Chuck: Season One

January 28, 2012 5 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

Of all the shows that graced our televisions last year, I really found one of the new ones to be very entertaining. That was, of course, “Chuck” which followed the adventures of one Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi). “Chuck” fully embraces the computer nerdiness in all of us and his employment at the “Buy More” (aka “Best Buy”) as a member of the Nerd Herd (Geek Squad if you’re using Best Buy lingo) is a testament to that. Unlike so many other shows out there, “Chuck” isn’t really trying to send a message, make us cry or save the world it’s just about good, clean fun. Much of the success of the show not only comes from Levi, but the supporting cast as well. One of my favorite actors is Adam Baldwin and he’s almost always recognized as “that guy” from a variety of films. Well, he’s stepped out of the shadows and plays a pretty convincing government employee and is the yin to co-star Sarah’s (Yvonne Strahovski) yang. All that aside, what’s “Chuck” really about?

Chuck (Levi) was best friends with Bryce (Matthew Bomer) until he got Chuck kicked out of Stanford University. Bryce went onto work for the government until his “death” and he managed to send Chuck and encrypted email which contained government secrets. Naturally Chuck has no idea what all of these secrets mean but he occasionally “flashes” when something sets him off. He’s been assigned two agents: Casey (Adam Baldwin) and Sarah (Yvonne Strahovski), the latter of the two had a previous relationship with, you guessed it, Bryce. Chuck’s job at the Buy More isn’t a faade, instead he tries to blend in while having two agents around him at all times. Morgan (Joshua Gomez) is unquestionably one of the highlights of the show and the comic relief to be sure. “Chuck” was one of the victims of the writers strike last year and the season was cut short, so hopefully with a new season on the horizon we can see just a little more into the world of “Chuck”.

Video: How does it look?

Like most television shows these days “Chuck” is shown in a 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer that looks just as good, but not quite as good, as the HD broadcast. Colors are bright and vivid and though there are a few areas which aren’t that great (namely the backgrounds), the standard DVD’s do a great job at representing how the show looks on television. Flesh tones seem warm and natural and though we’re not dealing with a motion picture here, I was surprised at how truly good some of the episodes really looked. Fans of “Chuck” will be pleased to see these looking ever so good and this fan has added the first season to his collection.

Audio: How does it sound?

All episodes of “Chuck” are encoded with a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack that sounds pretty lively. Let’s face it, most television shows aren’t really geared for the “home theater” audience but this does have a few instances that aren’t too shabby. Dialogue is the main focus of these tracks, however, and I found nothing really wrong with the way this sounds on DVD. There are a few ambient surround effects that come into play but you’ll do best to set your expectations to a more moderate level. Sit back and enjoy “Chuck”!

Supplements: What are the extras?

The four disc set comes equipped with a few supplements, notably the deleted scenes and a few featurettes. We start off with “Chuck on Chuck” as the cast talk with the creators about the show and their characters. “Chuck’s World” shows how the show was originally cast as well as a gag reel and a peek at the online world of “Chuck”. There’s also a Madden NFL demo disc for some odd reason. I’d have liked a commentary track, but you can’t have it all. Still, for fans this season of “Chuck” is all you could ask for.

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