Thursday, May 19, 2011

What I’m Watching: Chuck (Season Finale)

Chuck: Season 4, Episode 24 “Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger” (B)

There’s something awfully odd and reassuring about coming to the end of a season of this show knowing that there’s more to come. The series was given a thirteen-episode final season order by NBC last week, which is actually perfect, because the show has gone on for a while and can now properly wrap itself up with more than enough notice. This fourth year has marked the show’s longest season to date, after thirteen, twenty-two, and nineteen episodes, respectively. While I might say that this has been the show’s weakest season, that’s not to say that it was remotely bad, just that the second and third were both awesome. This is one of those instances where twenty-four episodes might be a bit too much, and a shorter, more succinct season might have been more beneficial. This season has been about Chuck and Sarah getting closer together, Casey and Morgan building a relationship with Casey’s daughter, and Chuck and Ellie finally getting their mother back and trying to take down Volkoff. I liked seeing some of Hartley in this episode, especially since Volkoff, for all his speeches and shenanigans, wasn’t all that evil, and it’s nice to think that there was a kindly scientist in there all along. While Chuck was inevitably going to save Sarah, it’s still fun to see it play out, complete with tons of Russians to give Casey the creeps. Richard Burgi is a terrific addition to any show, and I’d be intrigued to see if he recurs in some fashion in the next season. The last few minutes are always the most crucial in judging a season finale, and while the revelation of a meticulous conspiracy to have Chuck become the intersect isn’t such a shocker, having Morgan download the intersect is. It’s a bit corny, but it makes sense that Chuck’s furry best friend would put on a random pair of sunglasses to celebrate his good fortune. That last line is amusing, and I’m eager to see how season five starts out, though I do hope that Morgan isn’t the Intersect for long, since that really wouldn’t work all that well. See you on Fridays in the fall!

Season grade: B/B+
Season MVP: Adam Baldwin as Casey

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