Episode of the Week: Chuck vs The Ring II (3.19)

NBC Synopsis:  THE RING TARGETS CHUCK AND HIS TEAM–SCOTT BAKULA (“QUANTUM LEAP”) GUEST STARS- The Ring is closing in on Chuck (Zachary Levi) and Operation Bartowski. Fortunately, Chuck’s dad Steven (guest star Scott Bakula) is working hard to save his son. Meanwhile, Casey (Adam Baldwin) must secretly protect his daughter from the Ring, and Big Mike (Mark Christopher Lawrence) receives some serious news about the Buy More.

Chuck This Ranking: 13
Dave’s Ranking: Middle of the Pack

Full Write Ups: Chuck vs The Ring II (3.19) by Dave and Joe
Love Suits by Faith
Summertime Top Ten: Chuck vs Subway/Ring Pt. 2 by Faith

Alternatives: Season Three Alternatives: 3-17-S3/S4 Break by 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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27 Responses to Episode of the Week: Chuck vs The Ring II (3.19)

  1. Justin says:

    When the Buy More was destroyed in this finale, I thought they were heading towards a whole new status quo for the show next season. So imagine my disappointment when Season 4 came around and things were going back to the old status quo of the Buy More being a place where Chuck works and does spy work under the radar. As you know, atcDave, I corrected this mistake in AU Chuck.

    Part of me was also hoping that Chuck’s troubles with the Intersect was going to lead to him giving up the Intersect entirely and learning to cope with life without it then. Instead, the writers took the route of putting a Band-Aid on the problem.

    • atcDave says:

      Yeah Justin I think your AU took a more appealing route in several ways. Ultimately its more like what the show did for S5. Of course I would have been fine with that as early as S3. Get rid of the Intersect, let Chuck be a genius and mastermind, not so much the superhero.
      To me, the Intersect’s greatest function is as a gateway to get Chuck into the spy world in the very beginning. By the end of S2 that role is mostly complete.

      • Garnetflint says:

        Would you be able to tell us the title of the story or Justins FF user name, I’d like to look this up if I havn’t already read it. Thanks.

      • atcDave says:

        Justin never posted at ff.net, it’s a Chuck This exclusive!

        You can go back to the S3 Alternatives posts, I think he started around the second or third week, and he continued in one episode at a time installments all the way through S5.

      • Garnetflint says:

        thanks for that no wonder I couldn’t find it!

      • Justin says:

        atcDave, I just want to point out my installments went through S4, not S5. I thought it would be best to end AU Chuck with Season 4.

      • atcDave says:

        Sorry, it’s been a while!

    • I don’t mind the continuing role of the Intersect in the series. To me, it keeps alive the sci-fi element in the show. It also serves to highlight the situations when Chuck resolves a problem through his natural intellect rather than by means of the Intersect.

      • atcDave says:

        Well I didn’t “hate” it. The show remained a lot of fun. But I kind of disagree about what it highlighted; I would have preferred to see more clever Chuck and less Kung Fu from him.
        I just liked S5 best as a basic scenario.

  2. I’m sure I haven’t watched this episode more times than many of you, but this time more than others, but this time, I found I was much more annoyed at Ellie having guilted Chuck into quitting the CIA. Still, I’m glad they went after Shaw and the Ring rather than go into hiding.

    The entrance to the conference has a bit of an Ocean’s 11 vibe to it in terms of the pacing, the planning, the team action, and Sarah’s narrative. This is the first time I noticed this, but perhaps I’m particularly slow on the uptake.

    The way this episode ended, with Orion’s charge to Chuck, filled me with anticipation over what was to come in season 4, if they were renewed. I was of course really glad that they were, but the season itself did not quite match the anticipation, at least not in my assessment. Nevertheless, onto season 4 we go. And I’m still looking forward to the discussion.

    • atcDave says:

      Yeah overall this was a fun episode. Ellie was probably my least favorite part of it all. And I wasn’t particularly thrilled with the end; I mean, the adventure continues one way or another so the “hook” is really of little consequence to me. And I was more concerned if we were going to see more of lying, secretive Chuck than anything.
      Ultimately my fears were borne out, but resolved quickly and permanently. And that’s a good set up for my favorite season of the show!

    • uplink2 says:

      I agree Dave. The Ellie making Chuck quit thing was my least favorite part. Especially seeing it didn’t even last 1 episode. He needed to stand up for himself and I really can’t imagine the CIA/NSA letting him go because he defeated/captured the five accountants in a stairwell. That should have made him even more valuable and in need of protection. They knew there were other villains out there like Volkoff for example. Also it kept him away from Sarah which is a bad thing for both. But we have discussed before that the most under utilized character on the show was Ellie.

    • thinkling says:

      Agree with you all. Good episode, enjoyable on rewatch. Except for Ellie. I really dislike how they used her. I really really did’t like her asking Chuck to quit. The only thing that bothered me more than that (a LOT more) was that he did quit … after his vow to not quit the spy life and be with Sarah. Not one of his finer moments. Other than all the resetting,I liked the mom direction and continued to like it in S4 … my favorite season along with S5.

      • I agree and disagree: Ellie was an under used character; of all the things that bothered me about the show (aside from the misery arc) not enough Ellie and too much buy more was the biggest. In regard to the Intersect I love that the entire series; it is what kept Chuck from turning into every other spy show. S5 is where i would have liked the show to be come S3 regardless if Chuck had the Intersect or not and my fan fic continuation reflects a lot of what i wish the writers had done mixed with my personal tastes: There is no Buy More, Ellie is very involved in the Intersect and i have filled in many plot holes that existed with S5 and have since moved on to a plot that reflects what i think is a not too far off future for the world.

        I don’t have a problem with this episode and i’m probably in the minority but Ellie’s actions are very understable from an emotional and psychological perspective and as Dave mentioned the issues that arise with this episode are resolved quickly.

      • Justin says:

        Josh Zdanowicz, where I can look up your fanfic continuation? Would like to read it.

      • atcDave says:

        Josh’s story is called “Chuck and Sarah” and publishes as chuckfanatic21.

      • Justin says:

        Thanks, atcDave.

    • anthropocene says:

      Ditto, and I also wasn’t big on Team B relying on the family to be rescued (although the scene in Casey’s car was funny). I’d have preferred it the other way around (Ring takes Ellie hostage after Justin’s confrontation with Chuck) and given Stephen a more heroic death during the rescue. Just sayin’.

      • atcDave says:

        oooh, good idea!

        I did think Devon and Morgan made a very amusing team. But no doubt I prefer when my heroes are the heroes.

    • Wilf says:

      I never really blamed Ellie for asking Chuck to quit … for her, he was still the little brother she had brought up, however outdated and ridiculous that view of him was by then. What *was* really annoying to me was that Chuck didn’t immediately (or ever) point out to Ellie that he was now a little bit older than 8 and had chosen his career for himself, just as Ellie had chosen hers for herself.

  3. noblz says:

    I like to view Subway/Ring II as one since they aired as one unit for the season finale. Perversely, this is my favorite season finale. Lots of action, lots of funny stuff, just enough drama and a shocker or two (eg Steven Bartowski’s death).

    It’s always an upper to see Shaw get thumped, by Sarah AND Chuck no less (if only Casey Had gotten a shot in), and to see how joined (?), together (?) Chuck and Sarah are was fantastic despite Chuck hiding his illness. Chuck’s truthful revelation to his sister, even though Ellie forcing Chuck to quit was a downer. People have mentioned the “you finally picked a good one, Walker” scene but the scene with Devon getting drunk with Jeff and Lester was also great ( Lester: ” I still can’t believe your missus is taking on new customers”, Jeff: ” I know, it’s my dream come true. Ellie is just like Chuck but with lady parts!”).

    The ending was wasted in the long run. I hoped it would lead to revealing that Orion had been rogue, but had been receiving missions from Mary all along. In First Fight it looked that might be it, but alas TPTB missed another great opportunity IMO.

    • uplink2 says:

      I agree with much of that. I would have loved for it to be revealed that Orion and Mary had been in some kind of contact for those 20 years. It would have eliminated some really huge plot holes and led to some very interesting possibilities. I actually thought when I first watched Push Mix that they were going to reveal that but alas it wasn’t to be. But the PSP, her comments about what Stephen thought about that device, and other things would have been so much cleaner if they had revealed that. Mary needed a contact when she went into Volkoff. Sarah was able to get information out of Volkoff to Beckman, why couldn’t Mary?

      • noblz says:

        Mary’s familiarity with Orion’s “lair” and the things you mentioned seemed to head us there, but they never closed the deal. Anytime after they took down Volkoff would have been perfect for the reveal. Oh well (sighs!!!), another blown call.

  4. justin

    here it is

    https://www.fanfiction.net/~chuckfanatic21

    its also in Daves favorites which is located to the right side of this website under the links collum

  5. Another thing about this episode; Sarah’s “no that’s what makes you great” line after she knocks Shaw (which i thought was very fitting) out!

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