Kate Meets Castle's Dad
James Brolin returns as Jackson Hunt, the estranged dad of Rick Castle (Nathan Fillion), on the Jan. 13 episode of ABC's Castle. He meets his son's fiancée, Kate Beckett (Stana Katic), but for most of the episode, she's unaware that the CIA operative is her future father-in-law (he keeps his identity secret to protect his undercover work). "That introduction comes later and is far more awkward," says Fillion.
"[Beckett] has a big question about Jackson's true motives," says Katic. "He's not all that he seems." Blame that on Brolin, who agreed to reprise the role only if Jackson turned darker. "I wanted viewers to find out how deadly he is," Brolin says. "He gets a thrill out of terminating people who deserve it. The thrill is there, with no feeling of remorse." To make matters worse, Jackson "talks down to his son like he's 5 years old," says Brolin, "and is very attracted to Kate. That's the kind of a--hole he is." Hunt also comes face-to-face with Castle's mom, Martha, for the first time since their long-ago tryst.
Ryan's Special Delivery
Mark your calendars for Jan. 6. That's when Det. Kevin Ryan (Seamus Dever) finally becomes a daddy! But the blessed event is not without complications. Ryan's wife, Jenny (played by Dever's real-life wife, Juliana Dever), goes into labor at the same time detectives Ryan and Esposito (Jon Huertas) are trapped in a burning building. "Not only does it look as though Ryan may not be there to watch the birth of his child," says Seamus, "he may not live to see the baby at all." That leaves Lanie (Tamala Jones) and Beckett to assist in the delivery. While the storyline is traumatic, the cast kept the vibe light on set. "At one point, Stana was joking about eating the placenta," says Juliana. Fillion "was the first one to drop the fake baby," adds Seamus of the pricey prop. "It's his gag."
Say Yes to the Dress
Executive producer Andrew Marlowe has already decided when Castle and Beckett will get married. "But I don't think we're close enough to reveal it," he says, hinting that both Senator Bracken (Jack Coleman) and the presumed-dead 3XK killer could complicate the couple's plans. Nonetheless, the bride-to-be is in prep mode, and on the Jan. 27 episode, she finds a dress. "Beckett's past comes back and brings the dress to her," says Katic. She comes across the gown while investigating a case set in the world of high fashion. "Beckett's looking at designers' spring lines," says Marlowe. Trying on the dress "is an emotional moment for her because this is something she would have been doing with her [deceased] mother."