Laugh. Out. Loud. Funny. The Seduction Impossible has to be one of the funniest Chucks ever. Funny and fun. Roan Montgomery, Casey in a wall, and Beckman in the field. Mother/Spy turned Grandma/Spy. Babies and diapers and wipes. Family and weddings and stress. Seductions and missions and spies. It’s all in there; everything you need for a hilarious spy romp and pre-wedding … discussions.
But this is Chuck, after all, and there’s always more than first meets the eye. I laughed so hard and so often that the real story snuck up on me. On the surface the episode is about impossible seductions, family events, missions, and bad advice. Underneath the laughter and blessed events are rhythms of relationship, currents of love, and stories of pain. A lot like real life. How do they do that?
Simple. This is Chuck.
As Roan strikes out in Moracco, Clara is batting 1000 in Burbank, putting the master to shame.
It’s baby bedlam at the Woodcomb house and all of TeamB is involved. Mary shows she hasn’t lost her touch, but her point of reference has changed — big time. Do you know of anyone else who equates holding a baby with handling live explosives? … Me neither. Although, I do admit that babies can be, um, explosive.
Talk turns to weddings, specifically Chuck and Sarah’s. Everyone is totally engrossed in wedding plans, except for Chuck who’s wearing his panic face and Sarah who is sweating bullets, “I’m actually sweating. The last time I sweat, there was gunfire involved” (one of my favorite lines of the episode and season). In the midst of the pandemonium, a couple of things stand out. Mary’s total integration into the family conversation and her offer of her veil. And Ellie’s response. Mary’s offer was soft and gracious, a gesture of love and acceptance to Sarah. Ellie’s remark, “I don’t know if Sarah’s a veil girl,” shows a level of familiarity and empathy that I liked. I hope for more Bartowski female interaction in the future. I think both Mary and Ellie could be helpful without overwhelming Sarah. Sarah may need that before it’s all over. Who knows they may even help fill a void.
This episode’s title, like Suitcase, completely blind-sided me. I never saw it coming. In all the speculation about The Seduction Impossible, I don’t recall anyone guessing the scenario. At least I know I didn’t. We thought it was a seduction mission for one or all of them. Boy were we wrong, much to my entertainment and delight. Everyone did seduce someone, though … or at least try.
First Morgan seduced Casey. Yeah. He used Alex’s emotions to seduce Casey into talking to Kathleen so that he, Morgan, would feel more comfortable. It worked … sort of. Turns out, though, Morgan didn’t really understand Alex’s emotions. Shocker, I know.
Beckman in the bottle was too funny. Ordering TeamB on an off-the-books mission to rescue Roan Montgomery. Hilarious. Even Casey and Sarah are snickering about it. So, the Short Titian General misappropriates government resources to rescue her man. She’s not as good at hand-to-hand combat as the Giant Blond She-Male, but she’s wicked scary with a rocket launcher. Duck.
I loved Sarah’s teasing Chuck about his overpacking (I can relate), and I liked her proposition. It was sweet and romantic and understandable. I bought her reasons. Chuck’s kiss turned pout was adorable.
Chuck turns once more to that tainted fount of wisdom that is Morgan. OK, will someone please give Chuck a 900 number … or a psychic hot line … or somebody, anybody, to call for advice. We desperately need Ellie restored to the inner circle, so Chuck can get some decent advice. You know it was in Seduction(I) that Chuck told Devon what a bad idea it was to get relationship advice from Morgan. Hello?! OK, rant over. This bit of advice was particularly annoying, because Morgan was really only concerned for himself. Practice no’s? Really? Really dumb. Although I do admit it led to some funny moments.
Roan’s seduction of Fatima was a nice call back to Undercover Lover, with Casey under the bed this time. Chuck and Sarah behind the dusty tapestry was funny, especially the look on Sarah’s face when Chuck says, “But nothing. I said no … woman.”
Well, Sneezy gets them caught, and Grumpy is not a happy prisoner.
I liked the dungeon therapy session with Dr. Roan (except that I don’t care for ball-and-chain humor, but that’s just me). Bravo that Sarah-the-Silent, who was also the most offended at the time, started the communication, “What’s with all the no’s lately, anyway?” And hurray that Chuck-the-Pleaser finally told Sarah, albeit with prodding from Roan, what he was really saying no to. Sarah closes her eyes against the pain (Yvonne is perfect, throughout) and reloads for round 2. I loved Roan’s obvious affection for them.
Casey’s arrival took everyone’s mind off the disagreement and turned their attention to something they all agree on. Casey is better with guns and amo than romance and seduction. This scene was roll-on-the-floor hilarious, every word, every expression, from all of them. In most episodes, it would stand out as the funniest scene, but in Seduction Impossible, funniest-scene is too close to call.
Roan and Dianne. Awkward. So awkward, and Chuck and Sarah would rather be anyplace else. Not me, I can’t wait to see this. Roan’s charms fail him, and he winds up in the Buymore, too funny. I don’t know which was worse for him, the job or the polyester. At any rate we get some fun back story about GB as a dirty blond and a woman in love.
The advice from the Seduction Master, isn’t the best, but it’s in a better neighborhood than Morgan’s advice. It also gives us another side-splitting, hilarious scene. I mean, come on, Sarah had the whole course on seduction, not just the Cliffsnotes. Chuck is so out of his depth here, but he does recognize it for what it is and calls her on it. Sarah is appalled … appalled that he is doing the same thing she is doing. Kudos to Zach and Yvonne for a perfect scene!!
Are these scenes with GB intense or what? Chuck and Sarah may be glad when she’s back in her box. Get me Roan Montgomery. Easily a 4.7 on the Richter Scale.
One last seduction (the one the episode is named after) for Roan, with Beckman quarterbacking from a nearby turret. Roan’s performance is smooth, even if not fast enough to suit the general. He gets the location of the mint, and GB orders the strike. Our economy is safe from collapse. But I am not. I collapse in laughter every time I watch the rest of this scene. Dianne is a terrifying figure with her rocket launcher. Quacks me up!
Roan and Dianne. The general got her mint and her man. They have a long history, a famous romance, and a future. Just not the future they once agreed on. Theirs is a spy love whose mutual affection is subordinate to the job, and they wouldn’t have it any other way. There’s not much more to tell.
Casey and Kathleen. Theirs is the definition of a tragic romance. Casey chose duty and never knew that he had a daughter. Kathleen thought she lost her fiancé to the war and never knew that her daughter had a father. She has lived her life with a sense of loss.
Casey believed he made the right choice … until he got to know his daughter. Now he regrets the years and the love that he missed.
The choice we made to protect something bigger than ourselves is the right choice. (Crown Vic)
Don’t make the same mistake I did. I missed my daughter’s birth, missed her whole damn childhood. Alex’s mom had to raise her all on her own. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t regret that. (Push Mix)
Maybe he can fix the past. Maybe he can have a place in Kathleen’s life again. Maybe they can be the family now that they weren’t before. But Kathleen has finally moved on. She’s finally happy. “Good for you, Kath.”
For of all sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: “It might have been!” (John Greenleaf Whittier)
Ellie and Mary. The layers never end with these two women who have lost so much. This is one of the best Ellie scenes of the season, and another powerful, layered moment for the two women. Kudos to LH and SL.
Mary is restored to her family, but she can never restore what was lost to them. She can’t fix the past, though she clearly wants to try to make up for it.
M: I want to give everything to this baby that I never gave to you or chuck.
E: That’s my job. You just have to be the best grandma in the world.
Forgiveness is giving up hope of a better past. And it clears the way for a better future. There are no do-overs. But there are clean slates. Clara is their clean slate.
In forgiving her mom, Ellie is no longer chained to her past or its pain. She is free to be the mother she never had and to give Clara all that she wished for. That’s her job. In receiving Ellie’s forgiveness, Mary can let go of her own regret and pain and live in the present as the world’s best grandma.
There’s one more gem in this scene. (I know I’m going backwards)
E: I made Chuck quit the CIA. And sometimes I wonder if that was the right decision, because I know that he’s a good person who’s helped people, and he’s protected us.
M: He’s a Bartowski.
E: And he says that you’re the best. I can’t keep another person from being a hero, simply because I’m afraid. If you need to be a spy that’s not another abandonment.
So much in so few words. Ellie is beginning to realize, maybe, that Chuck should be allowed to live his own life. That she shouldn’t have kept him from being the hero that he is. (He’s a good person who’s helped people, just like Sarah said.) It’s a big step for Ellie, and my heart is cheering.
Mary’s response couldn’t be more perfect. As we saw in Push Mix, legacy is destiny. Chuck is who he is and can be nothing else. Mary didn’t out him. She didn’t criticize Ellie. She merely explained Chuck in a way that may help Ellie come to terms with Chuck’s choices. (Once she finds out.)
Chuck’s words spoken through Ellie to Mary must be welcome indeed, coming from the son who had lost faith in her. Ellie doesn’t know the half of it yet. But she couldn’t have delivered a more healing message to a mother’s heart.
They say it’s easier to get forgiveness than permission. Ellie gives her mother both.
Chuck and Sarah. Roan gave Chuck and Sarah their first bit of good advice, “Remember you’re in love. Listen to each other. Never go on a mission angry.” Finally, a nudge in the right direction.
Well, OK, I mean, who am I going to invite? … Who’s going to come? and … Who’s going to walk me down the aisle?
This is the story. From the moment Sarah asked Chuck to elope, this was the story.
I loved this scene — the way Sarah came clean and how she berated herself for not having been honest to begin with. She has come so far, even though avoidance was still her tactic of choice. Compared to the Sarah of old, this Sarah is practically see-through.
This will be the most lopsided wedding in history. But that is only the tip of the iceberg.
As difficult as it would be for Sarah to explain her family’s absence from her wedding, it might be preferable to having to invite them. Does she even know where they are? Maybe she knows where they are, however many they are, but they are estranged … really, really estranged.
Whatever it is … her past is pain. A big family wedding will uncap that well and flood the happiest day of her life with a sadness she would rather leave behind.
There’s one place that Sarah feels safe. In Chuck’s arms. Like the picture, the one she keeps with her at all times. That picture was taken during Seduction. Not long after that, in Cougars, Sarah had to revisit her past, with Chuck. The last thing she wanted was for him, or anyone, to know about her past. During that experience, she learned that Chuck’s love was steadfast and trustworthy, and some of the pain began to seep away. She gave him a gift, offering to answer a question about her past. He had seen enough and didn’t need to ask. Instead he gave her what she needed, unconditional love and a safe place.
Whenever her past reappears, Chuck is her safe place, and he somehow makes it all better. Still he has never asked her to open up old wounds, confront her past, or talk about things she doesn’t want to talk about.
Now, her past seems unavoidable. I mean, when you get married aren’t you supposed to invite your family?
The last scene is tender … intimate … safe. They’ve talked and listened.
Chuck offers to help Sarah’s family. If they can take on terrorists and despots and oligarchs, together they can handle her family. Right?
Why do I get the feeling, Sarah would rather take on the terrorists and despots and oligarchs? Her face registers such pain at the thought of dealing with her family. (Yvonne is utterly amazing in this scene.) But Chuck still makes her smile, makes her trust, and she knows it will be OK.
She is his Sarah Walker, the most mysterious woman in the world. Now he finally asks what he hasn’t asked for two years, to get to know her better. He’s more than earned it, after all he is the future Mr. Sarah Walker. But that’s not why he’s asking. He is asking now for the same reason he didn’t ask before. It’s what Sarah needs. His love is still unconditional. He is still her safe place. Safe enough to open her past and let go of the pain.