Stana Katic, Nathan Fillion, Seamus Dever
Childbirth on TV shows rarely goes according to plan. For Castle's Kevin Ryan, there will be no exception.
On Monday's episode (10/9c, ABC), Castle (Nathan Fillion) and Beckett (Stana Katic) investigate the murder of a victim found in ruins of a building fire. The team members learn soon enough that they're dealing with a serial arsonist, which is very bad news for Esposito (Jon Huertas) and Ryan (Seamus Dever), who end up trapped in a burning building just as Ryan's wife Jenny (Juliana Dever) goes into labor.
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"We thought there would be high jinks with getting to the hospital and getting that phone call," Seamus Dever tells TVGuide.com with a laugh. "It turns out Andrew Marlowe, our creator, put us in a lot of danger before it's revealed that the baby is even going to come. It's crazy. The stakes are very high. I think they're hoping it starts off the new year with a bang."
Although Ryan has struggled with his feelings about being a good father this season, those thoughts will be far from his mind. Instead, he's much more focused on simply surviving. "Ryan wants to be there for that moment," he continues. "But the whole building is booby trapped. So it's not only doubtful that Ryan's going to be there, it's doubtful whether or not he's going to make it out alive."
Ryan may end up being closer to "the moment" than he thinks after Jenny makes a brash decision. "Her husband starts to take priority because she can't really imagine a life without him and raising this baby alone," Juliana Dever says. "The minute she starts to realize that something's not right, she calls Beckett. And instead of heading to the hospital when she goes into labor, she heads straight to the scene where she knows Kevin is. She's not going to leave his side."
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Jenny's worry and heartbreak also provides a rare opportunity for the show. "There were mixed emotions," Juliana Dever says. "On the one hand, it was the first time Jenny got to have a scene with Lanie [Tamala Jones], which is exciting. It's a wonderful opportunity for the women on Castle to be together during that time. It was great being on set with all the girls, but the scenes themselves are very emotional."
Assuming Ryan survives the fire, Seamus Dever seems confident that the near-death experience will have some impact on Ryan as he balances his work with being a new father. But the more immediate impact will probably be on his character's lack of sleep. "It's very possible that Ryan is going to be a dartboard for Esposito and Castle to throw darts at when it comes to showing up at work looking like a zombie," he jokes.
As for Kevin and Jenny's future as parents, the Devers, who in real life have rescue dogs instead of children, are both optimistic that having a baby will help bring Jenny into the story more.
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"I know Andrew likes the idea of seeing the progression of things," Seamus Dever says. "Esposito might never get married and doesn't even have a permanent girlfriend. Ryan is very settled and going to be a dad. So, on the [relationship] scale, we're polar opposites and Castle and Beckett are somewhere in the middle, heading towards marriage and babies and things like that. I think it's fun for [the writers] to play off of that."
And if Ryan doesn't make it out alive? Who becomes the baby's godfather? "Esposito is with Ryan, so it's going to have to be Castle," Juliana Dever says with a laugh. "Rick and Kate would have to step in as godparents!"
Castle airs Mondays at 10/9c on ABC.