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To end its portion of the 2011 half of the season, Chuck continues its run of upward progression following the slow start. This week’s episode follows closely behind the events of the Shaw fiasco on Christmas Eve, and Sarah manages to find herself in even more trouble as a past mission resurfaces and she is forced back into old habits of secrecy as she attempts to protect a young girl, all the while pushing the “home sweet home” finale we are most likely heading towards.
Let me just start by saying thank goodness the baby from last week’s preview did not end up being Sarah’s. Now let me follow that by laughing at the fact that if you ever want to get out of a situation involving an assassin or government agent alive, then you better pray you are a baby or small child because more often than not films and TV have taught us that bad people often have problems with destroying the innocence of a small child. Granted you have to make sure what protagonist you are dealing with, because there are just as many people willing to kill babies as there are who will risk everything to save a child. Sarah fell for the baby eyes here, and it has happened before in The CW’s Nikita, Léon: The Professional, etc. Heck, even Jason Bourne’s amnesia was caused by the domino effect of his inability to kill a child’s father in front of her eyes. So, though it is not a 100% guarantee, you better pray that you are a baby when someone with this skill set comes calling.
If ever there was a sickness that the team suffers from, it is solomissionitis. Usually it is Chuck taking things into his own hands, but this time it is Sarah, who for some reason believes that filling the rest of the team in on what she is doing will put everyone in danger. Sure, Superman not telling Lois that he is Superman to keep her out of danger makes sense, but Chuck and Sarah are both spies for crying out loud! I really think we have passed the “I want to keep you safe” excuse, especially in cases such as tonight where it doesn’t really seem warranted.
Which brings on Example One in tonight’s episode of how women can’t think straight when it comes to babies. When Sarah sneaks up on Ryker after he fails to show at the meet point, she quickly loses the upper hand when she hears a baby cry from the other room. I’m not sure what is worse, the fact that she fell for the same trick she played on him five years ago with the recorded baby noises, or the possibility that she believed that (A) he stole another baby, or (B) she somehow managed to believe the crying was the little girl that she rescued five years ago. But whatever she thought, she fell for the trap that lead to another week of being tied to a chair so that someone can have a better shot at punching her in the face. Hm… Maybe Shaw’s fist, in addition to being frozen, gave her some brain damage last week and that’s why she wasn’t thinking clearly.
Kill Bill Style
Following all the trouble that Sarah caused, she more than made up for it with the conclusion of her time with her handler. After they race to beat Ryker to her mother’s home, we are treated to another all out fight in the confines of a house. I don’t know about you, but the addition of a child being involved and the use of large cutlery brought back a whole heap of Kill Bill: Vol. 1 memories of the first fight between Uma Thurman and Vivica A. Fox. Not only that, but the death was just as sudden in this episode as it was for Fox in that film.
It is no shock that Sarah is willing to kill people because we have seen her do it time and time again, but it is usually with a gun, or the camera is not right in the person’s face. Point is, there is a lack of it being personal most of the time. However, this kill screamed personal as we see the blood leak from Ryker’s face as the knife emerges from his chest as Sarah stabs him in the back. I don’t know about you, but something about this just made it feel far more gruesome than anything we have ever seen on the show before.
Morgan the Catch
I will never understand the sudden fascination with role-playing between Ellie and Awesome this season, so moving right past that it was still fun to see the two of them at a “couples” game day as Morgan attempts to get Alex back. As much as I wish they would keep that aspect of their personal lives to themselves, it was nice to hear them talk about times past as they acted upon their need to help get another couple that is “meant to be” back together again. Especially considering Awesome believes it was the flowers that got Ellie back during their time apart. Men…
The advice that Ellie gives Morgan is to simply be himself instead of trying to force things back to what they once were because Alex just needs a reminder of who he really is. And thank goodness this plan works. Though it is a little eye roll worthy that all it took was seeing Morgan playing with a child to make Alex forgive him (you know how we women can’t resist the idea of a man who will be a great father), I am glad that this fighting is over because I quite honestly thought Alex was in the wrong for holding on to her grudge. Does she not remember what she saw in his P.A.N.T.S.? Yes, Morgan was quite the d-bag to her at the beginning of the season, but it is a little unfair to hold it against him considering his brain was melting due to the Intersect. Not saying in the future during fights she can’t pull it out against him to further the sting, but for now she really needs to just let it go.
The Picket Fence
With this being the final season, this episode has the perfect story to help move Sarah and Chuck in a direction towards the happy, “normal” home that they will probably end the series with. Starting with the flashbacks of Sarah taking to the baby as a makeshift mommy, these past scenes are edited in such a way to help blend them into the present aspect of the episode. I know I say it week after week, but the family aspect of Chuck has always been one of the defining features that make the show as strong as it is, and though for some reason I completely forgot Sarah has a mom, I was more than happy to see her in this episode. Not only that, but these scenes between the two (even the one over the phone) shows that Chuck wasn’t the one to completely change Sarah from the solo spy that she was, but the kinder side was always really a part of who she is.
With the rough start of the first few weeks of this season, it is great to see Chuck coming back week after week with great shows. Not only that, but it is proving time and time again that they can deal with the “normal” people issues within the episodes to create full stories, rather than using the Intersect for material.
So what did you guys think? Were you a fan of this episode? Wondering why Sarah didn’t take the opportunity to Xena yell while flipping onto the table during her BA mass murder scene? Afraid the baby was going to go deaf because of all the shooting Sarah was doing right next to her ears? Glad that Sarah and Chuck decided not to take the CIA’s job offer? Excited to see what the home pregnancy test says next week!? Let me know below!