CASTLE: Andrew Marlowe Teases the Castle and Beckett Dynamic in Season 6
August 19, 2013 by Marisa Roffman
It’s not exactly the easiest thing to tease what’s to come in CASTLE season 6.
Sure, CASTLE is not the only finale to have a massive cliffhanger to end the season, but it is in the curious position of having both of its big, unanswered questions so intrinsically intertwined with the core dynamic of the show that it makes answering anything about what’s to come a big, fat spoiler.
So when I spoke with CASTLE creator Andrew Marlowe about what was to come for Castle and Beckett in season 6, there was some vagueness, there were some hypotheticals, but, hopefully, there’s also enough of a tease of what’s to come for the duo that it’ll have you counting down the moments until the show’s season premiere…
When you sat down to plan this season, how clear was the arc for the year in your mind? Did you plan out the scope of the year, or did you tackle the premiere just have broad strokes of ideas for the rest of season 6?
Andrew Marlowe: It depends on your definition of clear. I had a vision of what season 6 looked like, and beyond that, what season 7 could look like. And what I want to do with the relationship and where I want to take these guys.
As we’ve gotten into breaking stories this year, we’re really excited by some of the dramatic opportunities and problems Beckett’s answers to the two fundamental questions [raised in the finale] have created. One question is does she accept the proposal? And the other question is she has this job opportunity in Washington D.C. — what’s going to happen to that? And I know there’s been a lot of attention in the press to how Beckett answers those questions, but what’s more interesting to us is that each one of those answers has consequences to their relationship, and to Castle’s future and Beckett’s future. So what’s more interesting to us rather than what she answers is what are the consequences of those answers?
If she says yes to the proposal, there is a whole series of consequences in that relationship that are going to arise. But if she says no to the proposal, again, how is that going to affect the relationship? If she says yes to the job in D.C., it’s going to fundamentally alter stuff for Beckett and Castle. And if she says no to it, is Beckett betraying who she is as a person and will she be able to live with that? We’re really excited to explore the dramatic opportunities, no matter which ways the questions are answered.
We live in a time where it’s really hard to keep these big answers spoiler-free…and I know some fans think they know the answers to these questions based on set photos and how some of the actors have spoken about what’s to come this season. How important is it to you that viewers come into the season spoiler-free — or have you accepted to an extent that these twists can’t remain totally unspoiled?
AM: I think at a certain point you have to take control and do the best you can. Whether that means coaching your actors to say certain things or shooting multiple resolutions to stuff and putting stuff out there and people keeping guessing and letting them think they know and making them feel they know — I think it’s inevitable some things will get out, and in any circumstance, she’s going to say yes or no to one [question] and yes or no to the other. In any circumstance, a quarter of your fanbase, statistically, will come back and be smug and say, “I guessed she would do that.”
Again, what the answers are, to me, and I think our core fanbase, the answers are a lot less interesting than the questions those answers are going to raise. And how these two characters are going to navigate their relationship in light of it. I think inevitably in this day and age, stuff is going to get out there. Some of it is going to be accurate, some of it is not. We’re just pleased people care and people are talking about it.
That’s completely fair. It’s the sixth season, so the continued passion is probably a good sign.
AM: And I know some people who when they read mysteries, they read the last page and then read the book. In this circumstance, if people have gone and sought out spoiler material — and sought out spoiler material that’s accurate — all they’re doing is reading the first page of what happens next. And that’s fine.
If they’re engaged, do you see this being a longer engagement, or do you anticipate they may move a bit fast?
AM: I think no matter what the question is, we’re going to have to deal with the ramifications are, and it’s probably more complicated than either of them foresee.
If they get engaged, how will it impact their working relationship?
AM: You’re fishing in the engagement pond, aren’t you? [Laughs]
These are all fun hypothetical questions, because even if they don’t get engaged now, they could get engaged a year from now and still have to deal with these issues.
AM: Whether it’s in the premiere episode this year or a season from now or two seasons from now, if these two get engaged, I think they’ll have to wrestle with it. Certainly Beckett will have to wrestle with the fact that Castle has been married two times before. And Castle is going to have to wrestle with whether he’s done the right thing. And I think the two of them will have to wrestle with an imagined future together.
And also, how do they live their day-to-day life and what does that look like? It’s one thing to be hanging out, professionally, with a multi-millionaire dilettante writer who is helping you solve crimes. It’s another to imagine your future with that person and wrestle with your own identity. And then in terms of the kind of people it would make sense for Castle to be with on paper, Beckett’s not necessarily that person, but there’s clearly an attraction. That becomes real and they’re looked at by society as that couple.
So inevitably, when they get there, those are issues we’ll have to deal with. As well as how it would alter how they work together in a professional relationship. It’s one thing to be partners, but when you’re partners on top of partners, it’s a whole other thing. So when it’s time for us to do that, I assume all of those issues will be part of the trajectory of the storytelling.
Whether she accepts the proposal or not, will you be touching on the outside reaction to their relationship from the media and Castle’s fans, etc.?
AM: Inevitably, we’re going to have to deal with that.
It would make sense since we’ve seen Castle being touted as an eligible bachelor in the past…
AM: [Now either] an eligible bachelor or off the market. We will absolutely have to deal with that. Or off the market but have to pretend to be on the market for book sales. There are a lot of different possibilities we could get into.
Will the show be touching back on the conversation Beckett had with Meredith at the end of “Significant Others”?
AM: If you were a woman, wouldn’t that haunt you? And you are a woman, so if you were in a situation [like that] I think it would haunt you. And you know Beckett — she never lets anything go. She stores it all away. And I think inevitably when she’s looking at her relationship with Castle, she’s going to wonder about that.
If, hypothetically, Beckett goes to D.C., where does this leave Castle, professionally?
AM: That’s a big hypothetical — if Beckett goes to D.C.! I think, look, if Beckett doesn’t go to D.C., it’s going to challenge her and challenge the relationship. She will feel she has missed an opportunity. And inevitably, she will look at Castle as the reason, and that would cause stress in any relationship. And if she does go to D.C., what a huge wrench to throw into any burgeoning relationship. And one wonders if the relationship could survive.
One wonders what Castle would do: would he move to D.C..? He’s got family in New York, his mom’s in New York, he’s got business in New York, but maybe he can write from anywhere. If she takes this job and he moves to D.C., she’s already said in the last episode, this would consume her. Are they going to have any time together? That would be tough, too.
So I think that on either side of the equation, no matter what Beckett’s decision is, or whether it’s Beckett and Castle making the decision together, there are going to be relationship consequences they’re going to have to attend to.
Be sure to check back next week for more from my chat with Marlowe!
CASTLE’s sixth season premieres Monday, September 23rd at 10 PM on ABC.