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Heroes and Villains
Season 4, Episode 2
Air date September 26, 2011
Written by David Amann
Directed by Jeff Bleckner
Episode guide
Head Case
Season 4
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Heroes and Villains is the second episode of the fourth season of Castle, and the sixtieth overall.


When an ex-con is mysteriously slain in an alley, Castle and Beckett believe a vigilante is behind the murder. But efforts to identify their suspect are thwarted when they discover that he roams the city in a costume — and may indeed be a Superhero. Can they capture and unmask the killer before he strikes again?




Main Cast

Guest Cast


Martha: Lady Beckett, my lord. Richard, are you crying?
Castle: No, it's the onions.
Castle: Oh!
Esposito: Yeah, tell me about it.
Lanie: Split right down the middle. From the top of his head all the way down to his-- Please. The guy was sliced in two. I'd say his unit is the least of his problems
Castle: Then you do not understand the sacred bond between a man and his unit.
Castle: If you could be any comic book character in the world who would you be?
Beckett: Elektra.
Castle: Ah, a ruthless assassin who hides from her emotions.
Beckett: No, well maybe it’s because she’s got bad ass ninja skills. What about you? Iron Man? Spiderman? No, wait! I know: Annoying Man.
Castle: Try billionaire industrialist Bruce Wayne, a.k.a. The Dark Knight. He’s brooding. He’s handsome. And he’s got all the coolest toys.
Beckett: Wow, digging deep on that one.
Ryan: I mean, haven't you ever wanted to be a superhero? Going out there, prowling the city, knocking some heads?
Esposito: I do that now
Beckett: You have avengers number one?

Beckett: They are fought by the loss of a love one

Castle: Lone Vengeance. Lone.
Castle: A writer and his muse fighting crime. Just like us.
Beckett: You know, Castle, you might want to tone down the theories until Gates warms up to you.
Castle: Oh, I plan to melt Captain Permafrost by solving this case.
Beckett: Yeah, but she's growing up, Castle. That's what you want?
Castle: Yes.
Castle: And there’s more where that came from. You’re welcome to peruse my issues anytime. Please note how the killer has drawn inspiration from costumes of other superheroes. For example, the color scheme evokes Spider-Man. The horned helmet, obviously an homage to Daredevil. The sword and scabbard, Deadpool. The high collar, just like Black Panther. Now, what do these characters all have in common?
Castle: Whoa. You smell that? Wafting scent of printed pages? Comicadia. Beckett, this place is the premiere comic book shop. It’s the Vatican to a Catholic. It’s Mecca to a pilgrim. It’s upstream to a spawning –
Beckett: I know, Castle. I bought my first comic here when I was fourteen. Sin City. "A Dame to Kill For."

Featured Music

  • "Devil is a Lady" - Chain Gang of 1974
  • 'Finish Line" - Jen Hirsh


  • The central murder of this episode is not physically possible according to tests conducted with real katana. Human strength combined with the cutting prowess of even a master-crafted katana simply cannot generate enough continuous force to neatly cleave through a human head and torso in one stroke, due to the resistance of the skull, spine, neck bones and pelvis, not to mention all the soft-tissue and organs in the path of the blade.
  • The partial thumbprint on the knuckle-plate may prove Valtini's guilt to Castle and Beckett's satisfaction, but as evidence at trial it's likely to do more harm than good. There is no clear chain of custody—and the defense attorney will be sure to point out that the print was recovered from the super suit of an NYPD officer who has a secret life as a costumed vigilante, with reason to hate Tyler Ferris, who was involved in the investigation and therefore privy to the suspect list and potentially able to plant a print. The print itself was matched by a crime lab tech who was illegally using police resources to help Hastings. Not only is this more than enough to generate reasonable doubt; it drags the entire 12th precinct into exactly the media-friendly scandal that Captain Gates is trying to avoid. Ann Hastings's only chance to avoid public humiliation and a destroyed career is if Valtini plea-bargains out of a trial.
  • While the character of Ann Hastings is established to have been part of the 12th precinct for a while, and is not dismissed or even charged, as a character she had appeared only once before (Rise), and would appear again (After the Storm).
  • Beckett tells Castle that she bought her first comic "Sin City: Dame to Kill For" at age 14, from Comicadia, which explain her interest in comic books in Vampire Weekend
  • Castle refers to Captain Gates as Captain Permafrost while talking with Beckett while walking to Comicadia.
  • Valtini must have been telling the truth about Lone Vengeance (Ann) attacking him and carving an 'L' into his butt cheek, otherwise this event showing up in the comics at a later date would not make sense. However, Ann is not charged with this, and it is not mentioned during her interrogation. It is also claimed that Valtini frames Lone Vengeance by making up this incident to point the cops towards the superhero, which he cannot have done or the 'L' incident would not have appeared in the comics (which were written by Ann's boyfriend). Therefore, despite the implications of several lines of dialogue and camera shots, the image of Lone Vengeance on the murder board (taken from Valtini's security camera) must be of Ann as Lone Vengeance, not Valtini.
  • Officer Ann Hastings become a cop for the same reason as Beckett
  • When Castle talk about Paul Whittaker and Ann Hastings, they reminded him of him and Beckett
  • The victim in this episode was killed by being cut in half vertically, while playing the villain in the last televised season of 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' Nathan Fillion's character Caleb was killed this way as well.
  • Castle is revealed to have a large collection of Marvel Comics, including a mint copy of Avengers #1.


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