Almost Enjoying a Week Off

The timing of Chuck coming available on iTunes was fortuitous for me.  Chuck is in that small number of shows I can enjoy frequent repeat viewings of.  Not surprisingly, zipping through commercials gets really old on your 5+ viewing of something.

On a separate issue, I had decided a couple weeks ago I would re-watch Chuck season 4 while home on medical leave this week.  I had a minor surgical procedure that mainly meant I would be loaded on Vicodin and not driving anywhere for a few days.  So I was very pleased when S4 came up on iTunes the very day I had the surgery.  I actually learned about it while I was sitting in the hospital waiting room.  Dang, if I wasn’t eager to get this over with and home before, now I sure was!  

I am one of those chosen few who owns a first generation AppleTV.  That means it has a hard drive (unlike the current model) and I can buy and keep the show in commercial free HD (well, 720p anyway).  Current models only allow one to rent the episodes on a pay-per-view basis;  which given the way I watch Chuck is not an appealing option. [I’ve been informed this is somewhat incorrect.  Because you can play material from and associated computer with a hard drive,  sorry!]

So I thought it would be fun to put down a few comments from Chuck viewing in a drug induced haze.  Speaking of which, apologies if I’ve been more loopy or stupid than normal this week.  My wife says she doesn’t notice a big difference,  I’m not sure how to take that…

Starting from Anniversary I enjoyed every episode.  Although I still think Anniversary itself may be the weakest of the season.  The whole Chuck and Morgan on a secret/separate mission looking for mamaB just rubs me wrong.  Now I think it was supposed to.  Certainly Chuck and Sarah running off in opposite directions while Chuck is playing the secrets game was resolved quickly and decisively.  It bothers me a little that Chuck has never really expressed any sort of “mission statement” after rejoining the agency. I guess we can take Fear of Death as Chuck’s realization that he needs to be with Sarah and not letting her run off on missions without him; at least that’s why I assume he is so desperate to get back in the game.  And of course he actually said all of that in Balcony.  So although in Anniversary he rejoins the agency with the excuse of furthering his pursuit for mom, his main motivation seems to be to work with Sarah.  I would like to see him clearly give his own reasons (since rejoining; he did to his father back in 3.17) for wanting to do spy work; but if wanting to work with Sarah didn’t figure into it I’d be seriously worried about our boy.

Suitcase remains my favorite of the early season episodes.  Its fun in just about every way.  The “suitcase” issue itself still strikes me as contrived, but I love the episode.  And the Chuck/Sarah scene in the hotel closet (“no really, say it.”) is one of my favorite comic moments Sarah has ever had.  Cubic Z and Coup d’Etat kind of blur together for me.  Both are fun, with a few very good moments, but neither is extraordinary.  Couch Lock completes the early episodes.  It stands out in a few ways;  just being Casey centered is uncommon enough, Jeffster are very funny in a smaller part (the best kind for them!), and Chuck and Sarah work as the sort of team I most want to see.  They are comfortable and confident together; and ready for things to get rough.

I love Aisle of Terror.  A strong episode on several levels, and Linda Hamilton’s performance is dynamite.  We still get a smoothly functioning Chuck/Sarah (and who can forget, “I’ll eat your desert and blame it on Morgan”!?)  The ending was the first burst of fan angst we’ve seen this season, and of course accusations of Sarah violating the “no secrets” rule.  Well I loved the end,  I thought it was a completely legitimate use of the sort of angst that would come from the conflicted loyalties of spy world.  While insecure Chuck naturally felt disrespected; protective Sarah dutifully had her partner’s blind spot.  I might not have been so cheerful about this if it had drawn out longer.  But the resolution we got the following week was wonderful!  Timothy Dalton was a perfect pick up for Chuck; and I honestly still miss Tuttle, he was very funny.  I also enjoyed the resolution of Chuck and Sarah’s “First Fight”; I’m glad they’ve played these things light this season, and Sarah’s decision to trust Chuck in the end made everything feel right (very similar feel to Crown Victoria, but with a more entertaining build up).

Fear of Death seems to be the most disliked of S4 episodes.  But not by me.  It isn’t quite a favorite, but I have little against it either.  Agent Rye made me laugh, hard.  He was stupid and yet impressed with himself, comic gold.  I believe Sarah’s ill-advised words caused the most dislike here; but I felt her frustration with Chuck, Rye, and a foolish mission with no “safety net”.  And it led to Phase 3.  Wow! Is there anything else to say?  Emmy4Yvonne may be a long shot, but she is clearly deserving and can play anything she is tasked with.  Leftovers was sort of ho-hum by comparison. Another great performance by a psychotic Dalton (“Children love me!”) and a few good moments, but otherwise merely average.

The next big arc starts with Balcony.  A very romantically themed episode, that gets Chuck and Sarah engaged in all but fact.  Sarah taking over the sub-mission; and Morgan calming her nerves before the big non-moment being the defining moments.  Gobbler was not a favorite of mine; and an interesting thing on this re-watch, my initial feelings were largely strengthened.  Although there are some good moments here, and it certainly was no disaster of S3 proportions; the ending was too contrived and manipulative, and felt like the stupid miscommunication tricks the TPTB had completely overused in earlier seasons.  It might have been easier to overlook if we’d really gotten a good resolution, but the worst of it was Sarah taking advice from Frost, who still strikes me as the worst possible person to listen to; and not realizing her own error in the following episode. Now I get that they wanted to highlight Mary’s good qualities, but it was partly at the expense of Sarah.  I would have preferred if Sarah had seen the importance of finishing up and getting out on her own; Mary’s later defense of her husband was really all the redemption needed for a secondary character.  So I guess my main complaint with Gobbler is its inadequate resolution in Push Mix.  Ironic since I really consider Push Mix a strong episode.  I loved getting to see hero Chuck, and Volkoff going down in flames (have I mentioned that he ate ice cream in front of his men without sharing?  The man is a special sort of evil. Diabolical all the way through.  I mean, it looked like the cone even had sprinkles on it.  I think Dante spent an entire chapter on the level of hell he will go to!).  We were finally treated to one of the best Jeffster performances ever, and something about a ring…

Two stand alone episodes bring us up to date.  Seduction Impossible featuring the return of our favorite seduction master.  Very funny episode, I would be quite happy with more like this.  Although Schwedak said the episode had a Honeymooners feel to it; I think they might want to go back and watch Honeymooners again.  But Seduction Impossible was a very strong episode.  Ditto for Cat squad.  Maybe not quite as good as the previous episode, but lots of fun regardless; and we finally have Sarah and Ellie talking together.

I really enjoyed the season in review.  I don’t believe I’ve changed my mind on much; but certain things have become more set in my mind.  I’m really looking forward to how the rest of this season plays out.  Even if we don’t get a season 5 I’m content with how the show is ending up;  but oh boy do I hope it isn’t ending!

– Dave

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About atcDave

I'm 53 years old and live in Ypsilanti, Michigan. I'm happily married to Jodie. I've been an air traffic controller for 30 years; grew up in the Chicago area, and am still a fanatic for pizza and the Chicago Bears. My main interest is military history, and my related hobbies include scale model building and strategy games.
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81 Responses to Almost Enjoying a Week Off

  1. Faith says:

    If this is the kind of productivity you put out while loopy, you should be loopy more often ;).

    I’m bummed about the news about the new appletv, I was actually going to purchase one…can it at least airplay the HD DRM stuff I have on my computer? That seems to at least be a lame compromise.

    I do think the season has been strong overall. Some ups, some downs, some questionable plot points and some very strong (best of the 4 years) ones. I find looking back that the replay value of some episodes rival only that of season 2 (for example I have replayed Suitcase 15 times, I stopped counting after 15 to be honest) while Phase Three although badass has only been played 10 times for me. The funny thing is I consider Phase Three now an upper echelon episode (top 3) but it’s fairly heavy and like you said Suitcase was fun. Of note: seduction impossible 7 times.

    This season, for all the talks of Morgan and his expanding role, I find that I’ve become more enamored with Sarah Lancaster. I don’t think I ever really noticed her before. Sure I appreciated and hungered for an interaction between her and Sarah (Chuck is like a duck remains one of Chuck’s finest scenes) and have always loved her talks with Chuck (Beefcake’s you should break up with Sarah nonewithstanding) but this season I am seriously floored with her acting prowess. The chemistry between her and Linda Hamilton is magnificent. I am seriously considering crying every time I see them just to save myself time lol.

    Oh and to add to your Dalton comments (win!), I just realized that Tuttle broke character a bit during the fork scene. At least it seemed like the fork threat was more in line with something like the Dante level of hell psychosis he exhibits as Volkoff. But I do think that was by design, it’s one of those easter egg things.

    • atcDave says:

      Thanks for wanting me to stay loopy Faith!

      I think the transfer via airplay is one of it’s features, but since I don’t have it myself I’m not 100% sure.

      Agree about Sarah Lancaster, we’ve seen a lot of depth from her this season. Good catch on Dalton with the spork, maybe he wasn’t sure yet who Chuck was; so he wasn’t sure if he was playing Volkoff or Tutttle.

    • Mike says:

      You’re too hard on the new AppleTV- it’s a definate upgrade from the original unit. The big difference is instead of storing content on it’s own drive, you store it on your PC and stream it wirelessly. I bought the current season of Chuck in HD and it works nicely. You defiantely don’t have to rent the episode every time you want to watch it. Add in the Netflix streaming capability and my old AppleTV now sits in a closet at home.

    • Completely agree about Sarah Lancaster. I always found her good, and maybe it’s the fact that we haven’t seen her that much this season, but she’s been really good in all of her scenes.

      The show really has an amazing cast and we’ve been really well served this year, with the regular cast, the guest stars or addition like Mekenna Melvin.

    • atcDave says:

      Mike, thanks for that info. I’d thought the new model seemed like a serious step backwards, but that makes perfect sense if you’re just reducing redundant storage. Although how is the load time? My first gen unit takes a while to access things from the computer; oh and of course, the computer has to be on and iTunes open for that to work.

      Oh I’d also ask, why is Netflix so appealing? Is it much cheaper than just renting off of iTunes or pay-per-view? Or does it offer a much bigger library? The friends I currently have using Netflix only find it useful when they’re watching a lot of content.

      Oh and do you know what the video quality is? Are they still limited to 720p or have they upped it to 1080p yet?

  2. Tamara Burks says:

    I got a dvd recorder from ebay and while I can’t set things to record on a timer (the remote’s missing and universal one’s don’t seem to copy the set timer feature) I have been copying season 4 without commercials for my own cheap dvd set without the features (needless to say I would’ve given up in disgust if I’d tried that in season 3) and I have been enjoying the rewatches. Push Mix is the one I rewatched the most so far.If necessary it would have made one hell of a great way to end the season or series.

  3. Tamara Burks says:

    Oh and Agent Rye struck me as a less psychotic, more obvious holder of the title legend in his own mind than Shaw.

    And quite frankly I liked it when he showed that he was impressed by Chuck even though he still forged ahead with his stated mission.

    • atcDave says:

      Agree about Rye. He acknowledged Chuck’s strengths and provided some meaningful encouragement. He was a moron, but he wasn’t totally without virtue.

  4. Ernie Davis says:

    I have to say that I’m enjoying some time off too. Work however is a b*tch.

    I can’t help but be reminded of the post Honeymooners period last year when everyone seemed to breathe a sigh of relief and relax for a while. I feel the same way. Push Mix left me very happy, both with the initial season and with hopes for a well done series finale. The last two episodes have been pure fun, and now we still have another major spy arc and 8 more episodes to go.

    No Vicodin, but I’m in a pretty happy place too.

    • atcDave says:

      I’m down off the meds now and I’m still in a good mood; so yeah, I agree. I think this is as happy as I’ve ever been with the show. Which says a lot when you consider how up I was late in S2.

  5. jason says:

    Funny dave, I rewatched 4×1 thru 5 in the past week, and am going to try to rewatch the rest soon, sort of feels with the next arc starting it’d be fun to review how far we have gotten.

    For the first 5, I liked 4×1 and 4×3 more than most, liked 4×2 and 4×4 equally as much – and only 4×5 seemed a bit off to me – I don’t like morgan, and 4×5 once chuck got stuck in the lasers, it seemed like he went downhill mentally for the remainder of the season while Morgan got gifted with the wisdom of Solomon.

    In lots of ways, the heather chandler and steve austin guest stars are the kind of chuck I like. Please everyone don’t hate, we all have opinions, I am not that wild about dalton / volkov / big bads – I like the standalone show approach far better.

    With each mistake this season, the show has slipped a little bit in ratings, while the show’s homeruns (4×7, 4×9, 4×13) have not brought many new fans, and given chuck’s track record, I find it hard to imagine that the show won’t slip up once or twice more this season.

    Additionally, with the demo at 1.7 b4 the two 4 letter D words start up (DWTS & DLST), once they start, the odds of keeping our heads above the 1.3/1.4/1.5 Mason Dixon line where the bears hang out to devour shows, well those odds are really low moving forward.

    By and large, I feel like I am running out of contributions here, I like the show as is, and what I don’t like, isn’t changing at this point, the show more or less is as it is, at least for this season …

    My advice to myself and to all of you, let go of the neurotic whining about chuck, and enjoy these last 9 eps with spirit and joy, and if somehow next season does occur, tip your hat upward and wink, and know that Someone at a higher pay grade than you or I watches some TV too!

    • atcDave says:

      Solid advice Jason.
      I’m surprised you liked Anniversary so much and yet don’t care for Morgan. That was kind of the Achilles Heel of that episode for me; WAY too much Morgan. In particular, Chuck and Morgan time that should have been Chuck and Sarah time. I would agree I’m not nuts about Chuck heeding Morgan’s usually moronic advice either, but it is such small potatoes as show problems go I not going waste too much energy on it.
      I hope the ratings situation goes better than you guess. I remember in S2 we lost viewers after both the Jill and Cole arcs but rebuilt pretty well during the home stretch. I’m hoping for something similar now; with good things ahead for Chuck and Sarah and a few good episodes behind us, maybe we’ll start picking up viewers instead of going the wrong way!

      • jason says:

        Dave – I was not really wild about 3×16 thru 3×19, and in particular, I thought 3×19 left CS in a lousy spot, given the non stop lies, and the final Orion reveal without sarah there – given all that, I was really happy with how 4×1 resolved CS & Team B, no secrets, no lies, all in with Chuck. Also, I like heroic Chuck, Charles Charles, and in 4×1’s volkov facility, he was the man.

        I don’t mind Morgan the mindless dolt hanging around a little bit, Morgan the King Solomon figure who steals each scene by being fed the exact line that represents truth, justice and the american way, that grates on me, in 4×1, Morgan’s pipeline to wisdom and scene stealing was down, he was fine, largely kept his mouth shut.

      • jason says:

        king solomon he is not when advising chuck, actually, one of the reasons I don’t like beckman and I don’t like morgan, is they both have been the key plot devices used to keep chuck and sarah apart and from communicating, beckman by assignments, morgan by his advice resepctively.

        When beckman is not used as a plot device to keep chuck and sarah apart, then I love her, I wish she would be made part of an arc, with something to do other than to make moronic decisions to ramp up cs angst.

      • atcDave says:

        Okay, that makes sense. To me, the first 20 minutes are dreary, and strong conclusion doesn’t completely salvage it. But I do want to emphasize again, I did like the episode; just not as much as the rest of the season. Gobbler and Anniversary are my two candidates for weakest of the season, but its been a very strong season so that isn’t such a big deal.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        I don’t mind Morgan the mindless dolt hanging around a little bit, Morgan the King Solomon figure who steals each scene by being fed the exact line that represents truth, justice and the american way, that grates on me

        This^^^ Word for word.

        Apart from my continued insistence that Morgan has been way overused this season and the wasted opportunity to showcase Chuck’s smarts in FoD & Leftovers, I have by and large enjoyed this season. Even done some re-watching too.

    • herder says:

      Jason, I’ll agree with the episodes that you liked, I also liked Anniversary more than most, in fact to a greater or lesser extent I’ve liked all of them. The only two that left me a bit cold were Fear of Death and Gobbler. I’ve loved the last two, Seduction Impossible and it’s lesser follow up CAT squad, and I’ve rewatched both of them more than Push Mix.

      As to ratings, I had expected a small increase this week to 1.8 or 1.9, didn’t get it, but look at NBC’s 8pm results: Monday (Chuck) 1.8 & 1.7, Tuesday (BL) 2.3 & 2.5, Wednesday (Minute to Win it) 1.3 (and going to be much less this week), Thursday (Community and Perfect Couples) 1.8 & 1.5, Friday (Who do You Think You Are) 1.4. My point is that as bad as the ratings are, Chuck is still NBC’s second best opener of the five nights, scary but true.

      That being said, I agree with you, enjoy the next 8 episodes and if it gets renewed, well then there must be someone to thank.

      • atcDave says:

        I know I’m in the minority about not hating Fear of Death, that seems to be most viewers least favorite of the season. I guess I thought Rye was funny, and the ending actually excited me because I had a pretty good idea what it was setting up.

      • armysfc says:

        herder, i agree. i actually expected a small up tic in 4.14 when that didn’t happen i knew the best we could hope for after that was staying even. in the past when an arc ends the ratings have gone up the next episode. that didn’t happen this time. this is not meant to scare you guys but if the trend holds true and 4.16 does start another mini arc past numbers say the rating will drop over the course of the arc. by 4.18 the bear will have caught us. the last 4 arcs have started well and ended worse. lest hope the trend gets broken.

        as herder said the best thing chuck has going for it is the status it has on NBC at 8. add to that it is the best show they have on mondays. at least it holds steady where most of the others are in decline. these next three weeks are critical to the show, more so than the may sweeps. history shows most programs fall off as summer approaches DST or whatever, and i believe the networks account for that. if this is a new arc and the trend does continue and we lose even a few tenths, i don’t see NBC waiting till the may sweeps to pull the plug.

        disclaimer… i do like the show. i am basing this on the numbers alone and not what i think of the show. its just for some reason arcs do not do well.

      • jason says:

        FOD sort of has several strikes against it, in order of my complaints

        1 – contrived angst, in this case, TPTB use beckman to take chuck away from sarah thru rye in 4×8, jsut happens beckman assigned shaw who took sarah away in 3×7 & 3×8 & 3×9 & 3×11&3×12, in both cases, thru the use and abuse of their authority and power, in both cases, nearly killing chuck – in shaw’s case, his reckless abuse of power nearly killed chuck multiple times

        2 – the 42 minute long joke didn’t work for everyone, you have to really like a guy who is being a moron for that long, I did not even like the first 10 seconds

        3 – it became obvious in 4×8 that the intersectless chuck arc was going to portray chuck as an imbecile, yea he googled something and rye was impressed, not exactly a ringing endorsement from the maxwell smart like character rye portrayed, now if jack bauer had been impressed, then that’s saying something

        4 – the sarah line fell flat, by the way, I think it was true then, and is still true now, chuck is not a spy who should go into an open ended mission without the intersect and without sarah or casey, none the less, the line fell flat

        5 – the travel timeline and the scenes in general seemed as fake and hard to enjoy as any episode in the show, the story seemed sort of dumb overall, considering it was being used to set up some real drama and angst, not a good idea

        I have never watched it a second time, and promise I will and I will give it an open mind, but those were my major gripes the first time thru.

      • I didn’t have any problem with Rye, my problem was with Chuck.

        I didn’t like seeing him siding with Rye and carelessly risking his life. I never expected Rye to see the obvious about CS but Chuck should know better.

        And they turned Sarah into the bad guy with her outburst (which I thought was completely deserved BTW), and Phase 3 also made it look like Sarah was responsible because she didn’t tell Chuck enough how much she loves him, therefore feeding his insecurities.

        It looked to me like Sarah told him she loved Chuck Bartowski and Chuck wanted the Intersect back for himself. What fell flat for me was his epiphany in the gondola because he never talked about it with Sarah. Never said he was wrong or that he was sorry or whatever, anything.

        Her outburst wasn’t addressed either, apart for that lame ‘asset’ scene in Phase 3.

        FOD was just contrived angst to give us Phase Three and it’s proved by the fact that they didn’t resolved anything from it.

        Having said that, the episode isn’t that bad, it’s still fun, but bringing up issues that aren’t resolved, that annoys me.

      • What was funny was Rye telling Chuck “be a real spy like me” and getting shot right after that!

        Being a ‘real spy’ is overrated! 😉

      • atcDave says:

        Wow, no wonder you guys hated Fear of Death. I never saw Sarah as a villain of any sort; if anything I saw her as the smartest and most reasonable character in the episode and I completely got her exasperation when she blurted out at Chuck. He was taking foolish risks without backup, and no one was listening to her concerns. I kind of wanted to smack Chuck myself at that point.
        So Chuck’s risk taking was the only real complaint I had, and even that was lessened by Rye and Beckman leading him on.
        Like I said, not a favorite episode, but not a terrible one to me either.

      • I felt exactly like you Dave but it wasn’t stated at all, and that’s what bothered me.

        An ending that would have work for me would have been, Rye dying, Chuck managing to call Sarah telling her what was happening and that he was sorry, and BAM! The Belgian captures him, before they could finish.

        Sarah would still go after him, and the proposal stuff would still work as well. There was no need to make her feel guilty at the end of FOD.

      • atcDave says:

        Yeah, I can imagine a few endings that would have been more satisfying. The biggest thing would have just been Chuck and Rye deciding to wait on back up, but have the baddies bust into their room and haul off Chuck. Chuck would have still been captive, Sarah would still be frantic, and no one would have looked like an idiot.

      • I’ve always hated when they went for that kind of scenario.

        Chuck so desperate to prove himself listens to people that just don’t get who he is at all, instead of listening to Sarah who’s desperate to keep him safe, all that resulting in Sarah having to save his ass.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        The whole premise that it would require a fear of death to kick start the Intersect was stupid. And the Intersect out of the blue was under an emotional rock when in the previous episode it was shown that a technical hijink (PSP) had led to it being suppressed.

        Instead of showing Chuck taking stupid risks like getting on the gondola, they could still have him captured at the auction after being discovered by the Belgian. No wonder it is one of my least favorite episodes this season along with Leftovers. They could have shown Chuck using his smarts and getting captured due to the negligence of Agent Rye.

  6. armysfc says:

    dave, thanks for the taking the time to share that with us. good write up. really glad you are enjoying the show.

  7. Rick Holy says:

    I’ve been rewatching all along – especially on NBC.COM – and HULU. But I also record onto DVDs while the show is airing – so I already have the DVD set before I wind up purchasing the Blu Ray and DVDs when the come out. Can’t get enough “CHUCK.”

    I have to be honest, folks. I’m always “on edge” about CHUCK’s renewal and/or cancellation each season. But this season I am more thinking that getting the axe is a possibility. Yes, there are reasons for a fifth season – syndication being one – but syndication will NOT be “the savior” for CHUCK. It won’t.

    And sometimes people say, “Well, NBC has to have SOMETHING that’s a draw at Comic-Con…… and that’s CHUCK. Well (and I have to say I’m somewhat intrigued about this and will definitely tune in to check it out), NBC – among the TON of pilots they’re ordering – are reviving “Wonder Woman.” It won’t, I’m sure, be the campy WW I grew up with starring Linda Carter. I’m betting it will be “hip” and modern. They’ve cast Adrianne Palicki in the role (she’s been in a number of things – the first incarnation of Kara on Smallville, the girlfriend of one of the dudes on Supernatural, a signifcant role in Friday Night Lights, as well as some movies and I think one other TV series that didn’t last long). Let’s just say I think there will be PLENTY of interest in “the new Wonder Woman,” so NBC isn’t going to “need” CHUCK to satisfy the “Comic Con” thing.

    I also wonder if with the seemingly “revolving door” of writers, the (necessary) budget cutting every year, and the lack of promotion of the show, if Zach Levi and Yvonne Strahovski (who have the greatest potential of the cast to “breakout” and become more well known) may also be sniffing around for something else. It’s one thing to have a regular, paying job in Hollywood – I understand that. But they’re getting to the point where they both can probably afford to take the risk to start looking at other projects and possibilities. (Personally, I would have LOVED to have seen Yvonne cast as the new W.W., but since CHUCK’s future is uncertain, you couldn’t cast her in another series that starts next year (or at least the pilot for it).

    Anyway, that’s why I’m enjoying every episode that season 4 has left for us. And I’m STILL doing all the things I’ve always done to “help” the show. Subway, viewing again online, buying the stuff (which most of it by now is getting kind of stale) from the CHUCK site on the NBC.COM “Store,” etc., etc. I just wonder, however, if we’re on our last breath. Hope not.

    Until they tell us “it’s over,” Keep on Chuckin’ everybody!!!

    • jason says:

      rick – I sometimes see you post on TVBTN once in a while, maybe other places too, I think your unbridled enthusiasm and passion sends a very positive vibe into the chuck-verse – I encourage you to keep doing that and I submit it does more good than you might realize!

    • Faith says:

      Without hi-jacking Dave’s post (sorry Dave), I do worry about the future of Chuck but that’s kind of our MO right? We’re perennial cancellation bear meat and yet we never say die.

      A couple of things to address your concerns:
      1. The new wonder woman, of which I am a huge fan has not been getting favorable reviews on the script leaks that has been leaked all over cyberspace. There are a small but loud minority that doesn’t want this project to happen. I want it to happen but I want them to respect the name and the legacy so I’m remaining hopeful that they can and will do that. If it doesn’t, we could very well be looking at yet another failed project by NBC and this time they’d have dragged one of the best and most loved pop icons there ever was. In that case, I wish they had gone for campy instead because campy probably would have been better.
      Also I don’t think the new wonder woman will be a mid-season replacement, it’ll be coming in the fall so if we hold steady through our 24 order season and everyone else falters, we have a shot of being renewed regardless of the WW buzz. Best case scenario we get a 22 order season for 100 episodes and we get slotted in the same day as WW and benefit from its buzz.
      2. While the numbers are discouraging I don’t think we’re hopeless. Chuck gets almost guaranteed numbers on a weekly basis with little to no promotion. NBC is paying chump change for this show while shows it pays a lotttt of money to fails so I think at worst we could be looking at getting moved to Fridays a la Fringe. Obvious there could be another at worst, but I really would rather not go there :(.

      Back on topic (sorry again Dave!), I think by far the biggest difference in the first half of the season was the “all in” aspect of Chuck and Sarah. And I think that was more than just a welcome change, it was very lovely to see. Well technically they were always all in, but this time there’s a confidence in the emotion and the commitment between them. Plus you actually see them working it out together (interestingly enough this was foreshadowed in the Anniversary episode which did a good job setting the scene for all the themes this season, but I do agree in hindsight a lot less awesome compared to others).

      RE: FOD, funny one of the best songs (well for me) came from that episode and I have been playing it repeatedly ever since: Hiding Place. So even though one may not like a/that particular epi (me) it has its redeeming qualities lol.

      • atcDave says:

        No problem with a renewal theme popping up here. Chuck’s affordability and steady numbers are likely it’s chief assets. But if those ratings continue to slowly degrade, they will pull the plug at some point. We can only keep fighting for one more season.

        Faith you summed up Fear of Death very well (funny how this has become a Fear of Death thread. I knew there was a good reason why I was hesitant to admit not hating it); not a great episode, but a few worthy moments.

      • weaselone says:

        I wouldn’t be surprised or particularly unhappy if Chuck received a season 5 and was placed on Friday.

      • atcDave says:

        Friday would work for me! I know it’s considered a graveyard, but a loyal, steady audience might be a good recipe for a weak night.

      • armySFC says:

        i agree as well, if chuck pulled the same numbers on friday as it does now it would be a lock for another season. while friday has been called the night of death, could it be worse than the slot it sits in now? its up against too many popular shows.

      • weaselone says:

        I strongly suspect that if Chuck gets an additional season it will be the last regardless of on which night they place it. Plus to some extent I think that’s for the best given there isn’t too much further the writers can go with their favorite character.

        By favorite character, I mean Morgan of course. The writers enjoy making the Chuck, Sarah and Casey characters suffer. When I say suffer, I don’t mean like Morgan getting zapped by high voltage, breaking his thumbs, or being estranged from his love interest for nearly 24 hours because he’s on the radar of a 6-foot red head that wants to suck his beard off. I’m talking prolonged suffering with very little awesome factor involved.

        Morgan’s already stolen the mantle of Captain Awesome this season while the old holder of the title has been a nervous wreck. Next season he probably gets bitten by a radioactive spider. It’s tough to see where they would go from there.

  8. thinkling says:

    Thanks Dave, for reminding me of my own “highs” from Season 4 … all without the aid of Vicodin.

    I pretty much agree with your assessment, except for Gobbler, which I viewed as a strong episode, in light of how the whole arc played out by the end of Push Mix.

    What I find interesting in retrospect is Anniversary. Remember all the summer tension over how S4 would be, especially Chuck’s lying and keeping things from Sarah … how they would handle the relationship … if Chuck would be back in the CIA … how soon he would tell Sarah about his mom … how long we’d have to suffer with the Chuck/Morgan team? Remember how pleased we were with Anniversary? If I recall it erased a lot of our fears, and we raved about the episode. Ha! And now many of us, me included, consider it one of the weakest episodes. In fact, for me it is the weakest episode. But even as the runt of the litter, I still really like it.

    I don’t think there’s a bad episode in all of S4 to date (1-15). Well, I’m glad you found something productive to do with your medical leave. Thanks for sharing it with us.

    • atcDave says:

      Yeah I agree about Anniversary. It was not a bad episode, just my least favorite of S4. That has to be a record, even S2 had a couple of episodes I actually disliked.

    • silvercat says:

      I totally agree with you, Thinkling. I remember thinking at the time Anniversary aired that it was definitely a good start for Season 4. As it turned out, the episodes just kept getting better and better for me, except for Cubic Z which was okay but not as good as subsequent eps. I am also one of the few fans who enjoyed Fear of Death because Sarah’s deep love and concern for Chuck, and his importance to her, was so much in evidence. For me it was a call back to The Tooth.

      I particularly liked the scene where she yells out to Rye, “What are you doing in OUR home?” I also thought she was definitely right on to tell Chuck he’s not a spy, “at least not now.”

      For me, there wasn’t a bad episode in the first 14 of Season 4, I’d just say Anniversary and Cubic Z are my least favorite because I haven’t rewatched them as much as the rest. Based on my rewatch record, my favorites are, in this order, Phase Three, Push Mix, Seduction Impossible and Balcony (because of the proposal scene).

      As for Season 5, I definitely want it and wish those who say they wish the show would just end would stop pretending to be fans. I realize Chuck is on the bubble again, but I’m not going to fret about it. My favorite shows usually are. I just hope if Chuck goes bye, bye, I”ll still have Fringe.

    • joe says:

      Hum… I don’t think I ever tried mixing Chuck with Vicodin… Being one of those boomers who invented sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll, I appreciate Dave’s adventurous spirit. But it sounds DANGEROUS! I’ve always been conservative about such things.

      Me, I regularly over-indulge in organic endorphins generated by moderate exercise, supplemented by heavy doses of music from the show.

      It’s the only way to fly!

      “Oh wow, man. Look at the colors!”

  9. I liked Anniversary, and I don’t feel like it’s the weakest episode. The sexting scene between Sarah and Morgan is just too hilarious! 😉

    Suitcase and Cubic Z (I love ‘freaking out’ Sarah! Time Machine!) were a lot of fun. I didn’t like Coup d’État that much but I can’t really put my finger on why.

    I liked Couch Lock and Aisle of Terror. I disagree with you Dave about the end though. I didn’t find the resolution satisfying at all, even though I loved First Fight. That episode was a lot of fun. One of my favorite of the season actually. Still, I loved the fight in the fight but this “really believe in me, even if you think I’m wrong” was just ridiculous.

    FOD is the episode I disliked the most. Phase Three was awesome. Leftovers didn’t really stand out, it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t extremely good either.

    I loved Balcony. I liked Gobbler a lot, I think it was a very strong episode, but the end was bad. Especially since they didn’t address it at all in Push Mix and even have Mary lecturing Sarah… Push Mix contained A LOT of greatness but Sarah was completely useless in that episode and I didn’t like that at all. Why one of them has to be weak for the other to be great? I’m hoping that in 4.24 both Chuck & Sarah have big hero moments TOGETHER.

    • alladinsgenie4u says:

      Why one of them has to be weak for the other to be great? I’m hoping that in 4.24 both Chuck & Sarah have big hero moments TOGETHER.

      They just cant seem to write two strong individuals together. For one to have his/her hero moments the other has to start acting below their IQ level.

  10. Rick Holy says:

    Might as well chime in. I thought Fear of Death was definitely one of the worst episodes of this season – and would even put it in with some of the worst episodes of CHUCK ever. Just the whole premise – and I’m saying this about a show whose central premise stretches belief – was, um, let’s just say WEAK. I wanted to say STUPID, but I’ll go with WEAK.

    Robert Englund could have been much better used. The whole “Aisle of Terror” thing was ridiculous. And – nothing personal – but I just didn’t care for Rob Riggle – or his character – or both. And for those who have pointed out some of the really BAD special effects (I understand the cost cutting), there were some real doosies in FOD. The one with Chuck hanging off the gondola – awful! They should have just eliminated it. It looked like a wooden doll swinging in the wind.

    There were SOME funny moments, but just not a good episode for me at all. Just the whole idea of trying to “scare” him into flashing the Intersect back into action was a bit too much. I had no problem with the ending and the phone call, etc. It was just about everything BEFORE the ending that HURT. Rob Riggle getting shot – his reaction to it – and the fall out of the gondola, The Belgian “capturing” Chuck, and Sarah trying to reach Chuck – no problem with any of that. I actually thought that was pretty good – just not good enough to make up for most everything that came before it.

    Oh, yeah. Almost forgot. The whole “you’re not a spy” thing. They could have found a different and “better” way for Sarah to express her concern about Chuck’s safety. After four seasons of missions – and great “successes,” he may be an on occasion bumbling spy, but he’s definitely a spy. Sarah spent most all of season 3 lamenting that he had BECOME a spy. Then to state, “But you’re NOT a spy!” Again, I understand what she was trying to accomplish, but there could have been a better way for it to have been done.

    So 2+2 =4……. and F.O.D. = one of MY lest favorite episodes of CHUCK this season (which has otherwise been very good).

    • Rick Holy says:

      Oops – am I confusing/combining two episodes here??? Sorry. Beat me with the “stupid” stick (just not too hard). 🙂 I think I need an Intersect in my head to straighten this all out.

      Anyway – did enjoy C.A.T. Squad!! 🙂

  11. Big Kev says:

    Haven’t had the same benefit as Dave of a full rewatch, but here’s my 2c on S4 so far.
    I liked Anniversary. Opening episodes are notoriously hard to write, getting us back into the characters while setting up the season, and all the while having to be entertaining in its own right. I thought it did a really good job establishing a new (funnier) tone, while making MamaB enigmatic and very dangerous.
    Suitcase and CubicZ just didn’t quite work for me. The idea of Sarah not unpacking after so long and the eternally falling engagement ring just crossed my personal line from acceptable contrivance into facepalming, and I couldn’t get past that. The payoffs were good in Suitcase (as was the catfight) – but the setups will always drag the episodes down for me.
    Loved Coup D’Etat. Perfect standalone, campy, OTT romp – laugh out loud funny, crackling dialogue. Great start for Kristin Newman.
    Loved Couch Lock too. Chuck and Sarah as a good spy team, no whining, no neuroses, and no relationship issue of the week. Priceless Morgan and Casey comedy and by far the best use of Jeffster. The season was beginning to pick up pace, but after 2 fluffs and 2 standalones, I was getting impatient to get back to the real story.
    Could have done without the second half of the Wheelright story in AoT, but a great episode for the Sarah/MamaB faceoff, and the organic, dramatic ending. Set up First Fight beautifully, and FF is my favourite of the season by a distance, funny, dramatic, well acted, unpredictable and beautifully written by LaFranc and Judkins. LindaH and TimD are compelling on screen, I’m invested in both of their stories, Chuck and Sarah are dealing with real issues but in a fun way. We’re cooking with gas, at this point.
    Then FOD, and it all comes to a screeching halt. I remember thinking “meh” at the time, but not awful – but it gets worse on rewatch, especially in comparison to the excellence of the lead in episodes. A serious momentum killer for the season, both for the story as a whole and for the damage that it does to individual characters.
    Phase Three I loved, and Yvonne’s performance is possibly the standout one of the series to date. Damage repaired from FOD, Chuck back and hopefully with enough proof of Sarah’s love to banish the neuroses for a while.
    Leftovers to Gobbler is where the season loses me. Dalton is still compelling, but I’m asking serious Q’s about MamaB’s competence at this point, the idea of a 20 year platonic relationship between MamaB and a psycho who’s in love with her is just a bit too much to swallow, and the premise of Balcony would have been fine over half an episode, but causes serious pacing issues to the arc stretched out over a whole episode. So by the time we get to Gobbler, Sarah’s undercover mission just feels awfully rushed to me, because there was just too much filler in the previous 3.
    All credit to LaFranc and Judkins though – Push Mix delivered despite those setup issues. It’s funny, packs an emotional punch and has some great twists. Would have been a worthy series finale.
    Seduction Impossible – see line for Coup D’Etat.
    CAT Squad – Wootton’s best, but still filler, similar feel to Role Models.
    So – 2 outstanding episodes, 7 very good ones – but 6 fillers, which is too many. If they can reduce the fillers in the last 9 eps, the season could well become a great one for me – but it’s not there yet.

    • OldDarth says:

      Your views on the good and weak episodes line up pretty well with my picks Kev except I thought the Aisle of Terror totally fell apart with the ridiculous defusing scene of the bomb. Not an iota of proper handling protocols in place for hazardous materials. Anyone notice the biggest plot contrivances take place in the Castle and/or BuyMore? Another sign that the BuyMore has out lived it’s usefulness.

      Using those episode evaluations as a launching pad I would add that while this season may have its moments of levity and fun; the trade off is that it has no teeth, no tension, and never any sense of danger.

      The big problem?

      Chuck has been in encased in carbonite for vast portions of the season.

      The show runs a Robin Hood mode of writing. All of Chuck’s endearing qualities have been given to Morgan without giving him any replacement qualities. Sarah is on a season of emotional growth while Chuck remains stagnant with the occasional regression – emotionally and as a spy. A perfect microcosm example of this Robin Hood mode of writing is MamaB and Volkoff. When MamaB had the spotlight she kicked ass and intrigued. Volkoff shows up and MamaB becomes invisible.

      Throw in the shift in focus to relationships and family, the total abandonment of Chuck becoming a hero, nay a superhero – didn’t Chris Fedak mention that this was the overall arc of the show at one time? – and concluding this is the most underwhelming season so far is an easy call to make already at this point in the season.

      When the favorite male character on the show is a supporting one, aka Morgan Grimes, and not your lead; that is a big misfire.

      And yes this is my, and only my, opinion which I am aware runs counter to the majority of posters here.

      If nothing else I have left you all with discussion points.

      Glad many of you are loving this season. For myself the passion dimmed a great deal for this show with another clumsy, predictable and toothless seasonal arc in the first thirteen this season.

      • weaselone says:

        Personally, I don’t like the new and improved Morgan character for all the reason’s you’ve listed. I also feel things come just too easy for him-the job, the girl, the spying gig and the moments of pure awesomeness. It doesn’t make him a good character, it makes him an irritating contrivance.

      • atcDave says:

        I do agree some of Morgan’s growth has been at Chuck’s expense, especially when Chuck takes Morgan’s foolish advice. But given my primary interest in the show has always been the fun and funny; not anything involving “serious” spy work, I’ve been mostly very happy with the show.
        In that fun context, I found Volkoff to be a very effective, even terrifying villain. I also thought there was plenty of drama and tension in other moments. But as I said, my bias is wanting a fun show; I don’t expect it to be anything else.

      • jason says:

        ironic, some of those not getting enough surprise like morgan, morgan has been written with zero drama, he does not discover soloman’s knowledge, he simply is gifted it, he did not win alex, she kissed him, he has not had to keep alex, no PLI’s or what would be so so funny, a LI for alex

        when karina came on the show, casey did not find out about carina and morgan’s past, nor did alex – although a FF’d thru that so quick, I might have missed it if they did, again if they did, it sure made no impact on the show, on morgan, on anything,

        all morgan did is force karina to be attached to his hip is her ep, what a waste of karina, one of my fav chuck guest stars until this time, when she was rendered irrelevant by the show’s new 800 lb gorilla – although I must admit, he does not make the show repulsive, simply for a few minutes each episode, I can FF without missing anything relevant to the story.

        PS: I never FF morgan and sarah, and only on occasion FF chuck and morgan, all other morgan, FF – although of late, he is growing on me when he has to deal with jeffster, I feel like jeffster puts him thru what he puts me thru on the rest of the show – LOL

    • Big Kev says:

      I’m interested to hear Ernie’s perspective on Chuck’s Hero’s Journey this season, OD, because like you, I think that ball has been dropped this season. Boy to Man to Spy to – what? Fiance? I’m not sure where the writers are taking the character at this point, and Sarah is coming to dominate the story. We need some balance in the last 9.
      Much of this is personal taste, but I do think there is one objective point to be made – it’s never a good idea as a storyteller if the audience knows what’s coming. This has been the one season of Chuck so far where I haven’t been surprised by by anything I’ve seen – save the Tuttle/Volkoff switch. A clear purpose for Chuck the character, and a sense of unpredictability in the story (or “drama”, to use the word that some of you don’t like!) are the 2 things I most want to see in the final 9.
      That said, this little retrospective made me remember how much I really enjoyed most of the first 9. I’ve been underwhelmed since the hiatus, and harsh in some of my posts as a result – but the first 9 were mostly excellent, and if they repeat that in the final 9, I’ll be singing a very different tune about the season as a whole.

      • OldDarth says:

        “A clear purpose for Chuck the character, and a sense of unpredictability in the story (or “drama”, to use the word that some of you don’t like!) are the 2 things I most want to see in the final 9.”

        Kev – again totally agree.

      • atcDave says:

        Well I’m glad if you enjoyed the start of the season Kev. I would agree Tuttle/Volkoff was one of their better surprise moments, but I don’t remember more than one or two good surprises a season anyway, so my expectations haven’t been exactly let down. In fact, I think I’ll make that stronger and say I haven’t ever expected to be surprised by this show, which is likely why it has been effective on those few occasions when I have been.

    • alladinsgenie4u says:

      All of Chuck’s endearing qualities have been given to Morgan without giving him any replacement qualities.

      This^^ That’s why I don’t vent too much on Chuck’s regression. I blame the writers for this.

      When the favorite male character on the show is a supporting one, aka Morgan Grimes, and not your lead; that is a big misfire.

      Although I wouldn’t go so far as to call Morgan my favorite character (far from it) I agree that the writers have somewhat” screwed the pooch” when it comes to the Chuck and Morgan dynamic. Frankly speaking there has been a Morgan overkill and it is now assuming gigantic proportions as the episodes pile up. Will we see the same trend in the remaining episodes? I fully expect this to continue. It is ironic that they are concentrating so much on fleshing out Morgan that they are harming Chuck (do they even realize it? )

      • Big Kev says:

        I think the writers have written themselves into trouble in a way by making Chuck such an “open book” from the first episode. In terms of his essential character, there’s not much that we know about Chuck that we didn’t know after the first 4 or 5 episodes – he’s honest but uncertain, loyal but abandoned, fiercely protective of his family and friends and hopelessly in love with Sarah.
        So his character progression has to come from external things – hence the man to boy to spy meme of the Hero’s Journey that we’ve all talked about. One of the good things about Season 3 (I thought) was that it gave us some new insight into Chuck, put him into some new situations (the willing spy, the handler) and we learned some things about his character that we hadn’t known.
        This season, it’s more difficult for the writers. I thought that the next stage in Chuck’s journey was going to be about him accepting his destiny, and taking on Orion’s legacy – and he still may – but we’re not there yet.
        The flipside is that it’s easier for the writers to write Sarah. She hasn’t been fleshed out nearly as much, there’s more room for growth and self-realisation – and by a happy coincidence, the fans are screaming for her backstory, and Yvonne is clearly the best actor in the cast. I think it’s a combination of those things that gives us a Sarah-centric S4.

      • alladinsgenie4u says:

        Kev

        I get your point. I believe JC also put forward a similar point a while back. He said that Chuck’s character has progressed a lot – both emotionally as well as a spy in previous seasons and in this season Sarah is playing catch up – on the emotional side that is. That is also why to some fans he may sometimes appear to be stagnant in S4.

  12. Rick Holy says:

    Depending on your perspective, this either had absolutely nothing to do with this thread – or everything to do with this thread. Either way, thought I’d share it. A very good friend of mine and her husband just “reported” that they started getting “CHUCK” through Netflix. (They started with Season 1). After 8 episodes, they’re both “ADDICTED!” (Their words, not mine).

    It’s never “too late” to get someone turned on to “CHUCK.” They only need to take that first peak for themselves! 🙂

    • atcDave says:

      I would say that is perfectly relevant Rick. Thanks for that encouragement!

    • joe says:

      And ADDICTED is exactly the right word, too. 😉

    • herder says:

      That is why I was disappointed that NBC dropped Chuck from Saturday Nights (yet continues to air LOLA which is on hiatus) as it allows someone who has not seen the show to stumble upon it. The best ad for the show is, as always, the show itself.

      • atcDave says:

        I think the lack of re-runs has hurt Chuck from the beginning. It not only makes it easier to pick up new viewers, it keeps it fresh in the mind of casual viewers, who otherwise can stray away during a break.

      • jason says:

        reruns is how I first found chuck, between S2 and S3, on the sci fi channel if I am not mistaken a little mini marathon, I watched a few, and quickly caught up by the start of season 3, I was a fan for a few days b4 the show betrayed me, given the number of viewers who watched Pink Slip, I don’t think I was alone, probably was an opportunity for the show that can never be duplicated – Oh well

      • armySFC says:

        dave im not sure about reruns hurting chuck from the beginning. the first two seasons were pretty strong. there are there are many shows that don’t show reruns during the time off. i will agree that this year it hurt. what hurts more is the lack of promotion. NBC seems to push its big shows (SVU) or new ones (pick any from this year). that part makes no sense to me.

      • atcDave says:

        I think awareness for the show is so low, many people have still never heard of it. Summer in particular is when people often check-out different programming, as so much of the regular stuff is in re-run. Except Chuck, it disappears from the schedule. So no one looking to experiement during the off season will ever find it. We have gotten started on so many series by summer discovery, I think its a big loss.
        And I think NBC has decided no big push for Chuck anymore since the last one went so badly. That would be the big build-up to S3, and it worked, S3 started to very good ratings. And then washed away with the misery arc. (pretty easy to track the S3 downhill skid that didn’t level off until Honeymooners). I think they likely feel the show has found its stable core and isn’t likely to generate any big changes one way or the other anymore.

      • armySFC says:

        dave, sadly i think your right. their big push was before and during the 4.11-4.13 arc. i think that was the most i have seen it pushed. interviews were out, twitter was busy and promos were plentiful. yet it didn’t help. i think were at where its going to be and hope it doesn’t fall off.

      • armySFC says:

        dave season 3 went from 3 to 2.3 with the beard. tic tac went to 1.9 it upticed a bit in hero and other guy to 2.1. it then fell to a low 1.7 in subway and ring 2. during the misery arc ratings were fairly stable. from what i see looking at the ratings from when shaw first appeared till other guy rating only dropped by .6.

      • atcDave says:

        Only .6 army? That was the big drop. Since Honeymooners its been between 1.7 – 2.1 the whole time. We found bottom. And don’t forget the drop actually started at Pink Slip. Half the viewers I know who quit in S3 never even made it to Three Words. Pink Slip was the true start of the misery arc; Sham was just a sub-arc.

      • armySFC says:

        dave heres the numbers by episode

        1 “Chuck Versus the Pink Slip” 7.7 3.0
        2 “Chuck Versus the Three Words” 7.2 2.9
        3 “Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte” 7.4 2.6
        4 “Chuck Versus Operation Awesome” 6.7 2.5
        5 “Chuck Versus First Class” 7.0 2.5
        6 “Chuck Versus the Nacho Sampler” 6.7 2.4
        7 “Chuck Versus the Mask” 6.6 2.2
        8 “Chuck Versus the Fake Name” 6.7 2.4
        9 “Chuck Versus the Beard” 6.6 2.3
        10 “Chuck Versus the Tic Tac” 5.8 1.9
        11 “Chuck Versus the Final Exam” 5.4 1.9
        12 “Chuck Versus the American Hero” 5.6 2.1
        13 “Chuck Versus the Other Guy” 5.8 2.1
        14 “Chuck Versus the Honeymooners” 6.0 2.1
        15 “Chuck Versus the Role Models” 5.3 1.9
        16 “Chuck Versus the Tooth”
        17 “Chuck Versus the Living Dead”
        18 “Chuck Versus the Subway” 4.9 1.7
        19 “Chuck Versus the Ring: Part II” 5.1 1.8

      • armySFC says:

        sorry it looked better in the box.

      • herder says:

        They were shooting the Ring PartII the week that Final Exam played, I remember thinking that the second week in a row with a 1.9 would be a downer for the wrap up party.

      • atcDave says:

        Thanks Army, that nicely proves my point. Maybe the core was reached a little sooner than I recalled; but that shows nothing above 2.1 since Beard. S3 started with high numbers as all the promotion and good buzz from S2 worked their magic; but it was mostly downhill from there. I am sure if S3 had been more like S4 the drop would have been no where near as dramatic (yes I know I can’t prove something that didn’t happen. pure conjecture). But a .9 drop during the misery arc (3.01 – 3.12) is stunning no matter how you look at it. Every casual viewer I know was so excited after S2; by 3.12 half were no longer watching, and the other half were no longer excited.

      • atcDave says:

        Thanks for that detail Herder, I’d forgotten. We were discussing yesterday when they knew they’d screwed up, that had to be a big clue!

      • armySFC says:

        very true and that’s why i posted it. the entire season fell. from when shaw entered the picture the drop was what .3? from when they got together it was .4. the numbers for ring 2 are skewed. the first hour was 1.7 the second hour was 1.8. i used 1.7 because that’s consistent with the previous episode.

  13. Even though I’ve been critical towards some aspects of the show and the overall arc, the show is really FUN again, and I’m pretty excited with the rest of the season.

    Vivian, Robin Given’s character, the wedding, Volkoff & Mama B, maybe a spy story for the Woodcombs… There is potential and it starts with Masquerade!

  14. uplink2 says:

    Not that overall audience matters much but we can spin just like the rest of the business. Chuck was the 5th highest rated show on NBC this week in terms of overall audience. It also beat every single Thursday comedy except The Office in overall audience. Only The Office, SVU, Biggest Loser and Harry’s Law did better overall and Harry’s Law had the same demo as Chuck. What will happen next is anybodies guess but NBC really has huge problems right now and Chuck isn’t one of the biggest.

    • armySFC says:

      uplink yep. that’s my theory on chuck getting renewed if it holds steady. its the lesser of many evils for them. like dave says they don’t promote because they have a small but steady base. that’s another reason i feel chuck would do well on friday. the base would move and with the drek that’s on friday, a half way decent show like chuck would draw better. it would be easy to get viewers away from the shows on at the same time.

    • Rick Holy says:

      Absolutely right my friend. And think of all the promotion those Thursday night shows get. Parks and Rec did get a higher demo rating than CHUCK – but the total viewers was lower. But I would bet that most of those shows that performed around the same as CHUCK – or even worse – cost NBC alot more to produce. Combine two of those half hour shows into one hour of viewing (ratings). Figure what they pay people like Amy Pohler, Chevy Chase, Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, etc., in addition to the money they spend on promotion.

      Return on the dollar invested is the bottom line for any network. Ratings are definitely the most significant part of that, but they’re not the ONLY part. I would bet CHUCK’s return on investment is a lot better than a good number of NBC shows that are doing only slightly better than CHUCK in the ratings – and there are a whole bunch of those shows.

      If we don’t drop further – and I AM nervous about that possibility – I still think we have a chance at renewal as a “keep in your back pocket” show for NBC. Some new shows next year WILL tank. You need something to replace them with – and you’re not going to have EVERYTHING be new shows (they cost A LOT to get started). So you can – at the least – have CHUCK as something to pull out of your back pocket that you know – or at least can have some degree of certainty – of what your return is going to be.

      • armySFC says:

        they will drop that’s a given. all shows do later in the spring. the question comes when. if it starts dropping now its bad. if it drops along with the others not so bad. i think that networks take that seasonal drop into consideration.

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