It seems a miracle that Chuck has made it to season 5. It’s that little show that could, capturing the hearts of a small yet ferociously loyal group of fans that somehow kept it chugging along 4 seasons longer than most would have expected. It’s a show that proves that sometimes fan campaigns really can make a difference, especially with the help of corporate sponsorship on the part of Subway (also proof that integrated marketing isn’t always a show killer).
Chuck has had several episodes that could have served as fantastic series finales. I would have been satisfied to have left Chuck watching down the hallway at the moving marriage proposal. Or even last season watching Sarah and Chuck being driven away after their wedding with the brilliant “as you wish” send off. That is to say that the constant renewal has been a double edged sword. Each time the team thinks their time is up all the cards go down on the table, so when there are calls for more episodes the show needs to be consistently able to adapt and produce.
When I dove into season 5 it was with slight hesitation. Season 4’s finale came with a reset button so the question was: will the reset continue to hit the right notes. By putting Morgan into Chuck’s shoes would the show be a retread of what came before, or will it provide new and fun adventures?
After two episodes I certainly have to agree with Chuck when he says they’re still working out the kinks. In episode one “Zoom”, Morgan as the intersect performing wacky action sequences just isn’t quite as believable as when Chuck was just beginning to pull them off. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what seemed off, it wasn’t a bad episode, I enjoyed it but it fell a little short of the best Chuck is capable of. I
By episode 2, “Chuck vs The Bearded Bandit” the season started to develop a direction and plenty of intriguing antagonists to keep this final season rolling in style. There is a new status quo that everyone is adjusting to.The interpersonal relationships within the team haven’t been completely rocked but Chuck and Morgan have both been given a new set of neuroses. Chuck having intersect withdrawal and feeling less helpful to the team (although he managed to prove himself quite competent without it), and Morgan feeling like he is being underused and under-appreciated as the holder of the new intersect. Then there is the new relationship dynamic between them when Chuck is asked to “handle” Morgan, that and Morgan kind of going off the deep end, but more on that later.
There is no longer back up from the government that supplies endless resources and manpower. There is fierce competition that lies in the hands of Gertrude Verbanski, (Carrie-Anne Moss, and I’ll take a moment to point out her Canadianness!) she also has a special kind of hold on Casey, a relationship I cannot wait to see more of.
There is a new big bad in the team’s former employers, the CIA. A twist that will perhaps bring General Beckman back into the mix. On top of all this, the ream’s secret weapon is backfiring. Something wonky is going on inside Morgan’s head thanks to this new intersect. When Morgan doesn’t recognize Indiana Jones and Luke Skywalker, we know something has gone terribly awry.
Can we all say that we’re psyched for this fifth and final season of Chuck? What do you think so far? What are your wishes for this last season?
I’ll leave you with the promo & teaser for Next Week “Chuck vs. The Frosted Tips” Airs tomorrow night at 9.