Chuck vs the Honeymooners

Chuck vs the Honeymooners

In the previous episode, Chuck vs the Other Guy, fans rejoiced in the fact Sarah and Chuck have FINALLY overcome the endless obstacles and became a couple.  And now together, this episode deals with the “What now?” question.

The Action in Europe

We begin with an ominous looking character at the end of a darkened train corridor sharpening a long knife, and wearing a determined look on his face.

He knocks forcefully on the compartment, and a scantily clad Sarah opens the door. The man reveals himself to be compartment service of the dining car, and pulling out his knife, offers to carve the crown roast he is delivering.

Train porter

He knocks forcefully on the compartment, and a scantily clad Sarah opens the door. The man reveals himself to be compartment service of the dining car, and pulling out his knife, offers to carve the crown roast he is delivering.

Waiter: “Wouldn’t you prefer for me to carve?” Sarah: “I’m pretty good with knives.”
Waiter: “Wouldn’t you prefer for me to carve?”
Sarah: “I’m pretty good with knives.”

At this point, Chuck, grinning like a Cheshire cat, peeks around the door, and reassures the porter they have “everything” they need. (wink-wink, nudge-nudge..!) To the strains of Vampire Weekend’s “Holiday”, and the endless parade of room service carts to the room, it’s apparent that Chuck and Sarah are having the times of the lives releasing of two and a half years of sexual tension.

As Chuck settles in with a tray of champagne, and begins to discuss music with Sarah (Seriously, Chuck? You’ve got the textbook example of “blonde bombshell” partially nude in your bed in the middle of Europe, and you want to discuss MUSIC?!?) his phone rings, and seeing it is General Beckman, they remember they were to be back in Burbank by now. Sarah reminds Chuck that everyone expected them back, and they can’t just run away. Chuck makes the point that for the first time, nothing is in their way to be together, and doesn’t want any possibility of anyone, namely General Beckman, to mess it up. Sarah agrees that they have turned a corner, and they can’t go back to the way it was before. They agree to quit the spy life in favor of being together. When Chuck’s phone rings for a second time, Sarah throws it out the window.

Chuck: “Sarah Walker, do agree to quit the spylife with me?”

Sarah: “I do. Chuck Bartowski, do you agree to quit the spylife with me?”

Chuck: “I do!”

At the Buymore, Morgan is telling Casey he hasn’t heard from Chuck. Morgan assumes he is on a mission, but Casey tells him he and Sarah have not reported in.

Morgan: “Let’s cut the man some slack. He’s got the world’s fate resting in his hands.” Casey: “Oh, I’d say he’s got something else resting in his hands.”
Morgan: “Let’s cut the man some slack. He’s got the world’s fate resting in his hands.”
Casey: “Oh, I’d say he’s got something else resting in his hands.”

During a briefing at Castle, General Beckman informs Casey that Chuck and Sarah are AWOL, and tells him he needs to access a rather “unique resource”: Morgan.

A Unique Resource
A Unique Resource

Casey is in full recovery mode trying to find where Chuck and Sarah are. Even though he has been told to have Morgan assist in the search, Casey is very reluctant.

Morgan: “Let me get this straight, the last time you saw Chuck was in Paris…?”

Casey: “Quiet!”

Morgan: “Hey! You asked me for my help!”

Casey: “I was tasked to ask for your help; there’s a big difference.”

Morgan finally convinces Casey to let him help, and Morgan shows up the NSA by figuring out exactly where Chuck is just by know the person Chuck is.

Morgan: “I’ve been studying this particular subject for over 20 years, I think I know a thing or two. Sarah, l know “Sarah”, but my boy is a hardcore DC Comics fan and isn’t leaving Paris without the latest issue of ‘Justice League’”
Morgan: “I’ve been studying this particular subject for over 20 years, I think I know a thing or two. Sarah, l know “Sarah”, but my boy is a hardcore DC Comics fan and isn’t leaving Paris without the latest issue of ‘Justice League’”

Aaand back in Switzerland, Chuck and Sarah *finally* make it out of their compartment to the dining car, and speaking with the waiter, establish their cover as “Charles Charles…the Charleses…”.

As they begin to decide where to go and what to do over their breakfast, Sarah catches a glimpse of a gun under the coat of men walking past them. She immediately becomes suspicious and without Chuck seeing, puts a knife in her lap.  As she turns to see where they are headed, Chuck notices the men, flashes on one of them, and realizes they are terrorists. Unaware of each other’s suspicions, they force smiles and reiterate their commitment to not being spies.  Despite finally starting their lives with no restrictions, it is beginning to down on them that the spy life, for all its dangers and rules, is perhaps something they truly enjoyed.

Settling  uneasily into bed for the night, both Chuck and Sarah come up with excuses why they each have to leave the compartment; Chuck wants to get some air, and Sarah wants to get some ice cream. Chuck decides to get “fresh air” in the compartment, while Sarah goes out to get her “ice cream”. As Sarah leaves, she sees the terrorists leaving their compartment, and sneaks down the hallway to break in. She discovers the terrorist is Juan Diego Arnaldo, a known Basque terrorist, and finds a notebook filled with what appears to be codes, timetables, and dates.

Juan Diego Arnaldo, a Basque terrorist
Juan Diego Arnaldo, a Basque terrorist

Chuck waits a few minutes until Sarah is gone and sneaks down the hallway to also break in. Sarah hears him in the hallway, and thinking he is one of the terrorists coming back, locks herself in the bathroom. As he gains access to the room, he finds the same notebook and comes to the same conclusion Sarah did; the terrorists are planning something.

Sarah: “Codes, dates…what on Earth are they planning?”
Sarah: “Codes, dates…what on Earth are they planning?”
Chuck: “Names, dates…what are they up to?”
Chuck: “Names, dates…what are they up to?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chuck hears the real terrorists coming down the hall, and discovering the bathroom is locked (because Sarah’s inside), decides to escape out the window.  Sarah, ever the consummate spy, flushes the toilet and busts out of the bathroom. She acts like a drunk Southern belle (with some pretty impressive accent work by Yvonne!), and is surprised to see Juan Diego Arnaldo and his bodyguards in what she claims is her room. She then “realizes” she has the wrong room, begs their pardon, and escapes back to her compartment.

Sarah: “Per-done, all these  rooms look the same six drinks in! We do everything big in Texas!” Bodyguard: “I can see that.”
Sarah: “Per-done, all these rooms look the same six drinks in! We do everything big in Texas!”
Bodyguard: “I can see that.”

Chuck crawls across the top of the train, and flashes on an acrobatic move to get back in the train compartment just as Sarah comes back from “getting ice cream”. Settling back into bed, Sarah decides to come clean with Chuck on her desire to not quite give up the spy life.

Sarah: “Chuck, I can’t fake this, not with you.” Chuck: “What?!? You’ve been faking it this whole time?” Sarah: “No, not that. I spotted a Basque terrorist on board.”
Sarah: “Chuck, I can’t fake this, not with you.”
Chuck: “What?!? You’ve been faking it this whole time?”
Sarah: “No, not that. I spotted a Basque terrorist on board.”
Chuck: “Juan Diego Arnaldo, I know, I flashed on him. He has a whole list of names in his room.” Sarah: “Yeah, all his contact from the Escati de Asqua D’asuna.” Chuck: “Oh my god, you even make terrorist groups sound sexy!”
Chuck: “Juan Diego Arnaldo, I know, I flashed on him. He has a whole list of names in his room.”
Sarah: “Yeah, all his contact from the Escati de Asqua D’asuna.”
Chuck: “Oh my god, you even make terrorist groups sound sexy!”

Realizing they are both having a little difficulty quitting the spy life cold turkey, they decide that it would be “irresponsible, even criminal” to not try to apprehend him.  With a mischievous gleam in their eyes, they agree on “one last mission” before they quit.

Sarah and Chuck decide they need to apprehend the terrorists, and leave them cuffed at the station for Interpol agents. Unfortunately, all their spy gear is in Paris, so they have to steal a pair of handcuffs from a punk rocker on the train (who Sarah chats up in Polish, giving Yvonne a chance to show off her language skills), and sleeping pills from an injured French skier.

Meanwhile, Casey and Morgan have made it to Switzerland, and are hot on the trail of Chuck and Sarah. As Chuck and Sarah drug Juan Diego’s bodyguards, Casey catches up with them in the dining car and handcuffs them together. Juan Diego, realizing he’s being setup, escapes. Chuck and Sarah punch out Casey, and chase Juan Diego to his train compartment. After Sarah fights him one-handedly (Chuck is stuck outside of the locked door, still handcuffed to Sarah, who is inside fighting Juan Diego) they lock him in the bathroom as Casey busts in. They quickly explain they have him in custody (in the bathroom), but as the train lurches to a stop, Juan Diego runs out of the compartment and down the corridor, only to run into Morgan and his gigantic backpack and gets knocked out of the train.

Casey apprehends Juan Diego, and when Morgan spills the beans about being in the CIA, they find out he was in protective custody of Interpol and on his way to witness protection. When Casey asks if General Beckman signed off on this, Chuck and Sarah explain they wanted to do it under the radar. Casey then realizes what their motives are: they are quitting the spy life.

Finally checking in with General Beckman, they are told a new Interpol team is being sent to take custody of Juan Diego. Once he is safely in Interpol hands, Chuck and Sarah are to report back in Burbank.

Waiting for the Interpol agents to arrive, Chuck, Sarah, Casey, Morgan, and Juan Diego relax in a café. Juan Diego, listening to different conversations, begins to piece together Chuck’s and Sarah’s dream of getting away from the spy life may not be their dreams come true after all.

Morgan: “You’re a SPY, man! This is the coolest to ever happen to us! I thought this was everything you ever wanted.” Chuck: “It is, ok? It is, but I want Sarah more…!”
Morgan: “You’re a SPY, man! This is the coolest to ever happen to us! I thought this was everything you ever wanted.”
Chuck: “It is, ok? It is, but I want Sarah more…!”
Casey: “I know what it means to make a choice like this… I won’t stop you…unless you want me to…”  Sarah: “No matter how much I want to be a spy, I want Chuck more.”
Casey: “I know what it means to make a choice like this… I won’t stop you…unless you want me to…”
Sarah: “No matter how much I want to be a spy, I want Chuck more.”
Chuck: “Sarah has been a spy all her life, and she’s willing to give it all up to be with me...ME!  And if this is what she wants, I’m not going to risk losing her again.”
Chuck: “Sarah has been a spy all her life, and she’s willing to give it all up to be with me…ME! And if this is what she wants, I’m not going to risk losing her again.”
Casey: “It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.” Sarah: “I can’t risk it. This is what he wants.”
Casey: “It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.”
Sarah: “I can’t risk it. This is what he wants.”

Chuck: “This feels really weird leaving. I’ve never lived anywhere outside California before.”

Sarah: “Well, I’ve lived all over the world, but Burbank was the only place that felt like home.”

After Chuck and Sarah finally leave to start their new life, the Interpol agents arrive at the café to take custody of Juan Diego. Morgan, eager to discuss all things Europe, strikes up a conversation with the agents about their duty station; Lake Como, Italy.  While discussing the sights of Lake Como, he discovers they know nothing about one of the major attractions, raising the suspicion of Casey. As Casey draws his weapon, the “agents” reveal themselves to be terrorists. They, with other terrorists in the café, force Morgan and Casey to surrender.

Meanwhile, Chuck and Sarah, having made it back to the train station, prepare to make their final getaway.  Chuck asks Sarah if this is what she really wants, and as Sarah is about to explain she always felt it had to be one way or the other, but maybe…

Before Sarah can finish her answer, the original Interpol agents, who were mistaken for Basque terrorist henchmen and drugged, capture Sarah and Chuck demanding to know what happened to Juan Diego. Chuck tries to explain it was all a misunderstanding, but the Interpol agents say the replacements sent to take Juan Diego into custody were found dead. It then dawns on Chuck and Sarah that Casey and Morgan have been trapped and are in big trouble. The Interpol agents refuse to let them go until they get an explanation of what they’re doing. Chuck and Sarah punch out the Interpol agents, and still handcuffed, hijack a scooter to get back to the café.  Pulling up outside, they see Casey and Morgan tied up, and the terrorists “enhanced interrogating” Juan Diego. Chuck and Sarah crash the scooter through the front window and manage to take out all of the terrorists with a well-coordinated attack, all while handcuffed to each other.

With the terrorists out of commission, and Juan Diego back in custody, Casey reminds Chuck and Sarah they have a train to catch. Noticing some hesitation, Juan Diego finally speaks up, saying that running away is not all it’s cracked up to be, and it’s more important to remain true to what you really want. Further, he says that listening to both of them, running away is not what either of them really wants.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhL8GYsbwyE

Once all are back in Burbank, Team Bartowski (plus rookie member, Morgan) are debriefed by General Beckman in Castle. Casey explains Morgan was “resourceful and quick to action when necessary” in retrieving Juan Diego. As General Beckman thanks them for their work, Morgan asks to speak directly to the General, and pleads the case for Sarah and Chuck to remain as spies, even though they are now together.

Morgan: “Wow! What a trip! And Chuck and Sarah…I know, I know…they may have acted impulsively, recklessly, foolishly even, I don’t know. But I do know this: these two were born to be spies…together.” General Beckman: “Get him out of here!”
Morgan: “Wow! What a trip! And Chuck and Sarah…I know, I know…they may have acted impulsively, recklessly, foolishly even, I don’t know. But I do know this: these two were born to be spies…together.”
General Beckman: “Get him out of here!”

 

Chuck and Sarah try to take the blame as to why they stayed in Europe, but General Beckman sees right through it, and demands they come clean. Chuck begins to explain that they are a couple, and General Beckman cuts him off. Explaining she doesn’t want or need to know, Sarah pipes in saying they are dating…exclusively.

General Beckman: “I must caution you, that allowing your private life to interfere with your professional one can be dangerous. But off the record…it’s about damn time!”
General Beckman: “I must caution you, that allowing your private life to interfere with your professional one can be dangerous. But off the record…it’s about damn time!”

 

The Action in Burbank

Awesome comes into the BuyMore looking for Chuck, and tells Morgan that Ellie will be devastated if Chuck isn’t there for the going away party Ellie and Awesome and having before they leave for Doctors Without Borders in Africa.  Lester and Jeff overhear the party plans and accept the “invitation” for Jeffster to play (i.e. they are going to crash the party)

ester: “Did someone say Bat Mitzvah?” Awesome: “No. Party.” Lester: “There’s a lengthy Hebrew translation I’m not going to get into. In the olden days, Bat Mitzvah meant ‘party hard, because your daughter’s almost ripe for plucking’!” Jeff: “I miss the olden days.”
Lester: “Did someone say Bat Mitzvah?”
Awesome: “No. Party.”
Lester: “There’s a lengthy Hebrew translation I’m not going to get into. In the olden days, Bat Mitzvah meant ‘party hard, because your daughter’s almost ripe for plucking’!”
Jeff: “I miss the olden days.”

Awesome and Ellie are setting up for the party, and while Jeffster conducts a sound check, they blow a speaker.

Jeff: “You know who can fix that amp in two seconds? Chuck!” Ellie: “We do not need Chuck!!!”
Jeff: “You know who can fix that amp in two seconds? Chuck!”
Ellie: “We do not need Chuck!!!”

With the speaker blown, Jeffster goes”unplugged” and gets all folksy/Simon-and-Garfunkel playing “Leaving on a Jet Plane” as Ellie tries her best to drown her disappointment Chuck didn’t make it to the going away party.

 

 

In Castle, after General Beckman signs off, Chuck and Sarah go in for a kiss, Chuck sees the surveillance screen of Ellie’s and Awesome’s apartment behind Sarah, and realizes he completely forgot they were leaving for Africa. Chuck rushes back to the apartment complex to find Ellie’s apartment have vacant, and a DVD recording of the going away party. Watching and rewatching the part where Ellie says she wishes Chuck had been there to say good-bye, Ellie returns to the apartment to retrieve her phone she had forgotten.

Chuck: “I’m so sorry Ellie! I wanted to be here.” Ellie: “Chuck, it’s OK, you missed one party. The truth is, I think I got so drunk because I was upset with myself: I’m leaving my little brother.”
Chuck: “I’m so sorry Ellie! I wanted to be here.”
Ellie: “Chuck, it’s OK, you missed one party. The truth is, I think I got so drunk because I was upset with myself: I’m leaving my little brother.”

 

 Chuck: “I’m not so little anymore…and just so you know, you’re not leaving me alone.”
Chuck: “I’m not so little anymore…and just so you know, you’re not leaving me alone.”

Finally back in Chuck’s bedroom, it is evident that Chuck has revived the music topic. With Sarah sitting on the bed, Chuck puts a record on the turntable, and declares he thinks he “found the one. This is gonna be your favorite song”.

“….and I’m feeling good…..!”
“….and I’m feeling good…..!”

To the sounds of Nina Simone, in each other’s arms, Chuck and Sarah are finally, mentally, physically and emotionally, home.

And fade to black….

***********************************************************

I love, love, LOVE this episode. After rewatching it to write up this article, I’ve come to believe this may be my favorite episode for 5 reasons (in descending order);

5) After Sarah said she loved Chuck (in not so many words), and it was clear they were “an item”, the show could have very easily gone south. The entire show, up to this point, was the forever “will-they-or-won’t-they”, and once they did, the main impetus of the show was gone. Yet, the production staff was able to switch gears and keep the show going on an entirely different track, still maintaining the fun, suspense, and romance.

4) Jeffster unplugged. I know there are those who prefer the hard-rocking Jeffster (I’m looking at you, Alix) but their version of “Leaving on a Jet Plane” illustrates their depth and abilities as a viable musical act, and not some cheap gimmick to get chicks.  Although, if they did, it would be an added bonus, and nothing says tortured soul like Simon and Garfunkel singing a John Denver song.  Besides, I really like the song!

3) Morgan Grimes, the Unsuspecting Tourist. Although the writers kinda hammed it up, the traveler idiosyncrasies Morgan displays while on the train in Europe ACTUALLY HAPPEN;

  • Yes, I have backpacked in Europe with a bag waa-aay too big and knocked people over with it.
  • Yes, I have pretended to be Canadian (it was during the 1st Gulf War, and done to avoid unnecessary political arguments for actions which I had no control over. Not one of my proudest patriotic moments. No, I will not entertain comments and/or questions regarding this. As a sergeant in the US Army Reserves, I believe my penance is being paid.)
  • Yes, I have carried money in a concealed money belt, although I kept mine UNDER MY SHIRT! (While it was no less difficult retrieving, it was considerably less disgusting.)
  • Yes, I have tried to impress the “local talent” with my perceived knowledge of the language/culture, and like Morgan, also failed miserably.

2) Nina Simone track “Feeling Good” as the closing song to the episode. The soundtrack of Chuck is probably one of the best I’ve ever heard, insofar as song selection and scene relevance. This was abundantly clear early on in the series. However, when they pulled out the jazzy gem that is “Feeling  Good” by NINA -FREAKING- SIMONE, I was absolutely gobsmacked. The first time I saw the scene, after I picked up my jaw from the floor and giggled like a school girl for about 10 minutes (you better believe I rewound that scene several dozen times!), I think I actually applauded. Sitting there in my living room, I stood up and applauded. Yes, it was *that* good.

1) Even if none of the above happened during this episode, this would still be my favorite episode for this one, singular moment rii-iight….

…HERE!!

That is Sarah at the happiest she’s been in her life. Ever. This is when Chuck suggests they go back to explain the situation to Beckman to let them come back as spies, and it is at this exact moment that Sarah realizes for the first time in her life, she can still live the life she’s always known and have the life she’s always wanted. She can still keep being a spy, something she’s been doing for half her existence and enjoys (and can do rather well!), and have a “normal” life  and relationship with Chuck. And the icing on the cake of that scene is Polyphonic Spree’s “Light and Day” in the background. How that whole scene fits together (see YouTube clip above) is pure, unadulterated poetry in motion. Probably my favorite 2 1/2 minutes in television history.

There are many a “Chuck” fan who claim The Other Guy as their favorite because of The Scene. Yes, I get it. And yes, I have watched that scene many, many times myself, too. However, as much as I enjoyed that scene, I get the same feeling watching the entire episode of The Honeymooners. From the opening scene to the closing, I had a grin on my face constantly. I felt the moment in the last episode was not in vain, nor would it be wasted: Charah was here to stay!

In the next episode, Chuck vs. the Role Models, Chuck and Sarah start their new lives as a spy couple.

8 comments

  1. Great job on the write up !! And, yes…this was the best episode of Season 3 hands down. There was no real controversy to be had…this was the episode that should have happened to start Season 3, or , at least happened much closer to the start. The train and the “romantic ” vacation portion were very much a reset to the romantic holiday and the Prague “running away” idea. What all the other crap was in between, and what it accomplished, is anyone’s guess !!!

    As for what was Sarah’s favourite song …they’d doing the horizontal boogie for a few days. I’m sure they needed a breather every once in a while !!! And without that question, we don’t get the final scene with Nina Simone !!!

    • Yes, a reset is the best part of the episode, but my favorite part was when Juan Diego spoke the truth to Charah.

      He said “I been on the run for two years.” He said it best you never can run from who you are. They were both spies and both loved each other. A stranger gave the best advice….

      • Actually the best part of the episode ( the happy Sarah smile was golden ) was the fact that Sarah didn’t have to do a whole episode ( or arc ) with the pout on her face. The furrowed brow / pout was a permanent fixture for 13 episodes until Other Guy ( much like the Kate Morgan character in 24 ) and is such a waste of Yvonne’s talents. Plus she got to do comedy…which returned Chuck ( the series ) to its roots.

        And , like the much maligned romantic vacation idea Chuck first proposed, getting away from it all to explore each others wishes was a good idea. It was just lucky they ran into a Basque terrorist to help them communicate ( they STILL weren’t very good at it !) and find out what was important to each of them. The only difference between Ellie’s wedding and the Honeymooners was that Chuck ( with the 2.0 ) was now an “equal”…he could offer Sarah the chance to be a spy. That could have also been offered after he first downloaded 2.0, but I digress.

      • Misery arc was not fair to Yvonne’s talents, that brought her (character) to where she was in the first 2 seasons. After that debacle, Yvonne asked the show runners to allow her to do some comedy, and this was a home run with her Southern Belle character. Unfortunately , they didn’t really allow her to do much more, other than perhaps the Daphne Peralta character. Good stuff all the same.

  2. Outstanding writeup. This one made you realize too that, despite their backgrounds, Chuck and Sarah would still be a “normal” married couple someday, guilty of keeping little secrets that would scare or worry the other, until they can’t withhold them anymore. Sure, it’s wrong…but it’s also what we do when we’re in love.

    This one also marked the unlikely partnership of Casey and Morgan. Absolute comedic gold.

    And I enjoyed Jeffster-Unplugged just fine in this episode, just for the record, Sir. 😉

    Finally, I want to thank you also for sharing stories of your personal service. I thoroughly enjoyed a glimpse into that world.

  3. Enjoyed the write up and loved Sarah’s smile towards the gold we all wanted for both Chuck and Sarah to be happy and that smile said it all.

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