So far I’ve enjoyed season two of Chuck, but the last episode Chuck Versus The Beefcake made me start to wonder for the first time if the premise behind the show had run its course.
Where earlier in the season we had Sarah get jealous about a love interest for Chuck (who turned out to be a Fulcrum agent), now the tables are turned when Agent Walker is dispatched to seduce another spy, Cole Barker, codenamed ‘Beefcake’. It turns out that he’s an MI6 operative for whom Sarah, depressingly from Chuck’s viewpoint, responds positively to his charms.
Is it me or is Chuck’s rejection-o-metre being set too high here? And more problematic, isn’t it about time they changed this dynamic, where his ambitions are always trashed, before it gets very stale?
Where this show works best is when it throws a real curve-ball at your expectations, and it just hasn’t pitched enough of those recently. In fact, I’ll go as far to say it’s declined somewhat since the brilliant Christmas show.
Anyway, the madness this week is primarily centred on the insane world of Jeff and Lester. Given the power by Morgan to hire a new Buy More ‘Green Shirt’ they decide to make it ‘The Buy More Babe’ competition, and roll out the ‘casting couch’. The two are rapidly becoming like demented adult versions of the kids in Weird Science, willing to try any scheme irrespective of logic or legality.
Morgan also plays a bigger part this week; depressed by living with his mother who is having a very physical relationship with Big Mike, he ends up sleeping at the Bartowski’s, which is a shock for Ellie when she finds him naked in the kitchen!
This is mildly funny, but not classic Morgan.
What they did do, and was most appreciated, is that they managed to move the bigger story arc along, which needed a shove. During the spy side of the story, Fulcrum captures Cole Barker, Sarah and Chuck with the intention of torturing them to extract the identity of the intersect. Before Casey can arrive, Chuck’s told them that he’s the person they want, of which Cole Barker is now aware.
There’s a running thread about Chuck and Sarah supposedly breaking up, triggered by something Chuck said to Ellie about her not being the right one in a previous story. Because of this he agrees to move out from the Awesome’s and share an apartment with Morgan. In the final minutes of the show, Cole Barker is captured by Fulcrum (again), and as Sarah puts it, “they always talk”. So to protect Chuck he’ll need 24/7 surveillance, and he and Sarah will need to move in together! And this is the predicament that it leaves Chuck in, caught as ever with a foot in each camp.
This also seems to be looping back to the show only a few weeks ago Chuck Versus The Suburbs where he and Sarah faked being married, but it might be different, one hopes.
I think it’s about time for Chuck to get Jeff and Lester-type crazy, and gear up to take season two out with a bang. If it doesn’t do this soon, any possibility of a third season might evaporate.
Check out Billy’s review of episode 14 here.