Stars: Zachary Levi, Yvonne Strahovski, Joshua Gomez, Adam Baldwin, Vik Sahay, Scott Krinsky, Mark Christopher Lawrence, Ryan McPartlin
 Chris Fedak and Nicholas Wooten
 Robert Duncan McNeill
 NBC, Friday nights, 8 p.m.
Original Telecast:
 October 28, 2011

At the end of Season Four of CHUCK, we were left hanging with Chuck (Zachary Levi), Sarah (Yvonne Strahovsky) and Casey (Adam Baldwin) going into the private spy business after CIA super agent Clyde Decker (Richard Burgi) shuts down their operation and takes the Intersect – a database filled with all the intel from everywhere that resides in the brain – from Chuck. Then, Chuck’s best bud Morgan (Joshua Gomez) just happens to pick up the specs with the Intersect and gets it downloaded into his head.

Okay. The newlywed Chuck and Sarah, who happen to have inherited a mass fortune from the now dead former bad guy Alexi Volkoff, decides to put it to good use by buying the Buy More, the electronics store that Chuck has used as his cover since he first got the Intersect in Season One, and their Castle hide out underneath. Plus satellite imagery and a few other high-tech, high-end goodies.

The problem is that being your own boss isn’t as easy as Chuck thought. In the opening sequence, Morgan saves their skins, Intersect-style, but destroys the objective – a vase worth a fortune (check out and see if you can find Mark Hamill playing a cameo role). Costs are spiraling out of control. Casey isn’t happy with some of their clientele. And Chuck is having some trouble adjusting to not having the Intersect and feeling a little on the useless side. Not to mention trying to surprise Sarah with the home of her dreams, forgetting that Sarah a) doesn’t like surprises and b) is really good at telling when Chuck is trying to hide something from her.

So enter client number two – a not-so-nice lawyer who got conned in an elaborate Ponzi scheme by Roger Bale (Craig Kilborn). It’s no big deal. First, the team has to get themselves an invite to Bale’s big party, then break into the vault with his computer system, download all the investor accounts, including their own, and get out. In the meantime, Jeff (Scott Krinsky) and Lester (Vic Sahay) are up to another of their scams.

Overall, there’s a lot going on here, and truth be told, I’m not liking Morgan with the Intersect. I keep hoping they’ll find a way to get it back to Chuck or almost anybody on the team except Morgan. It’s not that I don’t like the character – he’s just too much of a doofus to have that kind of major role without coming off as grating. I’m also not thrilled that Bonita Friederancy, who played General Beckman, the CIA overseer of the Intersect program, doesn’t appear to be part of the cast anymore. I liked Beckman.

Alas, Decker is back with us and can’t say more about that without risking a spoiler. Suffice it to say, he’s going to be the lead bad guy this season for reasons that aren’t yet clear. Knowing that this episode is the first of the last 13 of the series, well… I can’t see creators Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak leaving us on a downer note – that has never been the style for this show, but it does leave room for a lot of suspense.


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