Going back to last July we were all assured this season would be wonderful and “epic.” We’re finally done with the main arc, so I thought it would be interesting to discuss our thoughts in hindsight. I’m not trying to stir up trouble or create a forum of bitterness. My main question, given that most (?) of us seemed to be unhappy as the season went, is just if this particular “destination” made the journey worthwhile? or even if in hindsight we have real appreciation for the journey we were brought on. I suppose some may even feel they enjoyed the journey more than the destination. You know I’ll never agree with that, but please feel free to present your views, and defend your position! I’d like to see the defense of the position be what this post is all about.
I’m sure you all can guess my position. While there a few good episodes this season, I did not and do not enjoy the journey they took us on. I can think of three things I mainly object to this season.
1. The chemistry of the show leads was disrupted by a long term guest star. Really two guest stars, although Kristen Kruek fit the tone of the show better. But the effect of long term guest spots was to take away from the interactions between Chuck, Sarah and Casey. As Ernie has discussed, one guest star was almost a new star at times, and he took so much time away from the characters I actually want to see; and impacted the ways they related and interacted. Obviously that mainly means Chuck and Sarah; but Casey has been fun as a foil/obstacle between them since the beginning, and his interaction with both of them suffered this season too.
2. I really never enjoy “love triangles”. Polygons are geometrically worse, not better. I guess I start with thinking, I don’t really want the show to be “about” the relationship anyway. I would rather they made a bigger deal of the spy plots; and used Chuck and Sarah as both comic relief, and a dramatic anchor. Both of them being involved with long or short term guest stars undermines both. I don’t find any of it funny, and it parts from any sort of drama I can relate to or want to see. I think the comic potential is huge for Chuck and Sarah trying to have something like a normal life while saving the world. Between Sarah having no experience with normal, and Chuck being a computer nerd, it shouldn’t be that hard to make it funny. And dramatic impact? Well there’s the whole life and death thing.
3. I don’t really want to see characters I like fighting with each other. This season started on a down note; with Sarah abandoning Chuck to his fate after thinking he had abandoned her in Prague. The mood lifted a little before we plunged into the angst arc. To me, this just meant the show was mostly no fun this season.
Now, for the record. I am hugely pleased with how the main arc ended in The Other Guy. While it didn’t undo all the earlier damage done to characters I had previously liked and respected; it did end in a happy place. And it looks like they may stay in a happy place. Even if Chuck suffers emotional fall-out from killing someone, or if Chuck and Sarah both get frustrated with the job interfering with their together time, or if Sarah has to face demons from her past; as long as Chuck and Sarah face their challenges together, the show will be a lot more fun for me.
Even when the show got rough and depressing to me this season, I enjoyed our discussions here. I do look forward to seeing everyone’s thoughts. If you think I’m a total idiot, please say it nicely. If you think I’m genius, be sure to go on at length.