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Lights, camera, 'Castle' recap: Murder at the movies

Season 7 | Episode 9 | “Last Action Hero” | Aired Dec 1, 2014

After Beckett’s latest murder victim is identified as former ’80s action movie star Lance DeLorca, it takes everything in Castle not to go completely fangirl during the investigation into his mysterious murder.

DeLorca was the star of the Hard Kill franchise, a Die Hard-like thriller that Castle idolized in his youth. Decades later, DeLorca was in town to work with his old costar and good friend Brock Harmon (Ted McGinley) on the latest in The Indestructibles franchise, a funny riff on the popular Expendables films. When Beckett breaks the news to the actor-director, Harmon explains that DeLorca had just wrapped on the film—he wanted to go out with a bang after beating his battle with cancer. But instead of heading back to Los Angeles, DeLorca had secretly holed up in a seedy motel in the week leading up to his murder.

In DeLorca’s shady hotel room, Ryan and Esposito find several curious items: building schematics of a local club, craft paint and stickers, and several electronic gadgets. These lead the detectives to believe DeLorca was making some sort of listening device.

Meanwhile, the team is able to track down security footage from the hotel that shows a mysterious woman following DeLorca. She actually turns out to be his wife, Kat Kingsley—soon to be ex-wife, courtesy of nasty divorce proceedings. She says she had secretly met with DeLorca that night because he had asked to borrow $200,000 to “make things right.” But it’s not just this meeting that leaves more questions than answers; Kingsley admits that after she had given him the money, DeLorca called to tell her he was in trouble and desperately needed help. She headed to the theater where he was hiding out, only to find him already dead.

Kingsley would continue to be a suspect if it weren’t for the truly fantastic security footage recovered from the alley behind the nightclub where DeLorca’s body was found. In something right out of one of his action movies, DeLorca is cornered by four unidentified assailants. But instead of getting his butt handed to him, it’s the over-the-hill movie star who puts the pounding on his would-be attackers, leaving each man down for the count. So what was he doing in that alley? And why were those men sent to attack? After providing the ass-kicking of a lifetime, DeLorca had called Kingsley for help, but she was too late.

The team catches a break when they learn one of the mysterious men on the tape is an actor from Harmon’s film. He says he was hired to be DeLorca’s bodyguard, and they were at the nightclub so DeLorca could complete some sort of business transaction that had to do with the briefcase full of $200,000. They connect the dots to figure out that the owner of the nightclub where DeLorca’s beatdown and subsequent murder took place is a former costar of DeLorca’s, Henry Allen Booth. Booth was in the Hard Kill movies with DeLorca, but later in life post-Hollywood he had taken ownership of this club and gained a reputation for being a larger-than-life drug kingpin, using his nightclub to further his drug-dealing business.

Beckett used her keen detective skills to figure out that the listening device DeLorca had created was a bug planted in Booth’s office. When Castle told Harmon of this evidence that could lead to DeLorca’s killer, Harmon assembled the whole Indestructibles crew (and Castle) to pull a Hollywood-worthy heist of the bug right out from under Booth’s nose. It’s a hilarious success, and how Castle actually kept his head from exploding from happiness, I will never know. The bug proves incredibly fruitful: Loads of information on the tape proves Harmon’s own son Trey was deep in the trenches of Booth’s drug operation and that Booth wanted DeLorca dealt with.

DeLorca had recently found out Trey was under Booth’s thumb, essentially being blackmailed continue aiding Booth in his peddling of drugs for the sum of—you guessed it—$200,000. So why would a friend of Trey’s father be so hellbent on getting involved and risking his life to save him from Booth? Because DeLorca had discovered the truth: HE was Trey’s biological father, not Harmon. DeLorca figured it out when Trey proved to be a near-identical match as a possible bone-marrow donor during DeLorca’s bout with cancer.

DeLorca had told Trey he had some big news to break, but Trey made the mistake of telling his mother (Krista Allen) about this strange development. When she realized what DeLorca was going to do, she killed him to keep her infidelity to Harmon and Trey’s biological identity a secret.

Oh, and by the way:

  • Ryan’s hilarious attempts to come up with an action movie-esque catchphrase was my favorite gag of the night. “It’s Ryan time!” was a personal fave.
  • Beckett: I know bad acting when I see it.
  • Seriously, though. Nathan Fillion is a fantastic actor, but if there’s one emotion he absolutely KILLS every time, it’s sheer giddiness. I’ve always loved Castle’s unabashed geekiness and enthusiasm for sci-fi/horror/macabre/magic/etc. It’s just such a delight to see.

Get more of Brandi’s take on all things entertainment over at ReelSnarky.com!

Castle airs Mondays at 10/9C on ABC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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