Postmortem: Castle Boss Answers Our "Burning" Questions About That Season 6 Cliff-Hanger
[WARNING: The following story contains spoilers from the Season 6 finale of Castle. Read at your own risk.]
Like many TV nuptials before it, the would-be blessed union between Castle's Katherine Beckett and Richard Castle did not go off without a hitch in the Season 6 finale.
In fact, there were numerous hitches. For starters, when Beckett (Stana Katic) and Castle (Nathan Fillion) went to apply for their marriage licenses, they were both shocked to learn that Beckett was already married! As it turns out, Beckett married her con-man ex Rogan O'Leary (guest star Eddie McClintock) 15 years ago during a drunken trip to Vegas. But when Beckett makes a trip upstate to get Rogan to sign a dissolution of marriage agreement, things get even worse.
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Even before the episode, some fans were vocally upset about Beckett not knowing she was already married. What went into making that choice?
Andrew W. Marlowe: It was just an obstacle to put in the way of them getting married. It's not like we're playing a love triangle or anything. In no way does it minimize how seriously Beckett takes [the relationship with Castle.] Castle is a very flawed character, and Beckett has always had the moral upper hand. This allows her to be a little bit more human in his eyes. I think it's very endearing to him. He's charmed by it, and I think it's difficult going into a relationship with somebody who's a little too perfect.
Because of that setup, a lot of this episode was light and fun, which is a bit of a departure from your recent more dramatic finales.
Marlowe: Before we could entertain the wedding and getting Rick and Kate together, we wanted to close out the Bracken arc. We wanted that sense of justice for Beckett's character so that she can move forward into her new phase of life completely unfettered. We wanted to do something a little Coen Brothers and just have a good time with it. Of course, [we knew] the whole time that we'd have a twist at the end. With the twist, we've got what we think is some great, fun, compelling storytelling for the start of next year, and this platforms pretty well where we want to go.
But even though Castle and Beckett overcame their fairy-tale obstacles, you didn't give them their happy ending! Did you purposely want to challenge the notion of our heroes getting what they want?
Marlowe: I think this is very much to challenge that. The story that we're telling with their relationship isn't over. It's going to get deeper. It's going to get more interesting, and there are still a couple of things that need to be overcome. This is not one of those things where suddenly one of them starts feeling a different way [or] one of those things where an old lover shows up. This is something else entirely, and we're hoping people take the ride. If they continue their investment, it'll pay off. I do know that some fans will feel robbed, they'll feel betrayed. But hopefully they'll stay with us to see how we're going to resolve it.
What can you tell us about the people in the black SUV? Are they related to Bracken or the mobsters we met in this episode? Or is it a whole new mystery?
Marlowe: I'm comfortable saying those are the questions that we like to leave people with. We feel like [this mystery] has some interesting answers, and are very excited to get back to it in the fall. We're sorry that people have to wait that long for the resolution, but we're excited about where we are going.
Castle wedding shocker: Beckett's already arried!?
Castle's burning car is a pretty bleak image. Can you give us some hope for his survival?
Marlowe: I think we know what the title of the show is.
Speaking of upset fans, did the Internet outrage about Beckett's original wedding dress play into it being destroyed or was it just another obstacle to overcome?
Marlowe: It was a bit of both. We knew the original dress was pretty divisive when we read the comments, and it was our way of honoring how the fans felt. But it's also about complicating the journey along the way and getting Beckett to that emotional point of, "What else could go wrong?" and having Castle be the one to give her faith. When she starts to doubt it, it allows him to come and hold her up the way people who are in committed relationships take turns holding each other up. And we also loved the image of the wedding dress on the autopsy table in the morgue. [Laughs]
This season ended the Johanna Beckett murder case, which has been a big narrative engine. What are you thinking about for Season 7?
Marlowe: The relationship has always been the engine. These two people are in a strong committed relationship that is certainly being challenged at this moment, but we're looking to open up new mythology, to bring in some new elements that we think will give the characters plenty to talk about.
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Is this new mythology related to whoever was driving that SUV?
Marlowe: Yeah. I think it's safe to assume that this event has something to do with the mythology that we'll be opening up in the new season.
So, is a happy ending still in Castle and Beckett's future?
Marlowe: That's what I believe. They've had a great deal of happiness over the last several seasons, and I think that there is more to come. Will there be challenges? Yeah, all relationships are challenged, and we're hoping to break some new ground when we come back next season, but we're very excited about it. We know that there's a cost to ending a season this way. We know that people are looking for that [wedding] moment, and that's a moment that we're going to get to. But there's still some storytelling that we have to get through before we get there.
What did you think of the Castle finale? Watch previous episodes here.