Inane Chatter - Chuck 5.06 - Chuck vs. the Curse

Hey, y'all! It's Shoe again. I know having a new job as a graphic designer has made me a bit of a bad minion, and I have a confession to make...after I give a short synopsis of Chuck vs the Curse.

Chuck and Sarah are on the run after being framed for Decker's murder. Morgan has helped Casey escape from prison and is the only team member of Carmichael Industries not under suspicion of murder. Ellie and Awesome have a "date night" that is memorable, but puts them into harms way and Chuck makes some questionable decisions in saving them.

Find out what kind of confession I make after the jump.

Confession time: If you followed or follow me on Twitter, I sent out a slightly cryptic tweet about going to L.A. in September. Many were wondering why I was going out there, and the reason was that I was going out there for a Chuck tour.

I went on the tour with Steph (@sundoll) and Kris (@MrsHemki), plus Steph's daughter. Steph was the amazing person who planned the trip out and I’m so glad I was able to participate in it.

The people who do the WB tours absolutely love Chuck fans since we know a lot about the show, and even some things people forget. We got to tour the sets, such as the apartments, Buy More, and even posed for a picture with a Nerd Herder. And we had an awesome guide who managed to score us a way into watching them film a scene on Stage 10. Stage 10 is the green screen stage and where Castle is (although we didn't see the Castle set. But I did get to see the Wienerlicious sign hanging up in the rafters!). Anyways, the part of the scene we got to see being shot was the Ellie/Awesome interior limo scene. We didn't get to meet or talk with the cast, but I did get to talk to the VFX Supervisor. I was happy I got to do that, since I want to have a job doing motion graphics! But it still would've been nice to see Zac on set...

Alright back to my review. Even though I am quite aware I may get virtual rocks thrown at me by Crumby (@DNWACrumb) and Catrogue (@Catrogue) and possibly Frea, I have to say right off the bat, I had some high expectations for this episode. I extremely enjoyed the previous episode, and I was so excited to see if the scene I saw being shot would make it in.

I will say there were enjoyable parts for me, especially the Ellie/Awesome scenes. Instead of SWP, we got EWP. Ellie looked amazing in this episode, and it was nice to see Ellie not be the overprotective sister. As I said before, the part that I saw being shot was at the part when Awesome says, "We need to roll out of the limo while it's moving." I had no clue what Agent Provocateur was until later on when we passed by a store in L.A. It was a little hard to hear what they were saying the first take, and Ryan kept flubbing his lines at times. They shot the wide shot/two shot first, then had to re-set the camera and shoot the close ups of both Ellie and Awesome separately. It is a bit of a process, but it was amazing to see anything of Chuck being filmed, and seeing the sets before they were broken down. Also, I have missed any kind of good Ellie/Awesome scenes in the show, so this episode was nice just for them.

Unfortunately, this episode was a bit all over the map and I get that some things are trying to call back to previous seasons, but Oh Chuck. Sarah even told him that she would go with him to rescue Ellie and Awesome since they are her family now too. His stunt reminded me of what Chuck did in Chapter 52 of Fates—which further confirms my sneaking suspicion that some of the writers read fan fiction. Don't know why but parts of this episode felt like it came from fan fiction. It did bother me that Sarah or Casey didn't turn off the virus and that seemed bizarre considering they were trying to stop it from happening. Yet, they had to come up with a "way" to bring Shaw back...

I told my partner in review, BDaddyDL (@BDaddyDL), that the women took the cake in this episode. They were more sensible, aside from the Robin Cunnings character, and definitely portrayed the strength they have. In a way, it reminded me of Steel Magnolias—the women in that movie portray a strength that you don't necessarily associate with Southern women.

Chuck does have strong women, but this episode just seemed to showcase it more. Alex, who I haven't seen do something kickass since Casey said he was her father, is her father's daughter when it comes to guns. That I was not expecting since she just seems like a sweet and gentle person. But she is Casey's daughter and has the temper to go with it. I was glad she stood her ground with Morgan again, even though some had issues with the PANTS thing, I found it funny. And boy, can Alex turn the waterworks on and off on a dime when calling 9-1-1.

Beckman and her clever Morse Code finger tap; I knew she still had to be supportive of Team B at the beginning. Ellie was a bit of a surprise to me. She was actually the one who was more aware that their "pick-up" was less friendly than let on. I don't know why Awesome wasn't as aware, but I guess he's always been that way in regards to the spy life. The problem with Robin, is that I keep seeing Mystique, and electrocution just isn't Mystique's thing. But I wouldn't want to play with that "toy," only to have it turned on me later.

I've yet to figure out how Chuck knew Sarah would come and save his ass, but her reaction was classic and reminded me of Fates Sarah. She was in her right to be utterly pissed at Chuck's stupid stunt and you could feel the doghouse vibes coming from her. Her threat to Chuck at the end of the episode about being a "trained assassin" did feel like she would go through with it, if Chuck did that again. And I was mad Chuck did the dumb thing and left his wife behind. This is why they stuck you in the car, Chuck, at the beginning. I guess Chuck has not learned that yet.

While I did not have as many nitpicking issues with this episode as some did, I did feel like there were scenes missing towards the end. Now, it could be because I saw some "spoilers" when we visited the sets, especially in Casey's apartment. By the way, when those men go "upstairs," it's just one step and then nothing. I don't want to say what I saw, just in case it is something that may come up in the next episode. Overall, I was glad the Ellie/Awesome scenes were a strong point of this episode.

I hate Shaw, but I still want to see Sarah kick his ass even though the promo shows otherwise. And I'm a little excited for that episode...please don't hurt me. Also, apologies that I spent a good chunk talking about my set visit.

So what did y'all think of the episode?


  1. Anonymous17.12.11

    I pretty much hated it from top to bottom. Ellie and Awesome were the only real redeeming characters in the episode and even their plot was weak. What kind of a mother would turn her phone off when she wasn't with her baby?

    The show definitely needs to hire a continuity editor though because there were at least two different times in the episode where something that was focused on was completely ignored afterwards. The first time it happened was when Ellie and Awesome first got into the limo and the camera zoomed in to show the doors being locked on them. That was apparently a pointless gesture by the agent since the doors were unlocked again when Ellie and Awesome decided to jump out. Later on you had a spot where Robin explicitly tells her minions to kill Ellie and Awesome on sight and instead they just sort of stare at them when they found them (allowing Awesome to knock one out and Sarah to shoot the other) and then take Awesome hostage.

    I was also extremely frustrated that no one contacted Beckman in the previous episode when Casey was first arrested and then when Decker was forcing them to do an off-the-books mission for him. That anger only intensified this episode when Beckman came in and saved them all because it showed how dumb they were not to contact her in the first place. It just further showed how incredibly stupid the characters have to be for the plots to work anymore.

    Speaking of which, Chuck really needs to grow up. This not trusting Sarah bullshit has gone on for far too long and someone (maybe Casey?) needs to put him in his place. I loved that Sarah just left him tied up in the end but unfortunately the episode kept rolling and she ended up forgiving him far too easily. I was also immensely pissed that he tried to just make it a joke in the end and seemed to have no real idea how serious the issue was and how badly he acted throughout the episode. It seems clear to me that the writers don’t take that kind of thing very seriously and that is probably why it keeps happening.

    I really just want the show to come to an end at this point. I love the actors but the show itself needs to be put out of its misery. The only reason I’m even watching at this point is because I enjoy the fanfiction community and don’t want to feel like I’m missing out on some great stories because I didn’t see all the episodes. With that said, I’m not sure I’m going to be able to stomach the next episode and might have to just skip it. I still can’t believe that the writers are bringing back Shaw. WTF is wrong with them?

  2. Anonymous17.12.11

    Oh, and on the similarities to chapter 52 of Fates, I think the basic idea was the same but that is where it stops. The reasons behind the schemes were polar opposites.

    Fates:Chuck completely trusted Sarah and was doing what he needed to do to give her the best opportunity he could to let her save Bryce, Andy, and him.

    Canon:Chuck didn't trust Sarah at all and did what he thought he had to to save Ellie and Awesome himself since he didn't think Sarah would.

    I agree that the writer may have taken the idea from Fates but it was so badly done that it seems wrong to compare the two. Fates shouldn't suffer because the writers of the show are incompetent.

  3. Ok this may be a bit harsh, but could people get an order of perspective with their coffee?
    Was this a great episode .... No.
    Was it fear of death, mask, beefcake and some of the worst Chuck episodes... I don't think so. It was the weakest this season. Sarah didn't go to DC or something like that, and we had a nice ending.
    This episode to quote Shoe was all over the place. It was contrived, also some Od it didn't work.
    As for the fates analogy... Look the story had to move somewhere and they used something they've done almost 100 times before. Chuck does something stupid, Sarah saves his butt. I do think that the parallel is valid. It's not exact, but its close enough for hand granades.
    All in all I enjoyed the episode. The look ok my wifes face when Sarah left Chuck was hilarious. I think ill never try and pull that stunt if I ever want to live.

  4. Anonymous17.12.11

    The problem is that when Season 2 Chuck does something stupid, it's usually still somewhat smart. This episode was just him being stupid. Absolutely nothing redeeming about it from Chuck. I mean, the amount of dumbass-ery is so great that it isn't even in character for him. He knows how dangerous this Omen virus is, yet he runs off and hands it over without a plan? Really?

    That is why this episode is probably one of the worst for the series for me. I can't handle stupidity of that magnitude, and from Chuck of all people?

  5. mjm073017.12.11

    Rewatched the episode this am. Certainly the weakest of the episodes this season. Chuck reverting back to being secretive was annoying. Sarah showing her complete support of him, by convincing Beckman & Casey to follow Chuck's plan, only to have him stupidly go alone to face the captors, unarmed. Dumb Chuck. And after last week's wonderfully Capable Chuck. Just annoying.

    With only 13 episodes, you would have hoped the writers could have found a way to lead into next week w/out making Chuck so whiny and ineffective.

    But as the popular phase explains, "It is what it is." So we move forward to next week...which looks awful (shaw returns) and amazing.

  6. Anonymous17.12.11


    I've never seen Fear of Death or the Mask so I can't comment on those but what made the Beefcake a terrible episode in your eyes?

  7. noidhoidah17.12.11

    I loved this episode. The Chuck stuff bothered me, but it didn't bring the rest of the episode down. It was just like: "Well, Chuck's being an ineffectual dumb-ass this week. Good thing everything else is so awesome." Speaking of awesome, I love how much fun Ellie and Awesome had with their little "spy" caper, even after things started to get real. I wish we could get some of that from Chuck and Sarah from time to time.

  8. Hey, no virtual rocks from me Shoe! ;-)

    I'm glad they used the scene you got to see shot, and that you enjoyed the episode. :)

    My highlights were the same than yours, even if there were some "facepalm-ing" moments (Ellie turning off her phone, then not trying to call somebody before jumping from the car, or like Anonymous said the car doors being locked and then not, etc.).

    I loved Alex with the gun! Win! And then the waterworks, hihi, that was great. Mekenna Melvin is great.

    I also liked Casey in the ep, and his interactions with Beckman.

    Now BD, I think we'll have to agree to disagree in the end. Chuck pulled similar stunts before indeed. And as brilliant as Frea is, I'd say that's probably why it happened in Fates 52 in the first place rather than the other way around (although for the record, I consider what Canon Chuck did here far worse than what Fates Chuck did in 52).

    However, it usually always was because Sarah and Casey didn't agree with him (which never made it better for me, btw). Here Sarah agreed. She specifically told him she did. She said she'd do it with him. And it was still not enough.

    Remember Chuck stealing the chip to go save Jill? That was stupid, but then, he wasn't a trained agent, Sarah and Casey had told him to stay put, they didn't have personal reasons to save Jill, and Sarah and him weren't together. I still didn't like it then, I certainly won't like now.

    At some point, what he did just looks abusive to me. He put himself knowingly and unnecessarily in danger, expecting Sarah to save him, with complete disregard of what it did to her. What if Sarah had gotten hurt in the process of saving him? What about the emotional hurt of such stunts? What about being the guy Sarah "can count on"? Where was that guy?

    Sarah will always come to save him, it doesn't mean it should happen when Chuck can avoid it. I'd expect my husband to protect me from such things when he can, rather than provoke them. But maybe that's just me.

    That was highly insensitive, and I expected more of him now that we've been there before time and again, and they're married damn it. Not to mention that Ellie and Awesome are Sarah's family too, now. What the hell? Did he really think she wouldn't save them? That was SO irritating.

    The cherry on top was Chuck not taking the issue seriously and not being very sorry about what he did. He was just sorry he might have to sleep on the couch for a night, that seemed about it. That's just annoying. (Just like he seemed to think that what Sarah did for him in Phase Three was completely normal, btw.) A little more gratitude would be nice.

    I agree that wasn't the worst episode ever, I enjoyed most of it. But the characterization of Chuck was just awful during the entire episode. There's no fun in that.

  9. Anonymous17.12.11

    The Chuck stuff really REALLY bothered me this episode. The only way Chuck can survive/thrive in the spy world is through his brains, especially now with no Intersect. Instead, in this episode, we see him betray Sarah's trust, run off into a dangerous situation with no plan and willingly hand over a virus that can possibly end the world...for absolutely no pay off and no good reason to do them in the first place.

    All this from a guy described as the second best spy John Casey has ever worked with.

  10. @Anonymous. John Casey has only ever worked with two partners though! The other partners that we know of, were court-martialed. So in that respect, it's not that hard to be ranked #2 of best spies by him.

  11. Anonymous17.12.11

    @Anonymous re: doing it for no pay off,

    Exactly! Even if you overlook how stupid Chuck and Sarah had to be for not realizing that Decker was going to double cross them last episode, how is it that Chuck learned absolutely nothing from that experience?

    He was making the exact same mistake again by naively believing that Robin would keep her word and release Ellie and Awesome. His "brilliant" plan to hide the Omen was shown to be completely worthless since all Robin had to do was threaten to torture Awesome and Chuck told them exactly where he had hidden it. What would have stopped them from just doing that in the first place if Ellie and Awesome hadn't escaped on their own?

  12. Anonymous17.12.11


    Um, no. Casey said that Chuck was the second best spy he ever worked with, NOT his second best partner. Casey has worked with: Carina, Cole, Bryce, Bennett, Shaw, Sarah...I'm sure you get the idea. And this is not counting the people before he met Chuck.

    @Anonymous (above)
    Exactly. The last two episodes have been pretty weak, IMO. I don't want to see Chuck Bartowski get lucky - I want to see him be smart. That's his "thing" and he totally fracked it up the last two episodes.

  13. awelle17.12.11


    I guess people just take different perspectives, just as they take their coffee differently. I for one loved Beefcake.

    I also didn´t completely hate this episode, because I enjoyed Ellie and Devon, Beckman´s inclusion (especially her meeting up with Casey) and Alex.

    I did however not find Chuck even the least bit likeable or rootable in this ep. He needed to be at least not be both completely incompetent or highly insensitive and disregarding of Sarah. Both was just too much.

    How much he cares about Ellie might have been helping, if he actually managed to save her. But Sarah did that, after Chuck failed to believe in her being just as eager and willing to do everything to save Ellie and Devon as he is. And she just made a speech about how important they are to her two episodes ago.

    I also didn´t like how he didn´t appreciate at least having her with him when they briefly were on the run in the beginning.

    I did like that she was completely mad, but she forgave him far too easily. And if they intended to truly make it seem like any of his actions were about helping Sarah or that he thought about what would be beneficial to her and just misjudged that, it was very badly executed. No matter how much I try to give him the benefit of the doubt, I can´t see how he could have come to this conclusion. No matter how panicked or strangely obsessed with this curse he was.

    Sarah obviously did come to that conclusion, because otherwise she couldn´t have let that go so easily. But I can´t follow that line of thought.

  14. AnonymousBody17.12.11

    I didn't find everyone but Chuck to be awesome; I found Alex to be awesome and some moments from Ellie and Devon.

    It bothered me that Sarah agreed with Chuck in the first place. This device can cause chaos in every corner of the globe simultaneously. I'm all for her wanting to save her family & supporting her husband, but support him by reminding him he's been showing some phenomenal computer skills of late and you have no doubt he can make a fake that will be convincing long enough for you to get in and save his sister. Then make an excuse for Chuck to be alone and go off and do his completely idiotic thing if you must. I just couldn't believe that Sarah, Casey *and* Beckman were going to be ok with handing over a real device that would have an impact on billions of people. Wasn't their job as spies to protect the world from such things?

    Then at the end they dared to look shocked that these bad mysterious people used the Oman to take down the internet? What did they expect to happen?!

  15. Anonymous17.12.11

    According to Chuck, the Omen couldn't just take down the Internet but it would crash airplanes as well. If that was true, then Chuck is responsible for the deaths of thousands of people since any airplane currently in the air when the virus went live would have died.

    Of course that might have been another one of those lines that was in the script for no real reason and forgotten as soon as he said it.

  16. I'm in agreement with Anon. This whole season has been portraying Chuck and, to a slightly lesser extent, Sarah as completely incompetent spies. And this last episode takes the cake. Everybody but Alex was really, really stupid. This whole episode made Chuck look like a complete douchebag. The fact that anybody thought it was a good idea to take the virus to the meet was utterly dumbfounding. Ellie turning off her cellphone while she was away from Clara? Never, ever gonna happen. I'm a parent. I know this. Sarah forgiving Chuck so quickly? Makes her look weak. Beckman saying this was a win was laughable.

    I put all of this blame on Fedak. This script should have never, ever been green lit. I realize the WGA has its rules (which I hate) but holy hell was this bad. The characters were inconsistent and stupid. The story was contrived and all over the place. And the fact that the virus was released was just icing on the shit cake.

    I know there are other episodes that people will probably hate more (Mask, Fake Name) for obvious plot lines, but as an overall episode, this one may be the worst ever.

    Luckily, Alan Sepinwall said next week's episode is outstanding, so I'm excited.

  17. Haha. I finally got some free time to come read your review. And like Crumby, no virtual rocks from me either. :p

    So cool you got to are a scene shot. Color me jealous! But anywho, I felt the same way about how amazeballs Sarah Lancaster looked. She is a Hot Mama. The Awesomes were super awesome this ep. I'm more than glad they had an actual storyline this ep instead of just a small cameo/scene.

    But besides the awesomes being...well, awesome, i didn't really enjoy the ep. I was annoyed and turned off by Chuck, and the whole "Curse" plot. So lame, I felt.

    Sarah's "trained assassin" line? Hilarious !!! :p I don't have anything else to say...And I don't have any expectations for next week's ep. Should be something.

  18. I thought that the episode had some really great plus points as you have pointed out it was great to have Ellie and Awesome have such a big part in the episode.
    Alex was really great in this episode and it was nice to see some movement in the Morgan/Alex relationship
    Now onto the gripes with the episode and I have to agree with most of them and That is Chuck himself he has had this Virus for a while and he has not destroyed it, reprogramed it or some other such thing to me that is just stupid and asking for trouble.
    Chuck is also being written as an idiot in his handling things with Sarah, therre was Vs First Fight in S4 when he talked to everyone else before Sarah and we had him saying 'that just makes it sound bad'. Now we have Chuck running off on his own mission to save Ellie leaving Sarah after she tells him that she agreees with him (another point from First Fight he wanted her to believe in him) in this she does exactly that and he still leaves her. I can understand that it is Ellie that is at risk here and if there is anyone that he would save ahead of Sarah it is her, plus the fact that he feels guilty that it is his fault she is in this position. We also have Sarah saying that she will convince them but it will take time, my take is that he simply thought it would take too long but he should have told Sarah that and they could have gone together. I appreciate that Fedak et all wanted to have the Omen unleashed probably so Chuck can save the day in the end but i think it would have been better to have. Chuck and Sarah captured and then rescued by Casey and Bekman but not before the Omen is unleashed.
    My last problem is that Chuck does not get how pissed off Sarah is and does not really apologise properly. However this is a pattern for the series I mean did Sarah ever apologise to Chuck for telling Shaw her real name, or for grabbing his Mother, or not believing him about his red test. I did however love Sarahs 'Trained assasin' line and her expression when he says about her shooting him


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