Season 4 Episode 15


Aired Monday 10:00 PM Feb 13, 2012 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (5)

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  • What remains inside Pandora's Box? Hope?

    With the paired metaphors of a linchpin, which holds a structure together and without which the structure will fail catastrophically, and of the myth of Pandora's Box, out of which all of earth's evils escaped when it was opened, leaving only hope, the writers have structured an uncomfortably possible cliff-hanger: if not prevented, an economic disaster the like of which the world has never seen will bring the US down.

    Humanizing both the evil machine aimed at destroying the US and the defenders who struggle to prevent catastrophe involves a series of juxtapositions: day and night as times for action; ground level and deep basement settings as backdrops; a gloomy garage and a sunny park as arenas for confrontations; the seriousness and freshness of Alexis and the jaundiced selfishness of Gage; the starkness of a believable doomsday scenario and the humor of jealous co-workers sniping and snapping out their irritation at one another. In places, the plot seems structured like the layers of a Russian matryoshka nesting doll: events within events within events; reasons within reasons within reasons; facts within facts within facts. One is reminded of Ezekiel's "wheel within a wheel" as every event changes meanings with the addition of newly-discovered or newly-admitted data.

    Castle, in "Pandora," interacts directly with five different women: his mother, his daughter, the Captain, his old CIA source, and Beckett; most of his interaction with Lanie is at a remove: she shares some comments with Beckett, who tells Alexis, who tells Martha. . . who accidentally tells Castle. For once, Castle savors having been forbidden to discuss a case; it gives him a chance to score against Captain Gates. Reminiscing and flirting with his old CIA source gives him a similar chance to ruffle Beckett's feathers, gently, as she reacts negatively to watching him "partner" someone else until he proves that ONLY Beckett is really his partner. As often before, one of the women in Castle's life suggests a different point of view for a problem puzzling him; this time it is Martha who opines that the chess moves may have nothing to do with the game of chess. Castle's interactions with ALL of the women in this episode reinforce one of his strongest attributes: his respect for women as people. Despite his frequent flirtations and rather bawdy history, Castle is actually a feminist and Alexis and Martha have definitely assisted in his growth.

    Although the murder of Dr. Blakely was predictable, the discovery that he is actually one of the "good guys" was not. We are left with questions about the CIA as an organization, about the veracity of its workers, about who is manipulating whom, about whom to believe and whom to trust. Although not excruciating, the suspense is pleasurable most of us will be tuning in next week.

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