mxpw vs. Frea - Chuck vs. the A-Team

Chuck vs. the A-Team
Season 4, Episode 18, air-date March 14, 2011

Chuck worries about his job as new agents are brought in. Chuck and Sarah suspect Casey is going on rogue missions. Morgan tries to make the best of things with his new roommate.

It's the return of Klemmer! One of us (Frea) has made her opinions of the work of Klemmer well-known on this blog, up to and including the DO NOT WANT meme dog when his return was announced. So with that in mind, how did this episode fare?  Did Klemmer rightfully earn his place at the same table as LeJudkins and Newman?

You'll have to click the link to find out.

mxpw: So I want to start this review off right and mention that tumblr is currently all atwitter over the fact that Chuck (or more likely Zac being Zac) slaps Sarah on the ass during the credits while they’re in Castle. I wasn’t sure, so I went and checked for myself and yup, he does. That helped gain the episode some points in my favor. Heh.

Frea: Awesome.

mxpw: But I know you are not as easily swayed as I am. You’ve said repeatedly that you wish this episode didn’t exist, so why do you feel that way?

Frea: Because I spent the first half of it wishing I could fast forward through this weird alt version of Sarah and her odd restlessness that I didn’t like, and I don’t like the feeling of wanting to fast forward on this show. This isn’t Glee.

Frea: After we got through the stupid dog stuff, the episode was fine. But up until then, while things amused me, I just wanted the episode to be over.

mxpw: Yeah, I definitely understand that feeling. I can’t say I was as hopeful as you that it would just end soon, but the first half was pretty weak.

mxpw: I too was bothered by Sarah’s odd restlessness. It just seemed really over the top to me. I know that it was supposed to parallel Ellie’s similar feeling of restlessness, but Ellie had a good reason to feel confined: she actually was. Sarah had no restrictions on her, so her weird desperation to go on a mission just kinda came out of nowhere.

mxpw: It just made me think, does Sarah have no hobbies? Does she have no life beyond being a spy? If not, that makes her kinda pathetic.

Frea: Chuck’s not really helping out much with the “Let’s play Nintendo!” campaign. Though I did appreciate him blowing on the cartridge, as that took me back to my youth.

Frea: Oh, right, that was another thing that Klemmer brought back that I didn’t miss: the straight-on headshots from early Season One.

Frea: Well, that wasn’t necessarily Klemmer, per se. But the fact that that style returned and it was on his episode? I’ma blame him.

mxpw: Fair enough. I think this episode really highlighted what Klemmer’s strengths are on this show: the spy stuff and the male characters. I don’t think he really knows how to write Sarah. She’s either just kinda background in his episodes or he writes her very strangely (see: A-Team, Mask, American Hero for examples). But he does handle the comedy and spy stuff fairly well. I think that’s probably the biggest reason why they brought him back. I mean, he made Jeff likable. That’s no easy feat.

Frea: Yeah, it’s really weird when Jeffster is my favorite part of an episode.

mxpw: That’s one of the sure signs of the apocalypse.

Frea: That rumbling you hear is the oncoming apocalypse.

mxpw: Haha

Frea: We typed that at the same time.

Frea: Because that’s how we roll.

mxpw: We are awesome like that.

mxpw: Next thing you’re going to say is that you love Morgan.

Frea: Seriously, Jeff/Lester/Ellie = favorite part of the episode. Robin Givens is going to make an interesting villain, I have issues with Chuck/Sarah/Casey, and no Excessive Morgan Syndrome, so you know, positives. But yeah, I don’t love Morgan. I did enjoy his exchange with Sarah about the tranq darts, and I’m going to pretend, like I pretend many times each week, that getting shot point-blank with a tranq dart doesn’t hurt OR leave a bruise. Ah, this show tests my new Suspension of Disbelief levels in new and fun ways.

mxpw: I liked that Sarah/Morgan/Chuck scene for two reasons: it was ridiculously over the top that Chuck and Sarah would have to resort to that to just get past Morgan, who apparently could teach the bridge guardian from Holy Grail a thing or two, and for the great Jurassic Park homage. Sarah is totally a scary velociraptor when she wants to be. Heh.

Frea: Are you saying that Sarah is scaly?

Frea: Or at her most dangerous in the kitchen?

mxpw: I’m not sure. I think she needs a careful inspection to clarify the issue.

Frea: I should assign a minion to that.

mxpw: I volunteer for that dangerous assignment.

Frea: No, I don’t think so. You were complaining today that both you and Olivia put up with continual abuse and you’re right, I should stop abusing you so much. I’ll get Crystal to do it.

mxpw: That’s okay, this is one assignment I don’t mind undertaking. Really.

Frea: Too late, I just called her and she agreed. Besides, you have a review to finish.

mxpw: Lamesauce.

mxpw: But fine.

mxpw: So what issues did you have with Casey/Sarah/Chuck?

mxpw: I mean, besides the fact that Sarah acted like a crazed, jealous girlfriend for the first half of the episode and Casey was kinda...I don’t want to say jerkish, but he certainly didn’t earn any points with me.

Frea: This show needs to pick a side.

Frea: And I’m not talking A Team vs. B Team. I couldn’t care less what team Chuck/Sarah/Casey are, as long as they’re working together. But I am talking about this:

Frea: Is Chuck an idiot? Is Chuck a renaissance man? Is Chuck GOOD at his job or not? Because I’ll believe whatever you want me to believe, but not when, just like everything else, the stance on this changes every week. If the government is evil, then fine. I’ll go with that. But I’ve gone with that several times, show, only to have you do a complete reversal on me. QUIT JERKING ME AROUND!

mxpw: I agree with this. It is getting ridiculous how many times Chuck’s ability and position as an agent is questioned on this show. This is the guy that has taken down the Ring and Volkoff and yet there are still people out there who don’t think he’s an effective agent and his method of doing things gets the job done? Really? This is the government, since when do they care about doing things better?

mxpw: I do have to say that I appreciated the fact that Chuck didn’t freak out as much as he could have in this episode. I thought Sarah was actually handling being sidelined much worse than he was. Which was odd, considered how he acted just ten or so episodes ago when he lost the Intersect. Chuck was portrayed as likable and fairly competent here, even if they did get the usual digs in. It would have been nice to see Sarah stand up for Chuck more and worry about not being part of the A-team less, but it’s a Klemmer episode, so what are ya gonna do?

Frea: As usual, you put my thoughts better than I could.

mxpw: That’s the job of a minion.

Frea: I can handle spying on somebody about little, stupid things. But Sarah kept making me cringe this episode with her determination to get to the bottom of this situation. Apparently, this is in character for her, since Casey knew her well enough to leave the handprint for both of them on Reagan. Such a considerate guy, that Casey.

mxpw: Heh, yeah. I really wish they had shown Sarah caring more about being Casey’s partner before this episode, because she hasn’t shown the slightest bit of interest in their partnership since...Tic-tac, probably. So her reaction in this episode was just weird. I don’t know, it’s not like I disliked Sarah in this episode, it’s just that she confused me and her reactions made little sense to me.

Frea: Heh, that was exactly what I was saying to myself during the episode!

Frea: “Uh, since when have you cared about being Casey’s partner?”

mxpw: Seriously. Before this, she seemed to be quite happy that she was paired up with Chuck. I mean, just look at the last episode and all the bank stuff. Where was Sarah’s concern that Casey wasn’t coming with them then?

mxpw: She didn’t even seem to notice.

Frea: I think I may have to counterpoint you here.

mxpw: But meh, Klemmer. Heh. I am using that as an excuse to explain a lot of things this episode, I think.

mxpw: Go ahead.

Frea: As we did see, in the last episode, that really nice Casey and Sarah scene where neither of them were freaked out by the Wedding Dress of Death. So there is some form of partnership there, I guess. But I don’t know, I feel like they could have played it out a different way. Sarah and Chuck realize they’re losing Casey and realize they’ve been taking advantage of him, for example, and then do everything they can to make up for that, only to run into interference with Casey’s new team -- a subject we’ll have to talk about in a moment.

mxpw: Oh no, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that there wasn’t a partnership there, just that Sarah hasn’t shown any concern over it not being like it was in say the first two seasons for a long time. Not since she basically became Chuck’s partner.

mxpw: But yeah, we definitely need to talk about Casey and his new team. That was just too underdeveloped for me. His switch, I mean.

Frea: I think that’s a casualty of telling a full season in eleven episodes, so that didn’t actually bother me too much. I would’ve liked to see him being threatened maybe a little more by Robin Givens -- did her character have a name? Because I’m okay with calling her Robin Givens -- but I’m glad this storyline isn’t sticking around. You may want to smell like him, but I’m not all that impressed with the acting of the Old Spice Guy.

Frea: But for one episode, I can forgive that. Finally, a better Intersect 3.0 than Sh**!

mxpw: Well, once I got past the fact that Casey’s switch behind Chuck and Sarah’s back wasn’t going to get much development, I was able to roll with the story. It’s one of the reasons why the second half of the episode is a huge improvement over the first. The main problem I had with Casey’s storyline this episode, though, is that there was no resolution. He switched because he felt like he was no longer needed on Team B, yet by the end of the episode, nothing had really happened to change that or assuage that feeling of his.

mxpw: So it felt like the whole thing was pointless. Unless they’re going to come back to it later, but what are the odds of that happening on this show?

Frea: He was the one that gave Chuck his juice box! He is not pointless.

Frea: Proper Care and Feeding of the Intersect saved the day.

mxpw: Somehow I knew you were going to mention that. Methinks that’s not Casey’s idea of being utilized properly.

Frea: Yeah, but that’s the casualty of his character. I mean, he’s not going to be utilized properly until he gets out of Los Angeles because they’re going to keep pairing him with Morgan.

mxpw: Though it did help make that my favorite sequence of the episode. Everything from the airport on was great, from Chuck in the bomb suit and his talk with Casey, with some of the best Chuck/Casey stuff in a long time. Casey standing by Chuck when it came to the bomb, the great callback to the Pilot, Sarah’s faith in Chuck and her encouragement. That was such a good scene! It reminded me of the gold old days.

Frea: Which, to me, is the wore insult to a Marine with a full career of service and medal-worthy deeds behind him, but you’ve heard this rant before, so I’m not going to go over it again.

Frea: Yeah, any scene that has me shouting, “Cry on it!” is probably a good scene.

Frea: Oh, wait, that’s just me. I like making people cry. The tears of innocents fuel my improbability drive.

mxpw: I liked that Chuck used his head to solve a problem. Thank God.

Frea: Hey, you know when it would have been nice to see that? When dude lost the Intersect!

mxpw: Sigh. I know. But you take what you can get on this show and I’m not going to lament too much because that really was a fun and awesome scene.

Frea: Fiiiiiine, win me over with logic, why don’t you?

mxpw: I wish they would settle on a consistent bit of Intersect mythology, but it was nice seeing the Orion laptop back.

mxpw: Yeah, curse my Vulcan brain!

Frea: you start talking in a gravelly voice because my dog just rang the bell to let me know she wants to go outside, we will have issues, Maximus.

Frea: But back to Chuck -- I enjoyed the airport scene. Though Ayefah put it best to me when we were discussing the Intersect:
1. Only give Intersects to people with an IQ over 7.
2. Ellie Bartowski pwns all.
mxpw: You talked about the episode with Ayefah before you discussed it with me? I am hurt!

Frea: She’s my favorite.

mxpw: Fine, then she can check Sarah for scales!

Frea: I’ll let her know.

mxpw: I did like that the Gretas got their humanity back after they lost the Intersect.

Frea: Yeah, that was a nice touch.

Frea: Hopefully this development means that Chuck will be continuing to combine his own smarts with the Intersect as a tool rather than just Kung Fuing his way through L.A. My fingers are crossed!

mxpw: Though one wonders how the government suddenly became so adept at inserting and extracting the Intersect, considering they were supposed to have no clue how it worked not too long ago. Why again was it necessary for Ellie to have the laptop so she could fix things for Chuck if the government could just figure it out on its own?

Frea: Well, I think they got the fix from the laptop?

mxpw: But they obviously reprogrammed part of it.

Frea: Can I go into shallow territory for a moment?

mxpw: It’s me.

mxpw: I live in the shallow end.

Frea: I think Stacy Keibler’s legs are longer than all of me.

mxpw: Yes, and they are glorious, every inch of them. She could give Mini a run for her money in the legs department.

Frea: And she’s pretty. Just for the record. As is the Old Spice Guy. So that was nice, to see so much prettiness contained on one screen.

Frea: Now that I’m done harping on the show, I have something I noticed that I want to bring up.

mxpw: What’s that?

Frea: Everybody buckle in, I’m about to pay the show a compliment.

mxpw: Wow!

mxpw: This is a banner day.

mxpw: You must still be half-asleep. Heh.

Frea: We’re about to head into Season Two territory here. And not in the nostalgia sense, but in the, “Did this episode just establish two concurrent storylines and TWO villains?” sense.

mxpw: I think so.

Frea: We haven’t seen that since Roark/the Bunker were legitimate villains!

mxpw: That is a very good point.

mxpw: It’s good to get back to the show’s roots.

Frea: I mean, Roark and the Bunker were tied together, whereas Robin Givens and Vivian don’t seem to be, so this may be new territory altogether.

Frea: This may actually convince me to care about Vivian Volkoff as an actual threat if it means we get two problems running at the same time Team B to deal with!

mxpw: I will keep my fingers crossed.

mxpw: I bet we’ll find out that Bentley was working for Volkoff at some point. Though it would be awesome if she was just a regular old, incompetent bureaucrat.

Frea: Oh, is that her name?

mxpw: Yeah.

Frea: Bentley? Bah. I like Robin Givens more.

mxpw: I can’t remember her first name, but I believe that’s her last name.

Frea: Her first name is Robin Givens. Robin Givens Bentley

mxpw: Works for me.

Frea: And no, I don’t have a bet going with Wepdiggy to see how many times I can type “Robin Givens” in this review...Robin Givens.

mxpw: Haha.

mxpw: Well, bets aside, have anything more you want to say about the episode before we wrap things up?

Frea: Whole bunch. I’m going to list things I liked. Feel free to join in.

Frea: 1) Jeff’s Clairvoyance. Yay Ghostbusters! Boo, no attaching Jeff to electrical probes and shocking him, though he’d probably enjoy that, so maybe it’s for the best.

mxpw: Seconded. That was a very funny scene.

mxpw: 2) Sarah looked very pretty all episode.

Frea: She did! As Yvonne Strahovski didn’t mysteriously turn into Peter Falk over the weeks we didn’t see her, that makes things easier.

mxpw: Hey, you said talk about things I liked. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention my favorite thing.

Frea: Point, Maximus, point.

mxpw: 3) Chuck referenced The Hurt Locker and Morgan had a funny line about the Intersect making the world a more peaceful place.

Frea: 4) Ellie! Her chattering on and on and on was fantastic and hilarious. Though really, if Sarah’s so bored, why isn’t she going over and hanging out to give Ellie more adult company?

mxpw: Precisely! I’d like an answer to that question too. It’s what I was thinking of while watching the episode.

mxpw: Do Chuck and Sarah have no other hobbies but playing board games?

mxpw: I’m not sure joining the Mile High club counts as a hobby.

Frea: I think Fates Sarah thinks it does.

mxpw: Canon Sarah would seem to agree with her.

Frea: As does Themselves Sarah.

mxpw: Nice to see that they do still have occasional sexytimes.

Frea: That was going to be my number 5!

mxpw: Heee

mxpw: There we go. If Sarah was so bored, why wasn’t she making sure Chuck would need a walker to get around? Man, I can’t imagine Fates Sarah letting such a valuable opportunity go to waste like that.

Frea: Ha, point. Assuming this is past the point where she’s broken Chuck’s brain. Anyway, where was I?

Frea: Oh right:

Frea: 5) Ellie! Damn if that woman doesn’t know how to get what she wants.

mxpw: She is clearly the actual smart one of the whole extended family. And her scene in the Buy More was pretty funny. Great to see Sarah Lancaster get some good material for once.

Frea: 6) Casey’s leaving them the handprint on the Ronald Reagan picture. I just liked that a whole bunch, is all. And I don’t think the other Castle is cooler than theirs. I miss old-school Castle as it didn’t look like an early 90s production company tag.

mxpw: Though I have to say, that’s a pretty nice contract she has with her hospital to get this much maternity leave.

mxpw: New-Castle was all dark and foreboding, subtly indicating that bad stuff was going on. It was very subtle.

Frea: Whereas Team-B-Castle matches Sarah’s wardrobe.

mxpw: Flashy and not always there?

Frea: *laughing* Uh, I was going for “purply.” But that works.

mxpw: Let’s get some CP!

Frea: Final thoughts: I need to reiterate that it wasn’t a terrible episode. But, like Tom Sawyer, I don’t really ever want to watch it again. Interesting things set in motion and next week we get to see all the potential slayers Chucks show up! Will they be wearing Chucks? Will they flirt awkwardly and adorably with Sarah? Will there be cheesecake? Stay tuned. Your thoughts, Max?

mxpw: I spotted what looked like at least one female “Chuck” so I am all for her awkwardly and adorably flirting with Sarah. :P

mxpw: But yeah... Look, I know it may seem like I wasn’t crazy about the episode, but I actually thought it was fairly funny and mostly entertaining. I view this episode like Dream Job, really. Which was an okay episode that didn’t really pick up until the second half and then had some pretty awesome scenes. That was A-Team for me. So yeah, I thought it was good but definitely flawed and lacking in depth.

mxpw: I am looking forward to next week, as always, and I’m very curious what they’re going to do with this very different episode they have planned.

Frea: Robin Givens.


Frea:  6.8 Castle Slides out of 10

mxpw: 3.5 Nerd Herd Sarahs in Honor of Klemmer's Return out of 5.


  1. Ayefah16.3.11

    The only thing that explains Sarah's first-half neuroses for me is her competitiveness. As soon as the A-Team versus B-Team idea came into play, she had to ensure she was on the former. Casey's appendages were just collateral damage.

    Also, I just realized the little Operation scene in the beginning was foreshadowing the bomb-defusing at the end, which was a cute touch.

    And...that's all I have to say right now because I'm sleepy.

  2. 'Morgan had a funny line about the Intersect making the world a more peaceful place.'

    True. But Casey said almost exactly the same thing first. I thought it was a continuation of what we'd seen earlier, where Casey was training Morgan in how to deal with being questioned (and tortured).

  3. Big Kev16.3.11

    I gotta say, I liked it. A good solid ep, and leagues better than anything we've had from Wootton or DiGregorio.
    I was surprised to hear the animus about Sarah's lack of hobbies. We've never been given any indication she has any hobbies. Chuck. Job. Porsche. That's pretty much Sarah, it seems to me. It might be poor writing not to have fleshed her out a little - but I don't think we can say that bored and stir-crazy Sarah is OOC. No doubt Klemmer has written some strange Sarah in the past - but I didn't think this episode was an example of it.
    As for her sudden concern with the Casey partnership, I kinda thought that was the point. She's neglected her partner but she doesn't realize it. She feels betrayed but those feelings of betrayal aren't really justified. I was fine with that. Agree that Casey's reasons for switching weren't satisfactorily resolved though.
    Hopefully it's not just a case of status quo ante, and they come back to it.
    One thing I will say for Klemmer - he writes Jeff better than anyone else! Tom Sawyer and now clairvoyant Jeff?? Gold!!

  4. Anonymous16.3.11

    Does Sarah have hobbies outside of being a spy? Ummm, I’m pretty sure that would be no. Unless knife throwing counts. She doesn't like music. She doesn't know popular culture. We've never seen her read (except for paperwork). The only time we've seen her watch television or movies is with Chuck. She's never gone sightseeing at any of the places she's visited. The only thing she and her friends seem to do to have fun is go dancing at clubs.
    We've also never seen her go more than a few days between missions. She was still doing missions while Casey was a civilian and while Chuck and Casey were stuck in Burbank during the Intersectless arc. Chuck and Casey have been sidelined at various points for weeks at a time but Sarah's never gone more than a week. That was why, for me, I didn't think the restlessness was necessarily completely unfounded. We never really have had the opportunity to see how she would act without mission before. She couldn’t even make it through Honeymooners without a mission and that included days and days of sexyfuntime.
    As far as her treatment of Casey. I kind of thought it was sort of like when you have a friend that you maybe grown slightly apart from, that suddenly starts hanging out with a bunch of new people and you get jealous. You know, you don’t know what you have until its gone? Sarah also felt that Casey had not only starting hanging out with the new kids, so to speak, but since the new kids had essentially kicked them off the playing field had betrayed her and Chuck … okay, enough with the metaphor. She felt jealous and betrayed. Whether you’re looking at her reaction to Chuck’s lack of trust in her during Helicopter and Wookie, or to Zondra’s perceived betrayal the more recent episode C.A.T. Squad, Sarah does have a tendency yell and act somewhat irrationally when she feels betrayed.
    Finally, the perfect time for Chuck to show his competency without the intersect would have been, in my option, during Phase Three. However that would have cut into seeing Sarah fight wet, so I have a feeling not everyone would agree with me. So I’ll take what I can get.

  5. "This is the government, since when do they care about doing things better?"

    They don't. That's the point. People in government care about doing things "their way", whether or not it is better. If Chuck was killing people, a different faction would say he was too lethal and there is a problem with the Intersect that needed to be fixed.

    I agree with the other replies about Sarah having no hobbies. Having nothing outside of the spy life and Chuck is one of the defining characteristics of Sarah. Chuck has been trying to change that, but the idea of Sarah becoming well rounded simply because she got together with Chuck a year ago is unrealistic.

    I have 2 theories about why Sarah wouldn't hang out with Ellie. 1) Sarah was "on call" at work because they had not been told they were sidelined while the initial Greta/Intersect test was on. 2) Sarah is avoiding the baby. Personally, I still hoping for the Charah babysitting/diaper changing scene.

    Also, if Sarah gushed over her partner Casey in every episode, Casey would get uncomfortable and Sarah would seem OOC. Since Tic Tac, she has shown protectiveness, appreciation, and/or interest in her partnership with Casey in at least Subway, Anniversary, Coup, Couch Lock, Phase Three, and First Bank. Any more would be excessive for two emotionally repressed spies.

    Casey's behavior makes complete sense to me. He is a (Lt.) Colonel. Of course he wants to lead a team. As far back as Wookie he called them MY team, in a way that may it sound like he was trying to claim leadership. The resolution makes sense to me too. In fact, I think they intentionally did not tie it up because the issue is not going away. If not, I'm ok with that too. Who needs to see a boring scene with Casey apologizing. It would be OOC.

    I like how Morgan is season 1 Chuck, but Casey is season 2 Morgan, slowing drifting away from the team, but trying to define a new place for himself.

  6. i'm intrigued by the revelation that chuck knows Japanese - I do believe thats a NES cartridge as opposed to a SNES cartride - so his comments about playing Final Fantasy II would be the Actual Final Fantasy 2 which was Never released in the US.

    The game released as final fantasy 2 in the US was a Snes game and was actually final fantasy 4. (this is the reason why to the US final fantasy games went 1 2 3 7 because they were really 1 4 and 6)

    i'll end my horrific geeking out now

  7. Since most of the mythology is such a mess a definite answer on why Chuck is special has become my new white whale. I really don't expect to get answers about anything else but after this episode it really needs to be explained.

    And I know this might get me killed here but Sarah Lancaster blew Yvonne away tonight in hotness.

  8. Don't worry, JC, I'll protect you. I've thought Sarah Lancaster was freaking gorgeous since her Everwood days (which is why the hospital in Fates is Madison Mercy). :)

  9. While the comments seem to be focused on Sarah Lancaster, I've been a huge fan of her hotness since the Sandworm ep, that Eve costume pretty much blew my mind. Ever since I've felt that there should also be such thing as EBP and that it should happen with nearly as much fequency as SWP.

    Also I'm kinda shocked there was no talk of the final scene with Ellie and the laptop. I read that secene as hinting that Ellie had inadvertently downloaded the intersect, what wither her being sat in front of the intersect laptop and having 'lost track of time'. Either I'm alone in this impression or everyone's taken it as writ and I'm still hung up on whether my suspicion is correct.

  10. I'm going to have to add my voice to the chorus of those suggesting that Sarah's stir craziness was not necessarily out of character. I can't help but think that your backgrounds as extraordinary fan fiction writers might be coloring you view of Sarah.

    While Casey, Chuck, Morgan and even Jeff and Lester have clearly been shown to have hobbies outside of their work life, Sarah has not. Casey has been shown with his Bonsai tree, his Vic, watching war documentaries and if all else fails spending hours fondling his weapons. Chuck has video games, board games and large computer programming tomes. Morgan has video games, board games and beard grooming. Jeff and Lester have alcohol, Jeffster and upgrading the Stalker van.

    Sarah's never been shown to have significant independent interests. While she's gifted with blades and guns, she's never demonstrated Casey's all consuming love of weapons. She's never been shown showering love on her Porsche. Even if the Porsche was an outlet for her, it's now in about 10,000 pieces so she can't substitute breaking California traffic for her normal adrenaline rush. The one thing we've been shown is her tendency to kick the crap out of inanimate objects (or Chuck) when she's upset. Missed opportunity to show sweaty Sarah in athletic gear, but probably not sufficient to kill time on the side lines. The one thing they could have done was have Sarah pour herself into wedding planning.

    Sarah also doesn't take being left behind well, regardless of the situation. She wasn't happy with Casey in Colonel, although the far more relevant episode is Sensei. Her response to Casey going on his own rogue mission is to jump on him from behind and hold a knife to his throat. So yeah, she can be a little high strung.

  11. Re: the Porsche-- I think that's solely a fanfiction creation, actually. I've never seen anything on the show that shows Sarah is particularly attached to the car.

    As far as the rest of your comments go, neither of us has called Sarah's restlessness "out of character." We just both felt it was completely over the top, as Sarah tends to be a little more reserved unless she's had Chuck egg her on into craziness. In truth, it highlighted a problem we've both had with the show at various points: that Sarah does not seem to have any interests outside of her work and Chuck, which kind of makes her seem like a flat character to us, given that she was supposedly going to give up one of those until Chuck downloaded 2.0. If she's so into her job, in addition, maybe she should be a little more professional. It grates on me when Sarah's unprofessional, and yet I mostly don't mind it when Chuck does it. Ah, double standards. They're fun.

  12. What's the point of having standards if you can't have more than one set?

  13. I gotta agree about Sarah I don't like the idea of her being defined by Chuck. We know the show goes overboard with certain themes but this one of Sarah was nothing before Chuck is a terrible one. They should of showed her teaching Chuck cons she did with her dad like three card Monty. Or since Cat Squad showed she like cards, how bout some strip poker.

  14. Ayefah16.3.11

    The show tends to define all its female characters by their relationships to men. Julia Ling was the one who came up with the idea that Anna was into anime, and it was Ling's martial arts background that bled into Anna's character. Beyond that? She was just Morgan's girlfriend, just like Alex is Morgan's girlfriend and Casey's daughter and little else now. In four seasons the only non-Chuck-or-Devon interest that we might have seen for Ellie is cooking. We're lucky they even decided that she's a neurologist.

    It's a very dude-centric worldview, and that's just...so typical of this show that yelling about it seems redundant. The fact that a gynocentric episode like "CAT Squad" even happened is a minor miracle.

    The Sarah in my head likes dancing and (since "Honeymooners") the blues. But that's me picking over the tiniest scraps and making into something they're not. And yeah, the female lead of this show deserves better. If Sarah had no real hobbies before, she should be gaining them now.

  15. Becca16.3.11

    I gotta agree with MyNameIsJeffNThis name is too long to type out....

    In that I felt secure in Sarah's appreciation of Casey as a partner. It brought back all kinds of season 1 feelings for me. And because her hair in at least 3 scenes looked like it did in Vs Beefcake, season 2 feelings too. (I think it was something to do with the fringe... looked great anyway, I was getting so tired of straight).

    Back to partnership - I kind of took it as assumed knowledge that Casey was valuable to Sarah. She worked with him before she really worked with Chuck. I always saw Casey as a bit of a backbone of the team. Chuck's all the meat for sure - mammals have more meat than bone - but Casey is what cemented the team into...well, being a team, and not just a couple.

    I didn't see the ass-slap! Must go back and check. Surprising, really, as I've already gone for the re-watch of this episode, because I really liked it. Then again, I really enjoyed Dream Job, so perhaps this is my type of episode.

    The only thing I had a problem with, was there was this whole, 'Casey, you are a part of the team!' thing going on, but then after Chuck diffuses the bomb, him and Sarah get couple-y, and Casey's point about not being a part of the team had never hit home harder.

    I think we all already knew that Sarah doesn't have hobbies. I mean, a few years ago she didn't really have a life! Plus, it's really funny watching her get bored playing games. I'm a sadist at heart.

    Heh. Earlier I was looking at the length of people's comments and shaking my head. Now people are going to shake their heads at me. Ffs.

  16. As Frea said, neither of us called Sarah "out of character." We, or since I don't want to put words in her mouth, I, just thought that Sarah was acting pretty ridiculous. And I realize that Sarah doesn't have any outside, independent interests beside spying and hasn't been shown to pursue any. That's precisely the problem Frea and I were trying to get at. It's been four years now and Sarah is, in many respects, the same kind of person she was when the show started. Yes, she's more emotional and more open than she used to be, and obviously she's with Chuck now, but this episode really made it clear that she is still couching much of her identity in terms of being a spy and nothing else. And I think that makes her a flat, two-dimensional character.

    After four years, that shouldn't be the case. After four years, she should have developed some kind of actual personality. It just makes me think about what she and Chuck actually do during their downtime. Do they do nothing as a couple beside play board games and watch TV? I never thought I'd say this about Chuck and Sarah, but they sound incredibly boring.

    And Jeff, I disagree with you. I think the fact that Sarah has been dating Chuck and under his influence for more than a year and has yet to develop even the most basic and simplest of outside interests is incredibly unrealistic. By now she should have found something that interested her outside of being a spy. Anything.

    Somebody on TWOP said it best, I think, that the fact that Chuck and Sarah seem to only sit around waiting for the next mission to come and don't really seem to do anything in between is a tacit admission by the writers that they've given up on giving Chuck and Sarah anymore personal growth.

    Oh and Anonymous the first, you made a lot of good points! I mean, everybody made good comments today, but yours made me think about modifying my position.

    @JC - You better run, cause I'm gonna be coming for you!

  17. Ayefah16.3.11

    Somebody on TWOP said it best, I think, that the fact that Chuck and Sarah seem to only sit around waiting for the next mission to come and don't really seem to do anything in between is a tacit admission by the writers that they've given up on giving Chuck and Sarah anymore personal growth.

    Huh. That is a really cogent point. The show has presented "real life" and spying as being a sort of yin and yang for Chuck - he's at his best when he has both, but they're vastly different aspects of him. And if he really has come down to just caring about missions...he's losing the yin. Or maybe the yang. In any event, he's short on something, and it shows.

    Chuck used to be overflowing with banal life - his Buy More job, his relationship with Ellie, his nerdy hobbies - but despite a slight resurrection of his geekiness of late, overall he's grown more and more distant from those things over time. And maybe that would be okay...if Sarah, his opposite number, moved proportionately in the other direction. But as we've all gone over in exhaustive detail, she hasn't.

    It wouldn't even be terribly hard to fix this. Show Sarah reading a book in the beginning of a scene. Have her mention watching a TV show. Give her something. The time when the show's romantic tension partially depended on Sarah being an enigma has long passed.

  18. Anonymous16.3.11

    I think new castle would make my neck hurt.

  19. "The time when the show's romantic tension partially depended on Sarah being an enigma has long passed"

    Hello Ayefah, was your tongue dipped in the fountain of the gods or something? Very eloquent and couldn't agree more. This comment section makes me very happy.

  20. Tamara19.3.11

    John Clark, I don't think the lost time had to do with her downloading the Intersect, it had to do with Ellie getting caught up in something.

    The first time I played this game that had unlimited lives (I'm blanking on the name but it was a FPS) it felt like I blinked and it was 5 hours later. With Clara sleeping well because of the Jeffster bear and Ellie having something to engage her mind she could definitely lose track of time.

    And I think one of the reasons Sarah got so strange about Casey was that she fears change. We saw in Coup that she seemed to have the belief that all change is bad. I blame her father for starting that and the CIA for reinforcing that.

    She's still working on learning that change can be a good thing , she's had examples of that but they may not have incorporated into long held subconcious beliefs yet.

  21. I'm a little nervous about Elle getting her dad's laptop again. I don't want her getting in to the spy business. She has a family now. Chuck can do it easily and not because he's the intersect, but because of the person he is. I loved how the new "deeper" part of Castle just popped out on my screen in HD. It looked so real, which was pretty awesome. As a DISH Network customer/employee I can tell you HD with DISH is the best. Not only does DISH have more HD channels than anyone else, the price is amazing. Totally worth it, at least to me.


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