Welcome back Castle fans! Are you ready to be on camera? Because this week we are filming a documentary about the rise of a rock band called “Holy Shemp”. Unfortunately for the band their lead guitarist, James Swan, is dead in his trailer, apparently killed with his own guitar.
Our team seems to love the camera, well everyone except Beckett (Stana Katic). She is unaccountably unsure of her self, uncomfortable being center stage. She tries to run the crew off, but they have permission from the mayor’s office. And they could be helpful, they have lots of footage of the band for our team to go through.
While investigating the scene the Castle (Nathan Fillion) & Beckett find a butterfly in the trailer. A groupie named Butterfly. Really. She doesn’t remember much; just the sound of horses hooves crunching in the snow…in the trailer….this does not seem very helpful. Interviews with the rest of the band reveal that James seemed very paranoid lately and claims he was being followed.
Perhaps he was. The footage from the documentary shows the same breaded man in the background of several shots. They track him through his van (he was seen leaning against it in one scene) and Esposito (Jon Huertas) and Ryan (Seamus Dever) go to pick him up. Here we see a less than professional side of Esposito as he shamelessly hams for the camera. When they catch up with our stalker he has duct tape and rope in his van. Things are not looking good. Until they discover that he is Butterfly’s dad and he is just trying to get his daughter back. He has been following James, looking for his chance. And guess what he saw? He saw our victim go to the bank and then into an abandoned building prior to his death.
Meanwhile, at the morgue Lanie (Tamala Jones) has news. James never had any of the standard immunizations everyone gets as children. It turns out that he was raised in a cult in Ithaca. He escaped and changed the cult tattoo on his arm from “serve” to ‘observe”. The band had recently played in Ithaca, and it seems that the cult leader, John Campbell, followed the band to New York. Is it possible he killed James?
All this time everything the team does is caught by the camera – including a sweet moment between Castle and Beckett. They realize too late, but there is nothing to do because they have a former cult member to interview. This lady tells them that she heard Campbell swear he would get revenge on James, who may have been trying to buy his freedom for $25,000 (remember the trip to the bank?). Beckett questions Campbell, but she can’t break him and has no evidence to hold him.
There is another suspect or two for the team to consider. First is a man who was suing James over a song; he and James had worked out their differences before James’ death, but he leads Castle to believe Swan was planning to go solo. This would be a big problem for the other band members like Keith, whose boots make sounds like horse hooves (remember Butterfly??) walking in the snow. Keith denies killing James, and there is a video showing Keith having sex with a groupie. So he is off the hook too. But Beckett and Castle may not be. Captain Gates (Penny Johnson Jerald) is reviewing all the footage shot in the precinct, and what will she do when she sees that stolen moment??
Finally, we learn that a man named Buck Cooper went missing from the cult the day after the band played in Ithaca. Buck was James’ best friend and the one who taught him to play the guitar. In the footage of the documentary James talks about this mentor and how much he owes him. Turns out that Buck is working as a roadie for the band and going by the name Hank. Hank/Buck tells them that James had a plan to bring him into the band. For that to happen, someone had to go. That would be Zeke, a far less talented bass player. And Zeke was not about to go gracefully. He killed James in a fit of rage.
All and all a satisfying ending to the case. But what about Captain Gates? Well, she has reviewed the footage and found nothing to worry her except one shot of her talking while Castle goofed around for the camera in the background. She is not happy with him, but when is she? So, what happened to the other footage? It seems there’s a tape missing. Beckett mouths a thank you to the camera.
Our episode closes with a fun impromptu precinct concert with Ryan, Esposito (who can sing!) and some band members. Our very own camera-shy Beckett invites the film crew behind closed doors for an exclusive… of the janitor’s closet. The End!