This season has definitely been a roller-coaster of quality, and I have been fighting the urge to just stop watching completely. Honestly the only reason I didn't is because it doesn't really conflict with anything else I watch. No, the Monday night glut of television shows comes in the 9 p.m. CST slot--why the heck does everything come on at 9 p.m. on Mondays? Upon hearing that the next season will be both shortened and the final season of the show, however, I figured I could probably just stick it out.
After this week's season finale, I am really glad that I did. I am actually looking forward to the next/last season!
I don't want to get into spoilers, but I will say that the season ended with a bang, and in a way that I really wasn't expecting. It made me care about Chuck and Sarah as a couple again, it reminded me why I love a lot of the ancillary characters, it made me laugh. I remember when this show used to make me laugh a lot. I loved it for the smart goofiness it started off with. When the smart turned to clichéd and the goofy turned to schmaltzy slapstick (yes, it may be a fine line, but there is a difference), it started to lose its appeal to me. But the season finale managed to restore my faith in the series.
Even if a few of the big shakeups that occurred at the very end of the episode (and if you've seen it, you know in particular which one I am referring to, I am sure) get reversed right off the bat, I expect we can get at least one highly entertaining episode out of the new premise. The other changes that occurred set the stage for a change in the formula that seems natural, a believable outcome of the story and events so far. I look forward to finding out where things go from here.
Add to this the fact that it is a shorter season--something which I have been starting to feel is a key element to keeping a story-driven series well-executed--and the fact that everyone goes into this knowing it is the final season. Well. I think that means we are going to have a chance to see a real conclusion, one that is well done, that grows organically out of everything that has come before, and one that feels right. I also think it will give them a chance to take some risks, be they emotional or action oriented, that we would not otherwise have a chance to explore. I think we're gonna see some magic here, folks, I won't lie.
Plus, NBC has been kind enough to move Chuck to Fridays for the fall. Maybe come September my Monday nights (and subsequent Tuesday DVR catchups) won't be so crazy! Of course, I still have to get through the summer, where a certain programmer has decided to move all of their shows I have any interest in to Monday nights, opposite my long-standing summer Monday night television date. Grr.
But, Chuck, woohoo! Here's hoping that it gets the swan song it deserves, eh?