The final season of Chuck is underway, and nervous fans are unsure of what to make of the titular Nerd Herder working without the Intersect.
"I'm a little hesitant to actually tell you if he'll actually get it back or not," co-executive producer Chris Fedak told reporters on a call to promote Friday's episode, "Chuck Versus the Bearded Bandit" (8/7c, NBC). "Chuck with the Intersect was a little too easy. We wanted to have more fun this season going back to Season 1 and Season 2 Chuck where things were difficult and complicated and he had to come up with his own Chuck solutions to problems."
Instead, the series' writers uploaded the computer into the brain of Chuck's best friend Morgan (Joshua Gomez). Yes, clueless, bumbling, frequently embarrassing Morgan. Fans have yet to warm up to Morgansect, and Fedak did his best to reassure them. "I love Josh Gomez with the Intersect. I think that what he's done with it is really funny and there's really funny stuff coming up," he said. "It's testing the bounds of the show... The Chuck-Morgan bromance is very much the show, and how Morgan getting the Intersect affects that...The first three episodes of the season are certainly about that."
Although Fedak wouldn't say whether or not Morgan will get un-Intersected, the show doesn't have the luxury to stick with any plot line for long considering its limited final season.
"At the end of each episode, the core dynamic will be changing, so it's not like we're settling in," said Fedak. "Not for a second should the audience be thinking, 'This is the show from here on out.' There are 13 episodes. We are trying to blow it out each episode this season. ... We want to tell the most exciting stories possible. And nobody's safe. There's no point on the show that isn't [fair] game right now."
There's been buzz that at least one major character will die by series' end, and Fedak hinted that this could affect the future of any continued story lines through comic books or other media. "I would love to, if Chuck survives Episode 13," he said. "I love the character and I love the show and if there was another way to [continue] it, that would be awesome. Right now, we're just focusing on delivering an epic finale to the show. But you never know what will happen out in the future ... that's of course if Chuck and Sarah and Casey and Morgan and the rest of the team survive Episode 13. You never know how cruel a writer I could be."
Yikes! Check out what other inspiring things Fedak had to say about Sarah's back story, Lester going to prison and what else to expect this season:
Casey meets his (love) match. "On Friday, we have Carrie-Anne Moss for the first time playing Gertrude Verbanski and she runs Verbanski Corp. ... [which] is the competition to Carmichael Industries, Chuck's new private spy company," Fedak said. "And we have a lot of fun with the competition between these two companies. Carrie-Anne is wonderful. She's funny and she's scary, and she has the most amazing relationship with John Casey and Adam Baldwin. It's like the chemistry between Adam and Carrie-Anne is amazing. In our third episode we have a fight between the two of them which is the most erotically charged thing we've ever done on the show."
Expect less Chuck Fu, more Chuck CPU. "As we had Chuck doing more and more Chuck Fu and fun Intersect stuff, we got away from the computer side of Chuck," Fedak explained. "And here in the first couple of episodes of the season we're going to have a lot of fun with going back to Chuck as being the amazing computer guy. Zachary Levi directed Episode 5 of this season which is called 'Chuck vs. the Hack Off' and it's probably one of the nerdier episodes we've ever done but it's got some amazing hacking sequences. We really took our lead from Swordfish. We actually learn that Chuck was known as the Piranha and that the movie Swordfish was based on him. ... Also, I love Episode 4, which is about Chuck and Sarah going undercover at a Buy More convention."
Sarah reunites with her mom and old handler. "We decided to focus on Sarah for [Episode 8]. Cheryl [Ladd] is wonderful and warm and caring and fantastic as her mother," said Fedak. "And we have Tim DeKay as Sarah's original handler, and Tim is fantastic in the show. He bring incredible gravitas to this back story. And it's not our funniest Chuck story. It is an amazing epic story that reveals a lot of secrets about Sarah that you could never have imagined that are actually back there. I have to say for those fans who love Sarah Walker, it will be your favorite episode ever. It'll be a jaw-dropping episode."
Ellie and Awesome step up and move on. "They've got big success in their future," said Fedak. "And it's time for them to start making decisions about where they want to go and what they want to do. For Ellie, to think about, 'Is it time to cut the strings and not feel like she has to take care of her brother at every turn?' ... She's probably the brighter of the two siblings, and ... it can be helpful to Chuck and the things that are going to be happening in the spy world as well as the mythology of the Intersect."
One half of Jeffster! gets booked, but not for a gig. "They're an incredible duo. In regard to the band, their story is going to change in a very big way in the next couple of episodes," Fedak teased. "Everything will change inside the Buy More, especially in regards to Jeff and Lester. ... There's a lot of really crazy things happening there. You should be worried because by Episode 5, we're going to see Lester in prison. There you go. An actual spoiler. I said something."
Stephen J. Bartowski (probably) won't be resurrected. "He is dead," Fedak confirmed. "I think for our show [his death] was ... kind of an epic. I couldn't imagine trying to undo that by bringing him back to life. But you know, you should take that with a grain of salt because I have been proved to be untrustworthy when it comes to spoilers, so you never know what I might do."
The series finale will be epic, emotional and... to be determined. "The real question right now is what will we do that for the finale," said Fedak. "That's what we're working on at the moment up on the board in the writer's room. It's kind of like my panic attack that's just waiting for me every day. I know I have to go in there and I know I have to work on that episode and I know we need to do it, but it's quite an emotional thing to try to find that perfect ending and we have a number of them right now.
"The second half of the season really drives us into the Chuck finale, and it's some big, emotional epic things," he continued. "We still have mysteries were going to learn about you know Sarah, and Casey, and Chuck. We're really looking to blow it out in a way that we've never done before. So there's a number of stories that are currently in play. But if I had my druthers I'd try to do everything, and that's what I think I'm going to try to do."
Chuck airs on Fridays at 8/7c on NBC.
Are you on board with Morgansect? Do you think a main character will die this season? Who? What do you hope to see in the Chuck series finale?