|Flowers for Your Grave|
|Season 1, Episode 1|
|Air date||March 9, 2009|
|Written by||Andrew W. Marlowe|
|Directed by||Rob Bowman|
Famous murder mystery writer Richard Castle is questioned by the NYPD when a murder scene is found as described in one of his novels. Castle must join forces with attractive detective Kate Beckett to find the killer, all the while trying to get ideas for his next series of novels.
The journey begins with a trickle of blood and a shower of petals. Sunflowers are placed on closed eyes, and someone is taking considerable pains, having presumably caused far more.
A voice from the dressing of the body carries us to a Manhattan rooftop, and a book launch. A woman is giving a laudatory build-up to a man who's, apparently, rather preoccupied with signing chests (female only). Richard Castle's "Storm Fall" is on the market, and going like the proverbial hot cakes.
Elsewhere the body prepared earlier has been found, and the police, detectives and photographers, are on the scene. The woman who brought us in, as yet unidentified, asks, "Who are you?" of the corpse. In quick succession we name the corpse (Allison Tisdale), meet the sidekicks and are introduced to the Medical Examiner/best friend. The female detective also brings us back to the matter of books, and with that we cut to the launch.
Rick Castle's "promoter" earlier turns out to be his publisher and ex-wife, and in neither role is she happy that he has killed the goose that laid the golden eggs, his lead character, Derrick Storm. It wasn't "fun" is his excuse, and the goose, he claims, is him. And "you can't rush genius", he states, a premise blown out of the water by the fact that a mole in his camp has informed her that the only thing happening in his home is writer's block.
At the bar, a "woman of a certain age" is trying to get her much younger companion to loosen up and have fun, a Sisyphean task by the look of things. The girl is studying for a test, and will not be diverted. The woman greets our hero with her conclusion about slipping sales, and the girl acknowledges "Dad"'s greeting. His mother (who has no desire to be identified as such) is, as he guessed, the leak Gina (his ex) exploited. Mother sees nothing wrong in what she's done, and soon scuttles of in search of "big game". Dad provides champagne, and receives a lesson in parenting from his 15-year-old, whose "old soul" can wait to drink alcohol. His desire for her to show she got at least some of his genes by "wildly inappropriate" behavior, causes her to point out his overabundance in this area. He feels stuck in a rut, which is why "Derrick" had to die. Castle longs for a surprise.
Cue the detective who, despite her looks, is not looking for his unique style of tattoo, and identifies herself as Detective Kate Beckett of the NYPD. She needs him to come downtown and answer some questions about a murder, which (as his daughter points out) is indisputably new.
Detective Beckett has Mr. Castle in an interrogation room, and comes in with his bulky file, commenting on his rap sheet as she does. His "Boys will be boys" clearly cuts no ice with her, and the fact that each time the charges were dropped obviously rankles her. He informs her that his fan club extends beyond "bimbettes and celebutantes" (her candidates) to include the Mayor. His bad boy charm is wasted on her, however, and she gets down to business. Castle doesn't recognize either of the victims, the second being Marvin Fisk, a lawyer who was killed two weeks prior to Tisdale's murder, but he does note the speed and precision with which Beckett identified the books from which "inspiration" was drawn. He pegs her as a fan, a concept which does not sit well with Kate. "Only hardcore Castle groupies read that one" is his observation, a category Beckett clearly doesn't care to belong to. He redeems himself for a (serious) moment by showing an insight into the psychopathic mindset, but sinks himself without trace by following it up with a cheap line ("Do you know you have gorgeous eyes?"), and requesting copies of the pictures, to make his writer buddies jealous. Beckett wants to go through his mail, and get out of the room before she commits an act of violence.
Back at his extremely spacious apartment, his mother is starting a rendition of "I'm just a girl who can't say no" as Castle makes it home. Despite the fact it's after midnight, mother is still entertaining, and a daughter, in the kitchen, is still studying. His daughter's attempts to extract info let us know that he has banned her from the fan sites, although apparently very liberal in the rest of his Internet outlook. He finds the murders senseless, then clarifies that this is odd as "murder usually makes a great deal of sense. Passion, greed, politics." It's the lack of taste in selecting from his oeuvre that's bothering him ("My truly lesser works"). As this role-reversed dynamic is played out, she's the one saying "It's bedtime."
In the precinct, Beckett is providing her team with "Castle's greatest hits", his entire body of work, for them to get to know every murder he's ever written, in excruciating detail. The books prove to be Beckett's personal property, and the other two tease her about her 'fangirl' status. The psych profile suggests low IQ and a real or imagined relationship with Castle, so that is their starting point. Esposito can't figure out why, after a day of dead bodies, Beckett would choose to read about more. She feel that the rationale is fascinating - why people do these things. Their killer's next strike must be somewhere in Castle's volumes.
The next day Castle's voluminous fan mail isn't the only mountain confronting the detectives. Their killer has inconsiderately left neither DNA nor prints, and Esposito's schoolyard suggestion that Rick is back because "he likes you" has Kate wincing as she is summoned into the Captain's office. The cherry on top is the discovery that Montgomery wants Beckett to take Castle up on his "kind" offer to help with the investigation. End of discussion.
With no choice, but to put up with Castle, they go through his piles of letter together. Castle continues to observe Beckett much to her annoyance. When Beckett asks Castle the real reason of why he was there, Castle says that he was there "for the story." He then returns the question to Beckett, asking her why she chose to be a cop if, according to his observations of her so far, she could have been anything from a lawyer to more socially acceptable options. He builds theory about Beckett's past through her character profile and comes to the conclusion that she must have lost someone she loved and whoever was responsible was never caught. The change in Beckett's features shows that he was right, but she merely tells him not to think he already knows her.
Moving back to the investigation, Beckett finds a clue in a letter addressed to the first victim, Allison. She sends it over to the lab for fingerprints, and when Rick finds out that it is going to take a week because of the system being backlogged, he calls the mayor and asks for a favor, so they get the prints in an hour. Beckett disapproves of Rick's ways because they should be following police procedure. Esposito, though, is amused by the way Rick seems to irk the detective and is impressed by his connections with the mayor.
The precinct gets another call about a victim that was killed based on one of Rick's books again, this time from "Death of a Prom Queen", left to float around a pool while in a dress, although Rick notes that the dress color is wrong: the victim, Kendra Pitney, was wearing a yellow dress whereas the dress is blue in the book.
- Nathan Fillion as Richard Castle
- Stana Katic as Detective Kate Beckett
- Jon Huertas as Detective Javier Esposito
- Seamus Dever as Detective Kevin Ryan
- Tamala R. Jones as Dr. Lanie Parish
- Ruben Santiago-Hudson as Captain Roy Montgomery
- Molly C. Quinn as Alexis Castle
- Susan Sullivan as Martha Rodgers
- Monet Mazur as Gina Cowell
- James Patterson as Himself
- Stephen J. Cannell as Himself
- Dan Castellaneta as Judge Markway
- Colby French as Detective
- Keir Dullea as Jonathan Tisdale
- Brian Avers as Harrison Tisdale
- Kurt David Anderson as Kyle Cabot
- Ian Jarvis as Bert
- Caitlin McHugh as Receptionist
- Kevin Jiggetts as Uniformed Cop
- Kym Jackson as Allison Tisdale
- Beckett: No signs of struggle. He knew her.
- Lanie: Even bought her flowers. Who says romance is dead?
- Beckett: I do. Every Saturday night.
- Lanie: A little lipstick wouldn't hurt.
- Martha: Really, dollface? Who does homework at a party?
- Alexis: I have a test next week.
- Martha: So do I. Liver function. And you don't see me studying!
- Castle: You want to know why I killed Derrick? There were no more surprises. I knew exactly what was gonna to happen every moment of every scene. It's just like these parties. They've become so predictable. "I'm your biggest fan", "where do you get your ideas?"
- Alexis: And the ever-popular "Will you sign my chest?".
- Castle: That one I don't mind so much.
- Beckett: Says here that you stole a police horse...
- Castle: Borrowed.
- Beckett: And you were nude at the time.
- Castle: It was spring.
- Castle: Looks like I have a fan.
- Beckett: Yeah, a really deranged fan.
- Castle: Oh, you don't look deranged to me.
- Beckett: What?
- Castle: Hell Hath No Fury? Angry Wiccans out for blood? Come on, only hardcore Castle groupies read that one.
- (Castle asked Beckett for photos of the murders)
- Castle: I'm not asking for the bodies. Just the pictures.
- Alexis: If I'm gonna have to keep bailing you out, you're going to have to raise my allowance... a lot.
- (Whilst being held at gun point by Harrison Tisdale)
- Beckett: Castle, you ok?
- Castle: Yeah, but this psycho here needs a breath mint.
- Martha: That makes about as much sense as Mousetrap.
Featured Music Edit
- "When I Grow Up" - The Pussycat Dolls
- "Stop and Stare" - OneRepublic
This is the pilot episode for the series. Pilot episodes are used as a test in the process of developing a series. As such, elements of the show can often change from the pilot episode to what audiences would recognize as the series. This can result from smaller budgets allowed for a pilot with an uncertain future or suggestions based on test audience reactions.
- Credits: Jon Huertas, Seamus Dever, and Tamala R. Jones are credited as "Guest Starring" in this episode, while Monet Mazur is credited as "Starring".
- Sets: The set used for Castle's loft is simpler than the one used in the series, with the entry way and a main room most notably different. Additionally, the long hallway in which Castle slides Alexis in front of him on her feet is not a part of his apartment after this episode. Also, the Precinct's wall colors and layout are markedly different in the pilot episode from the rest of the series.
- It is explained in the DVD's audio commentary of this episode that it was originally filmed in New York as a 37 minute "presentation". The rest was filmed in Los Angeles once the show was picked up as a series.
Castle originally aired as a mid-season replacement for the failed reality show, True Beauty.
- This resulted in a shortened first season of only ten episodes.
- When Beckett approaches Castle at the party and takes him to the police station, he has a clean shave. In the interrogation room, he suddenly has a more than one day growth of beard. When he returns home some hours later, he again has a clean shave.
- Beckett conducts her interview with Castle in the interrogation room. We know from subsequent episodes that she normally uses the lounge to conduct interviews with "friendly" sources and only uses the interrogation room for suspects, criminals, or people she considers to be troublesome.
- Castle returns home after the interrogation to find Martha singing with a man she met at the party. While the clock clearly reads 12:45 am (and Castle discusses this with Alexis), there appears to be sunlight streaming through the windows onto Martha. It might have been light from a light outside-- except that subsequent episodes show the same room to be very dark at night.
- Esposito says that watching "a control freak" like Beckett, trying to deal with "something you can't control" like Castle, is more fun than Shark Week.
- When the detectives flip open the book of the suspect with the scribbled drawings in it, the title is Storm Fall. This is the book that Castle gives Beckett an advanced copy of at the end of the episode. A goof? Or maybe the suspect attended the launch party at the start of the episode, or got the book from one of the guests.
- Beckett's badge number is "0334" in this episode.
- Beckett's hair continuously changes length throughout the episode, most notably when she and her team are in Kyle Cabot's apartment.
- ↑ This is a reference to the Agatha Christie murder mystery play which is the longest running show of its type in the world. It has been running in the West End of London since 1952. By tradition, at the end of each performance, audiences are asked not to reveal the identity of the killer to anyone outside the theatre, to ensure that the end of the play isn't spoiled for future audiences.
- ↑ Mid-Season Replacements Shows that Unexpectedly Became Hits