Powered by i.TV
July 30, 2014

Chuck: Chuck Versus Santa Claus

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 16th 2008 9:35AM
Chuck Xmas(S02E11) "This store has a very strict 'no bravery' policy." Chuck to Ned, gun-toting lunatic

Were you expecting a cameo by Bruce Willis on Chuck tonight? I was. The moment I saw Reginald VelJohnson in cop blues as Al, I just expected that John McClane might turn up at the Buy More looking to buy an iPod for his daughter or maybe a toaster for ex-wife Holly.

Yes, the connection to Die Hard was a major theme, especially with the Buy More staff (and Chuck's family) being held hostage by Ned, a supposed down-on-his-luck schlub who ends a high speed chase through L.A. by driving his compact through the entrance of the store.

All that might have been an exciting enough episode, but no, the Intersect had to be activated. And that led to some pretty major developments in Chuck's relationship with Sarah.

Sarah was all set to have a blue Christmas, intensified by last week's appearance and subsequent abandonment (yet again) of her father. As she told Chuck, Christmas memories for Sarah involved a Salvation Army con job, not the happy, heartwarming invitation Chuck extends.

Then when Bing Crosby was singing "I'll Be Home for Christmas" and everyone was calling loved ones (Jeff called someone in State Prison; Lester called a phone sex line), Sarah had nothing...until Chuck called her. And he gave her his mother's charm bracelet as a Christmas gift.

You got to love Chuck's puppy-dog sweetness, his willingness to please. But did his seeing Sarah in action spoil his love for her forever? That would seem to be the question posed at the finale. Of course, once Chuck revealed to Mauser that he's the Intersect, he said too much.

For me, the answer is no way. Sarah did the right thing -- her duty -- by killing Michael Rooker's character, Mauser, the Fulcrum agent. He's apparently not just any Fulcrum guy; he claims that every other agent will be out to get him and when he's found, he'll tell them all about Chuck and seal his fate, as in KILL HIM.

Now, Sarah has a license to kill -- just like James Bond. Sure, her first moral move is to apprehend the bad guy and bring him to justice. However, in this instance, she had to kill Mauser. Her objective as stated over and over is to protect the Intersect. Mauser had to die. Whether Chuck can accept Sarah the way she is and what she's done, however, remains to be seen. I have more confidence in Morgan and Anna reconciling. What do you think?

Interesting points of interest:
-- It's been 20 years since Die Hard was released. Seems like yesterday.

-- Did you catch the Twinkies connection? In Die Hard, Al buys Twinkies at a 7-11 before the Nakamura building crisis. In Chuck, before the car crashes into the store, Big Mike (Al's cousin) takes a big bite of a Twinkie and so does Al.

-- Last week's show featured a high rise L.A. office building that some commentators thought was as homage to Die Hard's Nakatomi building. You guys were right about that connection.

-- Final Die Hard reference: the Christmas music and Beethoven's Ode to Joy.

-- Christmas at the Bartowskis includes a Twilight Zone marathon. I'm in!

-- Did you recognize Ned, played Jed Rees? He was one of the main aliens in Galaxy Quest.

-- Casey is never going to forgive Chuck to his little toe. Although did Ned, who was in fact a skilled marksman, mean to shoot John in the foot?

-- Drinking game: if you took a shot every time they used the phrase "friends and family," you were plastered after 20 minutes.

-- Poor Morgan: he finally does something brave and Anna comforts Lester. Of course, he missed her reaction after Lester kissed her.
Chuck' Show & Cast Photos
    CHUCK Adam Baldwin as Major John Casey stars in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Adam Baldwin as Major John Casey stars in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Michael Clarke Duncan as Colt and Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker star in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski and Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker star in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski and Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker star in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski, Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker and Michael Clarke Duncan as Colt star in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski stars in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski stars in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Zachary Levi as Chuck Bartowski and Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker star in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC CHUCK Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker stars in the episode "Chuck vs. the First Date." Airs Monday, September 29, 2008. NBC

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

28 Comments

Filter by:
Joe

The key point that everyone here is missing is that Sarah is assigned to protect the Intersect, not Chuck. Given all the problems they come across, it would be infinitely easier to hide Chuck away until they make a new Intersect. But Sarah keeps pushing to allow Chuck to live his normal life in exchange for ensuring that protection. When Sarah killed Lt. Mauser, she wasn't just protecting the Intersect, her feelings for Chuck were pushing her to do more to protect his life, not just the images in his head. It doesn't change their relationship, but it shows how Sarah has been totally compromised.

December 17 2008 at 2:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
StillBash

Funny. Withouth getting all the Die Hard references I think the episode pretty much sucked. It was drawn out, cheesy and without logic, the main reason why I hate Chuck from time to time. This episode had no flow to it, things were just stuck to each other and didn't make any sense. When you look at it as a sequence of movie references of course, then it makes perfect sense.

But it was still drawn-out, long and boring.

December 17 2008 at 1:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike

3 things:

One should the 2nd criminal, the driver have been told that Chuck was the intersect or was he too low level. Anyway, he knows that the top guy wanted Chuck so that should be a security concern.

I am guessing that the 2nd guy was Fulcrum and not just a hired thug as he called the top guy and he got rid of Sarah. (and did you see that karate-chop)

Also, since Fulcrum knows about Sarah and Casey being there, how can they stay at the Buy-More as that is another security concern.

December 16 2008 at 8:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ian

I trhink the idea is that Sarah didn't tell Chuck the truth was she wanted to spare him grief and guilt that he was the reason the guy had to die.
I do have anothe issue. Ned surely knows who Chuck is and ths Chuck is still at risk while Ned lives,. So why kill one and not the other.

All-in-all a good episode with a lot of character twists. Not the usual totally feel good Christmas time episode, more nice but some nasty realities mixed in.

And note who was back for this ep and likely all next season.....

December 16 2008 at 6:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
burningchrom3

i wonder if there will ever be a time when chucks faced with the decision of taking a life to protect something he loves(like his sister or friends). i know that one of his character traits that we all love is the harmless "eveyday joe", but i think it would really amp up the drama. as greg stated earlier in this post you need conflict, and i dont agree that "happy couples equal boring tv". unhappy couples are just easier to write for, as happy couples force you to bring in external conflict.
anyway, just my few cents.
viva the interscect

December 16 2008 at 4:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Anita

I don't know why Sarah didn't tell Chuck the truth. He's been with the gang long enough to know when deadly force might be necessary, even when uncertain. Also, wouldn't he accidentally hear the truth from Casey or the surgeon general agent unless Sarah explicitly warns them?

I think this was the best ep of the lot. What I liked about Chuck S1 was Chuck's heart, his connection to the Buy More and his connection with Sarah. This season focused more on action and spy adventures. However, this ep brought back the Bartowski charm and has re-hooked me with what I view as the core of the show.

It's also nice seeing the Buy More kids rely on Chuck as nerd herd head, even if it's as a hostage and Awesome negotiator. This season, he barely spent 5 min in the store/ep. Also, shout out to Awesome the tactician.

December 16 2008 at 3:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jimmy

I always through Big Mike looked like Carl Windslow. And now they brought him on as his brother. Awesome!

December 16 2008 at 2:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Adam

I'm suprised no one picked up on Emmitt's condition "Lukeplakia." Maybe I love the film Lucas a bit too much, but that was a a classic to me.

December 16 2008 at 12:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Buttercup

Bruce Willis as Chuck & Ellie's dad - who's with me?

December 16 2008 at 12:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Buttercup's comment
Manuel Reis

Yeah, that would be cool. But now it's (im)possible. Both the show and the movie are from the same universe.

How about if John McClane was one NSA agent, who was hired following the events we saw in Die Hard 4?

December 16 2008 at 1:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Kim

I think that Sarah's action were more about protecting Chuck, the guy she secretly loves, than the intersect, the guy she's sworn to protect. She became very emotional when Mauser told her that all Fulcrum agents would come after Chuck and kill him.

I can see how Chuck would have mixed feelings about seeing Sarah shoot the defensless Mauser. I agree that he didn't hear the conversation that led up to the shooting. Also, in the past, he has only seen Sarah use deadly force in defense of self or others, not in cold blood. Then, of course, Sarah lied to him so now Chuck believes that Sarah doesn't trust him with the truth. I think Sarah lied to him because she didn't want to be diminished in Chuck's eyes.

This was one of the best episodes of the season. I wish they would do more with the entire cast.

December 16 2008 at 12:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Kim's comment
gabbyd

yeah, i agree totally with ur analysis of the chuch-sara dynamic for this ep. i wanted for a meatier role for morgan tho..

December 16 2008 at 4:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Follow Us

From Our Partners