Review of "Chuck - The Complete First Season" From The TV MegaSite
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Chuck First Season DVD cover

Chuck - The Complete First Season

by Suzanne 9/3/08

When I first heard the concept of this show, it seemed to be a little too much like the show "Jake 2.0"  That show was more of a straight scifi show.  "Chuck" is an action-adventure show with lots of humor. The setting reminds me a bit of "Reaper" as well, since both shows have goofy guys working in a large mega-store, which they hate, but during their off-time they have a secret life where they do weird things.  In "Reaper", they are hunting down lost souls for the devil.  It is a far sillier show than "Chuck", and the writing is ok but not as good as "Chuck".

"Chuck" is about some technical support computer nerds who work in a store similar to "Best Buy".  Chuck has very little ambition and no experience with girls.  In typical TV fashion, he is way too good looking to really be a geek. They get it much closer to reality in "The Big Bang Theory", but even those guys are way better looking than real-life geeks.  Because actors tend to be that way.  In TV and movies, they usually just take some slightly-dopey looking guy, mess up his hair, throw on some glasses or ill-fitting clothes, and he's a nerd or geek. Not like real life where geeks are usually fat, or strange-looking, or weirdly-shaped, etc.  But to be fair, there are some good-looking geeks. In fact, Chuck looks a bit like my brother-in-law, who is even more of a geek than I am.  He looks a bit like my friend Mark, who is a contestant on this year's "Amazing Race" (he and his friend are competing as "The Geeks").  Chuck's best friend, Morgan, is much more like your typical real-life geek, although in some ways he is way more over-the-top.

But I digress. In Jake 2.0, the hero was injured, so they repaired him by using this somewhat-real-world technology called nannites, which also made his brain into a super-computer.  In "Chuck", an old buddy sends him an email, and when he opens the email, he is inundated with images from a super-computer, so that somehow transforms his brain into a super-computer. It doesn't make a lot of sense, but it's okay because the rest of the show is cool. His friend also destroyed the original computer.

Chuck spends a lot of time running, being chased, being beat up, drooling over the CIA chuck Sarah, and ultimately helping to save the world.  The NSA and CIA both had their secrets in the computer, so they are using him to get the information.  That part of the show is exciting and done well. There is also a lot of humor in the show.  The characters are very engaging.  Since Chuck is kind of a pathetic loser, but cute, you want him to get the girl, to be less of a shlub, and to not be killed in his exciting new job.  To give you an idea, the show is kind of like "24" but with humor. It's that exciting.

The dialogue can be really hilarious, and the situations they get in make me chuckle. Plus, the writers are clearly nerds or geeks themselves because the computer and other geek references are so real. They did an awesome job of casting, too. I was very happy to see Adam Baldwin in the show as NSA agent Casey. I loved him in both "Angel" and "Firefly".  He is playing a less-insane version of Jane here. Another of my favorite actors, Tony Todd, has a bit part in the show.

The extras are fairly standard but not disappointing. They have little featurettes about all of the characters and actors. I enjoyed how they showed a lot of clips from their auditions. They have a featurette about the show, many deleted scenes, a gag reel, and a bit more.  It is worth getting, especially if you are already a fan of the show. Watch it and you won't be disappointed!

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Updated 9/3/08  


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