Inane Chatter - Chuck 5.08 - Chuck vs. the Baby

Hey y'all, it's Shoe again! I'm battling a bit of a cold right now, but I wanted to share my thoughts about Chuck Vs the Baby. A cold's not a fun way to bring in the New Year, but this episode was a bit of fresh air after the last two weeks. If the review doesn't make much sense, I'm going to blame it on the cold...

After Shaw's cryptic reveal of a "baby", Sarah feels like she has to do this mission alone. Chuck offers Carmichael Industries as a backup for Sarah's secretive mission—pro bono of course. Morgan is trying way too hard to win back Alex while staying behind at Castle with the Awesomes. The Awesomes offer those two some romantic advice and Chuck has a "surprise" for Sarah.

So what did I think of this look into Sarah's past? Read after the jump!

The episode starts out with a flashback from five years ago; I love flashbacks, especially if they are Sarah or Casey flashbacks. Now, I know Chuck must have a time machine or an alternate universe stashed somewhere because five years ago would be 2006. Sarah has a handler, but where is Bryce in the equation? I guess this is when Bryce started going off on other missions perhaps. I'm not sure. Aside from LeJudkins forgetting about where Bryce Larkin fits into the Chuck timeline, the continuity of Sarah's story was better than it has been.

Ryker is Sarah's handler for this mission in Hungary and it was great seeing Tim DeKay play a bad guy. I'm so used to seeing him as the straight-laced FBI guy from White Collar [Peter Burke], that this was definitely a different role for him. In a way, he kinda reminded me of Volkoff when he was a bad guy. The mission is for Sarah to take out these bad guys, who have just killed the couple who owns the mansion she’s sneaking into. I think after the last two weeks of Sarah just not quite being there, it was fun to see her kick ass. Granted, it was a bit over the top and reminded me of Blade fight scenes. This was the Chuck editor, Matt Barber's, directing debut. I could tell that he was shooting from an editor's standpoint and some of the shots were a bit jarring—overall, he did a good job for a directorial debut on Chuck.

I was certain that the "baby" was not Sarah's and I was right. It's interesting that Sarah is so wary of taking the kid at first, but maybe that explains why she took the kid into hiding later. She formed a protective bond, almost like her bond with Chuck in the first season, and decided to look out for the welfare of the child. It was great to see her being Graham's wild card enforcer once she found out that Ryker's intentions for the baby were of a more nefarious nature. That girl's family must have a lot of money, and Ryker must really be greedy.

Sarah takes the baby and won't even tell Graham she has her. Although, I feel like Graham knew she had the baby, but was suggesting that Ryker would still find the kid if she gave her over to the CIA. I was excited to see Graham back in the flashbacks, and I was half expecting Bryce to show up at some point, but he didn't.

Even though Sarah takes the baby, she still doesn't know a whole lot about taking care of a baby. At least she knew to make sure that the baby was fed and changed, but she needed her mother's help calming the baby down. Also, that gun case must be a comfy replacement for a makeshift crib.

Now, it seems like after her dad was taken into custody and she started with the CIA, she contacted her mother. LeJudkins did not go into depth about why Mama Walker (Burton?) wasn't in Sarah's life more as a child. Emma mentions something about her going off with her dad, which would sorta make sense according to Wedding Planner. She was a daddy's girl and maybe Jack took her away from her mom without Emma knowing. Since he was a con man and they did change their identities a lot, Emma couldn't find her daughter. Alas, that's just my speculation since they don't explain it otherwise. I wish there was a full season order for this final season to flesh out more of this story.

I need to mention that Chuck was acting more like a husband than in the last two episodes. He was being sweet, caring and worrying like he should about Sarah. He "surprised" her with the dream house and his visualization speech was cute. The Nina Simone reference was a great callback to their song at the end of Honeymooners. And when he said he was the most handsome man Sarah had met, which garnered a giggle from Sarah, that was sweet. His talk of having a life with her and in that house reminded us that yes, they are married.

At first, Chuck was willing to go back to the CIA so they could afford the house and the dresser Chuck had been eyeing from Anthropoligie. I love that store and it is expensive—I tend to wait until things go on sale there. It made me laugh that Chuck would shop there for furniture like that. Chuck also decides to use a roundabout way of having Sarah include him on the mission by offering his services to her. I don't know why that scene was funny with all the "reallys" going around but it just was. When he helps rescue her from the same mansion the flashback took place in, he went to her right away, unlike what he did in Santa Suit. Also, at the end in her mother's house, he asks if she's okay. We didn't really see that as much in the last two episodes.

The fact that Sarah goes off without Chuck or Casey was a bit of some Curse action. However, she does tell them to go after the waiter and it turns out that Casey knew that guy was working for Ryker. The Chuck/Casey banter in that scene was great: "Do you speak Hungarian?" "No, Mr. I Don't Need the Intersect". It kinda reminded me of Season Two.

My thinking on why Sarah froze when she heard the baby cry was not because of the kid she saved. I think she was worried that Ryker would kill another infant as payback. That's just my thinking, though. And Sarah really was not at the top of her game when the first confrontation with Ryker happens. This is the second week in a row where Sarah gets beaten up and tied up to something. However, at least she gets her mojo back when she head butts Ryker and when she stabs him. I will say that scene is one of the more graphic scenes for Chuck.

Some of my favorite scenes from this episode came from the Awesomes. When they were playing Life, Ellie was about to kill Morgan it seemed, and Awesome didn't want to waste their babysitter. Their role playing scene was hilarious. Devon cannot do a British accent and Ellie's earrings killed the mood a little. I'm hoping to see those kinds of scenes between Chuck and Sarah since the Awesomes have been married for a few years now and still have some steamy moments. We got sweet moments in regards to Charah, such as the ending scene where Chuck and Sarah carve their names into that door post. It was a promise to each other that they would eventually get that dream house and have a family there without the CIA interfering. I loved that little scene between those two.

Morgan was definitely trying way too hard to win Alex back and Alex knew it. She told him that what he did was not something she was going to forgive easily. It was a jerk move on Morgan's part and it did seem a little quick that Alex would forgive him in the end. However, she has been keeping Morgan at a distance the last couple of episodes. Her seeing Morgan being good with Molly made her realize, even though she didn't talk to Ellie, about why she got back together with him. I laugh every time they mention Awesome's modeling career and apparently he wasn't as Awesome when they were first dating.

Even though I feel like the Sarah's mom story was a bit rushed, we now have Sarah's "sister." I have always thought she had to have one since that story from Wookie, even though there is such a huge age gap. Molly looks like she could pass off as Sarah's sister with the blonde hair. Chuck being excited about meeting Sarah's mother, and how her mother was happy that Chuck was there for Sarah, was great. Yes, he may not have been there for her in those last two episodes, but he is making up for it in this episode. Also, how cute was Chuck playing with Molly? Too much adorable for that scene!

Overall, this was a vast improvement and a good Sarah story. Yvonne gave a great performance and the character she plays has come a long way from the Pilot. Speaking of the Pilot, plot hole/continuity error with the final Graham scene, but I think they did that just for the goofy looking Chuck picture. My dad noticed that Hungary had American looking buses, and I told him it was filmed on the WB lot. You can't win them all ,but this was a good Chuck episode.

What are y'alls thoughts?


  1. Tenks731.12.11

    Easily my favorite episode since Phase 3. It wasn't perfect (you've already hit on most of the minor issues I had with it) but it was such an utterly fantastic episode. This episode is the reason I still watch the show. It can be amazing when they are hitting on all cylinders.

    I also liked that Sarah's moms house was identical to Sarah's dream home: A white house with a red door and a picket fence. That was a really nice touch.

  2. Despite the continuity issues, this was also easily one of my favourite episodes. I thought it really spoke for character development on the part of Chuck that instead of being whiny about the situation, he got on his feet, and Team Bartowski worked well together, despite Sarah's getting on the *hungarian* bus without telling them.

    The flashbacks were SO. COOL. Man, Sarah's badass. Also, whoever the little girl is who plays Molly is really cute! 'It's nice to meet you, too' kasfhmoicsfaspoihf d'awwww

    It's just a shame that they didn't take the CIA's offer, and apparently their money wasn't unfrozen, because they have to buy the house now that they carved their names into it. YOU BREAK IT YOU BUY IT. :)

  3. Anonymous31.12.11

    Disappointed. Sarah's mom was way cool, knew all about her spy life which screams good relationship. why was she with the dirt bag dad? that's what i wanted the answer too.

    the retcon bugged me, also the wash out of bryce. it was full of emotional pay off but not character pay off. other than that pretty good, bout a 75.


  4. Madje Knotts31.12.11

    There were definitely continuity issues, but I was able to pass most of them off as normal Chuck. Seeing as continuity on the show doesn't even exist!! I squealed when Graham came on screen for the flashbacks!! I think the best part of the episode was with the whole gang at the apartment, especially with Sarah's reunion with her mom. Overall, I was pleased with this episode and not as frustrated by it as I have been recently.

    Then again, I made the decision before this season even started to just enjoy the last season of the show. And so I've been making a conscious effort to do so, even though it's been incredibly hard!!! Happy New Years people!!!!

  5. I liked most of the episode, but I wish the story would have make *some* sense. It would have backed up the emotional stuff a lot more.

    Overall though, it was such an improvement over Curse and Santa Suit.

    Plus, Sarah kicked ass, AND actually talked to Chuck and her family?! That's so rare. Awesome!


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