“If you’re in a bad situation, don’t worry it’ll change.”
There was a little “Easter Egg” embedded for me in Chuck vs. The Coup D’Etat. You know – one of those little surprises that you sometimes hear about (or even trip over) in some pretty sophisticated software. At first it seemed there was a bit of a flaw in the dialog, in the speech that Chuck gives to Ortensia and Alejandro Goya. I bet when you started out, just the two of you crazy kids cuddled up in your tropical cave, dreaming of revolution and having sweet, sweet jungle love, everything was perfect. I was thinking this was pretty much the speech that Chuck gave Karl Stromberg (Vinnie Jones) in The Three Words. In fact, watching Sarah’s face, I thought “That didn’t seem right.” This was NOT leading to something good, and in fact, it had me worried that someone had missed a beat in a very important part of the story.
But here’s the whole speech:
Chuck: I bet – I bet when you started out, just the two of you crazy kids cuddled up in your tropical cave, dreaming of revolution and having sweet, sweet jungle love, everything was perfect. No?
Ortensia: But then we moved into the palace, and he changed!
Sarah: So – change ruins things.
Chuck: But change is unavoidable. Unavoidable. Life is full of changes. Constantly changing. The question is, no matter what the changes are, is the love still there?
It’s much shorter and doesn’t seem to have as much impact – especially on Sarah – as the one we heard in S3. So what did I miss? It was that Sarah Walker, the girl who can do anything and seems to be without fear, was telling us she was afraid of change.
I’m not sure why it went over my head in this episode, and really, in every episode after The Honeymooners, because now it seems ridiculously obvious. There are certain things that Sarah likes the way they are, and she starts to panic a little when it seems they might change.
Sarah: [using her spy skills to find the book in the Buy More] “101 conversations before ‘I Do’?” That’s the book??? The one covered in wedding rings?
Chuck: [shaking his head ‘no’] Yeaaahh.
Sarah: I – I thought we talked about this. I thought we were going to take it slow.
Chuck: No. I know we did. And we are – going to take it slow. It’s just, you know, someday, maybe we can talk about that. And it takes a long time to have 101 conversations.
Sarah: Why do we always have to talk and, and, and push and change things? Why can’t we just be?
Chuck: [flashes on the pictures Sarah took in Costa Gravas] Uh, Sarah?
Sarah: Everything is great! What if we do “I do” and it changes us?
Chuck: It’s nuclear.
Sarah: Exactly. Everything we love about us could be destroyed!
Chuck: No, not us. The weapon!
Oh, that was such a humorous exchange! But my laughter caused me to miss Sarah’s clear statement of fear – Why can’t we just be?
“If you’re in a good situation, don’t worry it’ll change.”
Sarah’s got her reasons for being so extraordinarily cautious, but she’s not the only one who has to face big changes. Casey is temporarily transformed from being a spy to being an invalid. Drives him crazy too. Of course, that change may turn out to be the easy one for him to face, because he may be a real father soon, too. And Ellie is facing the transition that comes with letting go of her little brother. Her speech at the fountain-where-truth-is-told shows how hard it’s been for her to see Chuck as strong, effective and accomplished. That is indeed different for her.
Why do we always have to talk and, and, and push and change things? Why can’t we just be?
Morgan is no coward. He’ll talk and talk and push and push until he hits a wall. Yet, despite what he wrote in his book, facing Casey wasn’t what Morgan feared. I don’t think he feared a relationship with Alex, either. It was that change thing again. Change ruins things, especially when they’re going good. But Morgan did better than many of us. Just like Big Mike told him to, he grabbed his woman and kissed her on the lips and I’m guessing that for the first time, he “heard the jam.” That’s a change too.
We’ve said a hundred times how the characters have changed, you and I. The story has changed too. Like Chuck said, it’s unavoidable, and it’s something that is coming. I started to realize this week how much of the story, the way it was originally conceived, has been played out already. I suspect that the near cancellation of season two caused the creative team to compact things so that we saw a good part of what would have been in season 3 before Chuck re-intersected. And when Season 3 was given 6 more episodes, I would not be surprised to learn we had gotten to see much of what would have been in a fourth year, in the original conception, by the time the internal threat to the CIA and NSA had been stopped. With the budgetary realities of network TV programming in the 21st century, you will see the effects of change on the screen. But they don’t have to be bad.
Sarah needs one thing in her life to remain constant, a rock to cling to when the world swirls around her, and I don’t think I knew that before. Moments after Chuck’s speech to Ortensia and Alejandro Goya, Sarah turns to Ortentia and says “That love that you had in the caves – that doesn’t have to change.” Even at first, it felt like a corner had been turned when she said that. The more I reviewed those last few moments of the episode, the more important and perfect her words became. That’s my “Easter Egg.”
You see, Sarah had found that rock. She had something solid to hang on to, and a place of stability for her feet. With that, the rest is easy. No, when it comes to big questions (and, to be sure, there’s more than one) she can’t make up Chuck mind for him. But she’s made up hers.
Sarah: [softly] Are you awake? Can you hear me, Chuck? I love you, Chuck. Nothing’s ever gonna change that. And if you ask me for real, then my answer would be “yes.”