Another Break, Still More… oh never mind…

That’s right, Dave’s back with more fan fiction reviews. After my previous post on the topic where I commented on how fan fiction output seemed to be down; it really seems the rate of posting has picked up again. Maybe it was just a seasonal or random trend. After the jump I have a few recommendations for this late season break.

You’d think after doing this for so many months I’d be about out of suggestions; but really, not yet. The Chuck fan community is truly blessed with a number of creative and talented amateur writers. As I’ve said before, there is quite a range of age and skill levels involved. I’m not going to claim everything I recommend is professional quality, but a surprising amount of it is, or pretty darn close. What I will promise is; every story I recommend is a lot of fun if you’re a Chuck fan with taste like mine (gee, did I really just promise nothing?). Those of you familiar with my regular comments on the show will know that means some combination fun and exciting. And things will end (mostly) well for Chuck and Sarah without any great damage done to our favorite characters.

My first recommendation this time is for an “in progress” work. It is “The Revenge of The Bartowski” by Nervert. This is a sequel to “Chuck vs. The Pacific Northwest” which I previously recommended very highly. That previous piece really is one of the best of the best. This AU breaks from canon after Fake Name, but don’t let that scare you off. The writer takes considerably more care in restoring things that went wrong than canon ever did. The current story starts with Chuck and Sarah in a secret relationship. They know Shaw is crooked and are trying to bring him down, but he is still a part of their team, so this will get tricky.

The strengths of this writer are many. He handles tension and action well; he has a nice touch with the main characters and their relationship, making it funny and sweet in equal measure; and he even manages to do some pretty good things with Sarah and Ellie, while pushing Sarah way outside of her comfort zone. And as I mentioned elsewhere, I would like to nominate Nervert for a special award for “Worst Sarah Walker Birth Name Ever.” And if you missed the hint, that means even post- Fake Name, this Shaw knows nothing!

So far this story could be read in a couple of hours, and would be rated PG-13 for some adult situations.

My second recommendation will be a very old story. It is “Chuck vs. The Missing Memories” by Ersk4. I have previously recommended stories by ersk4, and I even have the writer tagged as a favorite on my own page; but I know nothing about him/her, except that I like almost everything they’ve written. This particular story starts with Chuck awakening from a coma in hospital, surrounded by friends and family; except he doesn’t recognize the beautiful blonde sitting by his bedside. Chuck thinks it’s 2006, and he seems to have misplaced the last 10 years.

Yeah I know, we’ve all seen amnesia stories before. I’ve even recommended one here before! This story basically gives us a snapshot of Chuck’s life in the future, through his own disbelieving eyes. It breaks from canon early in S2, so there’s no Intersect 2.0 or misery arc to worry about. It can be read in about 2 hours and would be rated PG. (just a heads up; this is different from “Chuck vs. the Missing Years” by Malamoo. Which is also an excellent story, is also on my favorites list, has been recommended by me here before, and starts in a similar manner! The two stories play out very differently)

I try to recommend one-shots when I do these lists; they are simpler stories and much faster reads. So this time I’ll mention “Bridezilla vs. the Extreme Wedding” by MyNameIsJeffNImLost. The title alone gives a good explanation of what this is about. This is just pure silly fun. We won’t find any deep character analysis or intricate plot points here. This is Sarah running her wedding, her way, plain and simple. Very funny stuff, and you might even feel a little sorry for Lester… nah, probably not.
Bridezilla can be read in about 20 minutes and would be rated PG, only because Carina is in it.

A few on-going works continue. “The Long Brick Road” by billandbrick has been updating faithfully every Thursday morning. When last we left them, Chuck and Sarah, and Cole and Ellie, have been living off the grid together for about a week and accidentally (yeah, we can blame Chuck as always) discovered an evil plot by drug lords that they will need to deal with while staying hidden.
On a very similar note; “Chuck and Sarah vs. Themselves” by Ninjavanish is down to its last few chapters, and is in a very similar spot; with Chuck and Sarah hiding off grid together when Chuck discovers an assassination plot. So they will need to save the president anonymously. This is really one of the great epics of fan fiction, and would require a time commitment like one was reading a novel. With only four chapters to go (and the next one already in beta) its a safe bet this will get finished.
Frea O’Scanlin, who is no stranger to this site, also posted an update to “What Fates Impose” a few days ago. But those have become few and far between, hopefully she’ll find time to finish that great work up soon!

As always, everything I recommend can be found by following the links under the fan fiction header on our side bar. My own favorites list is getting pretty long. But I have had many hours of fun putting it together.

– Dave

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About atcDave

I'm 54 years old and live in Ypsilanti, Michigan. I'm happily married to Jodie. I've been an air traffic controller for 31 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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58 Responses to Another Break, Still More… oh never mind…

  1. Robert H says:

    atcdave, thanks so much for these updated fan fiction posts and I hope they continue.
    They are really appreciated and offer alternatives to what is actually seen on the show
    and hopefully will continue long after the show ends.

    I certainly appreciate the time and effort you have put into this. Thanks again.

  2. Robert H says:

    P.S. wonder if the producers or writers ever look at the fan fiction posts for ideas. It
    certainly couldn’t hurt and might even help. Anybody know if anybody on the show ever looks at this blog site or any other Chuck blogsites? Just curious, thanks.

    • atcDave says:

      Thanks Robert. You know how I got really hooked on fan fiction was during S3 when I was profoundly unhappy with the show. I know you’ve expressed a lot of discontent with the show this season, so it certainly makes sense if you still care for the characters or setting, that fan fiction would be a great outlet for you.

      I saw an interview a couple years ago where Chris Fedak was asked about fan fiction, he stated categorically he read none of it, because he never wanted to be accused of swiping someone else’s idea. I would guess that is a standard professional writer’s answer. How literally he can be taken is anyone’s guess.

      I don’t know if anyone with the show reads this blog specifically, but I am certain they pay attention to fan comments from somewhere. We’ve seen both interviews, and proof on screen, of them addressing many of our concerns, thoughts and ideas. So I think we do have some influence, but I wouldn’t count on any specific comment being seen by anyone.

    • bdaddydl says:

      I think it was Old Darth who introduced me to the phrase that Fan Fiction is wish fulfillment. I can see that, it helped me understand why fan fiction is a fav of fans and a bane to others. Well that has really shown itself in season 4. There is a lot of wish fulfillment in this season. The writers are doing a lot of that. Sometimes it works Phase 3, and sometimes it doesn’t.

      • atcDave says:

        Among the things I love about fan fiction is that you can tell a lot about fan ideas and feelings at various times in the show’s history. Including (or especially) things many writers wish had been done differently.
        I think its an excellent snapshot of viewer wishes and attitudes at different periods.

  3. Tamara Burks says:

    DrMcDuck wrote a pretty good set starting with Chuck vs Sweet Home Alabama and all are complete.

    • atcDave says:

      I’ve got a couple of DrMcDuck’s stories on my favorites list. I particularly like “Donkey Kong”, a silly and fun one-shot.

  4. Thanks for the endorsement, atcDave. I’m very flattered. Although you forgot to say Carina is wet. That might rate a PG-13.

    • atcDave says:

      I’m happy to recommend anything that makes me laugh as hard as that did! Yeah the wet part is certainly pushing the boundaries of family entertainment. Of course that’s also very Chuck-like.

    • bdaddydl says:

      If fan fiction is looked down upon by some people in the fandom (and it is) than the crossover is the red headed stepchild of Fan Fiction. Jeff who has been lost for a long time also wrote one of my favorite crossovers Castle vs the Law of Averages. Definitely worth a view. Its not a long read, under an hour, but it is a lot of fun.

      • atcDave says:

        Thanks for the recommendation on that bdaddy. I just finished it. There were some very fun moments. I guess I’m not that into the cross-over genre, so much of the story’s energy is invested in how the two casts perceive each other. Its kind of fun, but ultimately feels even less “authentic” than most fan fiction [to me].
        Again, I don’t mean to be too harsh, there really were some very fun moments in the story. And the parallels/tone of Charah and Caskett are very similar. But of course, the show universes are very different otherwise. I’d say Castle is more gritty or realistic while Chuck is more larger than life (Castle is realistic only in comparison to Chuck!).
        I am glad I read it though, it was fun.

  5. bdaddydl says:

    As a Dune fan there is a chapter in Revenge of the Bartowski that instantly went onto the list as one of my all time favorite updates. I will not say more because I dont want to spoil it for you.

    If you ever wanted to know what Chuck would look like if written by a motorcycle enthusiast than Chuck Vs the Walkabout is a fun read. The author has a dry sense of humor, and diverges from the storyline during the ring. I would rate it PG because this is written more for adult tastes, and it is ongoing.

    Finally, a story which has caught me by surprise is Sarah Vs the true friendship. Thereisanother wrote this little diddy. It separates from cannon right after suburbs. The author is definitely a huge shipper, and its become a joy to read. Chuck decides to stop the will they wont they and decides to change tactics on the beautiful spy. The result is all of the relationships change in the story. The way Ellie acts in this story put a smile on my face.

    • atcDave says:

      I’ve been following “Walkabout” with mixed feelings. I like the level of humor and I love the way the writer handles Sarah. But I really have problems with how Chuck himself is written; he is too serious, strong in very different ways from the Chuck of the show (more independent, which is of course a mixed blessing, and just doesn’t feel right to me), and he spends WAY too much time running away from his problems (especially taken in combination with the writer’s other ongoing story right now; he likes to portray a very flighty Chuck).

      • Mike says:

        I’m enjoying Chuck vs the Walkabout too. I like that the updates are coming at a fairly speedy pace. Unlike you, I don’t have a problem with how Chuck is portrayed. My problem is with Sarah. I find her whiny and clingy in this story. It’s still a great read and some of the things they have Papa B doing in the story are hilarious.

        Thanks for the fan fiction suggestions. I was never much of a fan fiction follower before I tried some of your suggestions. Now I can’t seem to put the stuff down.

      • bdaddydl says:

        I agree the characters are a bit off, but there is so much fun in the story. Orion is much more….real. Plus it appears there is a lot of fun to come

      • Tamara Burks says:

        I love Papa B in Walkabout. You can easily imagine him doing that if we’d gotten to see more of him in canon.

      • bdaddydl says:

        Oh yeah and his new characters are NOT love interests just interesting.

      • atcDave says:

        I do agree about liking Orion a lot.

        Mike I’m glad I was able to help you find some stories you enjoy.

  6. uplink2 says:

    Thanks so much for doing this Dave. As you know I have only recently started reading FF but have found myself unable to put down many of your suggestions. I’m up to probably about 8-10 so far and have been given a number of other writers to check out by some folks on Twitter yesterday. I thank them all for that. Last night I spent about 4 hours reading a number of pieces.

    This part of my journey through the fanbase has been something completely new for me and I’m enjoying it a great deal. As you say some are definitely amateurs but many have a real sense of the characters with a definite style I find appealing. So thanks again as this area has allowed me to be kind of excited about a possible cliffhanger at the end of the series. There will be much stuff written about that I’m sure. I just don’t want it to be about the wedding cliffhanger lol.

    • atcDave says:

      I am really glad Uplink that you, and so many others have found these reviews helpful and fun. I’ve been a nut about this stuff for almost two years now (started reading fan fiction right after S2), and I’m still finding good reads I hadn’t encountered before; so there is truly A LOT out there.

      agree about a wedding cliffhanger! They wouldn’t dare…

    • bdaddydl says:

      Be careful Dave is an enabler. First it was reading and now its writing. If it wasnt so much fun I would blame them. Instead I thank them.

  7. joe says:

    Dave, I may never get deeply into FFs, but that’s mostly out of sheer envy. It’s creative writing at a level of which I’m just not capable. Like you say, some of these guys are GOOD. (Uh, hi, Frea!)

    But I sure am grateful for your suggestions!

    Remember the old Star Trek manuals? There was even one that laid out the entire construction of the Enterprise. Great stuff and very creative without mentioning a single character. Someday you and I should write a book just outlining all of Castle in it’s various phases of construction, complete with Orange-Orange entrances and Casey-locker exits.

    • bdaddydl says:

      Do not let the modesty fool you. If you have read most of my fics. waiting on a woman especially, Joe’s hand prints are all over it.

      BTW Joe I even type out doctor on twitter most of the time.

    • Mess says:

      You know Joe I get what you mean, when you say some people that write FF are so good, you’d almost get envious. But you know, FF isn’t about how great a writer someone is, or anything like that. What makes FF great, what makes it fun, is the shared love for a show. It is that love, that passion for the show that shows in the work of those authors. That is the reason people mostly write when the show is crap, they need to vent, they know it could be better, they want it to be better, and so they make it better. Which also shows in that certain themes just get a lot more readers than others. But then that is my opinion. That is why I can enjoy the polished works, the ones of the talented writers like Frea, NinjaVanish and the amazing co-operation between Bill and Brick, but also that of writers with a little less talent.

      • joe says:

        You’re right about that, Mess. The passion often does come through.

        One thing about the show that I’ve tried to get across in various ways. It does have a tendency to bring out the best in the viewers, even the casual ones. It’s like the Star Trek franchise in that respect; appealing to our better angels.

        It works that way for people who have a writing talent too, it seems.

    • atcDave says:

      I can understand a little jealousy, especially if writing is something you’ve ever aspired to. To me it isn’t; I have many hobbies, including reading, but never writing. So I’m pretty unabashed about gushing enthusiasm.

  8. Robert H says:

    Appreciate all of the comments. Are the stories mentioned by bigdaddydl and atcdave in above comments like Walkabout as an example listed anywhere or are all of them in fan fiction? A lot of good stories are mentioned above but not where to find them. Please advise, thanks-anyone. Also any fan fiction at Sarah Walker Fan Girls or is that
    listed under fan fiction, too? Thanks.

    • Tamara Burks says:

      They’re on fanfiction.net under tv shows then Chuck.

    • atcDave says:

      Sorry I was off-line for a bit there Robert. But, what Tamara said!

      The fan fiction header at right has several links. Anything I mention as a favorite will be found by clicking on my favorites list. Some individual writers are listed; otherwise, just click on the fan fiction.net link, it will do all the initial sorting for you (fan fiction/tv/chuck). Then just put the title in the search box and you should go right to it.

  9. Tamara Burks says:

    Anybody notice the Chuck news about Bubble shows that is currently there. It listed as a pro for Chuck : a rabid fan base and perhaps NBC’s only drama that can blow up Twitter. Cons was about the recent sink in ratings being below the normal minimum for pickup.

  10. Robert H says:

    Thanks Tamara,atcdave, appreciate the info.

  11. Tamara Burks says:

    I don’t write but I plotbunny heavily. For instance I’d love to read a story where Chuck runs across Sarah and Bryce on mission (it ends Charah) pre Intersecting . Maybe have Chuck getting the Intersect later. Maybe have Sarah meet him first and think he’s cute and charming and then Bryce shows up and then Chuck turns cold. Possibly have it where Chuck inadvertantly blows Bryce and Sarah’s cover and ends up saving them though he tells Bryce I still hate you.

    Or a story that has them run across Papa or Mama B in the sourse of a mission with the parent run across knowing about Chuck’s involvement with the CIA and in Mama B’s case probably not recognizing Chuck at all.

    • Tamara Burks says:

      I hope any of this made sense , I have got a wicked migraine from the weather.

    • atcDave says:

      I believe you have said you’re reading Fates, right? Not quite what you said, but some real similarities; with Bryce and Sarah as partners (and more) meeting up with Chuck. Its not clear in the central story, but when you read the associated side stories you realize meeting Chuck ended Bryce and Sarah. Sarah then carried a torch for Chuck for a couple of years (in her usual conflicted, understated sort of way) until the main story starts.

  12. Tamara Burks says:

    I wonder if there is any fanfic that explored the fact that a few characters have a very distinct type and are only in a LTR because the person is against type.

    here’s 3

    Sarah- Men who remind her of her father in that they are manipulators and/or charming . Aka a scumbag fetish.

    Morgan – women who reject him and have to be chased (Alex is the exception) . Anna for instance rejected him when she was with him and wanted him back once he started snubbing her, Carina slept with him when he berated him but once he persued her , she ignored him.

    Carina – Men who reject her. She slept with Morgan when he berated her and presumably gave him the contact info he had but ignored him once he tried to contact her. Casey is easily seduced by her so she just handcuffs him to the bed and we don’t know if she actually ever slept with him.Carina of course is not in a LTR.

    • joe says:

      Tamara, I should spell out that LTR is “Long Term Relationship”, right? Hum… people who know about “Game”, PUAs and denizens of Roissy know more acronyms than anyone! 😉

      Someday I’m going to write a major piece on how Chuck either totally disproves Mystery or how we’re all hopeless dreamers who refuse to take the red pill.

    • atcDave says:

      And of course Tamara you left out Chuck’s type; short brunette nerd-girls (sorry, I know that’s a little more superficial than your examples, but it still works).

      • Tamara Burks says:

        I figured those 3 had the best illustration of thier type actually being detrimental to thier future happiness. With Chuck’s type (or is he thiers) there’s a good shot of finding someone with a good personality (Lou for instance) but with Sarah, Morgan and Carina’s type there’s little chance of happiness unless they go against type.

  13. dreamer93 says:

    i would also recommend chuck v.s the sister by yomomma222, it’s a highly underrated comedic piece set after push mix, and it’s practically finished, so you’re not left hanging.

    • BDaddyDL says:

      That fic is a lot of fun. It is in the M section, but not for sexual situations. Some of the characters have a very cavalier attitude toward killing.

      A lot of it is not necessarily in character, but it is a lot of fun. It reminds me of the type of energy as the old Saturday morning serials, short fun action filled chapters, definitely PG-13 probably R.

  14. Anonymous says:

    where can i read them?

    • atcDave says:

      On the right sidebar of this page you’ll see a header called “fan fiction”. Just hit “atcDave/favorites” to get the listing of my recommendations including everything I mentioned here. Some of the other stories brought up by others can be found by hitting the more generic “fan fiction.net” link that will take you to the full list of all Chuck fiction. From there you can type the title into the search box, or if it’s recent enough you’ll see it right on the front page.

  15. Barbadianchuckfan says:

    I am so glad I found these fan fiction stories, I don’t know what I would have done during the Chuckiatus especially now that school is on vacation in my country
    You guys have saved me 🙂 thanks alot

    • atcDave says:

      It makes my day when someone else is excited by fan fiction. I have had so much fun reading many wonderful stories; but I’m not much of a creative writer, so sharing it with fans like you makes it worthwhile!

      • Barbadianchuckfan says:

        Once again, THANK YOU! I am now reading my 5th fan fic- “Chuck vs The Sister” so I’ll be pretty busy during the Chuckiatus 🙂

  16. Nervert says:

    Hey, thanks for the endorsement, atcDave. And thanks for all the great suggestions. One of the difficulties for me with FF is the sheer volume of stories and the little amount of time I have (which I should be using to write more updates, I know; I’m getting there) so this is really helpful.

    Glad the name was “appreciated”.

    • atcDave says:

      Glad to have you visit our site Nervert! The volume of Chuck fan fiction is staggering, I’ve been reading it for two years and I still find things I’ve never seen before (that’s apart from what’s actually new). I love doing these reviews, as a non-writer its my main contribution to the community.

      Anytime you’re interested in more general Chuck talk we have very active discussions most days on other threads. But of course if you’d rather spend your free time writing the next chapter of “Revenge” no one here will complain…

      And I always appreciate a good laugh. You’ve managed to give a few big laughs in your stories; but the name was “Grunka” good!

  17. Crumby says:

    Dave, may I suggest a special Category or Tag for your fanfiction-related posts? Don’t know if I’m the only one, but I like to go back sometimes and re-read your suggestions or the comments. It would help.

    • atcDave says:

      I’ve thought about that before, but you’ve just given me the motivation. I’ll work on that today.

      • atcDave says:

        I’ve got a start on it. Later tonight I should have time to finish. It will just be a matter of selecting the category button at right and choosing “Fan Fiction”. That will take you to all past articles featuring my mini-reviews and recommendations. (4/6/2011)

  18. Tamara Burks says:

    There’s one that has 2 chapters so far called Chuck vs the bank robbery on ff.net. It has Ellie find out about the bank robbery when footage from the bank is shown on the tv in the same room where Ellie and Devon are having thier friends over and they all clearly see Chuck and Sarah robbing the bank.

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