Credit: David Livingston/Getty Photo: Nathan Fillion Attends an ABC Party
Richard Castle is Dennis the Menace all grown up, someone who just can resist entangling himself in the day to day goings-on of his neighborhood. Now, instead of Mr. Wilson’s ruined garden, there’s homicide. Same idea. Castle should really be called Oh, Castle, but instead, we’ll just pick the top five moments that best exemplify the head shaking he inspires.

5. Someone did very well on the memory portion of early childhood exams.
When Castle first got a look at an 8x10 mug shot of potential suspect, he immediately recognized the guy’s face and ran to the crime solving board, holding it up next to a photo of a metal face sculpture done by Maya, one of the victims. After a moment of comparison, he said, “That’s the same guy!” This was hilarious not just because the resemblance was only slight (it wasn’t exactly a Madame Tussauds wax figure), but because Castle put it together after looking at each photo for two seconds on two separate days.

4. Offering relationship advice is difficult when your own relationship is in shambles.
As Alexis quietly sulked over a boy from the summer (trust us, Lex, they’ll be plenty of boys from the summer), Castle demonstrated good parenting skills by projecting his own problems onto her. While she had a good handle on the situation even in her disappointment — “Maybe he missed his chance” — we had to sigh when Castle not only defended this kid, but also reinforced the idea that if a guy doesn’t call for weeks, he’s just really nervous. Why are you trying to ruin her life?

3. A woman undressing behind large feathers is a surprising sight when you spend your days writing novels.

When Castle entered the burlesque club and saw snake handlers, jugglers, and scantily-clad dancers, he was like one of the catatonic patients from Awakenings who just woke up after years of slumber. It was endearing how awed he was by the sight of such late night shenanigans, and the moment reminded us that Castle might get a lot of attention from women, but at his core, he’s a guy who hosts Halloween parties with his daughter and organizes poker nights with guys twenty years his senior.  

2. Entering an active crime scene without authorization will get you a job with the NYPD.
We often wondered what doctors thought while watching George Clooney on ER yell something like, “Get two liters of o-neg! Bullet cut through the skin wall and hit the flamigial organ!” In the same way, we wonder what detectives think while watching Castle put on purple latex gloves and point out a spot of blood the professionals missed. When Beckett later finds him at another crime scene, he starts talking to her about the universe and gets rehired by the force. Naturally.

1. How not to handle police questioning (about your current relationship).
After being arrested at his sculptor’s apartment (hasn’t that happened to you?), Castle was brought to headquarters and asked Beckett, “Why are you so mad at me?” Oh, Castle, can’t you catch up to your own show, which does such a glorious job of acknowledging (barely) hidden agendas? She’s not mad at all! If a reunion with her crush had to come through the triple homicide of burlesque club-attending counterfeiters, then so be it. After seeing you again, her anger was hinging exclusively on whether or not you’re sleeping with someone. She needed to know. And then you had to nerve to actually tell her? You’re either the bravest or craziest fictional man we’ve ever known.