Just like last year, it looks like the fate of Chuck on NBC is going to come down to the wire. If the worst happens, will fans be satisfied with the last episode?
Chuck follows a geeky electronics store employee (Zachary Levi) whose life is turned upside down when a database of top secret government information is downloaded into his brain. The series cast includes Levi, Yvonne Strahovski, Adam Baldwin, Joshua Gomez, Sarah Lancaster, Ryan McPartlin, Mark Christopher Lawrence, Scott Krinsky, Vik Sahay, and Julia Ling.
This season, the ratings started out strong (for NBC) with a 2.9 rating in the 18-49 demo and 7.45 million viewers. Unfortunately, they’ve fallen quite a bit and hit a low of a 1.9 in the demo and 5.46 million. While the early numbers would have assured Chuck a third season, the later numbers put that possibility into question.
If Chuck is cancelled, it doesn’t sound like this season’s finale, just like last year’s, will offer a satisfying conclusion to the series. In a recent interview, McPartlin (“Captain Awesome” himself) had this to say.
PW: Earlier in the season Awesome toyed with taking Ellie to Africa before changing his mind — but I could have sworn I saw a jungle and tiger in this promo. What gives?
Ryan: You might see Ellie and Awesome going to Africa. There’s some pretty cool stuff coming up. The writers and production team went all out — the next couple of episodes really take us through to the end of the season and introduce a new element of suspense and cliffhangers.
PW: So there are cliffhangers?
Ryan: Yea, they had to try and match last year and I think they’ve done a good job. Hopefully they can keep one-upping themselves if we get another season. There’s a bunch of Ring stuff you’ll never see coming. Just when you think its predictable, they throw in a killer twist.
PW: That’s an interesting choice since “Chuck’s” future is still up in the air. Do you think they did that to not give NBC an easy out?
Ryan: They definitely didn’t want to let people off too easily. There is a moment in the season finale when you think we’re wrapping up everything nice and neat. That’s when we pull the rug out from underneath you.
PW: Are you frustrated to be back in this boat of not knowing if you’ll be back for a fourth season?
Ryan: Of course it’s a little frustrating to be back where we were a year ago. Its not a comment on the show — I think we’re doing great work — it’s more of a comment on the state of network TV. You can see why Conan went to cable. At the same time, NBC has been very supportive the whole time, but I think now especially they need to not look at the brand — not the ratings — and figure out what kind of network they want to be. I think “Chuck” would be a great cornerstone of that brand.
What do you think? Will you be happy if Chuck ends this way? Should they have filmed an alternate ending, just in case?
Image courtesy NBC.