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Richard Castle, commonly known as "Rick", is a fictional character portrayed by Nathan Fillion in the ABC crime series Castle.


Family Life

Castle is the son of Martha Rodgers and the father of Alexis Castle, both of whom live with him; Fillion describes the family dynamic as unconventional because Castle is "mothered by his... daughter, [then]... turns around and mothers his own mother". As a child, he was looked after by a nanny who spent most of her time watching daytime television, with One Life To Live as the inspiration to write his first novel. He also claims to have been kicked out of all of New York's finer academic institutions at least once, and to have picked up speed reading while spending his days as a child in the New York Public Librarymarker.

Richard has been married and divorced twice. His first wife was Alexis' mother, Meredith, an impulsive, over-sexed actress. She and Richard occasionally meet for a sexual liaison, causing Richard to refer to her metaphorically as a "deep-fried twinkie." His second wife was Gina Cowell, his publisher and publicity agent, a role she continues after their divorce.

Richard has sole custody of his daughter, Alexis, due to her mother's lifestyle. Due to his own experiences being raised by a nanny, he insisted on raising her himself, made easier by the fact that he works at home. Alexis is quite mature and responsible compared to her father, and in some sense parents him and herself (such as grounding herself for jumping a subway turnstile). Richard takes great care to look after her well-being, but also behaves like a surrogate sibling in some ways.

Castle also plays regular poker games with fellow authors James Patterson, Stephen J. Cannell and Michael Connelly.

Writing career

Castle is an author of mystery fiction, with 26 bestsellers under his belt. His most popular works comprise a series starring "Derrick Storm," including the novels In a Hail of Bullets (winner of the Nom DePlume Society's Tom Straw Award for Mystery Literature), Gathering Storm, Unholy Storm, Storm's Last Stand, Storm Season, Storm Rising, Storm Warning, and Storm's Break; in the pilot episode, Castle attends a party for the release of the final book in the Storm series, Storm Fall, in which he kills off his protagonist after becoming bored with the character. He later reads from the novel before a book-signing. Patterson and Cannell both disagree with the decision, with Cannell claiming that he could have crippled Storm instead. Castle's other books include Death of a Prom Queen, Flowers For Your Grave, Hell Hath No Fury, A Skull at Springtime, At Dusk We Die, When It Comes to Slaughter, and A Rose for Everafter.

After using his friendship with the Mayor to get partnered with NYPD detective Kate Beckett (under the pretense of conducting research), Castle plans a new series of novels starring a new detective based on Beckett. Toward the end of the second episode, the name of Beckett's literary alter-ego is revealed to be "Nikki Heat"; in the fourth episode, Beckett takes umbrage at the name and insists that Castle change it, despite his proposing the book titles Summer Heat, Heat Wave, and In Heat.

Richard Castle's book Heat Wave was released in hardcover by Hyperion on 29 September 2009 and debuted at #26 on the New York Times bestseller list. In its 4th week on the list, Heat Wave broke into the top 10 as #6. The novel also features a fictionalized version of Castle himself aptly named "Jameson Rook," (the first name derived from the Irish whiskeymarker) who enters into a partnership with Heat that mirrors Castle's working relationship with Beckett.

He was considered to write three novels revolving around an unnamed British spy, but rejected the offer when his publisher wanted three more Nikki Heat novels and offered him more money.

In Season 2, episode 6, it is suggested that Castle's interest in death, murder, and the macabre may be the result of witnessing a childhood trauma. When confronted several times about it by Beckett, Castle avoids the question. However, as soon as he tells the story, he admits it's fiction.

Police Consulting

In the pilot episode of the eponymous Castle, Castle is consulted by Detective Beckett of the NYPD when two victims are murdered in the style of two deaths portrayed in Castle's novels. Though Beckett wants Castle's access to the case limited, Castle repeatedly defies her instructions in order to see the handiwork of his copycat. Unsatisfied with what he considers a boring resolution to the case, Castle convinces Beckett to continue the investigation, and winds up discovering deeper layers to the crime. By the end of the pilot, Castle enters into a working relationship with Beckett under the pretense of conducting research for his new series of "Nikki Heat" novels. This relationship is often strained by Castle's luck in personally encountering the suspects, and sneaking in behind breaching teams. Despite this, Castle's familiarity with numerous obscure subjects has allowed him to continue working with Detective Beckett on what are classified as "unusual" homicides.


In addition to Castle's knowledge of a multiple of topics, he has also demonstrated a high level of marksmanship and personal defensive training, even outshooting Beckett on a range as part of a bet, in which he actually hustled evidence out of her by initially pretending to be a terrible shot.

Novels by Richard Castle

  • In Hails of Bullets (winner of the Nom DePlume Society's Tom Straw Award for Mystery Literature)
  • Gathering Storm
  • Unholy Storm
  • Storm's Last Stand
  • Storm Season
  • Storm Rising
  • Storm Warning
  • Storm's Break
  • Storm Fall
  • Heat Wave (2009)

  • Death of a Prom Queen
  • Flowers For Your Grave
  • A Skull at Springtime
  • At Dusk We Die
  • When It Comes to Slaughter
  • A Rose for Everafter


According to Fillion, the character's name "Rick Castle" was intended to sound "like you're saying 'Rick Asshole'," and executive producer Andrew W. Marlowe confirmed that "'it's certainly a way when you're yelling his name for it to sound a little bit like...' a profanity." The actor also describes Castle as "a bit of a douche" with "a bit of a Peter Pan syndrome" stemming from a lack of "real male adult role model[s] in his life."

Marlowe explained that he designed Castle's character as one that presents a "storytelling point of view" as a counterpoint to Beckett's evidence-based policework. On casting Fillion to fill the role, Marlowe described Castle as "the right vehicle for the right personality." He also acknowledged the similarity between the Castle/Beckett relationship and the Booth/Brennan relationship of Bones.


  1. Nathan Fillion on Playing the Childlike Richard Castle
  2. Listing - Castle on ABC
  3. Heat Wave cover
  4. Making Book on "Castle"
  5. What's Alan Watching? Castle, "Nanny McDead": To protect and serve, and to participate and annoy
  7. NY Times Bestseller #6 4th week
  8. Heat Wave cover
  10. NY Times Bestseller #6 4th week
  11. Making Book on "Castle"
  12. Castle's Nathan Fillion on his new role: "He's a douche."
  13. Nathan Fillion Talks Castle and a Little Itty Bit of Whedon
  14. Fillion's bad boy charm makes him king of ABC's 'Castle'
  15. King of the 'Castle'
  16. Owen-TV: 'Castle' star the next Angela Lansbury?

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