Season 3 Episode 4

Chuck Versus Operation Awesome

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Jan 18, 2010 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (9)

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  • Team Chuck good, Superman bad.

    After taking a few slightly-off hours to reestablish the show in its new direction, it's finally full steam ahead for Chuck. Finally, we get to watch Chuck being Chuck (or a newer, badass-ier version thereof), on a less-than-perfect mission, and to see his familiar chemistry with Sarah and everyone else play out without the nuances of them being overtly forced into our faces. It's classic Chuck, and it's good.

    In this week's mission, Chuck stands up and grows a pair - however briefly - to protect his new Bro from the Ring, who have confused him for an agent following his full-out tackle of Casey last week. The mission requires him to shoot Agent Shaw, a young CIA operative who specializes in the Ring, and will be taking over Project Bartowski for the time being. ("time being" being 7.5 episodes, but who's counting?) His risky approach to Chuck's Intersect 2.0 training doesn't mesh too well with Sarah, which should be interesting going forward.

    While most of this was solid, standard fare, there were a couple of stand-out aspects to CV Operation Awesome. The first was seeing the Captain out of his element, which is always good for a laugh. And he can't tell a good lie? Who knew?!? The second was the rise of Fight Club at the Buy More, so inherently hysterical I'm amazed it took this long to happen.

    On the downside, a glaring disappointment exists in the painfully wooden acting of Brandon Routh. Delivering every line of every scene with the same introspective, matter-of-fact whimper, he's not the confident, commanding presence the script clearly called for, nor the type of guy who could plausibly compete with Chuck for Sarah's affections as have superspies of seasons past. Somewhere, a director needed to yell "more Superman, less Clark Kent," but didn't, and knowing Routh will be around in this sorry state for seven more missions, I weep.