If you haven’t watched Monday (April 5) night’s “Chuck,” titled “Chuck vs. the Other Guy,” you may want to stop reading now.
In theory you could just read my recap, but that wouldn’t be nearly as entertaining as watching the episode. After the episode, you can certainly come back and read my recap before reading this story. I’m just sayin’ that if you’re a “Chuck” fan, you ought to be warned that spoilers are coming.
If you’ve seen what happened on this week’s “Chuck,” you can guess why the WonderCon crowd yesterday, treated to an early screening, was so excited to see Chris Fedak, Josh Schwartz, Zachary Levi, Adam Baldwin and Josh Gomez after the credits finished rolling.
“It’s about time,” Levi began, as the crowd cheered. “You’re not wrong. You’re not wrong. We did it. In Paris.”
Indeed after 12 tough episodes which saw both Chuck and Sarah seek comfort and intimacy in the arms of relative strangers, “Chuck vs. the Other Guy” featured Sarah’s confession of love and then a romantic conclusion in the City of Lights. It was what many a fan had been waiting for, probably since the show’s pilot. And they aren’t the only ones.
“I feel like I’m with you guys,” Levi said. “It’s been a tough relationship. There’s been a lot of ins and out and backs and forths. But it was all in good time and it all built up to something and all the ‘shippers can now be satiated. Are you’re you happy if you’re claiming you’re a shipper?”
The crowd roared.
“So yeah, man. It all worked out good,” crowed Levi. “And what better place to consummate their relationship. With the Eiffel Tower standing tall. How’s that for symbolism.”
Those fans may not have been so enthusiastic back in February when “Chuck vs. The Mask” set certain online message boards aflame with accusations that Schwartz and Fedak were leading their main characters down a dangerous and divergent path.
“We knew that we were taking the story in a direction that might be uncomfortable for some fans, but we asked you to be patient and we hope that what you witnessed tonight was worth the wait,” Schwartz told the crowd.
In addition to finally (apparently) bringing Chuck and Sarah together, the episode also, by necessity, tore Sarah and Brandon Routh’s Shaw apart, which wasn’t so hard since Shaw was prepared to betray the CIA and kill Sarah to avenge the death of his wife.
“That arc was designed,” Schwartz said. “It was part of the pitch of the character when we first met with Brandon. We warned him that any man who tries to come between Chuck and Sarah will face some mighty blogger wrath.”
“Chuck vs. the Other Guy” was originally arced as the finale of the 13-episode season NBC ordered after a long deliberation process last spring. After NBC assessed its failed fall and recognized the need for additional programming, the network bumped up the “Chuck” premiere and ordered six additional episodes, landing this spectacularly finale-esque episode only two-thirds of the way through the season.
“Essentially we designed the whole season to get to this point with Chuck and Sarah in that room in Paris,” Fedak said. “And when we got the order for six more and essentially you have to either take those six episodes and pad everything out, and I think the ‘shippers would kill have killed me, or we call in more story.”
Added Schwartz, “It actually works out great for fans, because you get what was designed to be a season finale in the middle of the season and then we ramp it back up again, so you get twice as much excitement.”
Here’s the rest of my report on the Sunday “Chuck” panel from WonderCon.
After this semi-finale, “Chuck” will take two weeks off before returning to launch its six-episode microseason.