Yeah, I did like Castle admitting that he doesn't really believe in the inane supernatural theories he expounds but is just messing with Beckett. I just wish they'd established that two years ago so I wouldn't have been annoyed so often at Castle being written like a gullible imbecile.
I never really looked at it that way.. for me it was always clear that Castle was pretty much rooted in reality but he really liked the supernatural and mysteries (and made a well paying career out of it). Just think back this season to the haunted house case where he watches a Zombie movie with Alexis and is both scared/gleeful at being scared by the horror movie.. he likes it but he is not gullible.
With Beckett he got the perfect foil.. a person who's so rooted in reality that she's the perfect foil and target for his antics and jokes (and i believe it's also one of the main reasons why Kate fell in love with him because he put some spice into her life).
It's like how Esposito put in in the pilot episode "A control freak like you with somethin' you can't control? No, no. That's gonna be better than shark week!"
But now that it's happened, I'm not sure how authentic it feels from a character standpoint, given how much time they've spent establishing her eagerness to move on and challenge herself. I mean, it kinda works that it's her devotion to her family that keeps her around, but I wish they'd done more in earlier episodes to lay the groundwork for that, so that it didn't feel so much like a copout when it was sprung on us here.
In reality it's one thing to talk endlessly about plans but when the time comes to put these plans in motion to the point of no return many have second thoughts and change plans. She's still a teenager to a degree (albeit a very adult teenager.. i've never met a teenager with these thought patterns but that's TV) so she was likely to change her opinion several times until settling with a decision. Experienced show viewers knew that there was no way she would be written out of the show (unless she wanted to go and there was no indication in any interview or piece i've seen). So i don't feel like it was a cop out.. as i understand it the colleges/universities in New York have a high academic regard so it's not like she preferred some community college in Hicksville to an Ivy League school just to stay around her dad.
As to the episode:
One of the best.. a Castle episode how i like 'em. Fun, engaging and a bit of Caskett moving forward. I really don't like the entire Zombie genre but here it was used well.. Castle's reactions were hilarious as were those of the other ones and season 4 really needed more of that vibe but the cream came near the end after the case.
I actually spazzed out for a time (good thing i was alone and nobody was watching me
) when they had their heart to heart. Her admitting she is in therapy is a huge personal revelation.. something she wouldn't have done to him in previous years. But the kicker was not only her pouring her heart out and sending him a message but that she didn't know she was telling more than she intended as Castle knew the whole truth about the shooting now (which out him in Jackass mode for a while) and it laid all his fears to rest forever. He now knows it wasn't malicious or non-reciprocated love on her part but "just" her inner trouble which she needed to deal with but since the swing scene in the season opener has never mentioned again so he was in the dark the whole time waiting for her to make a move.
Now she said to him that she's close to making that move and that means it's all good, she's nearly there and it's only a short wait now.
It's the closest they can get to actually spelling it all out and that makes me happy.
Now, weakling that i am, i couldn't resist and saw the preview for next weeks episode and goddamn, that will be one hell of a finale!