“He robbed from the rich and he gave to the poor, Stood up to the man and he gave him what for, Our love for him now ain’t hard to xplain, The Hero of Canton, the man they call Jayne.”
Jayne Cobb, that marvelous actor Adam Baldwin (referred to around our house as “the not-a-Baldwin”) is guesting on Castle, reuniting with his Firefly co-star Nathan Fillion in the April 16 episode, “Headhunters.” (Baldwin is “not a Baldwin” because he is not one of Alec’s brothers.)
Baldwin’s character for Castle, Ethan Slaughter, is closer to his character John Casey from Chuck than to the fairly dumb criminal Jayne Cobb. Like Casey, Slaughter is a tough cop. Fillion’s Rick Castle will be tagging along with Slaughter’s gang squad instead of Kate Beckett’s homicide squad. Things are a little touchy between Beckett and Castle right now since he discovered she remembers him telling her he loves her after she was shot in the chest last season.
The cast members of canceled TV series and movies usually take “souvenirs” from their roles, and we have already seen some of Fillion’s on Castle. Baldwin took a few as well, though he has auctioned many of them off for charity. I’d love to know if he still has Jayne’s hat. We Firefly-geeks love Jayne’s hat.
Fillion has been pitching a story idea to Castle’s producers that Firefly fans would go nuts over – the star of a sci-fi series is killed and his co-stars are the prime suspects. Fillion could even play the corpse. He says that the appearance of Baldwin as Slaughter might nix the idea, but actors have been known to play multiple guest roles in a series without difficulty. Really, Nate, we’re all adults here and we understand what actors do. The problem is not the idea, but the availability of his former Firefly co-stars. Unlike a lot of the actors in canceled series, those in Firefly have had very active careers since the show ended.
Castle did a wonderful Halloween episode a couple of years ago that had their fan sites going nuts. All the cast members wore costumes from previous roles. The series has done fewer references to Firefly in the seasons three and four, so maybe it’s time to mine another cast member’s past.
How about bringing in Robert Foxworth as a love interest for Castle’s mother, Martha? For those too young to remember Susan Sullivan in anything prior to Dharma and Greg, Foxworth played Sullivan’s husband in Falcon Crest, the prime time soap that ran from 1981 to 1990, also known as the “wine country Dallas.” Another idea presented to me was to bring in Lorenzo Lamas, also a Falcon Crest alum, as a younger suitor for Martha. The only problem with that is, though Lamas is 16 years younger than Sullivan, he doesn’t look it. Miss Sullivan’s agelessness is what makes Martha such a wonderful character, the Auntie Mame of television.
So, heads up Firefly fans (if you aren’t already Castle fans) it’s yet another chance to catch our favorite actors in their post-Firefly lives, like catching Sean Maher and Jewel Stait on Warehouse 13, or, well, we know where they’ve all been for the past ten years.
Credit note: Greg Edmonson is credited with original music for the “Jaynestown” episode, and presumably for the song, though the lyrics were probably written by either or both credited writers, Joss Whedon and Ben Edlund. Episode credits provided by IMDB.com.