'Chuck' - 'Chuck Versus the Fake Name' Recap
by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 2nd 2010 1:03AM
(S03E08) It seems more and more like the spy job is less and less attractive for Chuck. Just when things were on the verge of getting really good for Chuck on the personal front, there were complications based on the past and the job and the choices he's been forced to make. If this is spy life, it's no wonder James Bond drinks so much. More on that and the chicken pepperoni after the jump.
Chuck was chosen by Shaw to replace Rafe Gruber, an ultimate assassin, super-sharp shooter who had chameleon-like skills. Why Chuck was chosen to replace him made no sense considering that he's still so untried as a professional. The premise is that Chuck must learn every aspect of the spy game by being thrown into life and death situations every week, but that's a stretch considering what they expect him to do.
It was a nice surprise to see Paulie Walnuts and the other 'Soprano's' guy (Louis Lombardi played Big Pussy's FBI contact) as two old school criminals hiring Gruber for a kill job. They were basically doing their characters from 'The Sopranos,' but so what?
Chuck got good advice from Paulie and Louis (whatever his name). Too bad they were only around for a few scenes. The real Gruber was like Frankenstein's monster, a golem, and it wasn't very comforting to know that once again, Chuck could not flash when it mattered most. Casey came through with the sniper rifle. He took a shot that only five other guys could make and saved Sarah's life. By the way, one of those other guys that can make the shot is 'NCIS's' Jethro Gibbs! He took a similar shot at the beginning of the season.
To prove that he can be a real spy, Chuck had to be a jerk. He had to rip out Casey's tooth, act like a lout and generally not be a 'nice guy.' This is the biggest problem for Chuck. The spy attitude doesn't come naturally. Hearing Shaw and Sarah talking, Chuck was unable to suppress his emotions.
"You're a helluva guy, living a helluva lie ..." Yes, that's our Chuck. After a heart to heart where he kinda told Ellie how confused he was about his life, Chuck did the noble thing with Hannah. She didn't turn into a Ring operative or a secret agent. She seemed to be a nice girl who was falling for Chuck. He was falling for her, too, and if not for lingering feelings for Sarah, Chuck might've been happy with Hannah.
But no. He let Hannah go, and in a case of lousy TV timing, Sarah -- whose real name is Sam -- decided to give romance with Shaw a shot. Oh, Chuck me.
Other points of interest
-- If you enjoy bare-chested men (yes, ladies, that means you), this was your episode. Captain Awesome and Shaw both looked quite buff; and they are either naturally hairless or they go to the wax-a-torium.
-- Was Casey going to intimidate Gruber with that hand torch or turn him into creme brulee?
-- Devon really is not cut out for lying, and Ellie is an old softie when it comes to her baby brother.
-- The Buy More subplot was weird because you don't really consider Burbank the place you go for gumbo ... especially in an electronics store. Still, it was fun to see Lester, Jeff and Big Mike back on the scene.
[Watch 'Chuck' at SlashControl.]