Wednesday, December 10, 2008

"Chuck vs. the DeLorean": Anyone got some high-grade Plutonium?

A DeLorean. Anna returns. Captain Morgan forced to grow up. Chuck works his German accent. Casey shows feeling. Yvonne Strahovski works her emotional magic. What else could I ask for in a Chuck episode? Follow the link to find out.

Not much. As they stated many times throughout the episode, “Chuck vs. the DeLorean” was “personal.” The writers managed to connect the A and B story lines through their “personal” themes, which made the entire story, flow nicely. I was extremely happy to see Anna back with the Nerd Herd in Buymorea. And not only did her return add to the usual atmosphere of the Buy More, but she came back with a plan—to make Morgan grow up. This led to all sorts of fun between Morgan and the Nerd Herders in addition to giving Captain Awesome some great material. I loved how Morgan didn’t even refute Awesome’s insults of his childish lifestyle, but added to it by admitting that he only did his own laundry “occasionally.” Gotta say, I was initially surprised that Awesome would so willingly offer $2500, but then was glad to see that he included 12% interest in the matter. Was it just me, or did Morgan not really seem to understand that concept?

And then of course, as Morgan takes the slow walk of shame towards Anna and his future, Jeff and Lester step in the way. Or more accurately, a spitting image of Back to the Future’s DeLorean drives in the way, at a whopping 22 miles per hour. The introduction of the car was complete with Lester’s Cameronesque speech, a slow pan checking out the car, and the Bueller music. Oh yeah.

Awesome’s realization that his money could not be trusted with Morgan led to some of the best lines of the episode. First, we get Lester and Morgan’s thoughts on what they’d do when they get the car running at 88 piles per hour with high-grade plutonium. Jeff’s daydream of traveling in time to Lester’s birth was perhaps the most disturbing line he has had yet…“I’d love to see the look on your face when you emerge from the vaginal canal.” That is just creepy. And then Morgan enters, sunglasses on, with his new license plate, the DEMORGAN. It doesn’t get better than that. Awesome’s fury was only matched by Anna, who easily gave away their sex life due to Morgan’s refusal to use their money in a more productive manner.

On the spy front, we get to meet Jack Burton, played by Gary Cole. I’m assuming that we called him Jack Burton solely because that is the name Chuck knows Sarah by. But I’m not sure how she explained this to her Dad. Strahovski did a great job with the father-daughter relationship with a past in conning. Chuck’s spy sequence as he followed Sarah on her “personal day” was anything but impressive secret agent-wise, but Chuck-wise it was incredibly funny and realistic. As Mr. Burton relived the glory days of “Angel hair” as a youngster and her superb conning ways, Gary Cole was completely believable as Sarah’s father. Their dynamic together was great, complete with Sarah being ashamed of him while still clearly showing how much she cares about his safety.

Sheik’s arrival invoked Sarah’s security to come out with beautiful results. As Sarah and Jack try to talk their way out of problems with some intimidating men, Chuck brilliantly poses as the solely German speaking Mr. Lichtenstein. A very Carmichael move if you ask me. After Sarah gathered her “con team” on the good side of Mr. Burton, Jack maps out their plan in an extremely thought out manner. Cop face is placed on security detail and Shnook is told to do nothing. Almost like stay in the car but better. The detailed transformation of the hotel into Lichtenstein Enterprises was impressive, withstanding the crooked “N” that almost ruined it all. But no, the “N” did not fail them; in fact they didn’t fail at all. Even when Chuck’s German is jeopardized, they still manage to make the deal and transfer the money. If only Daddy didn’t run away and put the money in the wrong place, everything might have worked out for the best.

But then we wouldn’t have gotten the inspirational speech from Chuck to support Sarah as she deals with her father’s disappearance again. Oh how I love that articulate shnook. Moving on, I wonder if all of the Sarah-centric episodes are going to include a fighting out her feelings with parallels from her past scene. Two for two so far.

The garage roof scene put the icing on the cake of a beautiful episode. We’ve got Sarah’s emotional conflict of interests as she goes to save her con father. Then we have a nice snail paced entrance of the demorgan with Chuck to save the day. Not only did he get Sheik’s account number, but he inadvertently got Morgan the money he needed to pay back Awesome by leaving the demorgan unattended. Casey’s arrival with the crown vic and his cop face on for game put some sprinkles on the icing of the scene. I loved that Casey took no shame as he threw Chuck on the roof of the car and put the handcuffs on with a look of deep enjoyment. Typical.

The final scene really brought closure to the episode. Casey showed true loyalty to Sarah, with a tiny bit of emotion revealed. Morgan warmed up to the idea of moving in with Anna, only to be brought back down with another Bueller moment with yet another out of date car. Then the heart of the episode was revealed as Sarah makes the decision to let her Dad go before the cops arrived. And Dad delivers the perfect fatherly speeches to both Sarah and Chuck. I thought it was really poetic how both Sarah and Chuck have very similar pasts (in different ways), which deepens their relationship in a nice way that isn’t too cheesy. Sarah should listen to Papa Burton, I mean after all he did make a “ten million dollar bet” that Chuck loves her…and he is almost certainly right. It’s only a matter of when. Charlie is the right shnook for Sarah according to Dad. And we all know, father knows best.

Replay worthy moments:
  • “Aw, that’s sad, you’ve confused me with someone who cares about your life before the intersect.” Typical Casey.
  • “Welcome to adulthood. We’ve been waiting for you.” Perfect delivery by Captain Awesome.
  • The many great reaction shots of this episode: Chuck when he see’s the “N”; the faces of Morgan, Lester, and Jeff at the DeLorean; Sarah’s exchange of looks with her dad before shooting him
  • The demorgan’s arrival and departure to the scene ontop of the garage…scratch that, any scene with the demorgan was great.
  • Morgan catching Anna’s kiss.
The only thing I really find has been missing from the episodes lately is some quality Chuck, Morgan time. They have great chemistry and haven't been given much lately. Hopefully that will change before our month break. *tear*

So what would you do with the DeLorean (if you could go back in time)? And more importantly, what did you think of this week's Chuck?


mkr said...

88 miles per hour (not 80).

RSR said...

Oh wow...all fixed now. Thanks!

deadwinglullaby said...

i agree with you in every sense. it was a wonderful episode--possibly the best so far this season.

i think they cast sarah's dad spot on, and i love his nicknames for chuck and casey. classic!

very comical, and endearing at the same time. but like you said, i hope to see some more chuck.morgan bonding soon.

and i can't wait for next week's episode. :D

joy said...

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