The second arc of the series is a transition period for all three members of Team Bartowski. Chuck, Sarah and Casey are in midst of some character development changes. The biggest growth will be from both Chuck and Sarah relationship wise, and Casey learned that killing Bartowski would be harder than he thought.
The second arc started in Chuck vs The Marlin and it ends at Chuck vs The Break Up, and it includes some of the series best guest stars and well what would an arc be without Bryce Larkin included in the mix.
This arc also effected Morgan in a sense because as the series continues Morgan has made some growth while learning to make grown up choices with Anna as his first girlfriend.
Most changes happen naturally, and the more we resist the harder it becomes in accepting those changes. For example, two assassin killers like Sarah and Casey learn the more they spend time with Chuck and live his lifestyle, the more soft they become.
The fact that Casey didn’t want to pull the trigger on Chuck speaks volumes to the impact change can bring. Do you think Casey would hesitate in pulling the trigger in the first part of season one? I don’t think so, but after working with Chuck and gaining respect for him out in the field. Casey started to actually like Chuck enough not to kill him.
Being a con man’s daughter and learning to master the craft of lying and manipulation put Sarah in a tough place right from the get go. The minute she step foot into the Buymore, she was shown there was another kind of lifestyle out there. Chuck’s lifestyle was something she felt comfortable living and learn there is more to life then just being a spy or conning someone.
While spending time with Bartowski, Sarah learned that she was falling for her asset. Casey, Ellie and Carina already knew that much and in this arc Bryce will learn too. The idea was becoming more of a reality for Sarah.
The opportunity to work with Chuck and even though it was a cover be with Chuck as well. The job knew it as a cover and Sarah was alright with that, but the truth was no matter how close she wanted to be the agency finding out was still a real possibility and could ruin it all for Sarah Walker.
Chuck’s change was bigger situation then Sarah and Casey. He went from a man lost in his past and using it has a cop-out for reasons to live a slacker’s lifestyle to being challenged by the CIA and NSA, he had the intersect and there was nothing in the immediate future that can change that, but what Chuck could do was start to become a mature adult, which is the goal for season two.
So, Let’ s dive into the second arc of the series
Team Bartowski Changes
Chuck began changing from being a man lost in his way like most of season one, and sensing he has a future with his handler, and in order to do that things needed to change within him. A nerd at the nerd herd desk wasn’t going to keep her around. A close call would do that.
The threat of being bunkered and not being able to say goodbye to his friends and family made Chuck realize that his life can be over just like that, and with the help from not only Sarah, but Casey as well.
It all started in this scene, When Beckman and Graham said it was time for Bartowski to be extracted out of fear Fulcrum made him and most specifically the Intersect. It transcends Casey and Sarah into breaking orders.
Sarah shown feelings towards Chuck after Beckman and Graham told them Chuck was being transferred raised suspicion from her superiors. Something Sarah never did at that point in the story.
It was Casey that made the shocking decision. When he told Sarah to go find Chuck, and he would go after the mole.
Casey: We, meaning, I go get Lizzie while you find Chuck.
Well, don’t make me change my mind
So, change already hit Casey. It probably has to do with how Chuck helped him through the Ilsa situation, but whatever the reason Casey was allowing Walker to break orders all for the benefits of keeping Chuck in Burbank, and most specifically in her life.
It’s also important to take a look at what happen with Sarah. She was taken back that she wasn’t given the chance to at least say goodbye to Chuck, but we all know she didn’t want to say goodbye.
What I want to talk about in-depth is the helipad scene. Chuck was waiting for the helicopter to pick him up, as Sarah came running up the stairs.
When Sarah arrived at the helipad she was a torn woman. She loved being a spy, but she has grown to love Chuck, and the more she was with him the better she felt about herself. As Gary as said in the past, he balanced her, and when the agency was planning on taking him away, she became beside herself.
She went as far as saying he’s my asset, “My Guy” while in her mind she was saying boyfriend, but knowing Longshore was going to report this to Beckman and Graham had to tread lightly. She also was ready to pull her weapon on him, but at this point in the story would she have pulled the gun.
When she grabbed his hands and looked into his eyes with moist in them, Chuck did the right thing and made a joke out of a serious situation.
Its goes back to my original thought about Chuck and Sarah. They are by definition soul mates. The fact that she couldn’t bear to lose him made a statement to me, and take a look at the first season on what Sarah went through.
1. A woman challenged her personally, sparked the fire she has burning inside of her for Chuck
2. She elected to stay with Chuck despite the chance of reconnecting with Bryce Larkin.
Now the agency was tormenting her by taking him away. It almost felt like her surrogate family was telling her she can’t be with him. All very stressful situations in one year. For a spy it’s all a days work, the agent moves on, and assigned a new mission, but not when she invested so much time in getting close to the very people she was deceiving , and It’s not Just Chuck. It also included Devon and Ellie. A real couple she was learning how to be a real girlfriend.
We know what happened next, Sarah, Casey and Chuck would capture Lizzy and all well that ends well. we come up to a scene that I hold dear to my heart when it comes to the series and most importantly Chuck and Sarah.
It’s this scene,
While I have read on many sites this scene represented a hero stances. I respect the opinion, but its wrong. Its more than a hero stance because of this expression.
When Chuck asked her to come in with him, he had accepted her as family because the gravity of the situation. Devon proposed to Ellie and when Sarah said “Its family time” Chuck replied with a tender I know. It’s a change that Chuck has finally accepted her into his world which was his friends and family.
Take a look at the expression again,
See you have to understand what has happened for Sarah and its goes back to the pilot really. Her heart melted with his kindness towards the ballerina.
He then would open up about his mother with her. The first sign of acceptance now allowing her to participate in celebrating the engagement despite the relationship being a cover. It means that much more than just a hero stance indeed.
Sarah made a stance alright. There was nothing going to keep Sarah from being apart of Chuck and his family. While these scenes were transcending. it was only the start.
If it was a hero stance, it would mean she was acting as Agent Walker and i have pointed out the difference between the agent and the girlfriend, and as time continued to go on Sarah the girlfriend was gaining more life as each life altering experience came about.
In first date, which bothers me as a title for the episode. As Sarah said, this would mark their second date. The first date may have been apart of Sarah’s probing, but before the date was over Sarah wasn’t an agent anymore. She was enjoying herself,
The Board of Directors once pointed out how Chuck was eager when mentioning to Sarah he couldn’t wait to introduce awesome to her, which meant Chuck was seeing this relationship going passed that first date.
Throw in baggage handler and we get a woman who was planning on sticking around. He intrigued her and it showed in First date how far she had come.
The first time you can tell Sarah wasn’t hiding behind Agent Walker was after Colt let him go, and while Chuck was sitting on the coach, Sarah had a glow in her face that said she loved working with Chuck.
Another key season would be in the courtyard, after Beckman and Graham tell Chuck that his days as a government asset are numbered, she was inquiring about what Chuck would do next, and to be honest she was phishing. When she asked him what are you going to do next, she was hoping he would say I was hoping we can working on our relationship, but he didn’t
What I love about the scene was Casey and Sarah in this part of the arc. Sarah was courting Chuck without basically saying she wanted him, and Casey showed reluctance in killing Chuck.
The fact that Sarah wasn’t going to be his handler anymore opened the door for following her heart, and while she would still be a spy, the agency couldn’t prevent her from seeing him. Thus, the line,
Sarah: So, what happens now? You’re almost free. What are you going to do next?
Chuck: Well, you know I got the Buy More
Sarah: Chuck, can I tell you something? Chuck: Of course.
Sarah: You can do anything. I’ve seen you in action. And I’m not just talking about the bomb defusing, or the diamond stealing. I mean, anything you wanted, you could have
Meanwhile, Casey was given the order to kill Bartowski.
Casey: I thought you might call.
Beckman: Major Casey, you understand the situation? We can’t have another Intersect wandering around Los Angeles getting into trouble.
Casey: General, Chuck may be a novice spy, but the results speak for themselves. Surely we can find another exit strategy.
The impact Charles Bartowski has made on both Casey and Sarah have come full circle. The fact Casey questioned the general about killing Chuck was a major sign Casey was softening. He also did the right thing about not telling Sarah there was a hit on Chuck because he didn’t want Sarah to do anything crazy.
At the Orange Orange, Chuck walked into the yogurt shop determined to ask Sarah out.
While Sarah tried to play coy about the date, she already said yes in her mind. The first expression said it all.
Here is Sarah dressing for there date in the pilot, it is in pure agent mode.
Bullet proof vests, knives, piercing hair rods and a gun all apart of her attire. Agent Walker went into the first date, but was put away once Sarah saw what kind of man Chuck was. Now let’s take a look at in First Date,
He left her gun home, and Casey was conducting target practice, but couldn’t pull the trigger on Ronald Reagan and missed the target when Chuck’s photo came up.
At the date, Chuck was showing confidence being around Sarah unlike in the pilot when he was a nervous wreck. He was poised and even went as far as compliment himself, and Sarah agreed he was fantastic.
What I love about Chuck here was the change already starting, he told his sister that he didn’t want to work at the Buymore anymore and went as far as told her what he was doing “I want to be a secret agent.” and carried over into the date. Everything was going smoothly. It was going so well in which Sarah did two things on this date she didn’t do in the pilot.
She wanted to kiss him, and show a look of dismay when telling Chuck the CIA would move her far away from this place, and my friends she was clearly not pleased with that.
In an intimate setting, Chuck and Sarah were shining and feelings from both parties were surfacing enough for the two to act on those feelings, and came very close to acting on those feelings if it wasn’t for Colt and his men ruining the party.
Before we continue on with Chuck and Sarah, let’s take a look at a couple of scenes between Chuck and Casey that show the bond the two were building between them.
After Chuck learned he was going to be free soon, he went to thank Casey, but it was hard to accept the act of gratitude because of what Casey’s orders were.
but the two would have a very different conversation later, When Colt and his men reclaim the cipher, Chuck flashed on the scar Colt left on Casey’s face, and told Casey where the baddies hideout was, but Casey was showing obvious hesitation in going after them.
In fact from Chuck point of view, it was a delay tactic that pushed Chuck over the edge, and while Chuck was spewing about what happen to Casey become a real spy again, and when Chuck went on a tantrum about his future. Casey said the future can be dangerous Chuck. It was a warning Chuck didn’t understand.
Casey knows he has the order, and it is killing him how he had to be the one to pull the trigger. When working with someone for a year, and getting to see his strengths and talents. Casey saw potential in Chuck as a spy. The road was difficult, but Casey knew he can work with Chuck and Sarah.
After the harsh words from Chuck, Casey stormed out of the break room and went to get Sarah. Chuck would soon follow and want to help, but with Chuck’s words still on Casey mind Casey told Chuck he wasn’t a real spy, and Sarah echoed that by saying go back to work.
The problem was Colt would set up Team Bartowski by luring Chuck to an abandoned warehouse by placing a call into the Buymore for Nerd Herd help. It seems Chuck was right, Colt would be on the move. Casey and Sarah entered an empty hideout, and both Casey and Sarah realized Chuck was right.
This would set up one of two key scenes in this arc.
As I mentioned at the top, Sarah losing Chuck to bunkering was one thing. The thought of him dead was far worse for Sarah than him being locked up in some facility.
Watching Chuck being dropped sent Sarah into a precursor of a Season Four episode we all love, but won’t spoil here, and I will introduce a new reference to Sarah. Rampage Sarah went into full gear. She didn’t hesitate in charging Colt, and fighting him.
Casey also had a burden in his eyes watching Chuck drop closer to him on the fire escape, and made the save.
After the mission was over, Charah were planning on completing their second first date, and while Chuck was preparing dinner for Sarah, Casey was reminded of his orders on killing Chuck.
He would protest saying Chuck served his country well and maybe even has potential as an analyst, but Graham put things in perspective for Casey, and the much reluctant Casey gears up to whack Chuck.
While Casey was closing in, and let me tell you had two shots at Chuck while sneaking into the apartment, but was hesitant in pulling the trigger. The doorbell rings stopping Casey in his tracks.
Sarah was at the door, and while all this was happening. Graham put the cipher into the new Intersect 2.0 computer, but it was a trojan horse sent by Fulcrum to destroy the room and Graham with it. It left Chuck once again holding the bag as the only Intersect, which meant Casey was clear on killing Chuck, and Sarah wasn’t able to fulfil her heart’s desire by being intimate with Chuck.
Chuck has appreciation for his life after a new lease on life. He is confident and has had enough courage to ask Sarah on a real date once he knew the spy world was ending, and Sarah went with him.
Casey let Walker stop the extraction and couldn’t pull the trigger. Team Bartowski are growing more and more like a cohesive unit. Personal feelings for each other are the cause.
Then in Seduction we get a few scenes worth talking about, and it has to do more with Chuck and Sarah.
Sarah and Chuck are growing closer. The friction between the two as handler and asset are becoming less stressful as the arc continued. Throw in Casey’s change of heart, and we have three people really starting to gel as a team.
So, while going down to Florida to get Roan, they are discussing the mission with a more comradely then they did in season one, when it came to the two agents taking control over everything Chuck did. Here they are conversing, and we get a very important photo in this episode.
There are two scenes we need to discussion that showed Sarah’s reason for not pursuing a relationship with Chuck.
While I have read on other sites and comments on these two scenes, and how they didn’t like Sarah’s responses. The idea that Sarah could just ignore protocol for the sake of following her heart is a misguided interpretation. Sarah is an agent, and with that comes standards and consequences for her if she didn’t following the rules set forth by the agency.
We know she already went against orders by stopping the extraction, but if the agency saw that she was compromised, she would face problems.
They are honest answers. She does want to be with him, but she also wants that chance to be with him as not being a spy. The very reason she said, you can have anything you want or your free to live your life with whomever you choose.
So, she started telling Chuck her desire of wanting to break free from the spy world, and be with him without just blurting it out with fear of what the agency would do to them.
!. It’s family times, and while watching Chuck with his family was driven by protocol, but her heart wanted to be inside with these normal people.
2. She said he can do anything, have anything he wanted. She started giving hints to him without causing trouble, but Chuck though she was talking about work related. Still nothing about being a spy here.
3. We can’t be together, Its unprofessional, where did she say it? in a freezer that was filled with cameras and bugs I bet. Thus, Sarah followed protocol. She would say Bryce was a spy. Again, did she say Chuck you need to be a spy like Bryce?
4. Grant it, Sarah was trying to get Chuck to look at the file, but there is truth to it. She wanted to be with him in his world. He wanted to return to the world he knew, and it’s why she had a face of please Chuck let’s just find Roan and maybe we can be together for real.
When Roan was talking to Charah, he said he wanted to know what he was dealing with. He asked Sarah and Chuck to kiss, but he was reluctant. Sarah said it was ok.
When Chuck pulled Sarah towards him, Sarah was caught by surprised by the aggressiveness, but also was turned on by it. Thus, the I need to fix my lipstick. excuse me.
What I love about the scene was for the second time. Sarah lost herself in the moment and enjoyed every second of the kiss, and during the preparation for the mission. Sarah made a confession of sorts.
Chuck: Well, it may not be the steamiest, but we probably have the strangest relationship in Los Angeles.
Sarah: I doubt that, Morgan is still dating, right?
Chuck: Good point.
Sarah:Tonight will be fine. I wouldn’t take Roan’s advice too seriously. Just be yourself.
Chuck: I doubt Chuck Bartowski’s gonna be charming anyone.
Sarah: Why not? Worked on me.
Little by little, Sarah has begun to tell Chuck her feelings. Three times since the beginning of the season Sarah has hinted at where she would like to be with Chuck. By saying it worked on her, it means she was seduced by his charms without even trying. Good Job Bartowski!
Remember when i said Casey, Ellie and Carina were were the ones who already knew Sarah was into Chuck, Well add the seduction master himself. Roan asked Sarah how long had he been courting Charles, and like she did with Casey, she got very defensive. A move Roan said was the Lady Doth Protesting too much.
While on mission, Roan was coaching Chuck through the night. He gave Chuck a four prong seduction technique. It worked after the fourth try, and Sasha asked Chuck up to her room, and pulled Bartowski into the elevator, when Sarah turned the corner she was shocked and not sure if she was alright with Sasha kissing Chuck.
Chuck was trying to stay focused on the mission at hand, but couldn’t when he had all that ruckus going on in his ear, and when he heard the words “he is just an asset, I do not like him.” hit Chuck hard and would affect the seduction part of the mission. Sasha decided to head upstairs, but Chuck maturity forced himself in completing the mission. He didn’t let his emotions get the better of him.
Sarah stormed out of the van proving Roan right, and sent Chuck off to fetch Sasha. A good move in my opinion. Chuck wasn’t focused on what he heard,
As I said in this article, Sarah Walker vs Agent Walker Part 2, Chuck brought out a jealousy from Sarah. It’s a mission, but Sarah doesn’t want to share Chuck’s lips with anyone even if it is a mission, but Sarah didn’t have time to reflect on her emotions work needed to be done.
I think back to Tango when I see the hotel room scene, and when Sasha came out with a knife, Chuck screamed like a little girl at first, but confidence kicked in, and he not only swiped the cipher from Sasha, he did a daring spy move that Chuck from season one wouldn’t even think of.
As Chuck dropped to the air mattress, he is cool cocky, and excited, but things quickly became haywire when Sasha captured Casey and Sarah. Chuck was left alone because Roan took off like with cowardice means.
All of these things are apart of the changes the team went through.
We know what happened the west of the way, Again, Chuck used real spy tactics to save Casey and Sarah from Sasha, and they were able to regain the real cipher.
While Chuck and Sarah’s relationship was making headway, a certain someone will make his return to Burbank to throw a riffle in Chuck and Sarah’s relationship.
The final chapter of this second arc would bring Bryce Larkin back into the fold much like the last arc, but there is a difference. Sarah is not smitten like the last time.
In fact, I am bold to say it was an inconvenient timing I would say. Sarah was working on creating a life with Chuck. She was doing it the best way she can without setting off bells and whistles, and her attitude towards Bryce proved to be the case.
However, Bryce would have the last laugh when he was able to get into Chuck’s head about their blossoming relationship would be a detriment to the mission at hand, and Chuck broke up with Sarah for a second time.
The first scene that told me Sarah was done with Bryce was in Orange Orange. She told Bryce the Andersons’ should be only a cover. She said Fulcrum was getting too close, but they hadn’t made real headway yet, it was Sarah saying back off Bryce, I am with someone now.
While Sarah was putting the mission into perspective with Bryce, Chuck was his jealousy self, and completely missed Sarah giving Bryce the boot personally, and nothing said it more than when Sarah put on the red dress or salmon, and we not only have Carina, Casey, Ellie and Roan all-knowing Sarah’s real feelings.
Bryce knows now that Sarah was falling for Chuck.
and then again on mission, when Sarah elected to save Chuck rather than go after the chip. All things Sarah never did with Bryce.
She ditched Bryce to save Chuck. Something that should be noted as a big step. Especially when Bryce was Sarah’s personal Kryptonite
Bryce gets confirmation from Devon about Sarah’s feelings for Chuck. It would make Bryce confront Chuck not once but twice. He warned Chuck that personal feelings could cloud her judgment and get her and him killed. Fulcrum were ruthless and the only way to stop them was to think and act the way they do.
All the things Bryce said would come back and bite Sarah in the end though. As Chuck would do this,
I want to spend the closing moments of this article to discuss the impact of the words Chuck used in his break up speech, and compare it with the words he used in the first break up speech.
The first one was all Chuck, and rightfully so. He wanted a normal life and took a shot at being with Lou, but it ended when Sarah kissed him, but take a look at the words Chuck used.
Chuck: The longer we go, the longer we keep trying to fool people into believing that we’re a real couple The person I keep fooling the most is me.
This would mark a real break up speech. He gave reasons about how the feelings were affecting him, but not the second time. It was all Bryce fueled.
Chuck: I’m a normal guy who wants a normal life.
And as amazing as you are, Sarah Walker, we both know that you will never be normal.
What was Sarah’s reaction to hearing she would never be normal.
and her reaction to Chuck’s real break up from the Truth,
The final result was the term “you will never be normal” hurt a lot more than the first break up. Why, because she was trying to break into the normal life with him. She was positioning herself this whole arc to be his real girlfriend, and it was all ruined by who else Bryce Larkin.
So, what did we end up with in this second arc of the series.
Chuck began to mature, and become more active on spy missions. He felt confident around Sasha and Sarah both improvements from the pilot that’s for sure.
Casey could not pull the trigger when the order came in killing Chuck, and he also contributed in Sarah stopping the extraction of Bartowski.
Sarah change began when she stopped the extraction, and how Chuck meant that much more when she thought Colt killed him. Throw in telling Bryce to keep the Andersons strictly a cover was all strong signs Sarah was beginning to accept her feelings.
Overall Thoughts of The Arc
The changes going in were a far cry from when the characters come out of it. All three members experienced some change in the characters from the beginning of season one.
Chuck and Sarah made significant progress with their relationship and the arc ended with a sad scene, but it’s still character building.
The next Arc on my list would be Orion. I know the next arc would be Jill, but with Chuckaholics almost finished with season two. I felt it would be prudent to close season two with my thoughts on the Orion Arc.
Until next time my friends,