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What the Chuck?! - Chuck s3e11 - Naked Spy

Chuck-vs-final-examYour mission, if you choose to accept it, is to come in and talk about the latest episode of Chuck with me. Yes, that's right, it's time for a little What the Chuck?! style shenanigans. So come on down and let's discuss Chuck, Sarah and of course, Casey for a few. Because this week? This week proved very interesting indeed.


Now a first note. what the Chuck?! ran on Friday last week instead of Weds. Sorry about that. If you missed it, though, you can go read it here. Furthermore, you might have noticed I dropped the words "The Chuck Recap" from the subject line. That's because in the face of things like LOMGST! and Dancing with the Stars here I can't feel right calling this a recap. This is a discussion. Anyway! Let's get on with it!

Plotwise this one was a mess on a lot of fronts, wasn't it? We're going to keep going as if you've seen the episode. Please, seriously, watch the episode first and then come back, this might get disjointed. Because I want to discuss the plot and then talk about the thing that did work - the character moments. So we'll be jumping around a lot.

Right then! The plot. Let's ignore why Casey is still at the Buy More. We all know he could get a good job as a mercenary, but I have a reason for him staying there. We'll get there.

So we've come to Chuck's final test. A solo mission. His plane mission was far more solo, of course, which makes me wonder why Chuck never pointed that out. I mean this wasn't his first solo mission. This was his first solo mission while being directly observed. Of course, I then would wonder why they didn't do that on the plane mission but … well… yeah. Still, nice fake glasses, Chuck.


The mission itself seems simple on the face of it. Go track a guy through a hotel and find the mole he is meeting. ID the mole and don't be seen by the mole doing so. That's it. Simple. So simple you knew it couldn't end there. I think the flash-forward to start this episode was a huge mistake, actually, in that context. It told you right up front this wasn't going to be that simple, and while they may have stopped people from getting annoyed at how easy the mission seemed on paper, it also removed tension. Ah well.

It did lead to Chuck hanging from the side of a building and losing his towel, though. Which is very Chuck. I mean he has been on the side of elevators before and lost his pants. And at the start of this season and… Chuck has a pants problem.

Having completed his mission, Chuck is happy, and brings Casey a gift, one of his guns from Castle, snuck out. Casey isn't sure Chuck's mission is done but brushes it off. Chuck brushes it off. Seems like our boy is a spy. Except no. There's still the rest of the mission. His Red Test, a confirmed, purposeful, kill. Shaw gets Sarah to tell Chuck and leaves the choice in his hands.

So Chuck goes and is faced with killing someone and… Casey does it for him. Sarah thinks it's Chuck, the CIA thinks it's Chuck and we end on a cliffhanger of someone coming to pick him up.

Meanwhile, in the B-Plot Casey has to wear a bad suit and apologize to Jeff and Lester for, well, being Casey. It's funny at times but really just felt like they needed something to do with Casey for more than a minute or two.

That's the plot. It's meh. But let's deconstruct the characters a bit, all right?

Casey. Oh, Casey. He knew. He knew the whole time. And ever since last episode, I've gotten the feeling that Casey sees Chuck is on the same path Casey was. Giving up the love of his life, serving his country and being cold and locked down. It's what Casey chose and now he is starting to see that maybe it isn't a road Chuck should take. So he takes the shot for Chuck, removes the choice and gives Chuck what he thinks he wants (to be a spy) without the cost (bangbang goes the gun). Casey is Chuck's friend, and knows who he truly is. He's not a killer. It's intrinsic to his nature. And Casey would risk one hell of a lot to ensure that Chuck stays true to himself. That's a friend.

It's also a great showing of Chuck's possible road and growth for Casey while not breaking Casey's character at all and saving Chuck's at the same time. Nice.

Speaking of Chuck… I like this guy. The grown-up Chuck we see here. He's come to terms with himself far more than he has ever done before, except maybe at the tail end of Season 2. His Greatest Hits Stakeout plan was fantastic and merged the old Chuck with the new perfectly. You could see how he has grown and evolved as a person in the last few years. Set up spy stuff? Sure. Set up romantic night out? Check. Falter at all with it? Nope.

Yeah he still bumbles but that's Chuck. Overall, though, he's a smooth guy, once he has his feet under him, isn't he?


And then Sarah. Aie. Look, I like Sarah and I think her scenes this week were stellar. I just feel bad for her. She fully understands that Chuck chose this path at least 85% for her (despite what he says I'd say he looks up to Casey as well and that is a bunch of it) and like Casey she knows Chuck isn't a killer. And yet she has to ask him to go down that road. At the exact time she knows he is coming clean to her and that she is letting herself feel honest about him. She knows, she flat out knows if he kills this guy he isn't the guy she fell in love with, and yet she has to help him walk to that cliff.

The fact that this whole season she has been feeling like she wants to quit the spy game, and now this? It really is a wringer. Of course she flees to Shaw's arms. He's, on the surface, safe. She knows what he is, she doesn't have to love it but she can at least feel steady ground under her.

So how does this play out? Remember, and I'll keep reminding you in case, originally the season was 13 episodes. They added 6 but the first 13 run to a conclusion. Which means we're two episodes from a finale of sorts. (Speaking of! Next two eps then two weeks of repeats then final 6.) There's a lot to get done.

And who thinks the woman that came to pick up Chuck is a Ring agent? How many times in this show have we seen the pick-up agent be a traitor? There's no reason for the CIA to send someone. None. Yeah, she's Ring.

Or… and this is crazy… she works for Orion. Heh.

Remember, no spoilers, not even mention of the preview of next weeks' episode. But tell me guys, what did you think? That's the most important part of What the Chuck?! - your thoughts. Hit me!







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Comments

ljpock

I really liked some of the Casey parts this episode. Him bonking Jeff and Lester and then the note on the hand - loved it!

I too like how their showing a different depth of Casey and Chuck's friendship. You know their friends, but Casey is always "grunt grunt". He's started to replace a few grunts here and there which is kinda cool (although we must never get rid of the grunts all together - that would be tragic because a non-grunting Casey is not a Casey at all).

Loved that Chuck gave Casey one of the things he knew he was missing desperately.

Sarah - AAAAHHHHH - she's killing me! Why won't she just talk to Chuck about how she's feeling already damnit!!! It's driving me nuts!

I agree on the opening sequence - would have been ok to leave it out as we know things are NEVER as easy as Chuck thinks them to be.

Shaw - yea, still don't like him. Something that seems shifty about him. I'm really hoping we get to Casey beat the shit out of him at some point. That would be rad.

Adam P. Knave

To be fair - Sarah was about to discuss her feelings and had started to when Shaw interuptted them on the Stake-out. 

But yeah, Casey is opening up and still Casey at the same time. He's great. And they really do feel like a team, and friends now, which is great.

rockle

First of all: a pantsless Chuck is not a PROBLEM, okay? And a fully nekkid Chuck is ... well, my husband wouldn't like it if I said what I really feel about that, so let's just say that Chuck has a stellar head of hair and be done with it.

Definitely think something is not right about Shaw. His timing is just too perfect. I don't think that Sarah is what he's after, she's just a means to ends, so what in the crap does he want with Chuck? {For the record, I also suspect that the General is up to some shenanigans, but I also don't trust people who sit behind desks all the time and never show their legs. She's either a robot or a replicant.}

And poor Sarah. Poor, simple Sarah. I don't like one thing about her character though: they don't let her be as smart as she actually is. She's been a spy long enough to know that you can't trust anything, even what you "see" with your own eyes.

Also: I would TOTALLY watch a show that was nothing but Civilian Casey terrorizing Jeff and Lester. Because that is AWESOME! (Incidentally, I miss Morgan more when he's not around than I like him when he's there, is there something wrong with me?)

Adam P. Knave

Well we've seen Bekcman's legs before, but a few recaps ago I floated the theory that Shaw is a Ring agent and I still stand by it. I don't trust him. Nope. Sarah is smart except when it comes to relationships. Then she seems to be fairly dumb. Like Chuck and his blindness toward being a spy. I mean he just accepts things and doesn't ask questions that he would normally ask, sometimes, because he's dazzled by it.

ljpock

Yea - I know she was just about to talk to him - but it's not like she hasn't had other chances!!! I just get a bit stabby about it because I feel for Chuck so much.

@rockle - LOL - I think I would watch a show of Casey terrorizing any stupid civilians!

Maybe Shaw is the first agent we'll meet from yet another bad inside organization. He's just too "smooth" if that makes sense. Nothing gets him flustered, nothing really makes him happy - maybe that's it - it's the lack of emotion in general that makes me want to punch him.

I just love this show so much :)

Adam P. Knave

OH now Shaw showed emotion. Did you catch the odd grin this week when Chuck was fighting and they flash on Castle and Shaw has this odd, almost creepy smirk?

Kim S.

I think Shaw is actually Ring and Beckman and the CIA have put Sarah on forming a romantic relationship with him to find out for sure. I think Shaw is her mission. If not, then they are doing a piss poor job of convincing us that Shaw and Sarah are actually attracted to one another.

Adam P. Knave

I would like to think that is the case. IT's the sort of move I could see them making.

D.J.

Read an interesting theory, high on the coincidence, but still plausible for this show: the woman Sarah killed on her Red Test was...... Shaw's wife! Dum dum DUUUUUUUUMMM!

Not sure if the timeline works out, but if Sarah's only been a for reals agent for 5 years, it's possible.

Great recap as always, Adam.

Adam P. Knave

Actually I heard someone else say that the jewerly the woman from Sarah's Red Test dropped was the charm bracelet that Chuck gaver her. Making Sarah having killed CHUCK'S MOM WHO WAS A SPY. I kinda love that and want them to do it.

D.J.

I don't know... aren't Chuck and Sarah roughly the same age? That foxy lady Sarah killed looked a little young to be Momma Bartowski. Of course, maybe Bakula doesn't care what the law has to say about the age of consent... That'd be a creepy wrinkle.

Adam P. Knave

Besides we all know Chuck's MOM was Dean Stockwell.

Muirnait

I love all your guys' theories! Shaw is pissing me off, Casey is my hero, Sarah's driving me nuts with the emotional dishonesty (yeah I said it) and Chuck, ahhh Chuck ... he looks good in a towel :P

Muirnait

Okay, who was it that called Sarah killing Shaw's wife? Nice work.




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