Chuck Is One Of the Coolest Shows On Television ~ Random Waves of Insight
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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Chuck Is One Of the Coolest Shows On Television

One of my new favorite shows is "Chuck." A guy got sent an email full of top-secret CIA images. He was hypnotized into watching them for 10 hours straight. Now he's effectively walking around with all the CIA's secrets in his head, and has become recruited from his job at the "Buy More" (Best Buy) to work for the CIA with a tough guy and an attractive blonde.

This show kind of reminds me of "Jake 2.0," in which a similar computer-savvy guy suffered a happy accident (infusion of nanobots) that got him recruited by a secret agency. "Jake 2.0" had some neat ideas, but "Chuck" is just so much cooler.

On "Chuck," everybody's likable. Chuck is believable as being capable of helping on CIA missions. The romantic tension between him and the blonde agent is great. The music is awesome. "Captain Awesome" is awesome. Chuck's best friend is funny. Chuck's sister is nice. The opening sequence is cool. The missions are thrilling. The enemies are well-played. The threats are believable. The "Buy More" coworkers are hilarious. The ideas are genius. The gadgets are fantastic. The tone is uplifting and positive.

Part of what I didn't like about Jake 2.0 was how the show made it seem like he didn't belong as an agent. There was an episode where a guy who was already a great agent was going to be upgraded with the same nanodevices that Jake had. That episode killed the guy off. It didn't address why Jake was the better choice. In fact, it seemed to communicate that Jake was the inferior pick, but was simply in charge because of random luck.

In "Chuck," it's revealed that Chuck was already being recruited by the CIA in college, but his friend was able to postpone things. Chuck was intelligent, capable, and was seen as a prime recruitment candidate. So he definitely belongs, even without formal training, since he's got a head full of intel.

Here's a part of the script from a scene in the most recent episode that I especially enjoyed. The jokers are Chuck's coworkers.

Chuck!

Yes, Morgan, yes, I’m right here.

Hey, pal, yeah, listen, everybody's moving way too slow.

If they don't shape up, if we lose control of the store, we are gonna have a pineapple situation.

What's a pineapple situation?

Morgan: never say that word.

You just...

It's a black swan.

It's an impossible event that changes everything.

In case something terrible happens-- nuclear strike, earthquake-- anyone of you could initiate a full Buy More evacuation by uttering one word.

Pineapple.

The word that cannot be spoken.

I really just want to say "pineapple."

- Pineapples are fun-- my dad used to throw them at me.
- Pineapple. Pineapple.

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