© by Gerald So | geraldso.blogspot.com | 5:00 A.M.
Last week, ABC canceled the Nathan Fillion-Stana Katic police procedural Castle after eight seasons. Though the show had been on the bubble the last few seasons, canceling it now surprised me because, despite Stana Katic and Tamala Jones being let go, Nathan Fillion, Jon Huertas, and Seamus Dever had signed deals to return for another season.
I'm a Fillion fan from Firefly and have been a crime fiction fan since 1993, so you'd think Castle would be in my wheelhouse. I enjoyed similar shows—Monk, Bones, and Psych—but for me Castle started on too light a note to become very serious. And some episodes wanted to get dead serious. The longer series go, the less I expect them to maintain a single tone. Part of longevity is changing with the times. If a show's tone changes, though, I'm more willing to watch a serious show become lighter than a light show become more serious.
In case Castle was canceled, an extra scene was filmed to provide closure. The finale goes from Castle and Beckett holding hands after being shot to seven years later having happy family time. The abrupt shift couldn't be helped with the timing of ABC's decision, but it leaves me with the mixed feelings I've always had about the series.
As highly as I think of Firefly, Castle proved Nathan Fillion could lead a show for years. Meanwhile, Stana Katic's Beckett was the core of the show, the character who most influenced the audience's feelings about events and other characters. She would have been difficult to replace.