by way of the contents of her purse.
The lines (not a whole lot):
Castle: "Ryan, is it One Direction? You'd tell me, right?"
Esposito: "They're in Hong Kong." (Nice back reference, BTW.)
Beckett: "You texted Castle and not me?"
Ryan: "Well, when you have a crazy theory, you don't tell the voice of reason."
Your thoughts, dear Castle devotees?