Honestly, I don’t know what to write. I’m still trying to absorb it all. It’s over. It really is over. 5 seasons. 91 episodes. Countless Subway footlongs. I’m never to going see Chuck have another flash, Sarah punch another bad guy in the face, or Casey make another grunt, and that makes me sad. But at least Chuck got to go out on its own terms, and that makes me glad.
I was tempted just to write, “Watch the series finale. This love letter to the fans speaks for itself.” But that would be a cop-out. For better or for worse, Chuck has been the show that has defined this blog. I’ve reviewed every episode of seasons 4 and 5 (except this one, of course), it was the subject of my first summer rewatch, and it gets mentioned in almost every third blog post I write. Chuck deserves a real goodbye, and here’s mine:
To the directors: Thank you for navigating a versatile show with a wide tonal range and somehow making it work. Thank you for giving us thrills and bringing the writers’ work to life.
To the set designers: Thank you for making Buy More look like a real electronics store. Thank you for redesigning Castle every season and making it look more awesome every time.
To the costumers: Thank you for putting Sarah in these.
To Tim Jones, Alex Patsavas, and anyone else who contributed to Chuck’s music: Thank you for your fun, zippy score. Thank you for all the amazing needle drops. Thank you for introducing me to Bloc Party, Band of Horses, The National, Frightened Rabbit, and a whole bunch of other artists. Thank you for making Jeffster! possible and giving them one last hurrah in the form of A-ha’s “Take on Me.”
To Merritt Yohnka and the stunt coordinators: Thank you for all the wacky, awesome fight scenes. Thank you for all the action. Thank you for continuing to thrill us, even on a micro-budget. Thank you for making it all look easy.
To Adam Baldwin: Thank you for your grunts. Thank you for Casey’s love of weaponry and the American way. Thank you for humanizing a hardened soldier and turning him into a gruff old softie. Thank you for selling all those goodbyes as your character went off to be with his love. Thank you for being a badass.
To Scott Krinsky: Thank you for playing creepy and slightly demented better than anyone else on television. Thank you for Sober Jeff. Thank you for Jeffster! Thank you for “Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer.”
To Vik Sahay: Thank you for repping Canada. Thank you for making me laugh. Thank you for Jeffster! Thank you for every weird, crazy rant that Lester has ever had.
To Mark Christopher Lawrence: Thank you for being Chuck’s most reliable joke machine. Thank you for your very detailed descriptions of Subway sandwiches. Thank you for taking a lazy, ill-tempered cheater and turning him into a caring, nurturing married man. Thank you for tackling random bad guys.
To Sarah Lancaster: Thank you for being TV’s most underrated actress. Thank you for adding layers of complexity to Ellie beyond “nagging older sister.” Thank you for your tears, and thank you for your smiles. Thank you for being one half of TV’s most awesome marriage.
To Ryan McPartlin: Thank you for being awesome. Thank you for taking what could have been a douchey character and making everyone love him instead. Thank you being a good sport and going shirtless whenever asked. Thank you for being the other half of TV’s most awesome marriage.
To Joshua Gomez: Thank you for being the bearded little guy. Thank you for all the times you’ve made me laugh or crack a smile. Thank you for taking an annoying guy with a bad haircut and turning him into TV’s greatest sidekick. Thank you for infusing almost everything you do with an infectious enthusiasm that permeates the entire show.
To Yvonne Strahovski: I’ll be frank. When Chuck started out, I didn’t like you. Thank you for putting in the hard work to prove me and all your other critics wrong. Thank you for coming into Sarah’s character and making her your own. Thank you for being the beating heart at the centre of this show. Thank you for kicking ass, week after week. Thank you for showing vulnerability when you needed to. Thank you for being a good sport and wearing all those impractical, skimpy outfits. Thank you for digging deeper than you’ve ever dug for this series finale and showing us a version of Sarah who had no recollection of her experiences but had still been profoundly affected by them. Thank you for all that you’ve brought to this show, and I hope that you go on to do many wonderful things.
To Zachary Levi: You’re the person who made Chuck what it is. With a lesser actor, the show could have been a tonal mess. But week after week, you brought it. Thank you for juggling comedy, drama, action, romance, mystery, and everything in between, and thank you for making it seem easy. Thank you for taking a hapless nerd working at a consumer electronics store and turning him into a strong, confident man of action. Thank you for making Chuck-Fu work. Thank you for all those casually dropped nerd references. Thank you for delivering a stunning, emotional performance in the series finale. Thank you for making Chuck what it is, and I know that you’ll go on to have a bright future in Hollywood.
To the writers: Thank you for this story. Thank you for all the ups and the downs. Thank you for breaking convention and delivering something unique. Thank you for taking the characters and making them all grow in some way or another. Thank you for this series finale. Thank you for the twists and turns. Thank you for bringing back old guest stars (including that one bad guy who got away back in season 2!) Thank you for giving us one last Jeffster! performance. Thank you for giving everyone the endings they deserved, even as you subverted expectations and gave those endings a bittersweet twist. Thank you for showing us in that final scene that we’re not defined by our experiences, but rather by the indelible marks that they leave on our soul. Thank you for showing us that love can conquer all. Thank you for these five seasons. I really can’t thank you enough.
To Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak: Thank you for creating this wonderful show. Thank you for all the love you’ve shown to the fans over the years.
To everyone who ever worked on Chuck: Thank you for beating the odds and giving us five great seasons. No other show on television has brought me so much pure, unadulterated joy. Thank you, thank you, thank you.