Chuck (10/4/2010): "Chuck vs. the Cubic Z"

Last week we saw Bronson Pinchot on screen for all of one second; a true blink-and-you’ll-miss-him appearance. Oh yeah, there was also the Incredible Hulk, Old Spice Guy, and a hot Victoria’s Secret model. For a that’s spent its entire run on the bubble, we’ve been getting some really great guest stars.

This week, we’ll see the return of “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and Nicole Ritchie. Be prepared for another epic catfight!

Sarah, Chuck, and Casey must defend Castle from Volkoff’s all-out attack to free their prisoner, Sarah’s high school nemesis, Heather Chandler.

If only Jeffster had been prepared with some bitchin’ tunes instead of some lame poetry slam, they wouldn’t have had a riot on their hands. Good thing Big Mike came through.

This episode had dual wrestler-turned-bit actor appearances, with both Austin and Stacy Kiebler.

I was hoping Old Spice Guy would be a regular.

Seconded. I loves me some Jeffster.

I think this episode was let down by poor direction. It had a decent A-story, but the B-story was poorly handled and didn’t cut together very well with it, making for an unnecessarily jarring middle.

Plus Nicole Ritchie’s acting is somewhat monotone.

However, it was entertaining, and had a great ending.

I honestly had no idea who Stacy Kiebler was. I recognized the name in the credits, but couldn’t have told you a single thing about her.

Holy cow, she’s gorgeous.

I’d like to say I found this episode poorly written. There were just so many plot devices which were to convenient and unrealistic.

In no particular order

Why did Steve Austin have to open the cell doors 1 at a time, and in order? That isn’t how computers work. Especially not state of the art government holding facilities.

The voice recognition program Casey had to deal with was just awful. This isn’t 2002, decent voice recognition software exists and a top of the line brand new CIA/NSA substation would use said software, or if it didn’t function properly use another interface.

Why on earth would there be an escape ladder leading to a (human sized) ventilation system inside a prisoner’s cell? The previous castle’s cell doors opened automatically in the event of an emergency. They only covered a power loss previously, but it can be assumed a fire would also open them or some other such emergency (if a loss of power would).

The way in which Steve Austin escaped was totally unrealistic given the circumstances. When serving a prisoner food you do not enter the room armed(if you enter at all), you have other guards nearby, and you close the door if he isn’t on the far side of the room when you attempt to enter.

New video game launches for recent years have pushed pre-ordering games meaning the correct number will be sent to each store and if you show up w/o a preorder you can’t EXPECT a copy to be available. A slightly more plausible scenario would have been the delivery being delayed, not the distributor only agreeing to send 4 copies with a short phone call an hour before launch.

Video games are shipped to stores in advance, at the latest you would have them instore before sundown the night of a major launch. Stores are simply not allowed to sell the games prior to midnight.

The fight between Steve Austin / Chuck was horrible. Chuck did not flash, meaning the former RING OPERATIVE with huge muscles should have killed him in literally 10 seconds with the weapons available at the time. Why would this former ring operative leave Chuck alive, he was very angry earlier in the episode and was willing to kill him on the airplane which Chuck captured him.

They (the writers) keep trying to tell us how great of a spy Sarah is, if that were the case why would she not put her personal feelings aside until after the mission rather than discuss personal issues in front of prisoners while getting easily distracted?

Also perhaps they explained this and I missed it, but why would Steve Austin not leave the Buy More but instead headed for a group of angry gamers?

As far as the helicopter ambush on the roof, did the US government suddenly stop using radios and watching air traffic around CIA/NSA/Military bases? (especially during prisoner transfers)

And something that bothers me less (but still a little) why are Chuck/Sarah/Casey so keen on talking about their off the books mission to find Chuck’s mother INSIDE castle, which is completely wired with A/V surveillance? Seems to me like the General should already know whats going on and have confronted them about it.

Reading back at my spoiler text, I don’t want to give off the feeling that I demand perfection from Chuck as I know it was always a show focused more on character development than plot devices/realism. I look forward to seeing next weeks episode, and I hope it isn’t so poorly done.

This was an episode that could have been great, but ended up just OK.
Chuck is still way too angsty - I thought they were starting to move away from that, but I guess not.

The whole thing was just too talky and relationshippy. They need to start finding ways to show us the challenges Chuck and Sarah face by being together, instead of the endless repetitive yapping about it.

And I’d hoped for Chuck’s fight with Hugo to spill over into the video-game riot scene. They were totally setting up the two situations to come together, but the payoff was a bit of a letdown. It was kind of a fun episode, but it didn’t feel very tight.

(During the teasers for next week’s episode, I had to say to my wife, “Oops! I accidentally hit the rewind button on the TiVo! Oh well.” ;))

All television shows require a suspension of disbelief. This one requires a bit more than most. But I have to admit that I was laughing at

the idea that the ventilation system in this enormous secret CIA/NSA base below a big box electronics store has built-in lighting. I’ve already accepted the idea that such ventilation systems will be big enough for a person to crawl through, but I found the lighting system in the ventilation shafts unrealistic.

I was really hoping for more screentime with the gorgeous Stacy Kiebler!

Even so, it was a very entertaining episode.

Regarding the ventilation shafts, there was a bigger plot hole: When Chuck and Steve Austin are having their little standoff in the vent shaft, Steve points out to Chuck that if he fires his gun, he might hit the gas main running through the shaft. Then the shaft collapses and they both end up in the cage. And the gas main… breaks in two and the Buy More explodes (again)? Or… no, I guess we’re just supposed to forget that, even though they mentioned it all of 30 seconds earlier.

It was the emergency fire escape.