Chuck Rewatch Recap Season 3 Episode 1
Chuck Versus the Three Words
The episode opens with some bad guys killing a man with a briefcase. It then quickly takes a turn into the episode’s theme, which is buried emotions, a theme carried out through Carina, who has no interest in accessing her emotions and is in a fake relationship, as well as through Chuck and Sarah, who still have quite a bit of unresolved issues between them stemming from what happened in Prague.
Sarah is out at a nightclub with her old partner, Carina, who quickly picks up on Sarah’s unresolved feelings/issues regarding Chuck.
Chuck and Morgan are playing video games in their apartment, which has almost no furniture. Morgan then convinces Chuck to go out to a nightclub. Coincidence?
I think not, as it’s the same nightclub that Sarah and Carina are at. Then, Karl walks in and Carina tells them that they’re engaged. Carina introduces Chuck as Sarah’s boyfriend. They both just go with it. The interaction between Carina and Karl that follows is nauseating.
Chuck tells Carina that her and Karl seem so in love. Sarah is basically rolling her eyes. Chuck then flashes on Karl and starts to tell Carina that he’s an arms dealer, but Carina beats him to the punch. Sarah is really rolling her eyes now.
Carina says that Karl Stromberg, her fake fiancé, is a suspected arms dealer and as such is her mark. Chuck and Sarah will pose as Carina’s friend and her boyfriend. Carina tells Casey that he will be her father. He argues and the compromise is he will be her uncle.
While Karl is giving a toast, Chuck and Sarah go into the master bedroom to get to the safe. Karl gives such a short speech that Carina needs to stall, so she says her ‘Uncle Johnny’ is dying to say something.
Chuck and Sarah arrive at the vault where they are trying to get a briefcase the Karl has. In order to reach it, Chuck has to get through moving lasers, but he’s very distracted by Carina having told him that Sarah loves him and is having trouble flashing. Sarah says they can talk after, and then Chuck is able to flash.
After getting the suitcase only to be stuck inside the vault, the camera cuts to Casey, who is still giving a speech. Karl’s security has noticed the alarm has gone off, and are on their way to the vault, where Chuck is starting to freak out, especially when gas starts pouring into the room. Sarah tries to get him out using the badge from Carina, but it isn’t working. Noticing a vent, Sarah climbs through it into the ceiling as Chuck starts pouring his heart out. Inside the vent, Sarah can’t hear anything he says but Karl’s security guys can.
After finally escaping, they bring the suitcase Chuck retrieved back to Castle, and General Beckman says that Carina will bring it to Langley, but she won’t tell Casey what it is, seriously frustrating him.
Carina walks into the Buy More with the device, and Karl is in an SUV, following her. Not finding Chuck, Carina asks Morgan to give him the case. She sees Karl walk into the store at that moment. She quickly gets Morgan to take the case by agreeing to come to his party, and then runs out the back to escape the bad guys. Before she can get out, she is spotted. Karl then accuses her of being a spy. She says it’s ridiculous, but Karl has video of Chuck from when he was trapped in the vault and said Carina was a cold-hearted spy.
Carina shows up at Morgan’s party with Karl and two of his men. Meanwhile, Sarah, Casey and Chuck are looking for her. Morgan calls Chuck to get advice on Carina, inadvertently letting him know that Karl and his men are there.
Chuck gets to his apartment to find Sarah and Casey setting up in his bedroom, complete with huge guns. Chuck convinces them they can still peacefully negotiate because Carina is still alive, which means Karl doesn’t have the briefcase. Unfortunately, right then Morgan decides to tell Carina off and in the process he hands the briefcase right to Karl.
Coolest Action Sequences/Chuck Accidentally Saves the Day:
Chuck goes through the lasers in a very overly complicated, over emphasized, dance-like maneuver, which is made more humorous because of Sarah’s shocked expression as she watches him. Unfortunately, after he gets out, he’s concerned about their impending conversation and accidentally holds the suitcase in the laser, setting off the alarm and causing the door to close with him still inside the vault.
As the security guys are about to go into the vault, Sarah, having returned from turning off the gas, drops her lipstick to distract them and then jumps down and knocks them out. When Sarah finally gets the door open, Chuck finishes his speech, saying, “Sarah, I love you,” as he passes out in her arms. Sarah looks shocked and confused and doesn’t seem to know what to do.
Sarah takes her anger out on Chuck during their training, basically berating him for not flashing when they are fighting with sticks (sticks that I’m sure have a more technical name). She then is borderline physically attacking him, yelling at him to flash, maybe hoping to get to take out some anger on him in a fair fight where she can’t actually hurt him because the Intersect will protect him? Chuck puts the stick down, telling her he doesn’t want to hurt her. As he’s walking away, she uses the stick to knock his legs out from under him and then says, “Don’t worry, Chuck. You can’t.” She isn’t referring to physical harm anymore, though.
Karl has the case and is holding Carina at gunpoint while in a standoff with Casey and Sarah. Chuck notices the fountain has something flammable in it and tells them to drop their guns. Chuck then throws his lit torch into the fountain and the surprise gives Sarah and Casey the opportunity to get the upper hand on the bad guys. After the fight, Casey and Sarah have the guns again, but Karl still has Carina and the case.
Chuck starts talking to Karl about how maybe he opened up his heart and fell in love for the first time, something he never did before because it’s a liability. Casey just gives him a weird look, but it’s clear Chuck is actually talking to/about Sarah. Carina just goes with it, and ends up getting the upper hand.
In a scene that is a throwback to the pilot, Chuck is getting ready to go out with Sarah in his room, asking Morgan’s opinion (it was Ellie’s in the pilot) on what to wear, while Sarah is getting ready in her hotel room with Carina, hiding weapons in all sorts of places, my favorite being the small knife Carina hides in the heel of her shoe.
As they are putting on their jewelry and guns, Sarah asks Carina if she ever wonders about having a different life. Obviously, it is Sarah doing the wondering, but it’s another glimpse at how hurt and maybe even a little angry she still is about everything that happened with Chuck.
Sarah later finds Chuck while he’s cleaning up after the party and tells him that she’s listening. He agrees with her earlier assessment that he’s not a real spy and that his emotions make him a liability. Sarah tells him that’s not entirely true, and that Karl would have shot Carina if he hadn’t used his emotions to talk to Karl.
The penultimate scene has Chuck outside cleaning up the courtyard alone, yelling at Morgan that it better have been worth it. The camera pans to Morgan’s bed, where he is with Carina.
Carina gives Sarah the flash drive from the vault and tells Sarah she should watch it. It’s the footage of Chuck’s speech and we see it in its entirety:
“Look, Sarah, I know that you’re probably very hurt. You’re hurt that I didn’t run away with you in Prague. I get that and I’m sorry. You have to know that you are everything that I ever wanted. But how can I do that, how can I run away with you, how can I be with you knowing what I’d turn my back on, you know? Knowing that what I had in my head could help a lot of people. And you’re the one that taught me that, that being a spy is about choosing something bigger, it’s about putting aside your own personal feelings for the greater good and that’s what I chose. I chose to be a spy for my friends and my family and you. I chose to be a spy because, Sarah, I love you.”
The argument that Casey has with Carina and General Beckman about posing as Carina’s father. When Casey meets Karl, and again when he gives a speech at the party, he continuously emphasizes that he isn’t old.
As Chuck is telling Sarah all of his feelings, the security guys put down their weapons and start listening to him, entertained and confused by his declarations simultaneously.
Casey puts on his bathrobe and comes out and starts spraying all the people at the party with the hose, acting (?) as the cranky neighbor.
Notable Guest Stars:
Vinnie Jones plays Karl Stromberg, a suspected arms dealer that Carina is dating as a cover.
During the mission, Chuck tells Sarah he misses her and he just gets the brush off.
Later, Sarah contacts General Beckman and tells her that a different agent might be better for Chuck because she is more of the problem than the solution due to his emotional connection. General Beckman basically tells her to get over it, but Chuck overhears the entire conversation.
Most Overt Metaphor:
Sarah says, “It’s quite a mess we made,” while she’s looking around at the remnants from the party. Chuck responds, “Yeah, I’m really hoping we can clean it up, though.” Even at that point, they are obviously not talking about the courtyard, and then Sarah responds, “Maybe, but you’re on your own with the courtyard.”
The Mystery Setup:
The camera goes to General Beckman in person sitting at her desk talking to a man holding a lighter, though we don’t see his face. General Beckman is telling the man, Shaw (his first appearance!), that Chuck, Sarah and Casey need to know and be prepared. We still don’t know what she’s talking about, though.
“I know you’re upset about Sarah, but there is no pause button on life.” – Morgan
“It’s the cardinal rule. Spies don’t fall in love.” – Carina
“You idiot. The reason Sarah’s cold is because she loves you. Now get your head out of your ass and go be a spy.” – Carina
“No one’s ever said no to me before.” – Carina
“Where’s the button?” – Chuck
“Me. I’m the button.” – Casey
“Spies don’t fall in love.” – Sarah
“No one’s ever said no to me before. It’s sexy.” – Carina
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Chuck: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray]
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Chuck Rewatch Recap – Season 3 – Episode 2 – Chuck Versus the Three Words
Chuck Rewatch Recap Season 3 Episode 1