Season 5 of "Castle" has created many shifts in characterization, but the most discouraging is how Martha and Alexis have become background characters. In the first four seasons, these two females were able to ground Rick and prevent his from going off on tangents. Of course, this job has now been taken over by Kate, but the two colorful characters should not be written off as they have been.
Past practiceThe creators on "Castle" have been known for allowing characters and storylines to fall to the wayside at the expense of continuity and characterization. What has been going on with the Nikki Heat movie? How have the sales of Richard Castle's graphic novels been doing? Why was Captain Gates dropped as an antagonist to Rick and Kate? When past practice is taken into consideration, it makes sense how the creators of the show would take another opportunity to stop going in one direction and hoping the fans don't notice.
Currently, the only reason why Martha and Alexis show up on an episode of "Castle" is to remind viewers of their presence. They do not have any more significance than Kate's computer or Rick's desk. These two important women in Rick's life have been downgraded to set decoration. While the writer might not need them to ground him anymore, they are still important to him and should be allowed more time in the spotlight.
Importance of AlexisAlexis has always drawn attention because the character is not that of a normal TV teen. She listens to her father and does what she can to obey the rules he sets for her. At the same time, she obviously loves him and wants the best for him. She is an ideal teenage character as she is the type of daughter anyone would want. If my daughter was old enough to watch "Castle," I would spend each week pointing out how Alexis follows and loves her father and still appears to have fun in life.
Originality of MarthaAt the same time, Martha represents a mother who is there for her son without being overbearing. Mothers from shows such as "Everybody Loves Raymond" have given moms a bad name for years as shows have portrayed aging matriarchs as people who refuse to give up the power they had over their children decades before. Martha is a colorful character and is a refreshing variant to the character mothers that fans have grown up with. Her contrast helped keep the show fresh and as much a show about family as a cop drama.
Hopefully pushing Alexis and Martha to the background on "Castle" is a temporary move as Rick and Kate figure out their life together. If this becomes a permanent move on the show, it will drive down the originality of the show and convolute part of the continuity of the first four seasons of the show. Fans should speak up now if they do not want to lose two of the most interesting characters on the show.
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