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Chuck Season 2 - Even Better Than Season 1!
Chuck - Complete Season 2 (DVD)
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Chuck - Complete Season 2 (DVD)
Date: 06/04/12, updated on 06/08/13 (52 review reads)
Advantages: a very watchable season
Disadvantages: none that I can think of
Chuck Season first aired in the USA in 2008. The show which was created by Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak fast became a firm favourite of mine and I found myself enjoying Season 2 of the show somewhat more than Season 1.
*WHO IS CHUCK?*
Chuck's a seemingly average guy working at the Burbank branch of Buy More as head of the Nerd Herd team. His old pal from college sent him an email at the start of Season 1 which ended up downloading lots of government and spy secrets into his brain and by the start of Season 2 he's a government asset with two handlers, Agents Sarah Walker and John Casey.
*CHUCK'S NEAREST AND DEAREST*
Most of the characters from Season 1 return in Season 2 including Joshua Gomez as Morgan - Chuck's best friend. He's not particularly successful with women although he gets a chance during this season to improve his image generally with women. He's unaware of his best pal's secret agent status and activities.
Yvonne Strahovski returns as Chuck's CIA handler Agent Sarah Walker and love interest. The generally demeaning work uniform sported in Season 1 at the Hot Dog store is gone as it's now been turned into a frozen yoghurt store with their CIA operational base beneath it, a.k.a. Castle.
The fabulous Adam Baldwin is back as Agent John Casey. Casey continues to growl during this season as he did in Season 1 but he seems to have developed an attachment to his asset Chuck and seems less likely to be able to follow any orders which would mean harming Chuck. He's working at the Buy More and has little patience with the childish antics of the rest of the floor staff there such as Morgan, Lester and Jeff.
Sarah Lancaster reprises her role as Dr Ellie Bartowski, Chuck's older sister. I still found her unconvincing as a doctor. She's rarely shown at work, yet she complains of tiredness after having pulled long shifts several days in a row. I really don't rate Lancaster much as an actress but maybe she makes up for it by being so beautiful that you can forgive her lack of actress prowess!
Ryan McPartlin is back Ellie's nice but dim boyfriend Devon Woodcomb, also a doctor. He finds out Chuck's secret during this season and some of the one-liners he gets to deliver to show his shock are quite amusing. Again, like Lancaster, I don't find McPartlin to be a particularly good actor. He's really not credible as a doctor at any stretch of the imagination but he really sells the stereotypical "dumb blond" particularly well (even if he is male)!
Scott Krinsky and Vik Sahay return as Jeff and Lester respectively. As previously seen in Season 1, we rarely see these two clowns doing any work and both jump at any opportunity to get out of work. They have a bizarre friendship but are probably deep down as close as Chuck and Morgan although they have a funny way of showing this! These two are so ridiculous but they somehow grow on you (even though I'd want to bash their heads together if I knew people like this in real life)!
Mark Christopher Lawrence is back as the lazy but likeable Buy More manager Big Mike often referring to his obscure further education establishment where he studied Business and Finance as well as Julia Ling as Anna Wu, Morgan's girlfriend who wants to step things up a notch and get serious with Morgan much to his dismay. Bonita Friedericy's General Beckman continues to bark her orders to the team through a video feed but we lose Director Graham early in the season.
No new long term characters are introduced in Season 2, although there are some guest stars who appear in 1 or more episodes such as Jordana Brewster as Chuck's ex girlfriend from college Jill, Matthew Bomer as Chuck's ex friend from college Bryce Larkin, Scott Bakula appears in a few episodes as Chuck's and Ellie's father Stephen Bartowski, Chevy Chase appears in a couple of episodes as Ted Roark, Stephen Bartowski's old nemesis and Jonathan Cake (funnily enough Cake was referred to as the beefcake in the episode) as Cole Barker.
Although most episodes contain a mini story theme of their own, the running theme is obviously about Chuck and how he progresses from electronics store geek to somewhat of a useful spy who starts to be able to hold his own in dangerous situations. Old resentments come to the surface when his old nemesis Bryce Larkin is back on the scene and also when his old flame Jill turns up. Chuck tries to rekindle his old romance with Jill and things seem to be going well but everything is not as it seems and with the series progressing one wonders if anyone is really actually who they appear to be.
We see a different side to John Casey when his old sensei comes back into his life but what does he really want? Adam Baldwins' character is as fabulous as in season 1 with his habit of growling when being asked to do something he's not keen on becoming even funnier.
Sarah has conflicting emotions when her old flame Bryce reappears and it's obvious that she's developed feelings for her "asset" Chuck which complicates things somewhat - she doesn't want to get a reputation as the agent who keeps falling for colleagues!
The character of Stephen Bartowski is introduced in this season, Chuck's and Ellie's eccentric father and Chuck finds out why his father was so distant towards his kids when they were growing up without a mother. It's really not the reason either Chuck or Ellie had ever imagined!
In season 1 the bad guys are mostly working for an outfit called Fulcrum, in this season it's The Ring. Things do get fairly sinister but as this is a comedy action show, there's never really any blood and gore. There are some decent storylines and some really amusing one-liners from various members of the cast.
*LIST OF EPISODES*
This season of Chuck had 22 episodes of around 40 minutes each. The episodes were titled:
1 Chuck versus the First Date
2 Chuck versus the Seduction
3 Chuck versus the Break-Up
4 Chuck versus the Cougars
5 Chuck versus Tom Sawyer
6 Chuck versus the Ex
7 Chuck versus the Fat Lady
8 Chuck versus the Gravitron
9 Chuck versus the Sensei
10 Chuck versus the DeLorean
11 Chuck versus the Santa Claus
12 Chuck versus the Third Dimension
13 Chuck versus the Suburbs
14 Chuck versus the Best Friend
15 Chuck versus the Beefcake
16 Chuck versus the Lethal Weapon
17 Chuck versus the Predator
18 Chuck versus the Broken Heart
19 Chuck versus the Dream Job
20 Chuck versus the First Kill
21 Chuck versus the Colonel
22 Chuck versus the Ring
Season 2 has 22 episodes over 6 discs and there's no shortage of extras. Subtitles are available in English, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, Norwegian, Portuguese and Swedish. On each disc there is a feature entitled "Declassified Scenes" showing deleted scenes from the episodes on the disc. These scenes last a minute or so and some of them give you a little further insight into some of the storylines of the episodes.
On disc 5 the main special feature is entitled "Chuck versus the Webisodes" which has mini featurettes on Customer Service, Employee Health, Leadership, Work Ethic and Youth Marketing, all of these are fairly short and quite frivolous!
On disc 6 there are 5 features which are "Truth, Spies and Regular Guys: Exploring the Mythology of Chuck" (which contains mini featurettes within including "The Secret Agents" and "The Agents' Secrets"), Dude in Distress", "Chuck: A Real Life Captain Awesome's Tips for Being Awesome", "John Casey Presents So You Want to Be a Deadly Spy?" and "Chuck versus the Chuckles". Again these are all quite frivolous, some were fun to watch, I thought the worst featurette was the Tips for Being Awesome and the best was the last one which was a gag reel.
The extras are entertaining enough to watch and as with the first season you can tell that the cast and crew have real fun making the show.
I'm quite happy to rate Chuck season 2 with a strong 5 out of 5 stars. Having got used to the characters in Season 1, they're more "fleshed out" in this season and you feel more attached to our hero Chuck. Season 2 of Chuck is certified as suitable for those 15 and over.
Summary: One for my permanent collection!