It’s Done By Imitating
This is going to be a rather different kind of post for this blog, barely Chuck related. But I’ll make the connection this way, right up front.
Most of the time, I want to believe that Chuck and Sarah are fairly realistic. Not their abilities, of course – not in supercomputers embedded in the brain and spies who can beat up half of Asia while picking locks. I want to believe in them, in people who are competent, good, loyal, intelligent and beautiful like me like my friends and family! I find that easy to believe, actually, and maybe that’s my big blind spot. If so, I’ll live with it.
It’s the world around Chuck and Sarah that I find harder to accept. Evil supervillains who won’t die? Predator missiles commandeered by one mastermind with a lap-top and then by Buy More employees? Rings and rogues and suburban subdivisions dedicated to doing EEEEVVVVIIILLLL??? I rather like the idea of island-nation communist dictators having a change of heart, myself. But, really? They expect me to believe this?
Probably not. But sometimes the difference between fantasy (you know – supercomputers in the brain… hot spies…) and reality (standing in supermarket lines… paying bills…sigh…) becomes surprisingly thin. Let me ask this. Have you heard about the Stuxnet worm?
If you’re a techie the write up may strike you as taken from “The Dummies Guide to Computer Viruses”, but you’ll recognize what’s going on. If you’re not a techie, then you want to note that only one of the problems someone solved here was to infect highly secured (Iranian) government computers that were totally isolated from the Internet. When I read about it, I did a “Butch Cassidy”. Who *are* these people???
Simply put, Stuxnet is an incredibly advanced, undetectable computer worm that took years to construct and was designed to jump from computer to computer until it found the specific, protected control system that it aimed to destroy: Iran’s nuclear enrichment program.
The target was seemingly impenetrable; for security reasons, it lay several stories underground and was not connected to the World Wide Web. And that meant Stuxnet had to act as sort of a computer cruise missile: As it made its passage through a set of unconnected computers, it had to grow and adapt to security measures and other changes until it reached one that could bring it into the nuclear facility.
[I rather enjoyed this blogger’s reaction too.]
Clearly, this is something that Chuck and Sarah would have a hard time doing and would make for a great episode. It would require the aid of Morgan and maybe even Jeff and Lester, those “Mac Artistes!”, to accomplish.
Kidding!!! But you see my point. There are real spies out there dealing with nuclear weapons and the highest of high tech in ways that save (and cost) lives. The write-up hints strongly that this is beyond the ability of any one government to pull off; It took international cooperation. Whether you believe that or not, it was not a small deal, and in fact, was rather astounding.
But that was yesterday’s news. If you’re not convinced that, for all the silliness, the extraordinary dangers depicted weekly in Chuck are only a minor stretch of the imagination, I have two more words to say – Kim Jong-il. Makes me kinda wish that Chuck, Sarah and Casey weren’t fictional characters. The world is a dangerous place (DUH!) after all.
Then again, who needs a supercomputer in the brain when you have Wikileaks?
Wikileaks began on Sunday November 28th publishing 251,287 leaked United States embassy cables, the largest set of confidential documents ever to be released into the public domain. The documents will give people around the world an unprecedented insight into US Government foreign activities.
Ack! The Intersect has been compromised! Quick! Get Gen. Beckman on the line!!!
Sheesh. The line just got thinner, again. Maybe that totally unbelievable, exaggerated, disjoint and plot-hole filled world of Chuck and Sarah shouldn’t strain my credulity so much.
I take solace in the fact that the physically beautiful people playing spies on TV aren’t really so adept at the martial arts, throwing knives and providing tactical support. It would be really unfair if spies actually led glamorous, exciting lives and were so good looking too.