About halfway through Monday's episode of "Chuck" -- as Chuck and guest star Timothy Dalton were getting ready to jump out of a plane -- Timothy Dalton's MI6 character made reference to "that episode of Alias." I can't be 100% certain which episode he was referencing, but it was likely the Super Bowl episode that changed the whole show, which was fitting since this episode of "Chuck" served to change some things for at least this season (spoilers below if you haven't seen the episode).
Dalton was playing Tuttle, who Mary Bartowski claimed was her MI6 handler, the only person who could verify her story about Frost still being on the side of the CIA. Only, psyche, it turns out that "Tuttle" was actually Volkov, the big bad of Season 4, and Mary was playing Chuck the whole time!
I figured out pretty early on that Tuttle wasn't who he claimed to be, though I didn't see the twist that HE was Volkov coming (I just figured he'd be another person who works for Volkov). He was just a little too bumbling to be real, making it pretty obvious to me -- but not to Chuck or Sarah -- that he was faking it. And while Chuck has gone to the "guest star turns out to be bad guy" well before, I don't think they'd ever done it quite like this.
Even with Mary saving Chuck and Sarah at the end of the episode, I think it's pretty obvious at this point that she's on the opposite side, just with some hint of motherly love left. In fact, I'd be very disappointed if it turned out that she WASN'T working with Volkov, because not only would it not make sense, but it would be a lame cop out. That said, the show hasn't been above going the lame copout route in the past, particularly where Chuck's status as The Intersect is concerned, and once again that came into play last night. Mary used a device (an FX'd-up PSP) to do... well, something, to Chuck and he thinks she "de-Intersected" him. I'm guessing that it isn't nearly as simple as that, and that the device in the trunk of the Mustang we saw at the end of the episode will come into play.
Aside from the telegraphing of Tuttle's dual nature, the only thing that really bugged me about last night's episode was the destruction of Chuck's dad's underground spy bunker. That had the potential to drive plots for years, but it didn't even last two months into this season. There was so much untapped information down there, and the focus on Chuck finding his mother left it stuck in the background until it was ultimately burned to the ground.
Otherwise, this was a very good episode, made better by both Dalton's appearance and the comedic thread of Chuck telling everyone about his fight with Sarah before actually talking to Sarah about it (thus where the episode gets its title from). I just hope the writers resist the urge to quickly undo some of the things that were done this week.
For more coverage of the 2010-11 television season, visit the AdamReisinger.com TV Reviews home page.