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I first started watching Castle because I like Nathan Fillion. He both terrified and fascinated me in the final season of Buffy. He made me root for the "bad guys" in Firefly. And then he made me laugh my head off and forget how grossed out I was in Slither. I wanted to see what else he could do.
Also, the premise interested me. I don't know a lot of bestselling authors, personally, and I imagine very few are quite like Richard Castle. His is not a typical writer's life. And yet, there are writing in-jokes, and writers interviewing and shadowing the types of people they want to write about isn't unheard of.
I'm not usually a fan of police procedurals, so I don't know how Castle stacks up in that regard. I do know that I like the writing. There is a clear formula, but the writers have fun with it. They manage to slide in enough unexpected twists that I can't predict the endings most of the time. The show is fairly episodic, but there is character growth and development from one season to the next. The growth seems organic, rather than driven entirely by the plot, which I always appreciate.
The most fun episodes, for me, are when people are given more range. Beckett is normally a straight-laced detective, but she has a sense of humor, shown by a subtle gleam in the eye or biting of the lip by Stana Katic. Ryan and Esposito are normally in a support role, but we're given glimpses of their deeper lives in some of the most interesting plot asides. Dr. Parish is delightfully snarky and extremely good at her job, but she, too, is human underneath the lab coat, and pairing her off only to have it end spectacularly was one of my favorite parts of this season. I hope that's not all we see of that. Castle's family, too, is fun and fascinating, and I'm so glad his mother's and daughter's roles have expanded beyond the side conversations that give him the clue he needs to solve the mystery.
I don't watch a lot of TV, but, even when I didn't have cable, this show was a priority for me to watch every Monday night. You know for anything to take up an hour of potential writing time, it has to be worth it.