Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Chuck- the first 3 episodes

Spoilers for Chuck season 3, episodes 1-3

Chuck Publicity Still

Even though the first three episodes of this new season were not intended to air so close together I figured I would write about them as a collective unit after this became the case. The strongest of the three for me was definitely episode 3 'Chuck vs the Angel de la Muerte', this really felt like a proper Chuck episode, no need for any exposition  regarding the intersect or regarding the Sarah/Chuck relationship situation and there are some meaty scenes for both Awesome and Casey. This is the episode that I want to focus on for these reasons indicated above as it allowed the story to move on in a positive way. At the end of last season one of the interesting turns was that Awesome now knows about Chuck and his spy life and this was one element that I was really excited to see how it would play out and this episode provided brilliance that's for sure. Awesome is a character who is an adrenaline junkie so it is no surprise that feeling in a bit of a rut he turns to his brother in law for some much needed excitement in the spy world, though Chuck dismisses this life as being just as repetitive same old mission week in week out "blah, blah, blah". This does not deter Awesome though and when he becomes embroiled in to this weeks mission involving a big fancy party both he and Ellie are excited by this prospect (Ellie because she thinks fancy parties are pretty sexy- it's good to see her out of her scrubs again):

However, all does not go well for Awesome who's fate at the end of the episode seems uncertain (though the promo monkeys over at NBC give away this fate annoyingly, stay away from these if you want to remain surprised). Awesome and Ellie are favourites of mine and so I was glad to see them utilised in this episode as they were missing for much of the first two episodes, though with episode budget cuts it seems that certain characters will be taking a back seat, but more on that later. Also as much as Awesome does know about Chuck there is still much that he doesn't know, so when Chuck manages to get the bullet out of Casey's leg he believes that it is partly down to his words of encouragement, not that there is a secret computer in Chuck's head.
Casey was another character who benefited from this third episode as he got to show his patriotic side in his disdain for Communist countries and that he has also got an interesting nickname from his previous NSA exploits, this is the episode title which means Angel of Death, that much to his annoyance at the end becomes Angel of Life. Casey in the first two episodes also got some great moments like when he is Uncle Johnny fake moustache and all, getting to play the grumpy neighbour and breaking up the courtyard party (no one doubts that Casey would do this so it is the perfect cover really), any time he gets to use new weapons as it makes him pretty damn happy.
Must also say goodbye to some characters, Anna Wu who's goodbye we don't get to see and is one of the people that got the chop due to budgetary reasons. Also RIP Emmett Millbarge who in a strange moment of confrontational defiance met his end after calling an assassin a pussy, not a good move. I will miss you Tony Hale but will hopefully see you in the Arrested Development movie if it ever comes out.
Having three episodes in such quick succession really feels like they are spoiling us and I am just glad to have it back, not sure how I would've felt about the three episodes if they had been spread over a three week period though with each episode there was definite improvements and I think a lot of this had to do with trying to get new viewers for the show, but by the third episode this did not feel like the agenda and it definitely had the feeling back of the Chuck I love so I am more than happy with the start of this season. Also it seems like there were new viewers as the ratings figures are in for both days with over seven million watching each episode, this is the highest the figures have been since the post Superbowl 3D episode, and with Monday night facing competition from new episodes of House and How I Met Your Mother this is a good and hopeful indicator of how the rest of the season will pan out.
So to next weeks episodes and the fate of Awesome, I really cannot wait.

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