6x17 “In the Belly of the Beast” immediate reaction
What a gripping episode!You bring up a good point about Elena. The more I think about this ep, the less I like it. What was great about Simmons in his first appearance was that he was a total red herring, unconnected to Bracken as it turned out. Why would he be connected now? Why would McCallister have coughed him up back then if there was a connection? Ehhhh…
I’ll see what I think about this theory in the light of day, but a possible logical resolution to that question of McCallister and Simmons is simply that McCallister didn’t know Simmons was connected to Bracken. As far as we know, McCallister, Raglan, and Montgomery were low-level in terms of their operations under Bracken. It is entirely possible that Bracken already had a separate deal going with Simmons that they weren’t aware of. As such, McCallister throwing Simmons at Beckett could be a simple coincidence. Of course, I don’t much believe in coincidences when it comes to TV land; or rather, I should say that coincidences are generally held to a minimum for the sake of concise storytelling.
Another possibility that’s somewhat connected is that I think Simmons was always meant to be the figurehead in front of Bracken. That is, if they ever connected the machinations to anyone, it was supposed to be to Simmons as the Dragon (or as Lazarus, in this case). As such, McCallister mentioning Simmons could simply be following the game plan.
Like I said, I don’t know how I feel about either of those theories right now, and there were certainly quite a few question marks about the episode, but all in all, a solid, solid dramatic ep that really showcased the Castle ability to get dark and do it well.
As for the Elena question, I’m pretty sure the Narc Captain said that she’d been picked up by the cops through their monitoring, not that she’d intentionally gone to the cops. If anything, that part of the ep flows pretty well. It’s mentioned early in the episode that she was got a text about a promotion, so if the cops hadn’t picked her up, everything would have gone through normally and she would’ve become their contract killer. As it was, I think the subtext is that Bracken himself managed to get a hold of Elena sometime between her getting picked up by the cops and when she shows up to save Beckett to deliver the message.