Chuck – Episode 5-1 Review – “Chuck Versus the Zoom”

Somehow, Chuck has reached its fifth season. Through all of NBC’s recent and continuing tribulations, it was able to survive due to not-awful ratings and a small but fervent fan base. I can’t say the show is nearly as good as it was in the second season, but it remains a fun show.

“Chuck Versus the Zoom” represents a new start to the show and the features both the old and the new. Chuck and company are still spies so main plot is a mission. The specifics for missions have never been strong and it seems like the writers have gotten lazier over the years. What’s great about the missions is all the fun that can be packed in it and the season premiere has a fair amount of it.

The most obvious change is Chuck not having the Intersect anymore and Morgan having it. Compared to the season one Chuck, the season five Chuck is much different, more mature and sure of himself, able to do spy tasks without special powers. In fact, Chuck without the Intersect is about on equal footing with Morgan, who doesn’t have a good grasp of his powers yet. But the writers make sure that Chuck does feel something about losing the Intersect. After all, he had it for years and without it, it makes him feel inadequate.

On the character side of things, lots of good stuff with Chuck trying to buy a house for Sarah. She eventually tells him what she wants–a cozy home with a white picket fence–and unfortunately, the CIA freezes their money. The show that sets off in a new direction: Chuck still has the spy company and the Buy More and he endeavors to earn enough money through both. With this, the show now has a goal and the Buy More will be relevant once more.

Chuck’s mythology has never been its strong suit and it’s a glaring problem in the episode. Decker and the CIA in the background are basic plot devices. Decker takes away the Intersect from Chuck and then takes his money, both game changing twists. But why? It’s all shrouded in mystery, so we have no clue why Chuck is in the position he’s in now.

Score: 8.7/10