It's simple, really: Last night's episode of Castle was good. Good enough to keep me on the edge of my seat, good enough to earn the series its highest ratings ever, and good enough to properly set the stage for this morning's announcement that the show has been renewed for Season 3.
Last week I wrote about how the show was more than capable of handling a multiple-episode storyline, and "Boom!" (the second half of last week's "Tick, Tick, Tick...") aptly proved my point. "Tick, Tick Tick..." had left us wondering if Beckett (Stana Katic) survived a violent explosion, and within the first five minutes, we knew she was fine. No time wasted in the hospital, no over-acted bedside dialogues, no heartfelt confessions. After those five minutes, Beckett was back on her feet, doing what she does best: Kicking ass and engaging in witty banter with Castle (Nathan Fillion).
Overall, this episode was chock-full of self-validating, high-intensity moments for Castle and Beckett as individuals and as a team. Beckett displayed more physical prowess in this episode than ever before, deftly chasing Nikki Heat-obsessed killer Scott Dunn through the New York City subway system. Castle held his own with a firearm, shooting the gun right out of Dunn's hand at the final showdown. And together, the pair made even more progress. Beckett finally displayed complete trust in Castle—by giving him a gun and by following his instinct about Dunn's whereabouts—and Castle took this trust seriously, instead of falling back on his trademark wisecracks. After some skepticism about their relationship, kick-ass FBI Special Agent Jordan Shaw (Dana Delany) even complimented Beckett on their ability to work together. Beckett, of course, replied that their relationship was "complicated." What a tease!
So, what happens next? Beckett and Castle have obviously grown closer because of this case—she had to stay at his apartment after hers was blown to smithereens, he rescued her father's watch and kind of saved her life a few times—yet both characters are supposed to get new love interests any day now. I can't wait to see what the writers come up with—and judging from that ratings spike and renewal news, neither can everyone else.
What did you think of the episode?
Follow TV.com writer Stefanie Lee on Twitter: @StefAtTVDotCom