CastleThere have been TONS of shows were the main source of ongoing dramatic tension is the sexual tension between the two leads. And almost ALL of them screw up that seemingly essential tension by either mishandling how the two leads get together (i.e. Moonlighting) or by NEVER getting the leads together (i.e. Bones, as of this post). So far, Castle has avoided most of the pitfalls of its predecessors and has handled the relationship between Castle & Beckett exceedingly well. Using believable delays grounded in the character flaws of each person, but keeping enough of those "spark" moments around that the tension never fades away.
The season 2 finale for Castle is another example of how deftly that tension is handled. For two seasons, we've watched Castle go from lustfully smitten to actually romantically interested in Beckett in small increments. At the same time, Beckett has increasingly warmed to Castle as her pre-conceived notions of the author that got her through her mother's death were replaced with the startlingly immature, yet endearing reality.
Now at the end of season 2, Beckett seemed ready to admit some type of attraction for Castle, and was undone by all the work she had put in denying the possibility of that attraction. Again, a completely believable delay. One, that has me wondering what the consequences are going to be for the relationship. I hope that Beckett gets a bit of the same frustration/pain that Castle felt as she watches Castle and the ex-wife together for a little while.
But, I also think that Castle & Beckett should get together in Season 3, either near the middle of the season (like just before the Christmas break) or towards the end of season 3. If done properly, it wouldn't hurt the show, it would ADD to the comedic madness as Beckett has to deal with entering deeper into Castle's semi-upper class world, while Castle has to deal with the real possibility of Beckett possibly dying in the line of duty. That plus the normal relationship issues, exacerbated by both of their larger than life personalities, could fuel the through the end of season 4!
CSIWhile I LOVED the addition of Dr. Ray Langston to the CSI team, I never liked the "Dr. Jekyll" storyline, it always came across as a little writer's trick to get the audience to respond to Langston's character. He already had one serial killer in his back story, why not expand on THAT one? Why do you need to add ANOTHER one that just happens to kill with medical expertise, right when a medical doctor was added to CSI?
That's why I LOVED how this season ended. I loved the inclusion of the more interesting killer, and how he related to Langston. I'm dying to see how the next season unfolds!!
The MentalistThe most compelling part of this finale was Red John. And he was in the episode for like a minute and a half. As much as I enjoyed Patrick Jane's games, I was looking forward to seeing Red John take glorious retribution upon those who would defile his work.
My hope for the next season is that they either introduce a NEW serial killer for the season, or spend MORE time on Red John. Enough of this filler stuff. Let's get to some real challenges!
HouseAfter six seasons, House and Cuddy get together, and frankly, I'm not sure that I like that. Aside from the way it was written, which made it seem more like an afterthought to the ep, I'm of the opinion that Cuddy isn't a good match for House. I'm not denying that there is chemistry between them, but House's personality can too easily overwhelm Cuddy. It's happened so often on the show, it's become part of the formula of the show.
In season 2, when House's ex, Stacy, was on the show, things worked between them, because she could return fire and put him back in his place. At times, she could do it effortlessly, other times it was more problematic for her, but she was ALWAYS able to do that. She was always capable of matching House's strength of personality.
To date, Cuddy hasn't come anywhere close to doing being able to match wits, or even attitude with House which makes this ending feel more like Cuddy giving in to what House wants again, than her actually having any feelings for him. I know, I know the events of the episode are, in fact, the reverse, but them being together still didn't work.
It seems like the producers of the show are trying to make House a nicer, more relatable person. That scene with House and the psychologist and the "I want to be happy!!" is a harbinger of that. So is House and Cuddy getting together. I hope that next season will not see House upbeat & happy, but I'm not so sure that it won't.