Chuck is back with new missions, a new business -- and no Intersect. The stakes are high as Chuck sets out to become a full-fledged spy. But without the CIA as backup, Chuck will have to rely now more than ever on John Casey, Sarah Walker, and a new Intersect -- Morgan Guillermo Grimes. Across this thrilling final season, Chuck will find that his wits, his friends, and his family are the only backup he needs.Chuck
's entertaining amalgam of action-adventure, comedy, and romance makes its last stand--much to the dismay of its faithful adherents--with this set of 13 episodes (on three discs, including bonus material) from its fifth and final season. As veteran viewers will know, this season's Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi) is a far cry from the nerdy fellow from the show's earlier run. Beautiful fellow spy Sarah Walker (Yvonne Strahovski) is now his wife, and while Chuck remains fairly uncertain about his abilities, his own skills have sharpened considerably. But he no longer has the supercomputer known as the Intersect in his brain; for the first several episodes it's in Morgan Grimes (Joshua Gomez), with Chuck acting as "handler" as Morgan uses and abuses its astonishing powers, until the Intersect eventually turns up inside a sinister villain later in the season. Chuck and his crew of "free agent spies," which also includes tough guy John Casey (Adam Baldwin), weren't exactly a crack team to begin with ("We're still working out the kinks," as he puts it). Now they have to find a way to stop the monstrous "Omen" computer virus (the season's best storyline), foil many baddies (guest stars include Rebecca Romijn, Cheryl Ladd, and Craig Kilborn; Linda Hamilton and Bo Derek also put in appearances), and otherwise save the world without the Intersect, and a good many of their missions come down to exercises in mere survival. None of this is what you'd call cutting edge; it's escapism, pure and simple. But Chuck
's refreshingly light touch also allows for some poignant moments (especially in the finale) and an appealing family vibe.
Chuck isn't the first television show whose devotees reacted to its cancellation by campaigning furiously to bring it back. As is usually the case, they were unsuccessful, but a lineup of fan-friendly bonus features may help ease the pain. Not only do the cast and crew pay tribute to "the world's greatest fans"; they even predict how the show might have evolved had it been renewed. There are also featurettes about making the final episode (plus audio commentaries for the last two) and Chuck's beginnings and development through the years, along with a blooper reel, commercials for the Buy More store that serves as a front for the spies' operation, and more. --Sam Graham