Did you miss last week’s episode of Chuck, “Chuck vs. the Living Dead?” Check out a recap here. If you’d like to skip to the second hour of the two-hour Chuck season finale, “Chuck vs. the Ring: Part II,” click here.
“Chuck vs. the Subway” opens in Castle where Stephen Bartowski is working on a new Governor for the Intersect 2.0. He would be progressing faster if Chuck wasn’t hounding his father. Chuck worries that the new Governor won’t work, but his father tells him to relax. It will work, but if it doesn’t, Chuck should consider leaving. “Are you saying I should run?” Chuck asks his father. Not necessarily, but sometimes, a person has to leave in order to protect those he loves, Stephen replies, obviously familiar with such a strategy. Sarah, hearing the tail end of their conversation, wonders who is leaving. Stephen covers by saying that Chuck was talking about a vacation. Sarah agrees that Chuck could use some time off, telling him that sometimes your “dad knows what’s best for you.” Chuck begrudgingly agrees to go out with Sarah and leave Stephen to the new Governor.
Upstairs in the Buy More, Devon seeks out Morgan, and asks Morgan what’s going on with Ellie; she didn’t come home last night. Morgan tries to stall, but eventually admits that Ellie is cheating on Devon. Devon, of course, laughs in Morgan’s face, until Morgan plays Ellie’s message to Justin. Hearing the message themselves, Jeff and Lester are excited to finally, possibly have a chance to score with Ellie, but when Devon hears the incriminating evidence, he tries to get Ellie on the phone, but she doesn’t answer. Her phone signal is blocked in Justin’s office, ostensibly so Casey can’t track her. She tells Justin that she wants to get in touch with Chuck to warn him about Casey, but he assures her that they are bringing Chuck in presently.
Casey sits at a diner, and is served by Alex, his daughter, who doesn’t know of her relation to this regular customer. She brings Casey his usual pie, to his usual seat in a booth facing the door. Casey asks her how her finals went. They went well; one day she won’t be slinging pie anymore. Alex leaves to tend to another table — Casey’s pride is palpable. Meanwhile, Chuck and Sarah walk through a farmer’s market. Chuck worries that any of the numerous people around could be Ring agents. Sarah tells him that he needs to put Shaw behind him, and if he can’t, there’s always blueberries, which she feeds him form a nearby fruit stand. Sarah runs off to use the restroom, leaving Chuck amongst the crowd. He hears someone’s voice, and flashes. It’s Daniel Shaw’s voice. Looking around, Chuck spies whom he thinks is Shaw. He follows the man down into the subway, but loses the man in the crowd. Stunned and a bit afraid of what he thought he saw, Chuck hears a knock on the just-arrived subway’s window. Chuck turns and sees…Shaw, just as the train pulls away.
In Castle, Casey asks Chuck if he just had another one of his dreams. Chuck swears Shaw was real, and wants to call General Beckman. Sarah has been trying to get the General, but she isn’t answering any calls. Stephen suggests they call up the security video of the subway platform on which Chuck says he saw Shaw. They do, and see Shaw enter a service closet at the subway stop where he gets off the train. Stephen wonders if Shaw is just leading them into a trap, but Chuck says that doesn’t matter; they have no choice but to follow Shaw. Further, Chuck is not going to run out and leave his loved ones behind: a sharp rebuke of his father.
Up in the Buy More home theater room, Devon is drinking heavily with Jeff and Lester. He wonders aloud why Ellie would betray him, when Big Mike enters and suggests that all the time Devon spends at the gym, Ellie was likely very lonely. Jeff interjects that Ellie is beautiful: like Chuck, but with lady parts. Hearing enough, Morgan picks up Captain Awesome and leads him to safety.
General Beckman is not answering calls because she is testifying in front of the military leaders of the CIA as to the effectiveness of Operation Bartowski. She insists that Chuck, Sarah and Casey are an excellent, albeit unorthodox team. During her testimony, the aforementioned trio break into the subway service closet they saw Shaw enter. They are below a multi-floor office building — the building that houses Justin and The Ring! Each of them will take a floor; their mission is to capture or kill Shaw. The General tells the panel that Chuck has exceeded every expectation, and has turned into the weapon they had always dreamed of when the Intersect program started. As Chuck searches his assigned floor, he trips an optical alarm that begins to sound. Casey and Sarah run into each other, and realize they need to find Chuck. Sarah sees a door with a biometric scanner. She places her hand onto the scanner and is granted access to the room behind the door. This isn’t a Ring hideout — it’s a U.S. government building!
Justin rushes into his office to tell Ellie to stay where she is, for her own safety. Ellie sees the silhouette of a man with a gun creep by Justin’s window. Justin jumps out into the hall, but Chuck is there to grab his gun. Chuck flashes his kung fu, but it starts to short circuit. Chuck recovers in time to knock down Justin, just as Ellie walks out and sees her brother. “I thought you quit kung fu in the third grade!” Ellie exclaims. Chuck says he has no time to explain, but Ellie should go get back inside the office. During this family talk, Justin gets up and runs off. Chuck chases him down and tackles him through a set of doors…and right into General Beckman’s testimony. “What’s going on?” the chairman demands. “Apparently, I have no idea,” Chuck responds.
Later, the General tells Chuck that her testimony is of the utmost importance. All of their asse…er, careers are on the line as the committee is trying to determine whether the Intersect program is worth the cost. In fact, the committee brings Chuck, Sarah and Casey in front of them to answer to the efficacy of Operation Bartowski. The committee chairman informs them that in their view, the Intersect is “unstable, expensive and most of all dangerous.” Chuck thinks such a characterization is outrageous. “Who said this?” Chuck demands to know. “I did,” replies a voice from the door. It’s Shaw. Shaw enters and admits to saying those things about the Intersect, but adds that this is not Chuck’s fault. He never asked for the Intersect; in fact, Chuck is an American hero. While this might be true, however, unfortunately, Chuck’s mind is deteriorating due to the Intersect. Sarah interjects that the doctor gave Chuck a clear bill of health, but Chuck tries to hush her. Shaw informs her that Chuck’s mind is going, and that he’s oh so very sorry that she had to find out in such a public way, instead of her “boyfriend” telling her. Shaw recommends that due to the danger it poses to Chuck, the Intersect program should be disbanded. General Beckman speaks up to list the number of accomplishments Chuck, Sarah and Casey have racked up. As she reviews the team’s successes, Shaw begins to flash (having downloaded an Intersect in the last episode) on some of the names of Ring agents. Chuck notices Shaw’s flash and calls out that Shaw has an Intersect. Shaw laughs the accusation off, so Chuck tries the same test his father did of him: he throws a dagger at Shaw. Unlike Chuck, Shaw doesn’t catch the dagger between his palms. Rather, the dagger lodges in Shaw’s shoulder. The committee chair orders Chuck to be seized as he is clearly out of control. As Chuck is led away into custody, Casey leads Sarah out of the building, noting that it is clear The Ring has infiltrated the upper echelon of the CIA command. Casey, thinking about his daughter, tells Sarah that they should run. Clearly, Shaw will be targeting them after Chuck, so in order to protect the ones they love, they need to disappear. Sarah protests, everything she cares about is still in that building. She is going to save Chuck.
Ellie arrives at home, for the first time in two days, and tells Devon that she has a secret to tell him — Chuck is in trouble with the CIA. She just saw him punch out a CIA agent, and be led away. Devon is relieved! He thought Ellie was cheating on him, and besides, Chuck has been with the CIA for years! Ellie can’t believe her ears. She orders Devon to sit down and tell her everything he knows. Meanwhile, Casey runs into the cafe to tell Alex that she needs to leave immediately. As Casey begins to explain to her, Justin walks in behind Casey and puts a gun in his back. Justin asks for a table so he and his friend can chat. Chuck sits in a CIA holding cell when he hears a click of the door unlocking. When no one enters, he moves to the door and finds that it is open. He looks at the screen of the digital lock and sees a message from his father to follow the path out. Not seeing any path, Chuck notices that the lights in the hallway are flickering in succession, leading him to an exit. As Chuck turns a corner, Sarah enters the other end of the hall, seeing her love disappear at the other end of the hallway. Back in the cafe, Alex serves Justin and Casey some pie. Justin tells Casey that he will be leaving with Justin. Laughing, he tells Casey, “I never figured you for a father.” “Yeah, well, I’m not a very good one,” Casey responds before grabbing a napkin holder and smacking Justin upside the head with it. With Justin temporarily knocked out, Casey throws Alex over his shoulder and escapes. Sarah catches up with Chuck outside the building and tells him that he can’t run. If he does, he will never have a moment’s peace as he will always be hunted not only by The Ring, but by the CIA as well. At that moment, Stephen pulls up and tells Chuck to get in — the only way for everyone to be safe is for Chuck to run. Chuck is torn, but he makes his decision. “I will always choose to protect you,” Chuck tells Sarah before kissing her, jumping in his father’s car and speeding away.
In an abandoned parking lot, Alex asks Casey if he is about to do something terrible to her. Casey tells Alex that he’d never hurt her, and gives her a key to his locker at the Buy More. She asks if they can step outside the car so she’ll feel safer, and he agrees. She gets outside and makes a break for it. Casey chases her down quickly, but when he grabs her, she uses what she learned in a self-defense class to kick Casey’s ass. She runs again, but Casey yells after her, “I’m your father!” Alex stops and turns. That is impossible; her mother told her that her father died a war hero when she was born. Casey insists that isn’t true. Alex is named after him — his real name, Alex Coburn. With this reveal, an SUV approaches. Casey tells her to run and that everything in his locker is now hers. She escapes as Justin and (real) CIA agents apprehend Casey.
At home, Devon finishes telling Ellie all about Chuck and the missions in which he, Devon, has participated. Ellie asks about how her father factors into all of this, but Devon doesn’t know. There are some gaps in his knowledge, so Ellie insists they find someone who knows more. Enter Morgan. Ellie can’t believe that Morgan knows more about her own family than she does, but there he is. Morgan tells her that Casey is not a double agent, but is the most faithful person he knows. Morgan assures her that he and Devon will find out what happened to Chuck.
In one of the CIA offices, Shaw thanks Sarah for abiding his request for a meeting with her. First things first, he tells her that she looks great. Sarah, however, doesn’t want to hear any pleasantries. She says she’s going to tell the CIA about Paris, but Shaw cuts her off. Only three people know about Paris, and Chuck is believed to be an unreliable witness. That leaves Shaw’s word against Sarah’s. Getting closer to Sarah, he apologizes that she had to find out about Chuck’s mental condition in such a public forum. It really should have been something that her boyfriend told her about. Hearing enough, Sarah grabs Shaw’s gun. Shaw just tsk tsk’s her. He remembers a time when Sarah would never let her emotions get the better of her. Having pushed a silent alarm under his desk, a number of (real) CIA agent rush in and arrest Sarah.
Morgan and Devon are in Castle. They call the General, who is hidden in one of the CIA offices. She tells them quickly that the whole Intersect project has been shut down. In a great homage to Star Warsand Princess Leia, the General tells the pair that they are everyone’s only hope. Agents bust into the General’s office and she is arrested as the communication signal fails. Devon turns to Morgan and asks, “You or me?” Meanwhile, Chuck and his father are driving down the freeway. Stephen hands Chuck a box containing the finished Governor 2.0. Chuck puts it on and immediately feels relief. Chuck’s phone rings; it’s Morgan. Morgan tells Chuck about Casey and Sarah being captured, but as Chuck tries to get more information, Stephen grabs the phone and throws it out the window. The Ring and the CIA will be tracing the call. Chuck tells his father that he thought Stephen came back to protect Ellie and him. The only way to do so is for Stephen and Chuck to save Casey and Sarah and eliminate The Ring. Stephen begrudgingly agrees, but warns his son that if they are going to do this, they are going to have to be smart about it. Chuck agrees, and Stephen turns the car around.
When Chuck enters Ellie’s apartment, she immediately orders him to explain what he’s been doing the past three years. He says he will be happy to, but he needs Ellie’s help now. She has the answers they need to save Sarah and Casey. Where did Ellie meet with Justin? She takes Chuck and Stephen to the park where she would meet Justin. Chuck and Stephen whisper about the implications of the meeting spot, but Ellie yells that there will be no more secrets between them. Chuck agrees, and asks her where Justin would walk after their meetings. She points to a service door leading into the subway system. Stephen tells Ellie to wait in the park as he and Chuck investigate the subway door; if they’re not back in twenty minutes, she should run. Ellie tells her father that she needs to hear from him that he left all those years ago for a purpose. He promises to explain later. He says, “This is the last time that I walk away from you,” as he and Chuck run off.
Shaw leads Sarah and Casey to their holding cells. Casey tells Shaw that he’ll never get away with his plan. Shaw knows, because Chuck will try to save is friends. Chuck is is attempting just that. He and Stephen make their way into the subway service unit when Chuck sees the name of the control panel manufacturer” McTiernan. Chuck flashes that McTiernan is a Ring subsidiary. He pushes a couple buttons and the wall breaks away to reveal an elevator. They enter and descend into a Ring base. An agent tells Shaw that Chuck has just entered the Ring base, but it is a different one that Shaw, Casey and Sarah are in. “Why won’t your boyfriend think with an organ other than his heart?” Shaw taunts Sarah, throwing Casey and her into a holding cell. With Shaw gone, Casey remarks that Chuck has grown from a boy to a man. “You’ve picked a good one, Walker. Finally,” Casey remarks.
In the Ring base discovered by Chuck and Stephen, they find a lab dedicated to cellular regeneration (undoubtedly used to save Shaw’s life) and other advanced Ring experiments. Moreover, they see the podium used by Shaw to download the Intersect. Back in the park, Ellie sees Shaw and a couple agents enter the same subway service entrance, and, sensing danger for Chuck and her father, Ellie follows them in. Shaw discovers Chuck and notices Chuck’s watch, the Governor. Shaw wants the watch, so Chuck tells him to come take it. Unfortunately for Chuck, he doesn’t see Shaw’s henchman come from behind with a gun. The goon takes the watch. Chuck asks if Shaw wonders how their respective Intersects stack up against each other. Shaw admits that the fight would be great because they are evenly matched, but Shaw does have one advantage: he knows that Chuck’s Intersect doesn’t work when he’s too emotional. Chuck insists that won’t be a problem. “How about now?” Shaw asks, as he pulls a gun and shoots Stephen in the chest. Chuck’s father falls, busting his own Governor. With his dying breaths, he tells Chuck to always remember that he is special. Ellie, hidden behind a column, sees the entire proceeding. Shaw’s agents seize Chuck and lead the distraught hero away.
At the Buy More, Alex enters, and is immediately approached by Jeff and Lester. Lester wonders if there is any way he can “service her” today. Morgan saves her from the bizarre duo, and asks if he can help. When she replies that she’s looking for Casey’s locker, Morgan asks for whom she works. Alex is a bit confused, she works for the Pie Shack; Casey had told her that he is her father and gave her the key. Morgan tells her that if Casey said he’s her father, then he is. They go to the locker room, but the key doesn’t fit the lock. Morgan opens the locker with his Ass. Man. key, and removes a dew items incuding Casey’s clothes and a few Guns and Ammo magazines. Behind that stuff, Morgan sees a keyhole. With Alex’s key, he opens a miniature locker. Inside, he finds a number of passports and a whole lot of cash. At that moment, Devon enters the locker room through the door to Castle. Morgan says Devon can speak freely as Alex is “one of us,” but Devon says he needs Morgan, alone.
Chuck is thrown in a truck with Sarah and Casey. He morosely apologizes for not saving them and letting Shaw win. Casey insists that they’ll get Shaw, but Chuck, destroyed, can only reply, “No. We won’t.” Shaw, hearing this conversation, comments that he likes Chuck’s new defeatist attitude. He informs the trio of agents, “When the truck stops, so do your lives.” “It’s over,” is all Chuck can muster, “and no one is left to save us.” Cut to Ellie in her car, cell phone in hand. She tells Devon that she is following the truck holding her brother. Devon asks her if she is sure that she wants to be a part of this. If so, their lives are going to change forever. Ellie says yes — they are going to save Chuck.
That’s the end of “Chuck vs. the Subway,” and the first hour of the finale. Click here for hour two, “Chuck vs. the Ring: Part II,” while I’m off to lose a little sizzle.