Oh man, can I tell you how much I loved last night's episode? Especially since it was a hostage negotiation case because hello? That's all I've been researching for the last two years for my books.
The set up was awesome with the girl running from the crime scene and taking the hostages. Castle being called down to scene because the hostage-taker will only talk to Richard Castle was priceless. When Alexis said the captain was on the phone and a jobless dejected Beckett got all excited, I felt so bad that Alexis had to clarify the call was for her dad. (The sugar daddy comment and the I'm sleep-talking was so funny!) The only thing that bothered me about that whole family scene was Pi. His presence has never been explained, is he Alexis' boyfriend? A pal? Why is he still there? Have a talk with Alexis for the viewers, please, because he's an annoying plot point right now.
Down at the staging point for the hostage scene Castle has to prove he is who he is by playing Castle trivia which was hilarious. He makes a deal to go in if they let the little girl and her mom out. Awww. Of course the hostage-taker wants him to prove her innocence and Castle is on the job. Since Beckett isn't working for the NYPD anymore because of the hiring freeze, she asks the captain to let her help and she does. The boys are running the investigation and with Sully and Beckett's help uncover some pretty interesting clues. I loved how this case didn't really let you know whether the hostage-taker was innocent or guilty until halfway through the show. The boys' concern for Castle being in there with the hostages was awesome, and seeing Lainey was great. The family is back together.
It was a great conclusion, and I didn't guess the killer this time so kudos on the procedural part of it, too. All in all, a great episode, lots of sigh-worthy Castle moments (when she's helping him with his writer vest, after he gets shot and the end.) This is the Castle I love and I can't wait to see next week!