A few other TV critics have been down on the start to this season of Chuck. But this week's "Chuck vs. the Couch Lock" simply had to have changed their outlook.
One of the great things about Chuck has always been its ability to take some of the most serious spy situations and turn them into complete jokes. Doing spy well doesn't necessarily mean it's by the book, or completely serious. Chuck is somewhat of a farce. Sure, it has plenty of moments of true sincerity, but at its core this is a comedy. And it uses its also action sequences as comedic moments.
Take this episode for example.
When Chuck and Sarah are captured, and Casey takes Morgan along to help save the day, we have the privilege of watching the Bearded One make a mockery of the CIA with his lack of talent. First, he uses a miniature, plastic fan to cool himself off while on the "mish." Then, he can't work any of the equipment correctly, so he turns himself in to the bad guys.
But in order for this opportunity to even come about, Morgan had to go through some ridiculous antic in order to get Casey ready for the challenge. He professed his love for Alex in order to get the big man out of his paralysis!Because Sarah and Chuck's relationship took a back seat this week, Casey was a major player, while Jeff and Lester were in mid-season form. Everyone should have been happy with the episode this week and here's why:
There was quite a lot of Casey beating down dude this week. As much as I love Sarah or Chuck taking out bad guys, it's always nice to see John get his time in the violent spotlight. We also had Morgan saving the day with his ability to withstand an electrocution. He took out Eric Roberts, the dude from Dodgeball, and some huge oaf with one pull of cord!
Where to start right? Morgan was on fire once again. That eulogy? Brilliant. It turns out the little man is quite obsessed with dudes that can fill out clothing. Last year it was Shaw's ability to fill out a pair of slacks, and this week it was the fact that Casey "could fill out a uniform."
Then there was Jeff and Lester, who were on point this week. We had Lester cracking up at the ridiculous things Jeff says, Jeff knowing exactly what dumpster Casey was hiding in, and the fact that Lester has the keys to Morgan's apartment.
Like I said earlier, Chuck and Sarah took a back seat, which left plenty of room for the Morgan and Alex's relationship to blossom. Not only was there the sweet moments between the new love birds, but also the heartfelt moments between Morgan and Casey. Sure, they are mostly one sided, but when Casey agrees to let him date his daughter, you have to smile.
Casey's old team members inform Chuck that Frost was Volkoff's right hand. Now that he assumes his mom was a bad guy, things are a little more iffy on that front, but I'm sure more will be revealed after we find out what she says to him on that phone call. Hello Chuck, it's your mother...
- Morgan: "That's not the physique of a middle aged man, am I right?"
- Chuck also had a nice comedic moment when he tried to continue Casey's story as if he was doing the voice over work for The A-Team.
- The big musical number right before Morgan gives the eulogy was my second favorite usage of "It's a Dead Man's Party." The first, of course, being the party in Back to School. After all, that was "the best thing that's ever happened to me in my whole life."
- I loved Alex's direct approach with Morgan. It's nice to see a character not beat around the bush. She wanted answers right then and there!
Dan Forcella is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.