Castle's season four finale, "Always," airs tonight, and I'm a little worried. But I'm not worried about the show itself - I'm worried about the fan reaction. I'm not sure I've ever seen such intense, specific speculation about an episode, and ABC (and CTV) certainly hasn't helped prevent this by releasing so many spoilery promos and clips. (For showrunner Andrew Marlowe's take on this promotion issue, read Marisa Roffman's interview with him.) People are "predicting" whole scenes of the episode in detail, and so I'm concerned that even if the episode is great, hardcore fans will be disappointed, because there's literally no way the show on the screen will match the show in people's heads. That's always a risk, of course, but the more build-up there is, the more likely it is that fans will wind up upset. And that's particularly sad for a show like Castle, because it's not like the endgame is uncertain.
So I urge you - relax! Stop stressing! Stop trying to figure out exactly which order all the frames from the promos go in or what exactly the lyrics to a song might imply. Don't make a point-by-point checklist you need the finale to fulfill. The writers have a plan. If certain things don't happen this episode, that doesn't mean they'll never happen. So let's all take a deep breath, trust the writers, and enjoy the story as it unfolds.