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Chuck Season 2 Review

The second season of famous American TV show “Chuck” was first aired on NBC, on September, 2008. There are twenty-two episodes in second season, and Zackary Levi played the title role of “Chuck Bartowski”. Chris Fedak and Josh Schwartz created this spy/thriller/comedy TV show back in 2007 but first season cut short to only thirteen episodes because of an unexpected writer’s strike. But the first season was received mostly positively by both critics and viewers, so NBC decided to broadcast the second season with full 22 episodes. The DVD box set released on October, 2009 in the United Kingdom and there are six discs in this set. The story-line of second season is highly engaging and entertaining. This season mainly focuses on the background on The Intersect (An encoded database contains all US Government’s secret information) and Chuck’s continuous struggle to keep balance between his spy-life and personal life.

Lead Characters :

*Zackary Levy portrays the character Chuck Bartowski (The protagonist of this TV show, an average computer technician works at Buy More, and lives with his sister.)

* Yvonne Strahovski portrays the character of Agent Sarah walker (She is a young and beautiful CIA agent and her job is to protect the Intersect.)

* Adam Baldwin portrays the character of Major John Casey (He is an aging NSA agent and his job is to protect and to recover the Intersect.)

* Sarah Lancaster portrays the character of Dr. Eleanor Bartowski (She is a doctor and Chuck’s big sister. She works at a local hospital.)

*Joshua Gomez portrays the character of Morgan Grimes (He is Chuck’s childhood friend and works at Buy More as a sales assistant.)

Plot Outline :

In this season, Chuck works more actively in the field with Agent Sarah Walker and Major Casey in different government secret spy- missions. The story line mainly revolves around Chuck and his spy-life. Chuck is really edgy and inexperienced in spy-work, but he is very intelligent and somehow he manages to solve the problems for his team.

So the second season tells us about the detailed background of “The Intersect”. It also tells us, why Chuck received the Intersect and who made it for him? This season also focuses on the love-life of Chuck and very complex yet meaningful relationship between Sarah and Chuck. It also tells us about a very dangerous anti-government espionage unit “Fulcrum” and how Chuck and his team go to different missions to catch them.

My Personal Thought :

It is definitely a plus point if you see the first season of this great TV show. It will give you detailed background information about the storyline, different characters and their personal life. It also helps you to understand the flow of the storyline in the second season. The first season of this TV show mainly focuses on the different characters, and you basically get to know about Chuck and his dull life at Buy More. But it also tells us how Chuck’s life turned into a fast-moving thrilling experience after receiving the highly powerful and secret government encoded information “The Intersect”. 

In the second season, Chuck is more positive in his spy-work and actively takes part in different missions with Agent Walker and Major Casey. It also complicates his personal life, and sometime he has some tremendous difficulties to communicate with his family or friends. Chuck still works at Buy More as a computer technician and lives with his sister, Elli and her boyfriend Devon. In this season Ellie decides to marry Devon, and it creates some difficulties in Chuck’s spy life. We also see that Chuck goes to different missions and single-handedly manage to solve the problems and helps out Casey and walker. I personally call these situations as “Chuck-Time”. In the first season, Chuck was more of a reflexive viewer and just flash on different stuff and passed the Intel/information to Agent Walker or Major Casey. But in this season, the character of Chuck is far more exciting, positive and proactive. He knows about his super brain-power and slowly but steadily learns how to deal with it. He has more “Chuck-Time” in this season. He is also much more conscious about his strong feelings for his CIA handler Agent Walker.

The sixth episode of this season “Chuck versus the Ex” re-introduces Chuck’s ex-girlfriend from Stanford. He coincidentally runs into his ex-girlfriend, Jill Roberts (Guest-starred by Jordana Brewster) in a random under-cover mission. Both Jill and Chuck went to Stanford but Chuck was expelled for cheating (Chuck was falsely accused). Later, Jill left Chuck and dated his room-mate Bryce Larkin. Chuck again finds himself in a very complicated situation and does not know how to handle his emotions. Chuck creates some truly hilarious situations on the screen while he is trying to hide his emotions from Jill. I really enjoyed this episode.

This season also focuses on the personal life of CIA Agent Sarah Walker.  Sarah does not like to talk about her past life and her family members. But the fourth episode”Chuck versus the Cougars” informs the viewers about Sarah’s past (her home town, father and school life). At first Sarah is very uncomfortable about this, but slowly she learns to deal with it. The tenth episode “Chuck versus the DeLorean” introduces Sarah’s father Jack Burton (guest-starred by Gary Cole). He is a con-artist just conned a powerful Arab Sheikh.  But this Arab Sheikh is linked with some terrorist organizations, so Chuck and his team help Sarah’s father. Gary Cole did a fantastic job in this episode.

The first season does not tell the viewers about the personal life of the veteran NSA agent Major John Casey. But second season also focuses on Major Casey’s personal life, his educational a background and his spy-training. So, we get to know about Major Casey and his personal life in this season. Major Casey is a very strict, unemotional and professional NSA agent. His partner Agent Walker describes Casey’s characteristics to Chuck by saying “Casey is always mad, that’s his baseline. He is combat-ready all the times, so his feelings are liabilities.” But the ninth episode “Chuck versus the Sensei” shows the softer and emotional side of John Casey. This episode mainly revolves around an ex NSA trainer and now a rogue agent, Ty Bennett (guest-starred by Carl Lumbly) and his evil plans.  He taught Casey all the spy-works in the past and that is why Casey is too emotionally attached to complete his mission and catch his teacher aka sensei. So, Chuck and Sarah help him to overcome his emotions and complete his mission properly.

This season also focuses on Chuck’s co-workers at Buy More. Chuck’s best friend Morgan Grimes still works at Buy More as a sales assistant. He always tries to help Chuck but ends up creating awkwardly funny situations. Canadian actor Vic Sahay portrays the role Lester Patel, a fellow computer technician at Buy More. He is overly obsessive about Chuck and always wants to be like him.  Once he confessed to store’s Efficiency Expert, that whenever he is in trouble, he asks himself W.W.C.D (What Would Chuck Do?) or W.W.C.D.N (Wonder What’s Chuck Doing Now?). Chuck’s co-workers at Buy More really like him and follow him like a role-model. In the fifth episode of this season “Chuck versus The Tom Sawyer”, all the crew of Buy More told their new Efficiency expert in an interview that, the chain of command at Buy More starts with Chuck (unofficially). This episode also mainly focuses on another Buy More employee Jeffrey Barnes aka Jeff. He is an ageing alcoholic and one of the oldest stuff of Buy More.  He works as a tech expert and always makes inappropriate and weird comments. Chuck’s sister Ellie describes him as a “Nerd-Herd, creepy, serial killer Jeff”. Jeff used to be a champion player of Missile Command game. The maker of this game hid the code of actual missiles in the final stage of this game. So to save the world, Jeff has to play his best to recover the code and to change the direction of the actual missiles. I really enjoyed this episode.

~Character Developments and Performances~

Zackary Levi looks very confident, positive and believable in his role. His facial expressions are simply excellent, and he surely knows how to convince the audience and to win their hearts. He is the perfect cast for the role of “Chuck Bartowski”. Australian actress Yvonne Strahovski portrays the character of CIA agent Sarah Walker. She has a very complex “Asset-Handler” relationship with Chuck. In this season, she looks much more confident and elegant. She has strong feelings for Chuck and always tries her best to protect him. I think Yvonne did an awesome job in this season, she looks reliable and gorgeous on the screen. She handled all the fast-paced fighting sequences really well. Adam Baldwin plays the role of a veteran NSA agent, Major Casey. I really like the way how the second season focuses on his personal life and his emotions.  He gets some funny one-liners and some hard-hitting action scenes in this season. Overall Adam Baldwin did a good job in his role.

This season also features some guest stars in different roles.  American actor Tony Hale portrays the role of Emmet Milbarge. He is an efficiency expert and came to this specific Buy More’s branch to evaluate staff and their overall performance. Eventually, he became the assistant manager of this store. He is very funny always tries to harass his crews by applying new rules. I really like his acting in this season.

Season two is much more exciting, fast-moving and thrilling to compare to the first season of this TV show. Both Chris Fedak and Josh Schwartz gave importance to every detail in this season and also focused on side characters and their personal life.  Occasionally, they dedicated the main theme of a specific episode to a specific character.  So this specific episode tells us briefly about that character and also tells us about his or her background, like/dislike and weaknesses. I really like this idea. In this way, I feel more connected with the characters. They had a very big budget for the second season. I mean the visual effects are simply awesome in this season. There are some excellent fighting scenes, thrilling car chase scenes and expensive and modern spy gadgets in this season. I really like the modified stuff car of Buy More (Chuck uses it in different secret operations). CIA integrated this car with special gadgets and some unique features.  Though, they wanted to imitate “James Bond” style, still it looks awesome. The background musical score is also effective, melodious and well executed.

~Viewer’s reception & Critic’s Opinion~

The second season of this TV show received highly positive responses from both audiences and critics. Talented stunt actor and stunt co-ordinator Merritt Yohnka won Emmy award in “Outstanding Stunt Co-ordination” category for his excellent work in this TV show. Several Newspapers and critics praised this TV show for its unique and refreshing storyline. Season two is also short-listed as one of the top ten TV shows of the year by some famous critics. Currently, this show holds a rating of 8.3/10 in IMDB.

Official Website address: http://www.nbc.com/chuck/http://www.nbc.com/chuck/

IMDB rating:  http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0934814/

I am a big fan of this brilliant TV show. The storyline is simply amazing, fast-paced and highly thrilling. Every episode of this TV show is full with suspense, some excellent and well executed humour and brilliant performances by the lead characters. The second season is full with surprising twists, sharp dialogues, well presented jokes and ends perfectly to give a brilliant layout for the third season. After watching this season, you definitely want to see the third season.  There are 22 episodes in the second season and six discs in the DVD box set. Each episode is approximately 43 minutes long. I did not check the special features of this DVD box set. You can buy the box set from amazon.co.uk and it will cost you only 18 GBP. If you buy season one and two together from Amazon it will only cost you 27 GBP with free super saver delivery.

Many thanks for reading my review. It is highly appreciated.