Recap/Review – Castle – “Under the Influence” – 1/14/13

castlerecap121smallThe team investigates the murder of a DJ with a long list of priors.


It’s the night of Regina Kane’s release party, and her rival, Chelsea Lane, has arrived, stealing attention away from Regina.

The body of Holly Rhodes, the DJ at last night’s party, is found in a dumpster, wrapped in a tarp. She was shot at close range, presumably somewhere else, as no blood is found at the scene. Lanie estimates Holly’s time of death to close to midnight, but Holly was booked at the party til 1 a.m.

Castle and Beckett head to Soho to find the hostess, Regina. After trampling over passed-out bodies, they find the whiny starlet, complaining that Holly left at 11 p.m., two hours early.

Jump with me to read more.

Other guests at the party confirm Regina’s story; Holly left at 11, but without security cameras, they can’t yet account for the hour before her death.

Holly has no next of kin to notify; she bounced from foster home to foster home until she turned 18. After that, she turned to a life of crime; she has a record of petty theft.

A neighbor recalled seeing a man pound on Holly’s door, yelling, “You won’t get away with this,” just a day before her murder.

Lanie found peanut oil on Holly’s clothes but no traces of Chinese food in her stomach. The oil must’ve come from the tarp, meaning that she may have been killed at one of the million Chinese restaurants in the city. Lanie also found synthetic fibers but must have them tested.

A phone number found on Holly’s hand lead the detective to Tyrese Wilton, a music producer. Ryan is beyond excited to question this suspect, as he is Josie Lang’s producer and Ryan is, totally, like, a huge fan. Ryan questions Josie while Esposito chats up Tyrese. He gave Holly his number to set up a meeting. He saw her fighting with McThug (he sounds like a new fast food sandwich) before she left the party.

McThug’s real name is Darius Carson, and he matches the sketch of the man seen pounding on Holly’s door.

According to Darius, he went to the party to confront Holly; she stole his girlfriend’s bracelet. He threatened Holly but took it no further; his other girlfriend confirmed his alibi.

Darius, along with seven other guests at other parties, reported thefts totaling half a million dollars. Holly DJed each of these parties with her assistant Paul Travers, nowhere to be found at Regina’s party.

They find Paul. He didn’t work last night’s party; Holly hired her cousin to work it along with 7 other parties—the same ones where expensive items went missing.

If Holly stole anything from these parties, her financials said otherwise. No one saw Holly’s cousin, but if he set up the equipment, his prints would be on it.

Holly’s “cousin” is Joey Malone, aka The Monster, a 14-year-old boy.

Joey, orphaned at a very young age, develeoped a long list of priors. He’s pretty familiar with the justice system and successfully evades all of Beckett’s questions about the thefts. His smug attitude soon disappears when he’s accused with Holly’s murder.

Since neither he nor Holly have the stolen items, they must have been working for someone else, likely the same person responsible for Holly’s murder.

Esposito takes a crack at Joey, showing him the crime scene photos, but he isn’t yet convinced to start talking.

Joey’s case worker is trying to track down his uncle, but until then, Joey can be placed in foster care or protective custody in Juvie. Esposito offers to take in Joey, presumably thinking that they’ll bond and Joey will spill his guts. After about ten minutes in the apartment, Joey sneaks out.

Esposito finally catches up with Joey, brings him back to the station, and handcuffs him to the desk.

Those fibers on Holly’s body belong to the trunk of a 2010-2012 X-5.

As the detectives try to find a link between Holly and Joey, one name stands out: Shane Winters. He bailed them both out at a young age.

They check his last known address, and surprise, surprise, he’s not there and Joey still won’t give them any information.

Fortunately, they get a tip from an officer in Robbery and find Shane sitting in a bar. He’s been expecting Detective Esposito. That little weasel warned him!

Shane has no problem admitting that he bailed out Shane and Holly as kids; it was out of the goodness of his heart. Pfft!

Shane just so happens to own an X-5, but it caught on fire this morning, completely by accident, of course.

Esposito interrogates Shane alone and then shows Joey the footage… Footage of Shane selling out his beloved Joey for the thefts. Suddenly, the Monster is an open book. At Regina’s party, Shane told Joey to lift Tyrese Wilton’s phone. That’s funny, because Tyrese never reported the missing item. When they go back to his studio, they notice the Chinese restaurant right next door and the blood spatter on the wall.

Tyrese didn’t report the theft because it was returned to him later that night. His phone opened his studio, but nothing seemed to be missing. His phone could also be used to download an unreleased album, which is exactly what happened. Josie Lang’s album was downloaded 11:45 that night.

The only person that would benefit from Lang’s leaked album? Mean girl, Regina Kane.

Regina excused herself from the party at 11 and was gone for the hour. Her record label was going to drop her if album sales didn’t increase, and Josie was competition. She hired Shane to steal the phone, and while there isn’t concrete proof of that, those emails she sent to a hacker are enough.

Esposito goes back to the bar to show Shane the gun he’ll use to kill him if he goes after another child.

Esposito then shows Joey his file, and it looks quite similar to Joey’s. He has the opportunity to turn his life around.

I enjoyed this Esposito-centric episode. A short view of his bachelor pad, backstory (and hopefully a continuing storyline) all make for a good ep. And you’ve got to love his scenes with Ryan. They are, after all, my favorite couple on the show. Yes, I love them more than Caskett.

– Lindsay

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