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'Chuck' recap: Halloween in Burbank

Season 1 | Episode 6 | “Chuck Versus the Sandworm” | Aired Oct 29, 2007

It’s Halloween in Burbank! Evil geniuses are on the loose, promotions are given, and Awesome teaches Morgan how to be a man. We open with an escape from an underground bunker. A man (Jonathan Sadowski, Young and Hungry) attacks his handler (Rick Hoffman, the perfection that is Suits‘ Louis Litt) and makes a break for it.

Chuck runs into our mystery man at an arcade, where Morgan is blowing off work. (More on Morgan later.) Morgan is playing Guitar Shredder with Mystery Man when Chuck flashes. His name is Laszlo Mahnovski, and he’s dangerous. Chuck tries to warn Morgan, but Laszlo recognizes Chuck’s CIA watch—he designed it—and he runs for it.

Chuck follows protocol and updates Sarah on his encounter. When he gets home later, Sarah is waiting for Chuck in his bedroom with a surprise. (Awesome and Ellie think it’s sexy times.) But Sarah just wants to tell Chuck that he did the right thing, and she’ll update him about Laszlo.

Sarah is forced to stay for a while (about 42 minutes, according to Chuck) to keep up appearances, so she shows Chuck her actual surprise: a Photoshopped picture of the two of them cosplaying at Comic-Con (which would have occurred before they had even met. Do some research, Sarah).

The next day, Casey is grumpier than usual because Chuck didn’t call him about Laszlo, so he calls General Beckman to get the scoop. She tells him that Laszlo is a weapons designer who escaped, and they can’t afford to lose him. She also warns Casey that Laszlo is dangerous; he killed his handlers during his escape.

Chuck and LazsloBut Laszlo says he’s innocent. He confronts Chuck at (water)gunpoint outside the Buy More and begs him for help to prove he was framed—and for pancakes.

Over some late-night short stacks, Laszlo tells Chuck about his life. An agent saw him playing Tetris in a pier arcade when he was 11. Soon afterward, his parents signed their genius son over to the government, and Laszlo has spent the last 10 years in an underground lab. (He’s never even seen a James Bond movie.)

Laszlo tells Chuck that they’re similar. They both just want to have normal lives. If Chuck wants to help him, he can’t trust his handlers or tell them anything. Chuck is hesitant, but Laszlo explains that Casey and Sarah don’t trust him—there are probably bugs planted all over his apartment.

Score one for Laszlo. Chuck pokes around and finds bugs everywhere—including in the Comic-Con photo Sarah brought him. He storms into Casey’s apartment and drops off the bugs, feeling violated.

Meanwhile, Louis Agent Scary comes to Wienerlicious to talk to Sarah. He tells her Laszlo is mentally unstable and off his meds. And they think that he is trying to build a bomb.

When Chuck gets back from his fight with Casey, Laszlo is waiting for him in his room. He just wants Chuck to hide him for one night. Chuck agrees, and he sets him up in the home theater room in the Buy More. After Laszlo orders Chuck to turn off his phone and destroys his GPS watch, they pop in a Bond movie.

But Laszlo isn’t a fan. Christopher Walken isn’t the villain—he’s just like them! And they can blow stuff up, too. Laszlo hacks the TV so they can send thermonuclear bombs, but Chuck talks him down. Finally, Chuck is starting to get a little freaked out.

Chuck tries to run, but Laszlo beats him to his car. He configures his own set of controls and drives them away, with Casey, Sarah, and Scary on their heels. After ejecting Chuck’s seat from the Nerd Herder, Laszlo is gone again. Chuck can’t believe he was so wrong.

Chuck looks at a doodle that Laszlo gave him over pancakes and flashes: It’s actually a map of the Santa Monica Pier where he was first recruited, and he’s going to blow it up. Chuck finds the rigged Nerd Herder and Laszlo under the pier, but the bomb is armed. Laszlo tries to manipulate Chuck into cutting the wrong wires, but Chuck figures it out and stops the bomb from exploding.

At the end of the day, Sarah—dressed as Slave Leia for Ellie’s Halloween Party—wants to give Chuck a real photo, and they snap a selfie together.

In other parts of the Chuck universe, Morgan and Chuck are arguing over the former’s immaturity. At the Buy More, Chuck is up for the assistant manager job, and someone from corporate is coming in to interview him and Harry Tang. But Big Mike warns Chuck that Morgan could drag him down.

Morgan spends his workdays playing Mystery Crisper in the kitchen, blowing off work for video games, and projecting a woman’s thong onto all the store TVs. Chuck tells Morgan he needs to grow up. Are their annual plans for their Dune sandworm Halloween costume ruined?

Captain Awesome and Morgan

Morgan sulks outside Chuck’s apartment, and Awesome takes pity on him. He decides to teach Morgan the three easy steps to being a man.

  1. Be a “tucker”
  2. Always speak your mind
  3. Tame the mane

The next day, Morgan arrives at work transformed and professional. And when Chuck has to miss his interview to defuse a bomb, Morgan does his best to convince the man from corporate to give Chuck the promotion anyway. (It doesn’t work. Harry gets the job.)

But when Chuck comes back from saving the day and hears what Morgan did for him, he realizes that despite their differences, Morgan will always be the other half of his sandworm. He rushes to his sister’s Halloween party, and this year, Morgan gets to be the head. And who needs a promotion when you have friends like that?

The Sandworm

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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