Warning: this review contains spoilers.
5.9 Chuck Versus The Kept Man
It’s a disturbing admission, but Chuck actually made me laugh this week, after a seemingly long phase of failing to achieve this. I’m not foolish enough to actually suggest that it’s certainly returning to form, just before exiting stage left, but it was nice to see the writers actually deliver some sequences that worked for once.
This story is mostly about the animal attraction that Gertrude Verbinski has for Casey, and how that tends to drag the whole team into hot water. It wasn’t a great story, but they managed to put a few elements in here that made me chuckle.
Chuck’s entirely wacky idea that they should become the ‘Spies who Care’, was a nice theme that was woven throughout, as was a sub-plot about Sarah supposedly falling pregnant. As for that last element, I’m not convinced that she isn’t, because while they took the test they didn’t actually come up with any reasons why she was feeling nauseous in the mornings. I can foresee a conversation with the Awesomes about the real accuracy of pregnancy testing kits entirely reversing that conclusion before the end of the season.
As a parallel to the spy adventure, the writers preoccupied Devon and Morgan with a sub-plot where Jeff works out that something odd is going on at the Buy More and he and Lester investigate. I especially loved Jeff’s evidence board, where he’d collected all the clues. It’s a shame that they didn’t dwell longer on this, because some of the cards he’d written were very funny. One read ‘too hot for Chuck’ in reference to Sarah, and others had parts of the Cosine theory on them.
I’ve seen plenty of debate about the smart version of Jeff, and how some would like him to return to being a lush, but frankly I think they’d taken that as far as it could go, so having him clever and playing off the utterly dumb Lester works for me. It also provided a nice cliff-hanger for the show’s end, where they accidentally discover the truth and then need to be ‘neutralised’.
This part worked, although I’m less convinced about the Gertrude/Casey relationship, even if the bit where Sarah caught them getting busy, and when asked by Chuck what was wrong, she said, “Everything… it’s all wrong…” was very funny. Yvonne Strahovski hasn’t been given many comedy moments in the show, which is a shame because she’s very good when she gets one. If I’m brutally honest, better than Zachary Levi.
Just four Chuck episodes to go now, and with the double hit ending, that’s just three more weeks of faux-spy fun to be had. Even if season five has been lumpier than a vat of cement made with added golf balls, I’ll still miss it when it’s gone.
You can read our review of season five episode eight here.