[[quoteright:278:[[http://www.bscreview.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/chuck-poster-nbc-sdcc.jpg http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/chucktropesb.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:278:Saving the world at $11 an hour. (Uh... hello? It's $12.50!)]]

->''"Don't freak out."''

''Chuck'' is the story of Charles Irving "Chuck" Bartowski, an all-around nice guy HollywoodNerd who is stuck in a low-end retail job as a member of the [[BlandNameProduct Nerd Herd at the local Buy More]]. Chuck had his formerly bright future as a Stanford student derailed by his best friend and roommate, Bryce Larkin, who framed Chuck as a cheat and got him expelled -- apparently to steal his girlfriend Jill. One day, Chuck receives a strange email from Bryce. When he opens it, a vast array of nebulous government secrets, called [[AppliedPhlebotinum The Intersect]], gets downloaded into his unsuspecting brain, turning him into a walking OmniscientDatabase.

The various government agencies who contributed to this cache of government secrets are none too happy to have them stuck in Chuck's head, particularly since Bryce destroyed the original database, and at the same time sending the whole thing to Chuck. The agencies dispatch two agents to deal with the hapless Mr. Bartowski: the super-sexy CIA agent Sarah Walker (Bryce's former partner and erstwhile lover), and the borderline psycho NSA man, John Casey. Fortunately for Chuck, the agencies decide that Chuck may be more useful to them alive than dead, and they allow him to keep his normal life (more or less) -- with the addition of Sarah and Casey as guards/handlers/minders.

Chuck suffers from frequent flashes where he spots something or someone that seems innocuous at first, but the Intersect stuffed into his head [[MySignificanceSenseIsTingling identifies the object or person as very important]]. Chuck and his minders must find a way to act on Chuck's information, all the while keeping Chuck's family and friends in the dark about his special abilities and new status as government agent/prisoner. Among these friends and family members are his loving and protective big sister Ellie and her Significant Other, Devon (jokingly nicknamed Captain Awesome), his best friend Morgan, and Chuck's underlings in the Nerd Herd at the Buy More.

Primarily a SpyDrama spoof, ''Chuck'''s appeal comes from a mix of sharp writing, well-realized characters with surprisingly genuine emotional lives, and a strong cast including Zachary Levi as Chuck, Creator/YvonneStrahovski as Sarah, and the inimitable Creator/AdamBaldwin as John Casey. (And Yvonne Strahovski being good-looking. ''[[MsFanservice Really good looking]]''.) Much of the comedy comes from Chuck's FishOutOfWater nature in the spy world (even the "cartoon" version of it presented in the show) combined with the contrast between his life as a PartTimeHero and the normal one he tries to maintain with his sister and in his job at the Buy More.

This series has completed broadcast, having run from 2007 to 2012. There are also six {{Chuck}} tie-in comics in print.

'''Note that the tropes in this page are divided into an overall series section (at the top) and a specific-to-an-episode section (below). Please try to avoid duplications. Thanks.'''
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[[folder:Overall series]]
* TheAce[=/=]AlwaysSomeoneBetter:
** Bryce Larkin is a suave ultra-spy who is an impossible standard for Chuck to meet in his relationship with Sarah.
** Cole Barker fits pretty much the exact same archetype. It helped Cole Barker and Roan Montgomery in their roles as TheAce[=/=]AlwaysSomeoneBetter that they were Film/JamesBond {{Expy}}s.
** Captain Awesome provides a nice parallel version of this in Chuck's non-spy life. Ironically, when he was introduced into Chuck's spy life, he turned out to be terrible at it.
** In some ways, Chuck himself is TheAce among the Buy-More crew: the clever, respected, and responsible ostensible-peon who in fact [[AlmightyJanitor runs the place]].
** After [[spoiler:Bryce dies in the season 2 finale]], we have Daniel Shaw. Not quite a SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute, but definitely replacing Bryce. [[spoiler:Especially once he appears to be paired with Sarah]].
** By season 4, this trope has pretty much been subverted as Chuck has become a much more capable spy. He's even done well for himself in periods where the Intersect can't be relied on. Even then, though, this is played with with the introduction of [[spoiler:the Intersected Gretas--technically more competent but unable to think outside the box the way Chuck can]].
*** In "Chuck Versus the Frosted Tips" [[spoiler: [[BroughtDownToNormal Intersect-less]]]] Chuck is shown to be an even match for [[spoiler:Morgan]] using an Intersect in hand to hand combat. Similarly, in "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit", Chuck was able to hold his own against [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw]].
** Anna initially felt like this toward Ellie.
** Sarah spends most of "Chuck Versus the Fat Lady" getting overshadowed by Jill.
** Gertrude Verbanski and her company seem to be this for Carmichael Industries, the freelance spy service that Chuck and Sarah founded in season 5.
* AgentsDating: In the beginning, CIA agent Sarah Walker goes on a date with typical everyman Chuck, trying to get close to him and find out where the [[OmniscientDatabase Intersect]] is. Over the course of the series they go on a number of dates, both as part of their cover and some real ones as well.
* AmazonBrigade: Sarah's old CIA team, the CAT Squad, consisting of Sarah, Carina, Amy and Zondra.
** Goya's personal bodyguards were also an AmazonBrigade, [[ShoutOut based on Muammar Gaddafi's]] so called "Amazonian Guard".
* AntiVillain: [[spoiler:Vivian Volkoff]], maybe...
* ATeamFiring: Sarah and Casey, for all their advanced combat skill, are pretty crap when they really should be mowing enemies down. Much of the time, a firefight ends with no-one killed, when a group of friendly people show up with more guns, for instance the first season episodes "Chuck Versus the Nemesis" and "Chuck Versus the Alma Mater". Later seasons attempt to fix this, but it's still hit or miss. Sometimes Casey (and it's always Casey) will gun down a team of enemy soldiers before the real action starts.
* ActionGirl: Sarah, plus many of the guest-star female spies/terrorists who pop up regularly.
* ActionGirlfriend: The relationship dynamic between Chuck and Sarah.
** Until, of course, Chuck [[TookALevelInBadass learns Kung Fu]].
* ActionMom: Mrs. Mary Elizabeth Bartowski
* ActionSurvivor: Chuck, until he learned Kung Fu at the end of season 2.
---> '''Stephen''': (''to Ellie'') Your brother... does have a knack for getting into trouble.
* {{Adorkable}}: Chuck. He works at the Nerd Herd, is into lots of nerdy media (Dune, Tron, Star Wars etc.) and subjects, and has not had much luck with girls. However, he does have a level of charm.
* AffablyEvil:
** A number of episodes have Chuck and Sarah attending parties thrown by the villain of the episode, generally a financier of terrorism or other crime. They are almost always charming, perfect hosts.
** Ted Roark is an extreme example.
---> '''Roark''': (''with shotgun aimed at Chuck'') A real shotgun wedding. Just think, that terrible pun is the last thing you'll ever hear.
*** FULCRUM agents seem to have this as a hat. Case in point: [[spoiler: In "Chuck Versus The Suburbs," every agent living in the neighborhood behaves like this, even once their cover is dropped]].
** Alexei Volkoff, one particularly notable example being at [[spoiler: Chuck's Thanksgiving dinner]].
* TheAlcoholic: Jeff
* AlmightyJanitor: Chuck is ostensibly just another member of the Nerd Herd and not any kind of manager or supervisor at the Buy More. However, due to the manager's laziness and the fact that everyone looks up to Chuck as the leader, he pretty much runs the place. ''Especially'' now that [[spoiler:Morgan is the [[strike:assistant]] manager]]. Even more so at the end of season 4 when [[spoiler: Chuck has bought the store with Volkoff's money]].
* AlmostKiss: Chuck and Sarah, a lot. [[spoiler:Even after they finally got together]].
* AlwaysABiggerFish: Turns out FULCRUM is just one part of The Ring's larger operations. Can you say "[[NebulousEvilOrganization Nebulous Evil]]"?
** Tuned up to eleven at the season 4 finale when [[spoiler: it is hinted that everything they've done for the past four years has been manipulated by some bigger organization]].
*** [[spoiler:That however was a subversion]].
* ArcWelding: And '''''how'''''.
* TheArtifact: Despite his appearance changing over the show's run, the title card kept the same photo in Chuck's Nerd Herd ID Badge for the entirety of the show's run. Especially egregious since Chuck quit the Buy More at least twice, and would have had a new photo taken and issued a new badge upon being rehired.
* ArtisticLicenseGunSafety: One of the most often violated cardinal rules in all media is "Keep your finger away from the trigger until you have assumed firing position." It happens often enough that it can usually be overlooked. However, [[Creator/AdamBaldwin Casey]] does it and that actor definitely [[GunNut knows better]].
* AssholeVictim: Emmett Milbarge.
* BadassCrew: Sarah, Casey, and of course, Chuck.
* BadassFamily:
** The Bartowskis. Chuck's spy work outshines trained professionals, Ellie [[spoiler: is rapidly becoming a BadassNormal]], and Stephen [[spoiler: was on the run from the government for ten years]], while Mary [[spoiler: has been in deep cover for twenty]].
** Also, [[spoiler:the Volkoff family, including his daughter and mother]].
** Stephen's name [[spoiler:is so feared by his former co-worker, that Chuck is able to pull off the mother of all {{Batman Gambit}}s just with the rumor that he might still be alive]].
** Sarah eventually marries into the Bartowskis, and she's no slouch.
* BadassUnintentional: Chuck, capably demonstrated by The Morgan.
* BattleCouple: And how.
* TheBeard: For the first three seasons Chuck and Sarah pretended to be boyfriend and girlfriend, which is complicated by them being JustFriends, to each other (one of them more convincingly than the other). They have feelings that they're hiding from each other, while simultaneously faking a relationship for the outside world. Lampshaded in "Chuck Versus the Beard," by [[spoiler: Morgan, which makes it particularly funny]]. During the third season [[spoiler: the pretend relationship became real]], and in the fourth season [[spoiler: [[{{Squee}} Chuck proposed and they became engaged and then married]]]].
* BecomingTheMask: Agent X, in a name-checked example. Chuck also counts, having become more and more like his super-spy alter ego Charles Carmichael as the series has progressed.
* BelligerentSexualTension:
** Chuck and Sarah tend to avoid this trope, but there's a textbook example with their sparring before their first kiss in "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami".
** Casey and Gertrude.
* BerserkButton:
** After the new Intersect is installed in his head, Sarah is clearly Chuck's. It is important to note that Chuck has a bit of PowerIncontinence, though: he has trouble flashing if he is under emotional duress. So, Sarah can be a bit of a PowerLimiter at times as well. Of course, there are exceptions: [[spoiler:as Shaw's fate proves]], if you're about to kill Sarah, Chuck won't bother trying to flash if he's got a gun. He'll just kill you. Note that this is pretty much the only situation in which he would kill.
** The same goes for Sarah when Chuck is in mortal danger as well:
*** In "Chuck Versus the First Date," when it looks as though Chuck has been dropped off a high building by MichaelClarkeDuncan, Sarah goes into [[UnstoppableRage rage mode]] in an attempt to avenge her lost love and manages to hold her own for a bit.
*** As well, in [[spoiler:"Chuck Versus Santa Claus"]], when a [[NebulousEvilOrganization FULCRUM]] agent tells her that her reluctance to kill him (the agent) in cold blood (we've only seen her shoot people in combat up to this point) will ensure that all of FULCRUM knows Chuck's secret, Sarah pulls the trigger with little hesitation [[spoiler: not knowing that Chuck saw her. Chuck freaked out watching Sarah actually kill someone]].
*** Sarah [[RoaringRampageOfRescue went totally off the reservation]] while trying to find a kidnapped Chuck in "Chuck Versus Phase Three," even going so far as to threaten a diplomat with death by lethal injection if he didn't tell her where his employer was keeping Chuck.
** Casey has several, notably [[spoiler:insinuating that he likes Chuck (at least at the start of season 2)]].
** By the start of season 4, Casey [[spoiler:has grown fond enough of Chuck that when it appears that he's just been killed, he tells the man who made the order that he's "going to rip [him] limb from limb... from limb"]].
*** Casey also gets pissed when his friends and family, [[spoiler:especially his daughter Alex]], are threatened. Look no further than in "Chuck Versus the Business Trip" for proof.
** Do ''not'' mess with the Buy More around Big Mike.
* BetaCouple: Ellie and Awesome. Morgan and Anna in Season 2, Morgan and Alex in Season 4, Casey and Verbanski in Season 5.
** Although it also seems that Ellie and Awesome see Chuck and Sarah as a beta couple to them
* BettyAndVeronica:
** Played with regarding Hannah and Sarah. Sarah is ostensibly the Veronica of the pair, but she's really about as sweet and loving as Hannah... it's just that she buries it beneath a thin veneer of professionalism. She really isn't a {{Tsundere}} or JerkAss by any measure and in fact is deeply troubled by Chuck's growing (if still very minor) ruthlessness.
*** Anyone shipped with Chuck (Lou, Jill, Hannah) is the Betty. Also, Anna was the Betty to Ellie's Veronica when it came to Morgan.
** Chuck and Bryce/Cole/Shaw are male examples.
* BeautyBrainsAndBrawn:
** Chuck frequently carries the IdiotBall, but he also has a government intelligence database in his head; Sarah is frickin' Yvonne [[FanNickname Strahotski]], and Casey is, [[BadAss well]], Creator/AdamBaldwin. Of course, being TV spies, the relative Beauty/Brains/Brawn quotients of [[ActionGirl Sarah]] and [[EvenTheGuysWantHim Casey]] are all well above average. To be fair, Casey and Sarah also happen to be well trained spies who know a lot about technology, politics, and espionage. And since Chuck [[spoiler: TookALevelInBadass at the end of season two]], the whole dynamic is completely screwed to hell. BeautyBrainsAndBrawn may be the specialty of Sarah, Chuck and Casey, but they're not [[CripplingOverspecialization overspecialized]] to the detriment of everything else.
* BigBad: None present in Season One, but subsequent seasons have had them:
** Season Two: Ted Roark.
** Season Three: [[spoiler: Daniel Shaw]]
** The Ring Director ultimately controlled the villains of the first three seasons, even being [[BreakThemByTalking responsible]] for [[spoiler: Daniel Shaw]] [[FaceHeelTurn becoming evil]], until he was captured during season three. After that the organization was run by its senior members.
** Season Four: Alexei Volkoff [[spoiler: although he is almost an {{AntiHero}} due to only being evil thanks to the computer in his head]]
*** And later, [[spoiler:Vivian Volkoff]].
** Season Five: Clyde Decker, his boss [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw]], and finally Nicholas Quinn.
* TheBigBoard:
** It's revealed in "Chuck Versus the Lethal Weapon" that [[spoiler:Chuck has one hidden on the back of his ''{{Tron}}'' poster]].
** There's also the tactical plan he and Morgan made in "Chuck Versus the Push Mix".
** Also [[spoiler: Jeff's]] big board in "Chuck Versus the Kept Man".
* BigDamnHeroes: Really, just about every time Casey saves Chuck and Sarah. Which is roughly OnceAnEpisode. More listed in the individual episodes section below.
* BilingualBonus: In "Chuck Versus the Last Details," Morgan [[ItMakesSenseInContext pretends to attend a meeting as Ettore La Barba]]. "La Barba" means "TheBeard," which is also a FanNickname given to Morgan.
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler:Quinn has been killed, but Chuck needs to re-upload the Intersect to disarm a bomb at the cost of potentially being able to use it to restore Sarah's memories; Team Bartowski[=/=]Carmichael Industries disbands, but Beckman leaves the door open for them to return to the CIA; Subway purchases the Buy More; Alex and Morgan move in together; Devon and Ellie take new jobs in Chicago; Jeffster! [[GermansLoveDavidHasselhoff is signed by a German Record Executive]], and Casey leaves to take up Verbanski's offer; Sarah still has no memories of the last 5 years, but Chuck promises to stay with her and it's implied that her memories may return in time]].
* BlandNameProduct: The Buy More is an obvious stand in for Best Buy, including a price tag shaped logo and the Nerd Herd replacing the Geek Squad, complete with shirt/tie/pocket protector uniform replacing the single color polo of a normal employee.
** Orange Orange's logo's font is nearly identical to Orange Julius.
** Large Mart is a stand in for either Wal mart or Costco, it's never specified.
* BlessedWithSuck: The Intersect really messes with Chuck's life, with little personal benefit. He and everyone around him is in constant danger (even his handlers might "disappear" him), leaving him in fear and anxiety. He's seen others get tortured, shot and/or killed by people hunting for him. He's forced to lie to and disappoint his friends and family, he has no privacy at all, and he has no shot at a real romantic relationship while he remains cursed. Spy business and Chuck's potential to carry the Curse led to betrayal or abandonment by at least [[spoiler:his father (after his mother had already left), his girlfriend and his friend, who got him kicked out of Stanford, which is what put his life on hold in the first place]]. He does get a few fringe benefits from his undercover work, though, such as finally getting his degree, and getting to hang out with Sarah Walker. At the end of season 2 [[spoiler: the curse gets a little more awesome when the Intersect 2.0 gives him enough kung fu skills to disarm four armed combatants, some of them across the room, and who knows what other powers]]. but also needs to be constantly controlled or he'll lose his mind.
** In the fifth season, [[spoiler: the Intersect really wreaks havoc on Chuck's life, but this time with his closest friend Morgan and loving wife Sarah in the crosshairs. With both Morgan and Sarah, the Intersect[[note]]Or, in this case, a tainted variation...[[/note]] nearly destroyed their minds[[note]]Though with Sarah, it's far worse, as she lost all memories of the past five years or so.[[/note]]]].
* {{Blipvert}}: How the audience sees Chuck using the Intersect to flash on something or someone significant.
* BodyguardCrush: Chuck has a crush on Sarah, who [[strike:might be]] is also interested in him.
* BookEnds:
** The first and last times we see [[spoiler:Bryce]], he's in an [[spoiler:Intersect room]]. The similar composition of the shots makes it very clear that this was intentional.
** The GrandFinale provides three: one for Chuck's spy life, one for his relationship with Sarah, and one for the show in general.
*** Episode one has Chuck disarming a bomb with the "Irene Demova" computer virus, hidden on the website of a porn star of the same name; the same situation occurs in the final episode.
*** The pilot ends with Sarah finding Chuck sat on a beach uncertain of his future, and asking him to trust her; the final episode has the exact same spot on the beach, but with Chuck and Sarah's roles reversed.
*** Finally, instead of using "Short Skirt, Long Jacket" in the final episode, the title sequence is replaced with the original Chuck title card (his name sliding in from the left and out the right). The same title card gets used after the fade to black.
* BreakThemByTalking: [[TheBigBad The Director]] does this to [[spoiler: Daniel Shaw]] and it is later done to [[spoiler: Vivian Volkoff]] in season four.
* BroughtDownToNormal: [[spoiler: After Chuck gets hit with the suppression flash in "Chuck Versus the First Fight," he spends at least a month trying to reactivate the Intersect, including getting a trainer that forces him in extremely dangerous situations]]. [[DontBeAHero This does not end well for him]].
** Not to worry, [[spoiler: Orion left a with a reactivation flash. Chuck knows kung fu... again]].
** Done again in [[spoiler: the season four finale. During his attempt to save Sarah he makes enemies with the CIA and they remove it. This time he isn't as lucky and Morgan got it instead]]. Fortunately, at this point, Chuck's regular spy training means he was brought down to BadassNormal instead of his old level of normal.
* BunnyEarsLawyer: Chuck is turning into a spy version of this. He is geeky, overly talkative, naïve, and even a TechnicalPacifist, all of which are very bad for a spy, or at least are very bizarre. Good thing he also has encyclopedic knowledge of the spy business and access to almost every trainable skill that he could ever need.
* ButtMonkey: Morgan. Before he [[spoiler: found out Chuck was a spy he had to be kept away from all the spy stuff]], and every time the easiest way to do that just happened to result in humiliating him. His ex-girlfriend's new boyfriend is involved with the Triad? To keep the Triad from killing him, Chuck tells them he's a stalker. Chuck drugs him to keep him out of a fight? Morgan assumes he fainted in fear and Chuck lets him think that. During and after he [[spoiler: found out Chuck was a spy, he's trying to get involved and help out, which he is totally unqualified for]], so if he merely gets yelled at and treated like a buffoon he's lucky. "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners" had Morgan get shot down when trying to hit on someone [[spoiler: who turned out to be an assassin]], need to be pushed into a train because he's carrying too much junk, gets used for GrievousHarmWithABody by Casey, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking yelled at by the general]].
** Fulcrum agent [[ArnoldVosloo Vincent]] has a lot of this, too. He's been blown up, shot, poisoned, beaten, and blown up again... in his first episode. His two subseqent appearances kept it up, including a beating at the hands of Chuck's dad, getting run over by Chuck, and getting smashed with a radiator by Casey. In the end, he is [[spoiler: blown up again, but... Come on]].
* CaptainObvious
** "Chuck Versus the Helicopter":
-->'''Chuck:''' Casey, he's got Sarah. We've got to save her.\\
'''Casey:''' Brilliant deduction, Nancy Drew.
** "Chuck Versus the Predator":
-->'''Chuck:''' Oh, oh, oh, you're -- you're not dead.
** "Chuck Versus the Three Words":
-->'''Chuck:''' Well, we've got to get it before it falls into enemy hands.\\
'''Carina:''' Thanks for being on the case, Nancy Drew.
* CartridgesInFlight: in the opening credit roll.
* CastingGag: ''All over the place''. Especially from season 2 onward you'll be hard-pressed to find a major ''or'' minor character who is ''not'' a geek culture icon. {{ActorAllusion}}s are pretty much a guarantee.
* {{CatchPhrase}}s:
** "Don't freak out," and more frequently, some variant of "Chuck, stay in the car." The latter is also a RunningGag because he never does.
*** On one occasion he did stay in the car, and the car turned out to be the worst place he could have been.
*** He [[LampshadeHanging lampshades]] this at the beginning of "Chuck Versus the First Date", when, upon being asked why he didn't stay in the car, he shouts "You know what? It's never safe in the car!"
*** Hasn't been used since Season 3, [[spoiler:now that the Intersect 2.0 has made Chuck a competent spy]], but invoked when Ellie orders Chuck ''out'' of the car in "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II."
** The phrase "It's complicated" is also used frequently, especially when talking about Sarah and Chuck's relationship. Used less frequently now that their relationship is now less complicated.
** Sarah telling Chuck that "You can have everything you've always wanted."
** When Sarah says "I'll be right out", chances are you don't want to miss what happens next.
** Also, Devon's "Awesome!" (Hence the nickname.)
** Casey: his grunts, "moron!" and "Bartowski" -- sometimes in the same sentence
** "I know kung fu," referring to the Intersect 2.0.
** "Come on, flash!" Chuck, attempting to focus his flashing capabilities. Mostly used in season 3, and a little in season 4.
** "Aces, Charles," a "dad quote" usually made by Ellie, but occasionally by Stephen himself.
** [[QuantumLeap "Oh boy,"]] comes up at times during moments of particular surprise after the first appearance by Stephen, also doubling as a ShoutOut and ActorAllusion.
* CelebrityParadox: The ''Film/JamesBond'' franchise as well as shows like ''Series/TheOC'' and ''Series/{{Smallville}}'' all exist in the Chuck universe yet they never notice the likes of Rachel Bilson, Kristin Kreuk and Creator/TimothyDalton walking amongst them.
** Perhaps the biggest: Chuck & Morgan are huge ''StarWars'' fans & Casey's familiar enough with the series to [[spoiler:torture Morgan by having him watch ''ThePhantomMenace'' first & then spoiling that Vader's the father of Luke & Leia]], but none of them notice that they're stealing a vase from Luke freakin' Skywalker at the start of season 5.
** You can't learn anything about being a spy from [[SpiesLikeUs Chevy Chase]], even if he was Roark
* CelebrityPower: [[spoiler:Creator/StanLee and Bo Derek]] are spies.
* CerebusSyndrome: Despite retaining the charm that makes Chuck... well, Chuck, the third season has managed to hit some very dark territory concerning the lengths Chuck has to go through in order to become a spy, and the toll that keeping the secret from his closest friends and family takes on him.
* CharacterDevelopment:
** Chuck definitely becomes more competent over time and is much less cowed by Sarah and Casey than he was originally.
** Morgan is also being dragged kicking and screaming down this path, mostly at the urging of Awesome. Arguably, he's the one with the most character development. [[spoiler:He is also slowly becoming a competent member of Team Bartowski, starting from "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners"]].
** Sarah becoming less emotionally repressed and being more receptive and open about her feelings regarding Chuck.
** Of course, there's Casey being less antagonistic towards Chuck and even sticking up for him and Sarah, as well as his hard-ass facade being gradually giving way at times.
* [[ChekhovsGunman Chekhov's Assault Squad]]: See BigDamnHeroes.
* ChekhovsArmoury: This show averages at least one ChekhovsGun per episode, sometimes more. Many of them first appear in the Buy More-related subplot. It also relies on season-spanning [[ChekhovsGun Chekhov's Guns]]. If one were so inclined, the list could be longer than the ShoutOut entry.
* ChekhovMIA: Stephen Bartowski [[spoiler:as well as Mary Elizabeth Bartowski]].
* ChewingTheScenery: Pretty much requisite of the one-shot characters. Most notably, though:
** Armand Assante, as the leader of [[BananaRepublic Costa Gravas]].
** TimothyDalton, as Alexei Volkoff.
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: See section PutOnABus below, especially concerning Anna Wu.
* CityOfAdventure: A ''staggering'' number of terrorist plots focus on or are based in the greater Los Angeles area, or just have leaders who have vacation homes or functions to attend there. And by the end of the second season it becomes apparent that at least some spy activity is taking place there because that's where the Intersect is.
* CloakAndDagger: The Good Guy agencies are nominally the CIA and the NSA, though they bear little resemblance to their real-world counterparts. The Bad Guy organizations, FULCRUM, [[spoiler: The Ring]], and Volkoff Industries seem largely made up of rogue espionage agents.
* ColonelBadass: Casey as of the episode "Chuck Versus the Colonel".
* ColorCodedForYourConvenience:
** Agents of FULCRUM and The Ring predominantly wear black and other dark shades. In Burbank, California. No one finds this conspicuous, despite most of the enforcers being over six feet tall and weighing in excess of 240 pounds. Subverted in that Sarah and Casey often wear black also, when doing combat/reconnaissance ops, but hardly ever when in public and needing to be undercover.
** Played straight in the "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II," as Chuck is wearing a white shirt, and [[spoiler: Shaw]] is wearing a black shirt.
** Similarly any electronics used by the bad guys will be in their standard colors (FULCRUM Red and Ring Green). Even [[spoiler: Chuck's FULCRUM intersect]] shows up in red.
* CombatPragmatist: Though she has a preference for throwing knives, Sarah will kick your ass with anything that's handy.
* TheComicallySerious: Casey. General Beckman can also be amusing on account of her humorlessness.
* CommutingOnABus: Beckman in season 5.
* ConsummateLiar:
** In "Chuck Versus the Truth", under the influence of poisonous TruthSerum, Sarah claims to have no feelings for Chuck. [[spoiler:He doesn't know she can resist truth serum, so he believes her]].
** In "Chuck Versus the Nacho Sampler", [[spoiler: Captain Awesome]] is stunned with how easily Chuck can lie to Ellie.
* ContinuitySnarl: As well as it tries to avoid them, the show can't help but leave a couple tangled messes.
** The history of the Intersect alone is a rather confusing mess of retcons. For starters, [[spoiler: Stephen was completely unaware of what changes were made by the government to Fulcrum's Intersect to create the Intersect 2.0 that Chuck downloaded at the end of season 2, suggesting that the implanted abilities are ''completely'' new and not part of Stephen's original design. In fact when he challenged Bryce about the changed code, Bryce ''specifically'' told him he doesn't want to know. By the end of the third season he was ''expecting'' them. It goes even further in season 4 and 5, when not only was the Intersect used to completely change Hartley's personality to create Volkoff, but the revelation that the Intersect was ''designed'' to implant abilities as a teaching tool]].
* Not to mention that the original Intersect was supposed to be a sharing of information between the 2 agencies and was NOT intended to be implanted in someone’s mind. Then later retconned that that was what it was supposed to do, between the agent it was really supposed to be put in, and the fact that Stephan designed it as such.
** Go ahead, ''try'' and make sense of Casey's and Sarah's backgrounds. I dare ya.
*** Casey is probably the worst offender, due to a MultipleChoicePast that directly conflicts different facts about his history. [[spoiler: The name "John Casey" is unknown prior to 1989 when he faked his death to join a Marine Corps special forces unit. Despite the fact he claims to have been assigned by ''Beckman''--who is not aware of his birth name of Alex Coburn prior to opening Casey's file when he made an apparent FaceHeelTurn--to assassinate Alejadro Goya on three separate occasions since the ''early'' 1980s. Oh, and his "fruit salad" of decorations includes medals awarded for service during the UsefulNotes/VietnamWar, which Casey would have been too young to receive even if you assume he's in his mid-20s by the time he joined Keller's unit in 1989!]]
*** Sarah is not quite as bad an offender, but it's still difficult to fit together all of the pieces of her history. She was apparently recruited [[spoiler: by Director Graham in 1998, after he arrested her father to protect him from a con gone wrong. Sarah's history between 1998 and the early 2000s is largely unknown, but somehow she managed to fit: graduating high school, (her father was arrested before graduation, as classmates teased her as "jailbird's daughter") attending Harvard, (according to the official site) serving on the CAT Squad beginning at an unknown date to 2003, her "Red Test" in 2005, partnering with Bryce from 2005 to when he apparently turned rogue, ''and'' being assigned a handler as her last mission before being sent after Chuck in 2007 (when the series premiered). She also spent a year with the Secret Service]]. That's quite a bit to fit into the amount of time allowed.
* CorruptTheCutie: [[spoiler: Vivian Volkoff]] in season four.
* CoolBigSis: Ellie
* CrazyEnoughToWork: Chuck and the team have saved the day in ways so outrageous, they'd almost be more at home in the Franchise/StargateVerse.
* CrypticBackgroundReference: References to the Bartowski parents early in the series. Until the end of the first season, all we know about them is that the mom had left while the dad was perhaps mentally ill ([[spoiler: actually ProperlyParanoid]]) before he too left.
* CutShort: Averted, and this will take a while. Season 1 was initially ordered for 13 episodes, and 9 more episodes were ordered but unmade due to the Writers’ Strike; NBC ordered a second season (With 22 episodes off the bat), which ended on a major cliffhanger that appeared to be going unresolved until a last minute renewal spurred by the campaigns of the passionate fanbase. Seasons 3 & 4 were initially ordered as 13 episodes, but after seeing the quality of what was being filmed, NBC ordered more episodes (6 in Season 3, 11 in Season 4) after the intended finale (Which had been written as a potential GrandFinale) begun production. Towards the end of each season, fan campaigns started up again & NBC announced the renewal before the season finale had aired, which ended on a cliff hanger. After the announcement of the fifth season, again lasting 13 episodes, it was quickly revealed that it was also going to be the final season, finally averting this trope.
* DeadlyDelivery: Shows up at least once, when a courier picking up a package decides to also kill the guy he's getting it from.
* DeathOfTheHypotenuse: [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw, in the third season. Was there really any other way that was going to play out, though?]]
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: "We will not stop, and we cannot stop, and we will not... stop."
* DepravedBisexual: Jeff has some serious leanings towards this. He's ultra-lecherous, a "world class stalker" and the stuff he says while he and Lester are following Shaw is especially creepy.
* DesignatedGirlFight: A general, handy guide to how the final fight will play out in each episode:
-->''Does the terrorist of the week have a penis?'' He will be defeated through some combination of Sarah, Chuck, and/or Casey.\\
''Does the terrorist have a vagina?'' She will engage in, and ultimately lose, a physical fight to Sarah. Both will be in skimpy, possibly wet clothing. [[PantyShot And do lots of flips]].
** Not that this is a hard-and-fast rule; [[spoiler:"Chuck Versus Operation Awesome" features a female agent who is simply shot dead by Daniel Shaw. Earlier, she also handed Sarah a rare defeat in fisticuffs]]
** Casey does also take out his share of female baddies.
* DifferentInEveryEpisode: The wall of [=TVs=] at the Buy More tend to display images relevant to the episode. For example in "Chuck Versus The Fat Lady", the [=TVs=] show WesternAnimation/WhatsOperaDoc.
* DirtyCommunists:
** Premier Goya was this before he turned Costa Gravas into a democracy; Casey still refers to him as one.
** Volkoff Industries' logo is red with a fist holding a hammer. Also, the passphrase to Volkoff's Hydra computer network is a (fictional) quote from Joseph Stalin.
* DisappearedDad: Stephen Bartowski, played by the awesome Scott Bakula, tried to take care of his son and daughter after his wife disappeared but ended up vanishing himself for years on end. This might also be a ShoutOut to QuantumLeap, the show for which Scott is most widely known, as the father of his character in that show was this trope, too.
* DiscOneFinalBoss: The Ring Director, although his appearances were few, had in fact been controlling almost all of the villains in the first three seasons, including Ted Roark, who seemed to be the boss beforehand.
* DisneyDeath: [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw. [[UnexplainedRecovery He got better]]]].
* DistressedDude: Chuck, very often.
* DramaticDrop: All the time. Chuck drops the phone when he notices Sarah for the first time, drops Morgan's grape soda [[spoiler:when Carina shows up in a ski mask to take a diamond]], drops [[spoiler:the [=FedEx=] package with the same diamond in it when Casey suddenly slams a goon]], drops his wallet when Harry Tang startles him, drops his phone again when [[spoiler: scary Mr. Bennett]] surprises him, drops a bottle of champagne when he sees Sarah dancing very affectionately with Bryce, drops a bottle of beer when Jenny [=McCarthy=]'s character tries to seduce him, and drops his keys when Sarah walks into the living room in lingerie. In the Pineapple Incident, shortly after Morgan drops a box on Jeff's head, Big Mike drops his Danish to make a dash to keep people from leaving the store, and in a later episode he drops his tackle box when he receives word of a security breach at the Buy More.
* {{Dramedy}}
* DriveInTheater: FULCRUM uses an old one as their base.
* DroppedABridgeOnHim: [[spoiler: Emmett in "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip"]].
* DudeWheresMyRespect: By the end of season 4, Chuck's Charles Carmichael alias has achieved a MemeticBadass reputation in the Chuckverse, to the point that many highly experienced and very dangerous spies have acknowledged him as a WorthyOpponent, the CIA calls on him for their toughest assignments, and he was responsible for directly taking down ''two'' major rogue espionage cabals (one of which very nearly took total control of the CIA) and the world's most dangerous arms dealer, and thwarted scores of mercenaries, terrorists and other major threats to national security. One would think that when the word got out Charles Carmichael was going freelance Carmichael Industries would have had potential clients lined up out the door.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness:
** Sarah and Casey often quibble with each other in the first few episodes. In fact the second episode spends most of it's plot with Casey and Chuck thinking Sarah's the BigBad. She's not.
** There was no Castle in Season 1, so Team Bartowski would converse with Generals Beckman & Graham in the Buy More's home theatre.
*** On that note, General Beckman being joined by General Graham.
** Sarah's cover job at the Wienerlicious was only in Season 1.
** Sarah's genuine romantic affection for Chuck was only hinted at -[[EveryoneCanSeeIt usually by other characters]]- for the first eight episodes, and most of the ninth. Only after the BigDamnKiss, is their mutual tension treated as a fact.
** Jeff & Lester take most of the first season to grow into the characterisation that would see them through to the end of the series.
* EmbarrassingCoverUp
** Chuck occasionally blames Sarah's absence on a supposed spastic colon. "A girl that beautiful with a colon that spastic."
** Chuck covering for Awesome by telling Ellie that Casey had been arrested for getting drunk and publicly urinating and exposing himself.
*** This manages to be a BrickJoke in later episodes.'
* EnterStageWindow: Affectionately referred to as the "Morgan Door."
* MrFanservice:
** Captain Awesome.
-->'''Morgan:''' Look at you, you live in a freakish bubble of handsomeness.
** Casey
--->'''Chuck:''' And Casey, your jaw was chiseled by Michelangelo himself.
** Shaw
--->'''Chuck:''' Yeah, if you're into the, ''* ahem* '' strong, kinda [[ActorAllusion Superman-y]] type of a guy.
** Cole Barker
--->'''Chuck:''' I get what she sees in you, you know. The fearlessness in the face of danger, the imperviousness to pain, super-cool tank-tops...stop me whenever this is getting uncomfortable.
** Even Morgan, the little dude is stacked.
** Chuck himself. Started out barely edging into HollywoodNerd, and that was ''before'' he became really BadAss. And then there's [[MemeticBadAss Charles Carmichael]].
* EveryoneCanSeeIt: Chuck and Sarah, of course.
--> '''Jeff:''' Don't you get it? [[RomanticFalseLead None of them matter]]. Chuck may try to replace her, but when he's with Sarah, the light in his eyes shines brightly.
* EvilCounterpart:
** Chuck has [[spoiler: Daniel Shaw]] as of the end of season 3.
*** [[spoiler: Shaw]] is also Sarah's EC in that they both hid their intense romantic passions behind a facade of professionalism.
** You could also argue that, while not explicitly evil, Lester is definitely a bitter, sleazy mirror to Chuck in his civilian life.
*** Emmett Milbarge is a dark reflection of Chuck if he never leaves the Buy More.
** Stephen Bartowski and Ted Roark.
** Jill is the EC for both Chuck and Bryce. Like Chuck she was initially scared of being a spy. Like Bryce, she betrayed Chuck; unlike Bryce, she did it for heinous reasons.
** A couple from specific episodes below.
* {{Expy}}:
** Most of the more competent non-main character spies have at least some measure of Bond in them (the rest by and large trend toward [=MiB=] [[ShoutOut Shout-outs]]):
*** Cole Barker is Daniel Craig's Bond;
*** Roan Montgomery is Sean Connery's Bond; post retirement.
*** Bryce is Brosnan's bond;
*** And even Charles Carmichael seems to be based on Roger Moore's Bond (though when he does his Bond impression, it's using Connery's accent).
*** And TimothyDalton plays a Bond Villain.
** Casey's old team is an evil version of ''Series/TheATeam''.
** In "Chuck Versus the CAT Squad", the all-female CAT Squad, Sarah's old team, is obviously based on ''Series/CharliesAngels''.
* FaceHeelTurn: [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw]]
* FictionalCounterpart:
** Buy More is a stand-in for Best Buy, and instead of a Geek Squad, they have a Nerd Herd.
** Interestingly enough, they use Large Mart as a Costco stand in, but it's mentioned in the same breath as the real Costco.
** The Wienerlicious was a stand-in for Wienerschnitzel, and its replacement (the Orange Orange) for Orange Julius. [[BlandNameProduct Even the logos are similar]].
* FireForgedFriends: Casey in regards to Chuck and Sarah.
* FirstEpisodeSpoiler: It's fairly difficult to describe the series without divulging the contents of that e-mail that Bryce sends to Chuck.
* FiveTokenBand: The Buy More lot. [[PerkyGoth Anna Wu]] is a token twofer being Asian, and a [[BiTheWay bisexual]], [[BollywoodNerd Lester]] also a twofer (Jewish-Indian), [[BaldBlackLeaderGuy Big Mike]], [[TokenMinority Morgan]], and.... [[TheLastOfTheseIsNotLikeTheOthers Jeff]]. Lampshaded by Big Mike when he said he couldn't fire Morgan because he was the Buy More's token Hispanic.
* {{Flanderization}}: Lester and Jeff suffer from this. [[spoiler: In the season 5 though Jeff is 'cured' and returns to much more like his original self from season one]]
* FourTemperamentEnsemble: Sarah's old team, "The CAT Squad": Sarah (Melancholic), Carina (Phlegmatic), Amy (Sanguine) and Zondra (Choleric). Remember, Zondra is the "bitch" and Carina is the "mellow" one.
* FreudianExcuse: [[spoiler:One is used to motivate Shaw's FaceHeelTurn. It turns out that Sarah is the one who killed his wife while JustFollowingOrders]].
* FreudianTrio: Chuck = ID, Sarah = Ego, Casey = Super Ego
** Alternately, Casey as the Id, Sarah as the Ego, and Chuck as the Super Ego. Casey is more prone to violent, straightforward solutions and is eager for action; Sarah has a much healthier balance of killer instinct and spy stealth; and Chuck is the planner, who always prefers the least violent and most elaborate spy-type approach.
* FriendToAllChildren:
** Chuck is shown to be really good with kid customers at the Buy More, and the pilot has him help tape a young girl dancing ballet in front of the video wall for her mother, after her father failed to tape the actual recital.
** [[{{Cloudcuckoolander}} Volkoff]] claims to be one.
* FriendsRentControl: Subverted, Ellie and Awesome are two doctors living in what looks to be a rather average apartment with Chuck. Granted, it is a fairly nice apartment and they might be non-specialist residents, but even still in their financial situation their excess cash has to be ridiculous.
* GenreSavvy: Chuck and Morgan on several occasions demonstrate significant genre-fu.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: The writing team includes Phil Klemmer and John Enbom, arguably the kings of this trope judging by their time on ''Series/VeronicaMars''. Although they have fewer opportunities to take RefugeInAudacity than they did on UPN/the CW, they get in a few good zingers:
--> '''Big Mike:''' Well, there hasn't been a man around in a long time, so the plumbing's gone bad. I gotta get in there and I gotta snake the drains, I gotta lay down some pipe...
--> '''Casey:''' Well Chuck me...
** TwoWords, ''WIENER-LICIOUS''.
** Operation [[FunWithAcronyms Toes In The Sand]]. There's even a binder with the acronym prominently displayed on the cover.
** Charles Carmichael ''always'' comes quickly.
* GirlishPigtails: Sarah for her undercover job in season 1.
* GoToAlias:
** Chuck introduced the idea of Charles Carmichael ([[MartyStu the successful version of himself]]) in the third episode, "Chuck Versus the Tango". Over the course of season 2 it becomes so associated with him that it ends up as one of his operating aliases. In one episode people are congratulating him as both "Bartowski" and "Carmichael" as he walks through a crowd.
** Further down the line, [[spoiler:Morgan]] decides to take up the alias "Michael Carmichael," Charles's brother.
* GoodGirlGoneBad: [[spoiler: Vivian]] in season four.
* GreenLanternRing: The Intersect 2.0. Abilities Chuck has used so far include: kung fu; judo; parkour; gymnastics; zip-lining with a belt; boxing; bomb defusion; flamenco guitar; dancing through laser tripwires; ballroom dancing; speaking Thai, French, and Japanese; ImprobableAimingSkills with pen, tranquilizer gun, and nacho platter; bullet dodging; field medicine; fencing; staff-fighting; and using nunchucks [[spoiler:(though he never used them in combat, the Intersect did teach him how!)]].
* GrievousHarmWithABody: not necessarily Casey's ''specialty'', but it shows up from time to time. Whether he's tied to someone or the other person just happens to be nearby, John Casey can and will kick ass. With the other person's ass.
* [[TheGoodCaptain The Awesome Captain]] is awesome, and a doctor as well.
* GuileHero: Chuck, both before and after he TookALevelInBadass at the end of Season 2:
** "I'm a CIA agent, and this is ''my'' trap. I don't think you gentlemen recognize the gravity of the predicament you're in."
** "Did you know your Buy More associate can also help you with video conferencing?"
** "I can't believe you haven't figured out the solution yet."
* HeelFaceRevolvingDoor:
** Jill.
** Casey for most of the first season, and probably the first half of the second when he was under orders to kill Chuck once the government got its new intersect working. He evolved into more of a JerkWithAHeartOfGold once he stopped having to worry about having to kill him and Sarah, if she intervened.
** Mary, though it's more that our perception keeps changing.
* HappilyMarried: Devon and Ellie. [[spoiler:Later, Chuck and Sarah]].
* HeroAntagonist / VillainProtagonist: John Casey really blurs the lines on these two. He's always on America's side, but it takes a while before he's on ''Chuck's'' side. He protects Chuck while threatening him with injury. He's a patriot who will serve his country... even if that means killing Chuck.
* HeroicBSOD: Chuck suffers this after [[spoiler: Shaw murders his father]].
** This is somewhat of a literal Blue Screen of Death as it stops the Intersect from working.
* HeroicSafeMode
* HeterosexualLifePartners:
** Chuck and Morgan with the latter often interfering in Chuck's other relationships. (Morgan actually uses the phrase "life partners" in "Chuck Versus the Marlin.")
** Jeff and Lester
* HiddenDepths: Jeff, surprisingly enough. While [[ItMakesSenseInContext discussing Chuck's love life with Lester and Big Mike]], Jeff points out that "Chuck may try to replace her, but when he's with Sarah, the light in his eyes shines brightly", and there's also his [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming video[=/=]photo montage]] [[spoiler:of Chuck and Sarah, made for their rehearsal dinner]]. Played with hilariously in the final season when it's revealed that Jeff is actually highly intelligent. He acted the way that he did in earlier seasons because he's been sleeping in his van with the engine on for years.
* HideYourPregnancy: Sarah Lancaster's real life pregnancy was hidden in season four. Ironically, the pregnancy was announced a day after her character, Ellie, gave birth to her first child, Clara.
* HighAltitudeInterrogation: Chuck is frequently a victim of this.
* HighDiveEscape: [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw]] has a particularly stylish one in "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II", grabbing onto a large American flag as he jumps out the window and using it to spin around and re-enter the building on a lower floor, from which he escapes before anyone can arrive.
* HollywoodNerd:
** Zachary Levi scrubs up ''far'' too well to make a believable nerd. However, this is TruthInTelevision, as he's OneOfUs.
** Bryce's flashback scenes with Chuck at Stanford show him to have been one in the past before he became a full-time secret agent.
** The same can also be said of Jill, Chuck's ex.
** It's kind of averted with the rest of the nerds at the Buy More: Chuck is looked up to and pretty much runs the place.
* HonorBeforeReason: Subverted. John Casey has a strong sense of honor but is also willing to do less honorable things for his country including [[spoiler:killing Chuck, an innocent civilian, early on in the show]].
* HowsYourBritishAccent: Australian-born Yvonne Strahovski pretends to be Australian for a few moments in "Chuck versus the Ex", using her natural Australian accent.
* HypocriticalHumor:
** "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte" features Chuck reminding Awesome to take things seriously and focus on the mission, not to be a hero, not to touch anything in their secret base... basically, everything that Chuck himself had to be constantly told not to do.
** In a meta-example, during the cold open of "Chuck Versus the Tooth:"
---> '''Sarah:''' It's official. There is ''absolutely'' nothing on TV.\\
'''Chuck:''' Yeah, Monday night's going to be a bit of a wasteland.
* IBangedYourMom: Big Mike hooks up with Morgan's mom in Season 2. Morgan does not take it well. ''At first''. By the end of the season, Morgan's accepted their relationship. By the start of season 4, the two have formed a father-son relationship, with Big Mike expressing pride in Morgan [[spoiler:being made the manager of the new Buy More]] and Morgan giving Big Mike his blessing to propose to his mother.
* IdiosyncraticEpisodeNaming: Episodes are titled "Chuck Versus [X]". "X" is often a geeky shout out ("Chuck Versus the Wookiee," "Chuck Versus the Sandworm"). It's always something that's in the episode, even if it occasionally has [[ChekhovsGun little]] to do with the main plot (such as in "Chuck Versus the [=DeLorean=]") but sometimes is (such as "Chuck Versus [[{{Rush}} Tom Sawyer]]," where [[spoiler: listening to Rush saves the world]].)
* IdiotBall:
** Chuck grasps this firmly in "Chuck Versus the Beefcake" when he [[spoiler:tries to hack a FULCRUM data chip at the Buy More front desk when Sarah and Casey are half the city away trying to nab a FULCRUM agent. Needless to say, it goes poorly]].
** General Beckman clings to a massive one in "Chuck Versus the Other Guy", when she keeps Shaw and Sarah on the same team after [[spoiler: she finds out that Sarah killed Shaw's wife for her red test. To paraphrase: Beckman: "I'm disbanding the team because Sarah assassinated your wife" Shaw: "Oh, no need for that. I'm totally cool with it. No need for a full psychological evaluation or anything. You can totally just take my word for it and have me go on a mission with Sarah by ourselves where she'll be totally at my mercy." Beckman: "Well gee, if you say so Shaw. You're such a professional, and not a psycho timebomb waiting to go off or anything. Chuck, you should be more like Shaw. Well, have fun!" ]]
* IJustWantToBeNormal: Chuck spends most of the first two seasons doing this [[spoiler:and then, after finally becoming normal again, drastically abandons it]].
* IJustWantToBeSpecial: He occasionally considers that the next best thing to being given back his old life would be to become a Real Spy™ rather than a perpetual "asset".
* IllKillYou
* ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy: Most of the mooks are terrible shots, even at very close range with multiple pistols or sub machine guns:
** In "Chuck Versus the Marlin," TheMole manages to shoot a RedShirt, then not hit Sarah and Chuck despite them having no cover for the best part of 10 meters, while only being about 10 meters away from them. On a helipad.
** Another example in "Chuck Versus the Masquerade": the mooks are all over the woods with their guns, and Casey is stuck behind a log protecting Sarah. Casey easily picks off the mooks one by one while he never gets hit by the mooks.
* ImprobableWeaponUser: Casey is king of this trope, having weaponized: appliances as both melee and [[CrowningMomentOfFunny projectile]] weapons, part of a bed frame he was handcuffed to, a hotel room's heater/radiator unit, [[GrievousHarmWithABody Chuck, Morgan]], his [[CoolCar Crown]] [[CarFu Vic]], chairs and other furniture, and pretty much anything else he can get his hands on.
** Chuck is no slouch at this himself, having used a broken CD and a scalpel as shuriken, a nacho platter as a discus, chair legs, a [[CarFu Dodge Challenger]], [[DanceBattler Sarah]], a clothing rack, "tranq gloves," a cane, the cast for his own injured ankle, another scalpel in a [[CrowningMomentOfFunny tiny weapons standoff]], has disarmed bombs with [[TheInternetIsForPorn internet porn]] and fruit juice, and is a crack shot with tranquilizer guns. This becomes especially prominent in seasons 3 and 4, when the Intersect can allow him to use pretty much ''anything'' as an improvised weapon.
** Sarah gets in on the act as well, using hair pins as throwing knives, a broken CD as a knife, a car's air bag, handcuffs as brass knuckles, the carved head of a cougar, a tiki torch, and [[DanceBattler Chuck]], among other items.
* IndyPloy: Every episode can be described as "Mission to do X gets screwed. Plans reworked. HilarityEnsues." In "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II", Morgan alludes to this [[spoiler:while about to take on a group of Ring agents with only Awesome for backup...]].
-->'''Morgan''': "No plan?" Never stopped me before.
* TheInfiltration: Sarah in season 4 pretends to turn traitor from the CIA to undertake one of these.
** Also [[spoiler:Mary Bartowski]] in the backstory.
* IngestingKnowledge: The premise of the series.
* InterserviceRivalry: Sarah (CIA) AND Casey (NSA), mainly in the early part of the series. Both of them don't think too highly of the FBI.
* IronicEcho
** "Chuck Versus the First Fight"
-->'''Volkoff''': My name is Alexei Volkoff. I believe you were looking for me.
** "Chuck Versus the Push Mix"
-->'''Chuck''': Hello Alexei. I believe you were looking for me.
* ItGetsEasier: Pretty much the rationale behind the "red test", which forces wannabe agents to commit cold-blooded murder under orders and, in theory, make it easier for them to kill again when needs be. As demonstrated by the many kills by Sarah and Casey during the course of the series, including one additional cold-blooded kill by Sarah in [[spoiler: "Chuck Versus Santa Claus", in which she shoots an unarmed FULCRUM agent to protect Chuck]].
** In the third season, a major plot point is Sarah's ongoing fear is that, for Chuck, killing will get easier.
%%* ItMeantSomethingToMe
%%* JamesBondage
* JerkassFacade: Casey isn't nearly as condescending and loathsome as he seems. But he works hard to maintain the pretense.
* KarmaHoudini: The main cast have all committed multiple acts of treason, yet have never suffered any long-term negative consequences for it.
** There was a fairly important Ring agent who was never killed or apprehended.
** Beckman and Casey. General Beckmen orders Casey to kill Chuck at the beginning of Season 2. Casey's about to do it too, and only holds fire when he overhears Sarah tells Chuck about the destruction of the new Intersect. Neither Chuck or Sarah ever learn that Casey was about to kill Chuck, or Beckman's kill order.
* KnifeNut: Sarah's preferred weapons are throwing daggers, and will have a number of them hidden away in various places. She'll also use them to [[MundaneUtility cut cheeseburgers]] and [[RingRingCRUNCH mute her alarm clock]]. This was mostly dropped by the third season, where she defaults to guns instead of knives. Perhaps to align her more with classic spies to play up what she fears Chuck will become.
* LimitedWardrobe: The main cast's day jobs pretty much guarantee that the characters will spend a good amount of the episode in their work uniforms (Green Shirts, Nerd Herder shirt and slacks, Ellie and Awesome's scrubs, and Sarah's Hausfrau dress/orange-and-grey tank top from the second season onwards). Chuck's Nerd Herd outfit even gets used on missions, as well as occasionally on his free time.
* LivingLegend: By the third season, the Charles Carmichael persona has taken on a life of its own and gained quite a bit of notoriety in the intelligence community and criminal underworld. See DudeWheresMyRespect above.
* McLeaned: [[spoiler:Bryce Larkin, killed off]] at the end of season two when he [[WhiteCollar had a pilot picked up elsewhere]].
* LegacyCharacter: Played around with through the "Greta" character, who is played by a different guest star each time "Greta" shows up.
* LetsGetDangerous:
** The purpose of Intersect 2.0, but also in "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners", [[spoiler: Morgan turns out to have possibly the best unhoned espionage skills of the bunch]].
** [[spoiler: Ellie, Morgan, and Devon]] at the beginning of the season 3 finale.
* LipstickAndLoadMontage: Sarah often does this and a LockAndLoadMontage simultaneously.
* LimitBreak: [[spoiler: Laudanol]] allows the Intersect to work full blast for Chuck.
* LockedOutOfTheLoop: Awesome stumbled on the spy stuff near the end of season 2 and Morgan was told about it all in season 3 but Ellie, the person closest of all to Chuck, was kept in the dark about it all at long as they could. Even after she knew there was a SecretLegacy of spy work in the family she was led to believe that Chuck used to work for the CIA but quit because she was concerned for his safety.
* LoveDodecahedron: During the first half of season 3, Morgan wanted Hannah wanted Chuck wanted Sarah wanted Shaw at one time or another. Yeesh. Ellie and Devon are worth fitting somewhere in there too. They might be happily married, but what Devon knew about Chuck was driving Devon insane and causing friction in the marriage, and concern about Chuck led Ellie and Morgan to work together amicably for the first time ever.
* LovableJock: Captain Awesome. Despite being a musclebound extreme sports enthusiast who spends a lot of screen time [[MrFanservice shirtless and working out]], he's a skilled doctor, fluent in Spanish, and a pretty nice guy, even to Chuck and his nerdy friends.
* LukeYouAreMyFather: Played thoroughly straight with [[spoiler: Casey and the fiancée he left behind]].
* MasculineGirlFeminineBoy: Chuck and Sarah, at least for the first two seasons.
* MeaningfulEcho: Also a CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming in "Chuck Versus the Dream Job":
-->'''Chuck''': All I can tell you is that... I'm not who you think I am.\\
'''Stephen''': Don't worry, Charles. I'm not who you think I am either. [[spoiler:''* uses Orion's wrist device to disable a guard* '']]
* MeaningfulName:
** John Casey: "Casey" means "brave" or "watchful".
** Sarah Walker's last name could be interpreted that she's never settled down anywhere and is always on the move.
** Ring agent Hugo Panzer. The last name is, of course, the german word for tank, and considering that he's played by SteveAustin.
** Two members of Fulcrum are named Colt and [[spoiler:Mauser]], which are both manufacturers of firearms.
** Faran Tahir portrays a villain named "Farrokh Bulsara" in "Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer". Of course, that's also the name on Freddie Mercury's birth certificate.
* MistakenForBadass:
** A running gag is how the incompetent Chuck is mistaken by both good guys and bad guys for a badass super-spy. This includes Colt in "Chuck Versus the First Date" and Mark and Heather in "Chuck Versus the Cougars".
** A variant occurs in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary", [[spoiler:when it turns out that Chuck and Morgan's search for Chuck's mom has led them extremely close to Volkoff Industries, the arms dealers that Sarah and Casey have been tracking on their own. The Volkoff agent played by Creator/DolphLundgren assumes that their use of public transportation is an effective ploy to avoid being tracked, and believes them to be super-spies even better than Sarah and Casey, who he had just kidnapped with plans to torture them for information on the former two]].
* MistakenForSpies: For the first two seasons Chuck was not a "real" spy but was constantly getting mistaken for one anyway. It's not as if Chuck went out of his way to destroy that illusion. In fact, he often pretends to be the (made-up) Bond-like [[MemeticBadAss Agent Charles Carmichael]].
* MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness: ''Chuck'' is "really soft" science fiction. The Intersect is the only significant sci-fi element and its inner workings get very little explanation.
* MoralityPet:
** Chuck to Casey, at times.
** Morgan may be well on his way to becoming Casey's new MoralityPet, now that he's gained his respect [[spoiler:by nearly sacrificing himself when he leads a ''Bengal tiger'' into an apartment]]. Casey's right; the furry little elf has balls. Solid diamond balls. Check out "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II", where he [[spoiler: breaks his thumbs to get to a fire alarm]] to evacuate the Buy More, and "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock", where he [[spoiler: risks electrocuting himself to save Chuck, Sarah, and Casey]].
* MrExposition: Beckman and Graham, though Beckman's character was eventually fleshed out more.
* MsFanservice: God bless you, Yvonne Strahovski. Finally lampshaded in "Chuck Versus the Kept Man."
** Some of the female guest stars are quite the lookers, too.
* MySkullRunnethOver: The Intersect puts a huge long term toll on the bearer's brain unless you use a device to keep it in check, and can possibly fry your brain outright if it can't absorb the information properly. (Note that the only time this has happened in the show was with a beta Intersect [[spoiler:developed by FULCRUM]]. Becomes a plot point in season 3 when [[spoiler:Chuck is seemingly in danger of this happening to him]]. Happens again in the final season when [[spoiler:Morgan and Sarah receive the Intersect. Morgan becomes a douche who can't remember Star Wars or Indiana Jones, while Sarah loses all of her memories of the past 5 years and reverts to her old CIA personality]].)
* NebulousEvilOrganization: FULCRUM, the shadowy organization determined to find the intersect. To one-up FULCRUM, the end of Season 2 revealed an even ''shadowier'' organization, The Ring, with dark intentions for the Intersect. WordOfGod promised at the time that they'd have actual ''goals'' [[BlatantLies instead of just nebulous evil]].
* NecessarilyEvil: While not a villain, Casey has an ethos of giving up any chance for a normal life himself in order to protect it for others, and he is frequently critical of Sarah and Chuck when they seek normalcy. Veering in the direction of villainy is that Casey is on orders to ultimately eliminate the Intersect (i.e. kill Chuck), something which increasingly troubles him as the series progresses.
* NerdActionHero
* NerdsAreSexy: Kind of the whole point.
* NeuralImplanting: How the Intersect is put into Chuck's brain in the first place.
* NeverMessWithGranny: As of "Chuck Versus the Push Mix," [[spoiler:Chuck and Ellie's mother, Mary Elizabeth "Frost" Bartowski, thanks to the birth of her first grandchild]].
** Hartley Winterbottom's mother qualifies as well.
* NewPowersAsThePlotDemands: The function of Intersect 2.0 in Chuck's head.
* NiceGuy: Chuck Bartowski.
** Despite being very muscular, Devon is a very gentle person.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed
** Ted Roark is essentially Steve Jobs if Steve Jobs decided to moonlight as a murderous supervillain.
** Premier Alejandro Fulgencio Goya seems to be based on Fidel Castro (though in "Chuck Versus the Coup d'Etat", there is a mention of him hanging out with the real Castro). In "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte" [[spoiler: the Ring assassin tries to kill him by poisoning one of his cigars, a shout out to one of the CIA's real life plans to kill Castro with an exploding cigar]].
* NonLethalKO: The tranq gun is Chuck's WeaponOfChoice.
* NotEvenBotheringWithTheAccent: Alexei Volkoff, though apparently a Russian, retains TimothyDalton's English accent. Justified in "Chuck Versus Agent X"; [[spoiler: Volkoff has a British accent because he's actually Agent X, who was born in Somerset]].
* NoYouGoFirst: Happens a lot between Chuck and Sarah.
* NotHimself: [[spoiler:Morgan with the Intersect. Chuck recognizes it when [[OutOfCharacterAlert Morgan doesn't get an]] IndianaJones reference. Even more heavily underlined for the audience in the final shot of the episode when Morgan asks who [[StarWars Luke Skywalker]] is]].
** [[spoiler: Sarah gets the Intersect and her memory wiped]] in the series finale. [[spoiler: Small things like how she won't let him warm her feet with his in bed]] are what tip Chuck off that something's not right.
* NotSoDire: Very common gag.
* OddCouple: The moment [[spoiler:Morgan Grimes hired John Casey as Lieutenant Assistant Manager at the Buy More]] is the moment a new, hilarious OddCouple was born. [[spoiler:This continues to be hilarious the moment John Casey inducts Morgan Grimes to the CIA and is assigned to train him]].
--> [[spoiler:'''Beckman:''' It was ''your'' idea to make him part of the team, it's ''your'' job to make him field-ready. He's a diamond in the rough... very, very rough... but I'm sure you'll make him... [[SarcasmMode sparkle]]!]]
* TheOmniscientCouncilOfVagueness:
** FULCRUM.
** The Ring, even more so.
** [[spoiler:Decker's CIA division]], in Season 5.
* OneManArmy:
** Casey. Several episodes feature him taking out small squads of men, and nobody seems surprised when he does so.
---> '''Shaw:''' (hears gunfire and screaming) I see you brought Casey.
** As of Season 4, [[spoiler:Chuck]].
-->[[spoiler: '''Chuck:''']] Clearly you have no idea who I am, since you only sent ''ten'' of your men to deal with me.
** Sarah, especially if Chuck is in danger. Taken UpToEleven in "Chuck Versus the Phase Three". Even more so at the end of "Chuck Versus Bo", after [[spoiler:she uploads the Intersect into herself]].
* OnlySaneEmployee(s): Chuck, though Morgan seems to be [[CharacterDevelopment evolving]] into this as well.
* OutrunTheFireball: Done by a ''pig'', of all things, in "Chuck Versus the Muuurder".
* OverProtectiveDad: Casey.
* OvershadowedByAwesome: Devon is an adventure sports-loving cardiologist, an excellent dancer, a superb and sensitive husband, profoundly philosophical on life and love, and an all-around great guy. Bonus points because his nickname is ''actually'' Captain Awesome.
** Subverted when he gets drawn into the spy game, though. He was initially eager but even [[spoiler: Morgan]] has proven to be a better all-around spy.
* ParentalAbandonment: A recurring theme.
** Chuck and Ellie's mother "left them" and their father "wasn't around much." As it turns out, their father literally abandoned them when Ellie was old enough to be Chuck's guardian, [[spoiler:but did so for their own safety]] while their mother walked out on the family earlier. At least, Chuck and Ellie have believed that since they were kids. [[spoiler:It turns out that their mother got stuck for twenty years in a mission trying to take down Alexei Volkoff's network]].
** Morgan's father is never seen or mentioned.
** Sarah travelled the country with her father, aiding him in his cons until he was arrested when she was a teenager; at which point she was taken in by the CIA. Her mother wasn't involved, but [[spoiler:Sarah and her father changed identities enough that they couldn't trace Sarah back to her; Sarah placed Molly into her mother's custody shortly before the start of the series because of this, but it meant she couldn't see her mother again or both she and Molly would be compromised]].
** Vivian Volkoff being abandoned by her father.
** [[spoiler:Casey]] was this to Alex, who grew up thinking he'd died before she was born, although he wasn't aware her mother was pregnant at the time he disappeared.
* PartTimeHero
* PerformanceAnxiety: Chuck has difficulty using his ability to "flash" while under pressure.
* ThePlan: Chuck pulls one at the end of "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II".
** Again in "Chuck Versus the Push Mix."
* PoorCommunicationKills: This has often been played straight as part of the show's {{UST}}. [[spoiler: The {{UST}} seems to be over as of "Chuck Versus the Other Guy". The episode after that, "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners", frequently seems to threaten PoorCommunicationKills but ultimately, thankfully averts it]]. Played [[{{HSQ}} terrifyingly]] straight in terms of [[spoiler: Ellie being kept out of the loop in terms of everyone's involvement in spy work]].
** As Morgan puts it in "Chuck Versus the Coup d'Etat":
--->'''Morgan''': You are both, without a doubt, crap communicators. No, no, no -- precious looks and whimsical little make-ups after big misunderstandings... you guys are fantastic, sure. But actual, real-life day-to-day communication?\\
'''Chuck''': Fine, I get it.
* PortmanteauCoupleName:
** Jeffster! (as a platonic version for ThoseTwoGuys). Invoked in-universe.
** At one point Casey refers to "Charah."
* PowerIncontinence: See GreenLanternRing above. If Chuck could do all that on command, he would be a BoringInvincibleHero. Fortunately -- fortunately for the plot, unfortunately for the characters -- his ability to flash on a skill depends on his emotional state in some not-yet-clear way. When he's nervous in a taking-a-test or stage-fright way he can't flash, and when he's afraid for his own well-being he can't flash (unless the person he feels threatened by is a pro wrestler), but when he's afraid for the sake of someone he cares about then he flashes all the time, whether it's a good idea or not.
* PrettyLittleHeadshots: Boy howdy, "Chuck Versus the Fake Name". A sniper rifle with a large enough caliber to make the shot half a mile away, leaves a small head wound on a guy's head. This would be possible if the back of his head was blown out, but not a speck of blood is visible around the body.
** Also, the agent shot by Sofia in "Chuck Versus the Suitcase".
* PreviouslyOn: "Hi, I'm Chuck. Here's a few things you might need to know or maybe just forgot..."
* ProductPlacement:
** Toyota. Taken a bit far at one point when Chuck extols the virtues of the Venza as a getaway car.
*** When called out by Ellie for buying a minivan, Awesome actually responds with "Toyota Sienna, safest family auto in its class." Even though Awesome keeps on trying to sell Ellie on the Sienna (dropping all sorts of statistics on its safety, of course), she prefers to ride her dad's "unsafe" Mustang '68 convertible. [[spoiler: This sets everything up for [[HereWeGoAgain yet another]] [[MagneticPlotDevice Intersect]] upload. Provided by [[ProtectorsOfThePlotContinuum Orion]], whose own [[SwordOfPlotAdvancement device]] had earlier blocked it to begin with]].
** Subway, especially in season 3, as a result of the SendingStuffToSaveTheShow campaign for season 3. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] incredibly hard, as virtually any time a cut opens up on either a Subway or a Subway sandwich, a CherubicChoir can be heard in the background ''actually singing the word "Subway."'' [[invoked]] In the series finale, [[spoiler: Subway ends up purchasing the Buy More]].
** Looking for a new drinking game? Take a shot every time you see an [=iPhone=].
** [[http://www.sleepsheep.com/ Sleep Sheep!]] Though, real ones don't play Jeffster! songs.
* ProgressivelyPrettier: Chuck's unflattering haircut and ill-fitting clothes disappear over the course of season three, his look getting sleeker and cooler as he lost his everyman quality.
* PromotionToOpeningTitles:
** Season 2 promoted Ryan [=McPartlin=] (Captain Awesome), Mark Christopher Lawrence (Big Mike), and the other major Nerd Herders to the opening titles.
** Season 4 promoted Bonita Friedericy (Beckman).
* PromotionToParent: Ellie mothers Chuck.
* PublicSecretMessage: [[spoiler:Stephen Bartowski]] provides Ellie with a method for contacting him through coded messages in the personal ads.
* PutOnABus:
** Anna Wu at the start of season three. [[TheBusCameBack She did turn up once more]], but only for Morgan to get over her.
** Hannah later in the same season.
** Harry Tang is sent to Hawaii in season one.
** Jill is allowed to escape by Chuck, and her fate is never resolved by the end of the series. WordOfGod is that there were plans to bring her BackForTheFinale, but [[WhatCouldHaveBeen time and budget limitations prevented it]].
* RealMenWearPink: Adam Baldwin could almost be the TropeCodifier for this. John Casey is a [[TheComicallySerious Comically Serious]], NecessarilyEvil ColonelBadass who carefully upholds a JerkassFacade and is a veteran of basically everything since the 1980s. Very much a real man, right? He also meticulously takes care of a bonsai tree, has perfect pitch due to a childhood as a choirboy, and is apparently quite skilled at wedding planning and decorating:
-->'''Miles''': ''* showing Casey a ream of pink fabric* '' How about this?\\
'''Casey''': No, no, no. That clashes with the bunting.
* RedOniBlueOni: Carina and Sarah.
* RefusalOfTheCall / TheCallKnowsWhereYouLive: Chuck, for pretty much the first two seasons.
* RememberTheNewGuy: Season 5's final BigBad Nicholas Quinn. [[spoiler: He apparently was supposed to be the original candidate for the Intersect project, but got rejected. He's also apparently helped organizations like FULCRUM and The Ring behind the scenes during the past few seasons]].
* RepurposedPopSong: The ThemeTune for ''Chuck'' is an instrumental thirty-second cut of "Short Skirt/Long Jacket" by Cake.
* ResetButton: The writers seem to love [[StatusQuoIsGod hitting this]] in the cruelest ways possible.
** Between the end of season 1 and the beginning of season 2, Big Mike's marlin goes from smashed, to reassembled with duct tape, to good as new.
** In the season 2 premiere, "Chuck Versus the First Date", it appears to Chuck, for a while, that he'll be able to go back to being "just a normal guy" and dating Sarah once they retrieve the Cipher and put the Intersect in someone else's head. [[spoiler: Too bad the Cipher contained a TrojanHorse that killed all the CIA's Intersect agents]].
** In the season 3 premiere, "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip", [[spoiler: Chuck flunks out of spy school, loses Sarah '''again''' and goes back to work at the Buy More, while Morgan failed Benihana school after Anna ran off with a classmate, also, surprise, surprise, coming back to work at the Buy More]]. Of course, the writers had to accommodate for the possibility of the show being canceled, which is likely why they hit the reset button when they ''did'' manage to get a third season commissioned.
* RomanticFalseLead: Bryce, Jill, Lou, Shaw, Hannah... seemingly correct choices for Sarah and Chuck who ended up disappointing them. [[spoiler: Or, you know, doing a FaceHeelTurn]]. Let's make it simple: Anyone Chuck takes an interest in not named "Sarah" '''OR''' anyone Sarah takes an interest in not named "Chuck".
* RunningGag:
** "Chuck, [[WaitHere stay in the car]]." (The joke being that he never does.) Lampshaded in "Chuck Versus the First Date":
--->'''Chuck''': It's ''never'' safe in the car!
** In Season 1, Chuck needs to come up with an excuse to explain Sarah's absence, and he blurts out the first thing which comes to mind, which to his surprise is that "she has a spastic colon". From this point onwards, he uses this excuse whenever he needs to cover for Sarah in civilian life. In season 3, he replaces a guitarist and when a member of the band asks what happened to the other guy, he immediately goes straight to "spastic colon" again.
** Every time a hot girl walks through the Buy More, the Buy More Wind Machine appears to be running and pointing directly at the girl in question, whose hair billows gently in its artificial breeze as she [[MaleGaze strides through the store in slow motion]].
*** [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in "Chuck Versus the Three Words", where Carina gets the treatment walking into a housewarming party. Apparently the Buy More staffers bring it with them wherever they go.
*** [[UpToEleven Given an entire chucking wall of lampshades]] in "Chuck Versus the Tooth", in which Morgan gets it walking through the Buy More in a tux. Of course, since his hair is short and gelled into place, the only reason you know it's on is because it's violently blowing through ''Skip's'' hair (you know, the white guy with the [[FunnyAfro huge blond afro]]) as well as a few pages off his clipboard in the background.
*** [[SerialEscalation The lampshade itself is given a wind machine]] in "Chuck Versus the Suitcase", in which you actually see Morgan holding up an industrial fan as the Buy More crew PowerWalk through the store.
** Captain Awesome has a tendency to accidentally tackle the good guy (see "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte" or "Chuck Versus the American Hero").
** Jeff's tolerance for drugs of all kinds has definitely become a RunningGag. He uses chloroform recreationally and shrugs off ''[[ImmuneToDrugs three times as many tranq darts as it takes to put Casey down]]''.
** Also, various people alluding to the Tron poster Chuck has. [[spoiler:It's a ChekhovsGun]].
--> '''Heather Chandler:''' Thanks for that, movie dork. I bet you have, like, a Tron poster in your room.
** MI6 agents are always undercover. (See "Chuck Versus the Tango," "Chuck Versus the Beefcake," and "Chuck Versus the Last Details".)
** If [[WithMyHandsTied your hands are bound]] behind your back and you don't have any accessible tools to unbound yourself, you'll probably have to break your thumbs. This has been referenced at least once a season since season 2 Lampshaded by Tuttle in "Chuck Versus the First Fight" when he discovers a method that doesn't involve breaking his thumbs. [[spoiler:Of course, since he's actually Alexei Volkoff and they were on his plane, he probably wasn't actually bound]]. Volkoff actually uses this (non-thumb-breaking) technique in "Chuck Versus the Push Mix".
** [[TheKarateKid Sweeping the leg]] comes up quite often, doubling as a ShoutOut.
* ScaryBlackMan:
** Big Mike (partially subverted)
** Mr. Colt (played by Michael Clarke Duncan, so of course he is) in "Chuck Versus the First Date".
** Mitt (played by Michael Strahan) in "Chuck Versus the Breakup".
* ScrewTheRulesImDoingWhatsRight: Numerous times throughout the series, but a notable example pops up in the season 4 finale. [[spoiler: Wherein Chuck actually goes against (and subsequently quits) the CIA in order to save Sarah, who had been poisoned by the BigBad]].
* SealedWithAKiss: Every episode 13 from Season 3 on. (Since each of those was a SeriesFauxnale--until the actual GrandFinale, anyway--we can assume they always intended the series to end on one.)
* SecretIdentity:
** No cowl and no cape, but Chuck's status as both an agent and the human Intersect is kept secret from his family and friends. [[spoiler:At least, until mid-third season. Even Ellie and Devon don't know about the human Intersect, and in season 4 believe he's retired]].
** Just about every spy in this show seems to have one. Sarah Walker and John Casey are both covers:
*** Sarah's real name was partly revealed, assuming she wasn't lying when she told Shaw her real first name [[spoiler: Sam]] in "Chuck Versus the Fake Name," and her middle name [[spoiler: Lisa]] in "Chuck Versus the Wookie".
*** Casey's given name was [[spoiler: Alexander Coburn]].
*** Heck, even Chuck is known in the CIA and NSA as "Charles Carmichael" rather than "Chuck Bartowski".
* SecretKeeper:
** As of the end of Season 2 [[spoiler: Captain Awesome]].
** As of the end of Season 3, [[spoiler:Morgan Grimes and Ellie Bartowski]].
--->[[spoiler:'''Morgan:''' My best friend is a spy? This is the best news I've ever heard!]]
--->[[spoiler:'''Ellie:''' Morgan Grimes--the boy that took my ''pillow'' as his date to Junior Prom--knows more about my family being spies than I do?]]
** By the end of the show, [[spoiler:the only member of the main cast who '''''isn't''''' one is Big Mike]].
--->[[spoiler:'''Big Mike''': So what you're saying is, Chuck Bartowski is a spy who runs a spy company ''beneath the store''?\\
'''Lester''': The exciting part of the story is that ''we'' saved the day. You didn't get that? We'll go again]].\\
[[spoiler:'''Big Mike''': I got it. But do I ''believe'' it? [[CassandraTruth Not a word, boys. Not a word]]]].
*** But given that [[spoiler: the German record executive made his offer to Jeffster in front of Big Mike, and referenced the parts of their story that he was aware of...]].
* SensitiveGuyAndManlyMan: Casey often mocks Chuck and his "lady feelings".
* SexyWalk: Almost all sexy women who walk into the Buy More and Sarah when she's wearing a {{Stripperific}} outfit.
* SexyMentor: Sarah, for Chuck.
* ShipperOnDeck: Pretty much everyone ships Chuck and Sarah. Even Casey. ''Even Beckman''.
* ShootTheDog: [[spoiler: Twice so far in season 3, Chuck has had to betray people he's grown close to so that he can keep them safe]].
* ShoutOut: [[ShoutOut/{{Chuck}} So many, we had to give it its own page]].
* SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan
* SinisterSilhouettes: The leaders of [[NebulousEvilOrganization The Ring]] were shown as this during a YouHaveFailedMe moment.
* SitcomArchNemesis:
** The first season had Harry Tang and similarly there is Emmett in the second season -- both characters are [[TyrantTakesTheHelm Tyrants Taking The Helm]] at Buy More and are an ironic contrast to the very dangerous villains Chuck faces in his spy life.
** Then there's the Beverly Hills Buy More versus the Burbank Buy More.
* SlidingScaleOfSillinessVersusSeriousness: Surprisingly balanced. The opening credits seem to promise absolute silliness. It's premise is outlandish, and everything spy related is ruled by the RuleOfCool and RuleOfFunny, all the while being firmly tongue-in-cheek in its references to the Spy and SciFi genres. It also deals with unrequited love, loss of loved ones,tragic childhoods, absent/runaway parents, threats to family members, government & institutional corruption, deception of family members and friends, betrayal, and the moral dilemmas inherent in almost every aspect of the world of espionage, doing so in a surprisingly honest fashion.
* SlutShaming: As part of her role as MsFanService and to build up more {{UST}} with Chuck, Sarah often has to seduce men. Every once in a while, Chuck's jealousy builds to the point where he attacks her for it. He usually apologizes, but there it is. Once they became a ''real'' couple, this died down.
* SneezeOfDoom: Lampshaded by Sarah.
-->'''Sarah:''' "If you get us caught because you sneeze, we are officially the worst spies in the world!"
* SpannerInTheWorks: Jeff and Lester can be this on occasion. For example, them trailing Shaw to prove how excellent stalkers they are is what ultimately allows Chuck to find and locate him from making a SenselessSacrifice. [[spoiler: Their biggest moment comes from late in the series where they manage to save Alex, Morgan, and Awesome from Quinn's goons.]]
* StatuesqueStunner: Two, no less: Ellie and Sarah.
* StatusQuoIsGod:
** Chuck, Casey and Morgan will always end up back at the Buy More, Lester & Jeff will never get fired. In Chuck & Casey's case, this is in part because the CIA are pulling the strings to make sure their cover is intact; as of season 4, [[spoiler:it's actually invoked as the CIA are actively running the Buy More as a cover, and Morgan pointed out they needed the Jeff & Lester's to hide the insanely competent CIA agents on staff]].
** Chuck, Casey & Sarah will always remain a covert ops team, no matter how many times Chuck quits or the CIA questions if Sarah & Casey are becoming too attached to Chuck.
* StepfordSmiler:
** While she is a genuinely nice person, Sarah has a disturbing ability to turn on a perky, bubbly personality at will even if it is completely at odds with her actual feelings. Chuck eventually lampshades this aspect of her personality in the second season [[spoiler: and "Chuck Versus Santa Claus" uses this to have a DownerEnding as Chuck witnesses Sarah kill the villain, and not knowing what he saw, Sarah puts on her cheerful personality and tells him that the villain was taken into custody]].
** In "Chuck Versus the Breakup", after a particularly heart-breaking speech from Chuck, they both do this at exactly the same time. Quite moving, considering both of them had been on the verge of crying only moments before. In detail: Chuck has been convinced that Sarah's feelings for him will get one or both of them killed, and so lies through his teeth, telling Sarah that he wants someone normal and that she can "never be normal". Chuck is not liking to have to be saying this, and Sarah is... well, she's just been told that Chuck, the first person she has ever loved, doesn't want to be with her because she is a spy. She's crushed. And then the two of them look at each other sadly, and then put on really sincere-looking grins as they prepare to spend the night pretending to be a couple and discussing Ellie and Devon's upcoming wedding.
* [[StockSuperheroDayJobs Stock Spy Cover Jobs]]: Actually quite an original one -- as a computer techie, Chuck's got a 9--5 job that he can easily drop at a moment’s notice just by claiming he's "on an install". How Casey the floor-sales guy gets away with the same thing is... [[FridgeLogic less clear]].
** It's somewhat explained that everyone is too afraid of Casey to ask. Also considering how insane the other employees can be, someone no-nonsense like Casey would be a valuable employee no matter how absent he seems to be. The Buy-More can't be too picky considering the employee pool available to them.
* StrawLoser: Morgan, to Chuck.
* SugarAndIcePersonality: Sarah.
* TakeThat: The show doesn't seem to hold the FBI in high regard. Chuck bluffs about having an enemy surrounded by a task force. When the villain points out that he can't see anyone, Chuck responds with "Of course you can't. Who do you think we are, the FBI?" In another episode, they have to sneak past two FBI agents and when Chuck makes a noise, Casey cautions him "It's the FBI, they're dumb not deaf."
* TalkingHeads: Beckman and Graham start out as this. But in later seasons, Beckman's character becomes more fleshed out. She makes a few in-person appearances (and even going on the field with them in one episode) and her communications with Team Bartowski show her in settings other than her office, such as her home. She also becomes more a part of the show's humor rather than just a [[MrExposition Ms. Exposition]].
* ThoseTwoGuys: Jeff and Lester
* TimeCompressionMontage: {{Subverted}} in 'Chuck Versus the Frosted Tips'. Devon [[LeaningontheFourthWall was surprised to find out]] that only an hour had passed.
** PlayedStraight in Chuck Vs The Honeymooners as we learn that [[spoiler: after having '''finally''' consummated, Chuck & Sarah]] are holing up in their train cabin, and aren't coming out for any reason. An endless parade of meal-service trays shows that they're there for several days, at least.
* TooKinkyToTorture: Jeff. Possibly Lester.
* TookALevelInBadass: Over the course of season 3, Chuck takes several levels in badass. In season 2 and earlier he was an ActionSurvivor or maybe GuileHero at best. At the end of season 2 he gains the Intersect 2.0, which gives him access to [[GreenLanternRing a vast library of useful skills in addition to the knowledge that came standard with the Intersect]]. It took him most of season three to learn to use that [[PowerIncontinence reliably]] and [[MySkullRunnethOver safely]]. Along the way he was given lots of field assignments that put him in harm's way and forced him to make tough choices. By the start of season four he's beating up a dozen guards at a time. After losing the Intersect yet again in season 5 it is revealed that Chuck has learned enough to defeat [[spoiler: Daniel Shaw, also without an Intersect]] in single combat. Since [[spoiler: Shaw]] was a highly-trained government agent [[spoiler: even without the Intersect]], the fact that Chuck can beat him without the Intersect shows how much he's learned.
** Also [[spoiler: Morgan]] took a level in badass in a more quiet way. He's still not a fighter or even particularly clever, but Casey has complimented him on his bravery more than once. Morgan has lured a tiger into an apartment to trap it and, as of the end of season 3, is the only person other than Casey to break their own thumbs to get out of a pair of handcuffs.
** [[spoiler: Morgan gets the Intersect at the end of season 4]].
* TrueCompanions
** Team Bartowski, extending to Morgan, Ellie and Awesome; especially after [[spoiler:they all become [[SecretKeeper Secret Keepers]]]].
** The Buy More staff. Except for [[{{Jerkass}} Harry Tang and Emmett Milbarge]].
* TyrantTakesTheHelm: Emmett Milbarge stars in this story arc.
* UnrequitedLoveSwitcheroo: Although Chuck's interest in Sarah is pretty much clear from the beginning, Sarah initially insists that their relationship is only part of their cover. However, when Chuck moves on and begins to date a girl named Lou, Sarah realizes her feelings for him are more than just a cover. Chuck eventually dumps Lou to be with Sarah, only to discover that her former lover Bryce is still alive. Later on Chuck gets back together with his old girlfriend Jill and Sarah gets jealous. Then after that, Sarah becomes attracted to CIA Agent Cole and Chuck gets jealous and so on...
* UnusualEuphemism: Non-sexual example. Casey's codename for briefings is "yogurt time".
* {{UST}}: Frequently. Chuck is a HollywoodNerd with a really hot ActionGirlfriend. However, to her it's just a job, or at least she is trying to maintain her professionalism and her calm reserve, especially after how her last workplace relationship ended. ''Every''one has remarked on her feelings for him, and he wears his heart on his sleeve. After a brief period of trying to be a couple, mostly off-screen between seasons two and three, they decided to be just friends. This won't last forever. [[spoiler: Finally resolved in "Chuck Versus the Other Guy"]].
* VideoPhone: General Beckman's interchanges with the team mostly happen through one of these, as do liaisons between Castle and various field operatives.
* VisualPun: Chuck frequently wears Converse Chuck Taylor sneakers, often referred to simply as "Chucks".
* VitriolicBestBuds:
** Casey and Chuck are Type I for most of the first three seasons, with Casey softening on Chuck as time has gone on to the point where Chuck gets the new intersect and has some spy skills of his own, he and Casey evolve to Type II with the caveat that Casey still terrifies Chuck and can silence him with one of his trademark grunts.
** Once Morgan [[spoiler:is in on the spy stuff]], he and Casey become Type I.
* WaitHere: Chuck is always told to stay in the car during missions. He never does, until "Chuck Versus the Colonel", and EVEN THEN.
* WeaponOfChoice:
** Do ''not'' mess with Sarah when she's holding... well, anything at all, really, but she does some ''very'' painful-looking things with a throwing knife, and has an ankle sheath to make sure she's never without.
** Chuck's tranq guns. And ''gloves''.
* WeirdnessMagnet: Threats to national security show up within thirty feet of Chuck ''all the time''.
* WellIntentionedExtremist: FULCRUM is an entire organization of ultra-patriots whose research into the Intersect is meant for creating better soldiers, moral qualms be damned.
* WillTheyOrWontThey: Chuck and Sarah:
** Brutally [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] by the bad guys of all people in "Chuck Versus the Fake Name."
** Drawn out for more than twenty episodes ''after'' they demonstrated their feelings for each other, complete with numerous {{ResetButton}}s. This may be a new record.
** [[spoiler: "Chuck Versus the Other Guy" has finally shifted the paradigm. [[TheyDo And there was much rejoicing]]]].
--->[[spoiler: '''General Beckman:''' And off the record? [[LampshadeHanging It's about damn time]]]].
** A somewhat ambiguous example in the finale where the viewer is left to wonder [[spoiler:whether Chuck and Sarah actually do end up together when Sarah has no memory of their relationship. It's implied that she's getting her memories back and that the [[SealedWithaKiss final kiss]] means they're headed back to normalcy, but not everyone saw it that way]].
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse:
** The assassin from "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte". He fails to assassinate Goya, kidnaps Awesome to set up "Chuck Versus Operation Awesome", but isn't heard from again.
** Season 2 ends with [[spoiler:Stephen]] handing Chuck his wrist computer so that he can help Casey and Sarah [[spoiler:stop The Ring from taking the new Intersect]]. In season 3, Chuck no longer has it, yet we never see it with [[spoiler:his dad]] either. It would later be seen [[spoiler:in Orion's vault underneath the old Bartowski family home in "Chuck Versus The Ring: Part II", and was likely destroyed along with the vault during Season 4]].
* WhatTheHellHero: Although neither seem to have any problems when it comes to killing in the heat of battle or in self-defense, both Chuck and Sarah enter this mode with regards to each other at various points: Chuck, after seeing Sarah [[spoiler:murder the FULCROM agent to protect him]] in "Chuck Versus Santa Claus" and Sarah enters this mode regarding Chuck when she [[spoiler: thinks he actually went through the red test and killed a mole]] in "Chuck Versus the Final Exam".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Specific episodes]]
* ABNegative: In "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte"
* AbsenceMakesTheHeartGoYonder: Thinking her fiancé Alexander Coburn [[spoiler:now John Casey]] is dead, Kathleen [=McHugh=] has found herself a new boyfriend/husband. Her daughter Alex keeps her mother and father from meeting in order to preserve her mother's happiness.
* AbsurdlySharpBlade: Chuck uses broken [=CD=]s as shuriken in "vs. The CAT Squad", they actually stick into the Nerd Herd desk.
* ActionDressRip: Sarah cleanly tears off the bottom of her bridesmaid dress to prepare for battle with Fulcrum agents in "Chuck Versus the Ring".
* AdrenalineMakeOver: Done by Ellie and Devon when they accidentally become spies in "Chuck Versus the Curse", as Ellie gets rid of the pin in her hair and Devon loses his shirt to cut the power.
* AGodAmI: It at least appears Morgan is suffering from this [[spoiler: with the Intersect in his head]] early in season five. It turns out [[spoiler: it came from the bad guys instead of Beckman, and it's melting Morgan's brain. Luckily, it's extracted from Morgan before further damage can be done to the guy's brain]].
* AirVentPassageway:
** The trio sneaks in via air vent in "Chuck Versus the Fat Lady".
** In "Chuck Versus the Ring", he sneaks into the room with the Intersect via the air vent.
** Played straight in "Chuck Versus the Cubic Z".
** Casey uses the vents to gain access to Castle when [[spoiler: Shaw captures Sarah]] in "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit".
* TheAllegedCar: Morgan's titular car in "Chuck Versus the [=DeLorean=]."
* AllYourBaseAreBelongToUs: "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit" features [[spoiler: Shaw taking over Castle and holding Casey and Sarah hostage]].
* AmazonBrigade: Fatima Tazi and her entire organization consisting entirely of fairly attractive women in tank tops with machine guns in "Chuck Versus the Seduction Impossible".
* AnAsskickingChristmas: "Chuck Versus Santa Claus" and "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit".
** "Chuck Versus the Crown Vic" takes place during the Christmas season.
* AppliedPhlebotinum: The emotion-suppressing Laudanol in "Chuck Versus the Tic Tac".
* ArcWords: "Chuck Versus The Beefcake" had ''Everyone talks''.
* AsHimself:
** "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit" has Creator/StanLee make a [[TheCameo cameo]] appearance.
** "Chuck Versus Bo" has, well, Creator/BoDerek.
* BackForTheFinale: Two people: [[spoiler:Linda Hamilton as Mary Elizabeth "Frost" Bartowski, and--oddly enough--Mark Pellegrino as a previously-unnamed FULCRUM agent whose only appearance was in "Chuck Versus the Fat Lady."]]
* BackToBackBadasses: Chuck and Sarah, and Morgan and Casey in "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners".
* BadassLongcoat: Volkoff in "Chuck Versus the Leftovers".
* BaitAndSwitch: Played for all it's worth in "Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger" -- [[spoiler:Chuck rushes into Sarah's hospital room with the cure for the Norseman, but it's unclear if it was too late as the scene fades to white. Cue jump cut to the exterior of a church, and a sign reading "Funeral and Viewing, 3PM" only for the camera to quickly pan downwards to reveal "Bartowski Wedding, 4PM"]].
* BarehandedBladeBlock: Chuck pulls one off in "Chuck Versus Agent X" when demonstrating [[spoiler: that he's the Intersect to Ellie]].
* BattleDiscretionShot: Played with in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary": Sarah and Casey discover (through the villain's walkie-talkie) that Chuck [[spoiler:and Morgan]] are surrounded by ten enemy guards, armed with weapons. Gunfire and screaming commences, but we only hear it through the walkie-talkie as we focus on Sarah and Casey's expressions. While they believe that Chuck is dead, we then [[OffscreenMomentOfAwesome hear Chuck talking through the Walkie-Talkie, and see all ten guards strewn about all over the place]].
--> '''Morgan:''' You were limber!
* BeachEpisode:
** "Chuck Versus the Beard" finds time to put Ellie in a swimsuit at the pool. Of course, to balance this out, Awesome is shirtless.
** "Chuck Versus the Coup d'Etat". While they never go to the beach, Costa Gravas is home to some beaches and Sarah tries on some bikinis.
** "Chuck Versus the Kept Man" also puts the crew in Miami (and) South Beach for a good part of it, even if Sarah is, again, the only one wearing a swimsuit (despite Gertrude in a very nice dress insisting that Casey wear a banana hammock).
* BeardOfSorrow: Chuck in "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip".
* BellyDancer: The compound in Morocco in "Chuck Versus the Seduction Impossible" had these. Sometime later, Sarah wears a belly dancing outfit to [[spoiler: try to seduce Chuck into eloping with her]].
* BigDamnHeroes:
** This happens a lot with Casey, most notably:
*** In "Chuck Versus the Ring" [[spoiler:(with his commando unit)]]
*** In "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip", [[spoiler:coming in on a helicopter with a [[{{BFG}} big-ass gun]]]], definitely reminiscent of the original BigDamnHeroes scene (which Adam Baldwin as actually [[{{Firefly}} part of]]).
** In "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II," [[spoiler:Ellie Bartowski's promotion to BadassNormal comes when she [[MisfitMobilizationMoment mounts a rescue effort with Morgan and Awesome]] to save the other three members of]] Team Bartowski.
** The way Chuck brought the cavalry to save Casey and Sarah in "Chuck Versus the First Date" comes to mind, too.
** "Chuck Versus the Ring" has two in quick succession -- [[spoiler: Bryce walking into the reception hall just as Roark is ordering his men to shoot Chuck; and shortly after that, once Fulcrum has secured Bryce, Sarah & Chuck and Roark is about to shoot Chuck (again), Casey and his special forces unit burst into the room through a skylight]].
** In the season 4 finale, "Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger", Chuck pulls one off.
--> '''Casey:''' [[spoiler: Russians. So many Russians]].
** In "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train", [[spoiler: ''Jeff and Lester'' (yes, ThoseTwoGuys...) manage to pull one off to save Morgan, Alex, and Awesome]].
* BigNo:
** Morgan when he discovers a ring with which he thinks Chuck will propose to Sarah in "Chuck Versus the Marlin".
** Sarah has one in "Chuck Versus the First Date" when it appears Mr. Colt has dropped Chuck off a roof to his death.
** Shaw in "Chuck Versus the American Hero", after [[spoiler: seeing the video where Sarah shot his wife]].
** Chuck says this in "Chuck Versus Sarah" when [[spoiler:diving to take a bullet meant for Sarah]]. And it's in slow-motion, too.
* BlastingItOutOfTheirHands: "Lizzie" accidentally does this to Sarah in "Chuck versus the Marlin".
* BlatantLies: The team usually only lies to friends and family out of necessity, but in "Chuck Versus Santa Claus", Sarah's hamming it up to Ellie during a (civilian, fairly peaceful) hostage situation is particularly ironic.
-->'''Sarah''': I'm just scared, I've never been this close to a gun before.
* BloodFromTheMouth: [[spoiler: Ring operative Sydney Prince, when she is killed, in]] "Chuck Versus Operation Awesome".
* BodyguardCrush: Sarah herself; her feelings for Chuck were first developing during the time her primary mission was to protect him.
** Lou Ferrigno played a mook in love with his fashion model / Volkoff agent boss in "Chuck Versus The Suitcase".
* BondOneLiner: Casey loves these.
** (After knocking out a bad guy with a microwave) "How's that for moving some merchandise?"
** (After driving his car right into restaurant full of Fulcrum agents) "Somebody order drive-through?"
** (After using the Intersect to take out a team of Fulcrum scientists while disguised as a TV repairman) "Somebody call the cable guy?"
* BottleEpisode: With the exception of Season 1, there's been one in every season.
** Season 2: "Chuck Versus Santa Claus"
** Season 3: "Chuck Versus the Beard"
** Season 4: "Chuck Versus the Cubic Z"
** Season 5: "Chuck Versus the Kept Man"
* BriefAccentImitation: Chuck pretends to be in Tyler Martin (Dominic Monaghan)'s band in "Chuck Versus the Third Dimension".
-->'''Chuck''': Yeeeeeaeah ah'm in 'is band alright, drummah, jus' layin' the beats down, like a li'l drummah boy, come they told me, pa rum pa pum pum.\\
'''Tyler Martin''': ''[slightly disgusted look]''
* BrokenPedestal: Ty Bennett, for John Casey in "Chuck Versus the Sensei".
* BulletProofVest: Twice in "Chuck Versus the Nemesis".
** It's fortunate that Chuck was wearing one in "Chuck Versus Sarah". [[spoiler: He dives in front of a bullet meant for Sarah, and ends up getting shot in the back]].
* BulletTime: Morgan in "Chuck Versus the Frosted Tips," an episode in which guest star [[ActorAllusion Carrie-Anne Moss]] features heavily.
** Done in 'Chuck Versus the Business Trip', for about two minutes with shurikens... thrown by Chuck and Sarah, just for the heck of it.
* CableCarActionSequence: At the end of "Chuck Versus the Fear of Death".
* CallBack:
** In "Chuck Versus the Nemesis", it is established that "pineapple" is the one word that can initiate an evacuation of the Buy More. In "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II" when Buy More management arrives in the midst of a closing down sale, Jeff suggests they instigate an evacuation of the store by uttering the word; and in "[[RuleOfThree Chuck Versus the Business Trip]]" Big Mike is heard wailing the word whilst Jeff pushes him out of the store in a wheelbarrow, after Lester tries to poison Jeff with carbon monoxide & Big Mike gets caught in the middle.
** In "Chuck Versus the Other Guy", Sarah tells Chuck that she fell for him "a long time ago, after you fixed my phone and before you started defusing bombs with computer viruses," both of which, incidentally, happened in the pilot.
** In the next episode, "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners," Chuck is marveling at the fact that Sarah really doesn't have a favorite band... a conversation continued from their first date, also in the pilot.
** Chuck & [[spoiler:Shaw]] fight in an empty Buy More in "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II" with the fight coming to an end with Chuck holding [[spoiler:Shaw]] at gun point but opting not to kill him & Sarah knocking [[spoiler:Shaw]] out by hitting him in the back of the head with a pipe; in "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit," they fight in an empty Buy More again, but [[spoiler:Shaw]] is the one with the gun and [[spoiler:Ellie]] knocks him by hitting him in the back of the head with a pan.
** Fittingly, "[[GrandFinale Chuck Versus the Goodbye]]" features several to the pilot & the previous five seasons of the show.
*** The BookEnds mentioned above (The "Irene Demova" virus; Chuck & Sarah on the beach).
*** Team Bartowski [[spoiler:breaking into the CIA's Intersect room]] features several nods to [[spoiler:Bryce doing the same thing in the pilot]].
*** Jeffster! performs with orchestral accompaniment in order to buy Chuck and Sarah time to deal with Quinn, and delay the detonation of a bomb; they unknowingly did the same thing for Ted Roark, and to stall Ellie and Devon's aborted wedding in "Chuck Versus the Ring".
*** Morgan tells Chuck "you once told me to listen to our hearts, because our brains only screw us up"; this is what Chuck told Morgan when he was worried about leaving to become a Benihana Chef in the season 2 finale "Chuck Versus the Ring".
*** During the mission to apprehend Quinn, Sarah and Chuck end up going to a Wienerlicious branch in Berlin, with Sarah even wearing her old staff outfit, GirlishPigtails and all.
* CameraSniper
** In "Chuck Versus the Balcony", as Sarah makes a drop giving a bogus chip to a minor villain, we have a POV shot of someone taking pictures. Turns out it's an operative for the CIA, who believe that Sarah has had a FaceHeelTurn and is selling the real chip. [[spoiler:Except it's really an operation to justify her going double]] in the BigBad's employ in order to take him down and rescue Chuck's mother.
** In "Chuck Versus the Zoom", someone from Decker's team is taking pictures of Chuck and Sarah as they are looking at their dream home.
* CarryingTheAntidote: "Chuck Versus the Truth"
* CelebrityParadox: "Chuck Versus the Tooth" starts with Chuck and Sarah talking about [[SpiesLikeUs "spies like these"]] and even mention Chevy Chase. So when they watched the movie, didn't they recognize the guy who was his dad's enemy from the events leading up to his newest Intersect upgrade?
* ChairReveal:
** Done twice in "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte": one straight (Awesome waiting for Chuck in his room) and one subverted (Chuck reciprocating... on the patio... with a lounge chair... that he has to push by foot.)
** Also done in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary" to reveal [[spoiler:General Beckman, or "Diane," as her Buy More name tag would suggest, in the manager's chair]].
* ClassReunion: [[strike:Sarah]][[spoiler:Jenny]]'s, including the now-gorgeous-and-successful ex-loser, and the successful ex-{{Nerd}} married to the bitter ex-AlphaBitch. But all with a SpyFi twist.
* CodeSilver: "Chuck Versus Santa Claus"
* CoincidentalBroadcast: In the pilot, Chuck flashes when the TV Morgan turns on shows General Stanfield.
* CombatStilettos
** Casey mentions he once stabbed a guy with a stiletto in "Chuck Versus the Suitcase".
** A surprised Sarah very nearly skewers Morgan in the neck with her stiletto in "Chuck Versus the First Fight".
** Also a StealthPun -- stiletto heels get their name from a very thin knife that was often used in assassinations.
* ConMan: "Jack Burton", Sarah's father. (We see that he trained Sarah to do the {{Flopsy}} and he pulls off a LandmarkSale as well.)
* ConspicuousTrenchcoat: Achmed Gambir in "Chuck Versus the Third Dimension" evades notice despite wearing a heavy trenchcoat in Burbank.
* ContinuityNod: Several, notably when Chuck relates the story of defusing a bomb using internet porn to the rest of the CAT Squad when they visit him and Sarah.
** Several of the attendees of the "Buy More house party" in "Chuck Versus the Cougars" are wearing Mighty Jocks jerseys (from the previous episode).
* ContinuitySnarl: In "Chuck vs. The Nacho Sampler", Sarah's first entrance to the Buy More (from Chuck vs. The Intersect) is revisited twice. The first time, the original footage is used, i.e. Sarah's introductory shot -her looking away from the camera, then about-facing towards it (and Chuck and Morgan at the Nerd Herd Desk). The second time at the end of the episode features her walking in the main entrance while on the phone, locating the Nerd Herd desk, saying "Piece of Cake", and striding over. At no time does she turn 180 degrees.
* CoolBoat: ''The Contessa'' from "Chuck Versus the Push Mix" has Anti-Aircraft Missiles, Sonar Stealth Technology, and an [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Parlor]]! It's a Floating Fortress of Fun (purchased from Craigslist Dubai)!
* CrashCourseLanding: "Chuck Versus the Helicopter"
* CrazyEnoughToWork: While this trope is used by the heroes on a near-weekly basis (see "series as a whole" above), it gets one noticeable invocation from the Buy More staff in "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II":
--> '''Big Mike:''' That's ''crazy''!\\
'''Lester:''' ''* [[CheshireCatGrin grins deviously]]* '' ...crazyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy[[OverlyLongGag yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy]]yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy... ''good''?\\
'''Big Mike:''' There may be a brain under that mop after all.
* CrowdHockey: "Chuck Versus the Cubic Z" has Morgan chasing after the eponymous Cubic Zirconium ring during a Buy More riot. He doesn't find it. Chuck does. [[WithThisRing On bended knee. In front of Sarah]].
* CurtainCamouflage: "Chuck Versus the Seduction Impossible", with Chuck and Sarah trying to avoid being caught as Roan Montgomery goes... uh... deep undercover.
* CutHisHeartOutWithASpoon: Gregory Tuttle threatens to rip out Chuck's throat with a plastic fork at their first meeting in "Chuck Versus the First Fight".
* DanceBattler: While handcuffed together in "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners," Chuck and Sarah fight a group of Basque terrorists. They work together using ''swing dancing'' to [[GrievousHarmWithABody take down the bad guys]]. Sadly, Chuck's flash for this was for regular martial arts, rather than actually flashing on swing dancing.
* ADayInTheLimelight: As Zachary Levi was busy preparing "Chuck Versus the Leftovers", most of "Chuck Versus Phase Three" focused on Sarah.
** Jeff is the only character not connected to Chuck's spy life that got his own episode in "Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer".
* DidntSeeThatComing: Chuck vs The Subway, Shaw assumes that he's won once he's killed Orion and locked up Beckman, Casey, Sarah and Chuck -- essentially all of regular Team Bartowski. A rescue by Morgan, Ellie, and Awesome takes him completely by surprise.
* DiegeticSwitch:
** Happens with the Jeffster! season 2 performances:
*** Morgan [[CannotSpitItOut tries to tell Anna he loves her]] at the end of "Chuck Versus the Best Friend" to Jeffster!'s cover of Toto's "Africa," which transitions to the real cover when she kisses him.
*** The wedding sequence in "Chuck Versus the Ring" starts with Jeffster! (and string quartet) performing "[[Music/{{Styx}} Mr. Roboto]]," which subsequently transitions to an in-house cover scored orchestrally, which finally transitions to the real song.
** "Chuck Versus the Alma Mater" does this with "[[{{Oasis}} Don't Look Back in Anger]]" playing on the radio while Chuck looks at photos, and switching to background music during a flashback.
** "Chuck Versus the Last Details" also features this with Chuck and Morgan humming "[[StarWars The Imperial March]]" in order to get him psyched up for a meeting. Cut to him walking to the meeting with The Imperial March blaring in the background.
* DieHardOnAnX: "Chuck Versus the Leftovers" features terrorists taking over the Buy More. ''Morgan'' plays John [=McClane=].
* DirectedByCastMember: Zachary Levi (Chuck) directed "Chuck Versus the Beard" in season three, "Chuck Versus the Leftovers" in season four, and "Chuck Versus the Hack-off" in season five.
* DisasterDominoes: Emmett triggers one in "Chuck Versus the Predator".
* DisneyVillainDeath:
** [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw; in "Chuck Versus the Tooth" it is revealed that he survived being shot and falling into a river]].
** [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] by Morgan in "Chuck Versus the Living Dead".
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything:
** "Chuck Versus Phase Three". His inability to flash (in his first dream) is a metaphor for sexual inadequacy.
** Morgan being advised to 'think about baseball' in order to prevent premature zooming in "Chuck Versus the Zoom."
* DoubleMeaningTitle: Season 2 Finale "Chuck Versus the Ring" seems to relate to the fact Chuck's cover for stalling Ellie's wedding being the excuse that he forgot the wedding ring. However, this works to hide the TwistEnding and the introduction of the new BigBad group for the next season: The Ring.
* DownerEnding:
** "Chuck Versus Santa Claus"
--->[[spoiler:'''Morgan:''' What do you do when you see your girlfriend do something so horrific, it gets permanently burned into your brain?\\
'''Chuck:''' I don't know, buddy. But I know exactly what you mean. ]]
** "Chuck Versus the Nacho Sampler" [[spoiler: Chuck has his "friend" Manoosh put into a "secure underground location". The last thing Chuck says to him? "[[WasItAllALie I'm not your friend. I'm a spy]]." Then he goes back to his apartment alone to [[DrowningMySorrows drown his sorrows]] in a bottle of whiskey]].
** "Chuck Versus the Gobbler" [[spoiler: Casey is comatose after being pushed by Sarah from a high-rise, Sarah is feeling terribly guilty about it, and Chuck has no idea what's going on]].
** "Chuck Versus Sarah" [[spoiler: The bad guy's got the Intersect glasses, and Sarah decides to leave Chuck in order to go after the bad guy, after admitting that she's not quite feeling the love that they once shared]].
* DramaticGunCock: [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in "Chuck Versus the Leftovers."
--> '''Volkoff:''' I didn't really need to do that. I just love the sound.
* EasyAmnesia: Played with in Season 4 and averted in Season 5, courtesy of the Intersect.
** Season 4: [[spoiler: Stephen Bartowski's best friend, Hartley Winterbottom, uploaded the Intersect to create himself as Alexei Volkoff, however the Intersect malfunctioned and the Volkoff personality overwrote his own for almost the next 30 years. When the Intersect was removed Hartley could remember nothing from his time as Volkoff, but his memory prior to uploading the Intersect was restored intact. Thus, Volkoff could remember nothing of his real identity while Hartley lost all memory of his life as Volkoff]].
** Season 5: [[spoiler: Morgan and Sarah's memories are both badly damaged by malfunctioning Intersects, both unintentionally (Morgan) and induced by the villain (Sarah). Morgan was forced to relearn many things, including his love of pop culture. Sarah's memory was even more severely impaired: she forgot everything that happened to her dating back five years and was subsequently brainwashed and manipulated by Quinn. Sarah slowly began remembering small details from before her mind was damaged, however while implied Sarah would eventually recover her memory, it appears this process may take time, and it is unclear just how much she will regain]].
* ElevatorActionSequence: "Chuck Versus the Other Guy"
* EngineeredPublicConfession: In "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II", Chuck gets one out of [[spoiler: Shaw, in front of the entire brass of every major spy organization]].
--> '''Chuck:''' You know, your Nerd Herd associate can also help you with videoconferencing. Smile, [[spoiler:Daniel...]] [[MagnificentBastard you're on TV]].
* EpisodeOnAPlane: "Chuck Versus First Class"
* EstablishingCharacterMoment: The pilot is obviously loaded with them.
** Chuck: In his first scene, it's clear he's still socially hobbled by the events that happened in Stanford with Bryce & Jill. In his second scene it's clear that he's a gifted computer repairman, the respected and competent supervisor of the Nerd Herd, and all around NiceGuy towards customers.
** Sarah: Her first scene, that of charming Chuck and gaining his confidence, is quickly shown to be an act, as she's also the "ninja" who destroys his computer, her second scene. Together, the two scenes tell an awful lot about her - pretty, charming, even seductive, but a highly competent agent, and a lethal fighter.
** Bryce Larkin: (not an accountant) No kidding!
** Casey: Guns down Bryce with hardly word. John Casey, ladies and gents- big on shooting, not big on talking.
* EveryoneKnowsMorse: "Chuck Versus the American Hero". Good thing for Sarah that Casey just so happens to use Morse Code to chat with his old buddies.
* EvilCounterpart: In addition to the recurring [=ECs=] above...
** In "Chuck Versus the Suburbs", it is revealed that FULCRUM is trying to [[spoiler:make an evil counterpart to Chuck with their own Intersect. Inadvertently, they use Chuck as a test subject, so now he's ''two'' Intersects]].
** Sarah and the AlphaBitch from her high school Heather Chandler. Sarah's in love with a nerd while Heather married a nerd for the money and even that wasn't enough.
** It can be argued that Daniel Shaw is more appropriately seen as an EvilCounterpart to Sarah rather than Chuck. They're both extremely competent spies, and Shaw is best understood as the person Sarah might have become if she'd lost Chuck. This is actually [[LampshadeHanging somewhat lampshaded in "Chuck Versus The Santa Suit"]] when Shaw tells Sarah that he's going to do to her what she did to him -- namely, kill the most important person in her life.
* EvenTheGuysWantHim: Devon. When Morgan asks him to describe a typical day, Morgan [[HoYay practically falls in love with him]] after hearing how much he does for Ellie, ''just because he loves her''.
* EvilLaugh: Mocked by [[spoiler: Shaw]] in "Chuck Versus the Subway" and by Chuck (even if you can't really call Chuck evil) in "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II". "Muhaha."
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin:
** "Chuck Versus Sarah". [[spoiler: And no, it's not in a metaphorical manner, as we literally do get a BrainwashedAndCrazy Sarah fighting Chuck (who, to his credit, doesn't fight back)]].
** "[[GrandFinale Chuck Versus the Goodbye]]."
* EyeScream: "Chuck Versus the Gobbler". No blood and [[GoryDiscretionShot no direct shot]] (it IS a broadcast TV show!), but the squishy noises and the implication can still serve as effective NauseaFuel.
* EveryoneCanSeeIt: In "Chuck vs The Imported Hard Salami" we learn that Sarah's affection for Chuck is waaaaay more then professional. but before that ...
** Ellie is convinced that Chuck's mysterious new girlfriend is really into him in "Chuck vs The Tango"-- (granted it could be Ellie just falling for the ruse)
** Corina -who knows of the ruse and sees right through it- realizes that Sarah wants Chuck for herself in "Chuck vs The Wookie"
** Casey can tell that Sarah's unhappy with -and jealous of- Chuck's relationship with Lou in "Chuck vs The Imported Hard Salami".
** Later, in "Chuck vs The Delorian" Sarah's father correctly diagnoses Chuck (whom he's known for all of two days) to be seriously in love with Sarah. By this point in the series, their mutual affection is not news to her.

* FakeKillScare: A variant appears in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary": Sarah and Casey have been captured, and Chuck and Morgan are surrounded as they attempt to save them. Sarah begs for them to be let go over the radio, and Marko orders his men to kill them. Gunshots and a scream are heard....[[spoiler: and then Chuck's voice is heard]].
* FakeOutMakeOut:
** "Wow. Girl on top. Miss Walker, when Herr Wienerlicious signs your paycheck, I doubt he's factoring in make-out sessions with your boy-toy."
** "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit" brings us the greatest comic example of all time, when [[spoiler:General Beckman plants a big wet one on Chuck to prevent CIA security from discovering that they're searching for a device in Decker's office]].
--->''([[OverlyLongGag long, awkward]] [[{{Beat}} silence]])''\\
'''[[spoiler:Chuck]]:''' You know, I typically brush my teeth before I--\\
'''[[spoiler:Beckman]]:''' [[LetUsNeverSpeakOfThisAgain We never speak of this again]].\\
'''[[spoiler:Chuck]]:''' Ever. ''Ever''.
* FakingTheDead:
** Chuck comes up with a plan to fake Casey's death to lure his old rogue teammates out of hiding in "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock".
** Morgan [[ItMakesSenseInContext pretends to be dead at a meeting]] in "Chuck Versus the Last Details". [[spoiler:As does one other person at that meeting]].
* FallingIntoTheCockpit: "Chuck Versus the Helicopter"
* FalseReassurance: In "Chuck Versus the First Date", he asks what happens to him as the old Intersect once the new Intersect comes online:
--> '''Graham:''' Tomorrow the new computer will be online. Operation Bartowski officially comes to an end. You'll be done with us. No more briefings, no more missions, no more spies. Enjoy the rest of your life, Chuck.
** [[spoiler:...because it'll end as soon as the new computer comes online]].
* FanDisservice: THREE WORDS: [[spoiler: Open shirt Jeff]].
* FauxHorrific: Jeff and Lester's Aisle of Terror. Images said to induce horror in even the most fearless. Images like old people, public showers, babies in snail costumes, and otters.
** Hilariously subverted at the climax, when Chuck [[spoiler:uses the Aisle Of Terror to terrorize the villain, who has been [[HoistByHisOwnPetard affected by his own Fear Toxin]] and finds the Aisle truly horrific]].
* FictionalCounterpart: In "Chuck Versus the Nacho Sampler", Weap-Con stands in for [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Defence_Exhibition IDEX]].
* FightSceneFailure: InUniverse example. When Chuck and Morgan watch a security video of [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw]] fighting the Ring agents, Morgan notices that they aren't actually hitting each other [[spoiler:exposing Shaw as a traitor]].
* FindTheCure: Chuck has to do this in "Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger" when [[spoiler: Vivian Volkoff poisons Sarah on the eve of their wedding]].
* FiveManBand: Team Bartowski when Ellie gets in on the action in "Chuck Versus Agent X", with Chuck as TheHero, Sarah as TheLancer, Casey as TheBigGuy, Ellie as TheSmartGuy and Morgan as TheChick.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: "Chuck Versus the Subway"
--> '''Stephen:''' "This is the last time I'm gonna walk away from you."
* FryingPanOfDoom: Ellie, in "Chuck Versus the Living Dead" and "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit".
* FullNameBasis: Creator/BoDerek in "Chuck Versus Bo" (except, oddly enough, in the title). It's hilarious.
* GatlingGood: Casey's BigDamnHeroes moment in "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip".
** Subverted in "Chuck Versus the Leftovers" when Volkoff's hacker disables the Buy More's gatling gun defenses.
* GirlWithPsychoWeapon: The new 'Greta' CIA agent played by Summer Glau in "Chuck Versus the Fear of Death". She carries a small serrated knife she refers to as her "favorite friend".
* GoofyPrintUnderwear: Casey's lucky clover boxers in "Chuck Versus the Wookiee".
--> '''Carina:''' Like Prague again, eh Casey?
* GoneHorriblyRight: In "Chuck Versus the Wedding Planner", Chuck and Sarah get conned and don't have enough authority to find the conwoman. Chuck fakes a flash to get the general to put more people on it; fishing for a connection to make the target important enough to for the general to put more resources on her, he accidentally links her to a notorious terrorist... and the general puts ALL resources on her. Which leads directly to...
* GoneHorriblyWrong: The general no longer trusts them, and Chuck's next flash isn't believed.
* GoodPeopleHaveGoodSex: "Chuck vs. The Honeymooners" -- Once Chuck and Sarah become an official couple, they stay in their train's private compartment for ''days''. We know this from a montage of full -- and then empty --- room service plates making their way to the door and being cleared.
* GrandFinale: [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin "Chuck Versus the Goodbye"]].
* GrievousHarmWithABody: Twice.
** Casey, using Chuck, tied back-to-back in chairs in "Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover".
** [[CallBack Called back to]] in "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners". [[spoiler:This time, it's Morgan tied to Casey]].
* GunmanWithThreeNames: The Buy More hostage-taker of "Chuck Versus Santa Claus" introduces ''himself'' this way.
* GunsAkimbo:
** Cole Barker. "Wow -- two guns. You really are a badass."
*** Averted as he then gives one gun to Chuck, and keeps the other himself.
*** ... though he had previously used two guns against a helicopter.
** Also when Chuck goes to save his dad in "Chuck Versus the Dream Job". Dual tranq guns.
** Chuck again in "Chuck Versus Operation Awesome." Again, tranq guns.
** Also Shaw with real guns.
** Sarah in "Chuck Versus the First Bank of Evil".
* HamToHamCombat: Chuck narrating the fears in the "Aisle of Terror" to Dr. Wheelwright, whose responses are just as hilarious.
** OTTERS!
** IS IT A BABY? OR IS IT A -SNAIL-?
* HandicappedBadass:
** Chuck sprains his ankle in "Chuck Versus the Lethal Weapon" but still has to fend off Fulcrum, on one good leg. The ''real'' badass part is that he uses his ''casted'' leg as a weapon to knock out the guy.
** Casey is probably the epitome of this.
*** "Chuck Versus the Coup d'Etat"
--->'''Torrini:''' Don't make me shoot a man in a wheelchair.\\
'''Casey:''' (''stands'') Better?
*** In "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock", he manages to escape an alpha team while under heavy sedation.
*** In "Chuck Versus the Push Mix", he takes down an assassin who attempted to smother him. With a bonsai tree. After tricking him into thinking he ''was'' dead by slipping his heart monitor off his finger. All while bedridden!
* HaveYouToldAnyoneElse: Invoked in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary", when [[spoiler:Mary asks Marco whether or not he told Volkoff about Chuck searching for her]].
* HeroicFireRescue: Chuck and Casey in "Chuck Versus The Frosted Tips". They run into a helicopter and its surroundings on fire to rescue Morgan and Gertrude Verbanski respectively.
* HijackedByGanon: "Chuck Versus Santa Claus" starts out as a somewhat refreshing change from the secret agent stuff, but then, about 15 minutes from the end, suddenly [[spoiler: FULCRUM ends up behind it all, including both the guy holding up the store and the agent handling the case]].
* HistoricalInJoke / NoodleIncident: Gen. Beckman and Roan Montgomery's romance have changed history.
-->'''Casey''': [[UsefulNotes/ColdWar Berlin 1989]], [[UsefulNotes/GulfWar Iraq 1991]], [[UsefulNotes/GeorgeWBush Florida 2000]].
* Homage: The plot where Emmett tricks Morgan into "going against the family" and getting [[spoiler:Big Mike demoted from Buy More manager]] is of course heavily referencing Film/TheGodfather.
* IfYouEverDoAnythingToHurtHer:
** Sarah gives Lou this line regarding Chuck. And then again to Jill.
** Chuck does this in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary"
** One issued to Morgan in "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock":
--->[[spoiler:'''Casey''': You break her heart, I break your ''everything'']].
* ICantDance:
** "Chuck Versus the Tango" has Chuck learning the [[spoiler:girl's part of the]] Tango.
** Subsequently subverted in "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte", because [[spoiler: the Intersect 2.0 teaches him how]].
** Subverted again in "Chuck Versus The Good-bye" despite [[spoiler:Chuck's not having the Intersect, because his wife's apparently given him a few lessons since then]].
--->[[spoiler:'''Sarah''': I need to find somebody to dance with. I'm going to get close to Remy --]]
--->[[spoiler:'''Chuck''': Sarah! Please, you taught me how to dance]].
* IHaveAFamily: [[spoiler:"Chuck Versus the Anniversary" has a rare villain example of this. When [[MissingMom Chuck's mom]], Mary, is motivated into killing the men with her and escaping, Marco tries this exact line on her. She simply replies, "[[MamaBear So do I]]" and shoots him]].
* IKnowMortalKombat:
** In "Chuck Versus the Helicopter", Chuck flying the helicopter is half knowledge of an Apache chopper game and half Sarah convincing him that that's the best way to think about it.
** In "Chuck Versus the Other Guy", Morgan's extensive knowledge of Sonny Chiba films [[spoiler: helps Chuck figure out that Shaw is working for The Ring]].
** Chuck is a crack shot with his tranq gun without needing to flash, thanks to Duck Hunt.
** Inverted as well, as he's now ''also'' outrageously good at Duck Hunt due to his flashing and spy training.
* IKnowYoureInThereSomewhereFight: In "Chuck Versus Sarah", [[spoiler: as Chuck has to convince a BrainwashedAndCrazy Sarah to not kill him. However, Chuck himself doesn't actually physically fight Sarah, opting instead to verbally tell her about his love for her while getting beaten down]].
* ImpairmentShot: Happens to multiple people on multiple occasions.
** Inverted in the pilot the morning after Chuck is implanted with the Intersect; Morgan comes in and out of focus before becoming clear.
** After Chuck gets knocked out by Bryce in an elevator in "Chuck Versus the Nemesis", Chuck sees Sarah and then Casey from an impaired POV.
--> '''Chuck:''' Pretty... not pretty! Ugly!
** In "Chuck Versus the Sensei," he sees the world tilting and out of focus during the fight with Ty Bennett.
** And in "Chuck Versus the Ex", his vision gets distorted right before he passes out.
** It happens to [[spoiler:Captain Awesome]] in "Chuck Versus the Broken Heart", after [[spoiler:Agent Forrest shoots him with a tranquilizer dart]].
** Casey in "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte", waking up in Castle after losing blood.
** And Morgan, in "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock", after [[spoiler:he had just electrocuted himself along with the bad guys]].
** Inverted in "Chuck Versus The Bullet Train" when [[spoiler:Sarah wakes up in a warehouse tied to a chair in front of the waiting Quinn]].
** Inverted in "Chuck Versus Sarah" when [[spoiler:Sarah regains consciousness in the "dream house" after Ellie intentionally crashed their car]].
* ImprovisedZipline: In "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip", when Chuck was training to be a "real" spy in Prague, he had to do a zip line using a power line and his belt as the pulley, but failed. In Mexico, he was forced to use a power line as a zip line with his belt as the pulley. This time he succeeded.
* IncrediblyObviousBug: In "Chuck Versus the Ex", Chuck is assigned to plant a bug that's about half an inch wide, has a blinking red light on the top and beeps when you turn it on. All the weirder because other bugs in the show are tiny, non-obvious black disks.
* InterruptedIntimacy: "Chuck Versus the Colonel". Chuck and Sarah are on the run. There is only one bed in their motel room. Cue Casey interrupting them to arrest them.
* IrrevocableOrder: In "Chuck Versus the Business Trip", an assassin known as "The Viper" is known for going dark after receiving instructions and making it impossible to retract an assassination order, meaning that [[spoiler: Decker]] cannot call off the hit on [[spoiler: Morgan]].
* JustBetweenYouAndMe: In "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II", Chuck does it (and lampshades it) to [[spoiler: Shaw]]:
--> '''Chuck:''' Come on, do you honestly expect me to make the classic villain mistake of explaining my evil plan? Well I'd love to!
** Almost smells like an IdiotBall in the making when [[spoiler:Shaw points out the flaw in the plan. Made brilliant by the fact that [[MagnificentBastard Chuck spelled out the details of his plan]] in order for [[EngineeredPublicConfession Shaw to gloat and spill his own plan over a hidden camera]]]].
* KickTheDog: Specifically invoked by Morgan in "Chuck Versus the Last Details" to maintain his cover as a crime lord.
--> '''Morgan:''' [[ShootTheDog Shoot the puppy!]] I'm so sick of feeding him!
* KilledMidSentence: In "Chuck Versus the Business Trip", [[spoiler: Casey kills the assassin ''and four associates'', while the assassin is EvilGloating, in about three seconds. ]]
* LaserHallway:
** An inventively choreographed one appears in "Chuck Versus the Three Words": Chuck doesn't have cat-burglar dexterity and weight, after all.
** In "Chuck Versus the Push Mix," however, it turns out [[spoiler:Morgan's yoga and girlish frame DOES give him some of this]]. Yoga seal!
* LeaningOnTheFourthWall: "Chuck Versus the Seduction Impossible", when Team Bartowski has to infiltrate a crime boss's lair... which is disguised as a Moroccan nightclub.
--> '''Chuck:''' Well, looks like we need a costume change.\\
'''Sarah:''' By the way, for the record, I will not at any point during this mission be dressing as a belly dancer.\\
'''Chuck:''' What if you need to do it for our country?\\
'''Sarah:''' [[TakeThat I'm sure America can handle it]].
* LieDetector: Used on [[spoiler:Jill]]. Too bad he ignored the last answer...
* LockAndLoadMontage:
** Sarah does a fanservice-y version in the pilot.
** "Chuck Versus the Broken Heart" had an interesting variant: Casey and Forrest had such a montage....[[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything with an extremely erotic charge]].
** "Chuck Versus the Three Words" includes another, extremely fanservice-y one with both Carina and Sarah.
* MadnessMantra: The agent driven mad by FULCRUM's Intersect kept saying "Salamander" in "Chuck Versus the Suburbs".
* MeaningfulBackgroundEvent: The ending shot of "Chuck Versus the Push Mix" is framed so that [[spoiler:Chuck's proposal to Sarah and her acceptance]] are in the background, as the camera is focused on the janitor's waxing machine in the foreground.
* {{Metaphorgotten}}: Big Mike's fatherly love with meatballs and marinara sauce in "Chuck Versus the Leftovers".
* MidSeasonTwist:
** Season 1: We discover that Bryce betrayed Chuck [[spoiler:because he was trying to keep him out of the CIA life]].
** Season 2: [[spoiler:Jill]] is FULCRUM.
** Season 4: Volkoff reveals himself. Chuck loses the Intersect.
** Season 5: The head of Decker's CIA subcommittee is revealed to be [[spoiler:Daniel Shaw]], who decides to personally visit the Buy More to make the Bartowskis' lives a living hell.
* MindRape: Quinn, MagnificentBastard that he is, does this [[spoiler: to an Intersected Sarah]] at the end of "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train" [[spoiler: by forcing Sarah to flash repeatedly with a set of flash cards, no doubt causing her tremendous agony. By the time Quinn's done, Sarah has lost ''all'' her memories of the past five years or so, and allowing for Quinn to manipulate Sarah into killing Chuck]].
* MisfitMobilizationMoment:
** In "Chuck Versus the Tooth", there's a scene involving former CIA agents in an insane asylum showing that they still got the stuff. [[spoiler:Subverted as the enemy agent [[JustShootHim simply tranqs them all]]]].
** "Chuck Versus the Subway/Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II" has [[spoiler:Ellie, shaken from witnessing her father's murder and Chuck's abduction, getting Awesome and Morgan to help her run a Pincer movement on the van holding Team Bartowski captive ''and succeeding'']].
** "[[GrandFinale Chuck Versus the Goodbye]]" gives us Jeff and Lester using a group of people including Fernando and Skip to [[spoiler:track down Sarah]]. Incidentally, this marks the only time [[TheVoiceless Fernando]] has [[SuddenlyVoiced spoken on-screen]], and Skip's second-ever line of dialogue.
--->'''Lester''': Unleash the perverts.
* MissionImpossibleCableDrop: In "Chuck Versus the Mask".
* MistakenForGay: Awesome, by the security guard at the office building.
--> '''Julius:''' Look pal, if you really love this "Chuck", you have to tell your wife; you can't live a lie. Trust me, I've been there.\\
'''Devon:''' That's... not really what I mean.
* MoodWhiplash
** The end of "Chuck Versus Santa Claus", when Sarah [[spoiler:[[ShootTheDog shoots an unarmed man in cold blood to protect Chuck's cover]]]] to the strains of Christmas SoundtrackDissonance. Also pretty much the entirety of the season two finale.
** The pilot episode -- the character establishing moment for Chuck cuts to Bryce Larkin stealing the Intersect and getting shot by Casey.
** Done hilariously in "Chuck versus the First Bank of Evil" when Sarah and Chuck rob a bank as part of a mission and talk about [[spoiler: their upcoming wedding]].
--> '''Sarah:''' ''(to Chuck)'' "I took you up on your advice and I found a dress. Ellie was right; when I put it on, it felt like magic. ''(to the people in the bank)'' "Get down on the ground before I blow your freaking head off!"\\
'''Chuck:''' ''(to Sarah)'' "I'm so glad you found a dress, that's awesome, and I bet you look gorgeous in it." ''(to the people in the bank)'' "Don't be a hero my friend! I will break your face!"
* MoreDeadlyThanTheMale: Sarah and Casey are both Chuck's bodyguards. Upon being captured, Fulcrum agent Mauser decided to mouth off about how he'd surely escape, and that it would be the end of Chuck when he did. Chuck would have ignored him. Casey might of slapped him around a bit. Sarah cold bloodedly shoots him.
* MrFanservice: Roan Montgomery, literally, in "Chuck Versus the Seduction Impossible".
* MurderTheHypotenuse: Subverted, in "Chuck Versus the Other Guy": [[spoiler: Chuck does everything he can to avoid killing Shaw, but shoots him to save Sarah. [[NeverFoundTheBody Not that he kills Shaw anyway]]]].
* MyFriendsAndZoidberg: Lampshaded in "Chuck Versus the Tango":
-->'''Chuck''': Sorry about this guys, and Anna. We really need to find a non-gender-specific name. How about "team"?\\
'''Anna''': Fellow Nerd Herders?\\
'''Lester''': "[[EgocentricTeamNaming The Lesters]]".\\
'''Jeff''': "Chuck's Stable of Hos".
* NeckLift:
** Colt, in "Chuck Versus the First Date".
** Also, Casey does it to Chuck in response to the name "Sugar Bear" in "Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover".
** Casey again [[spoiler:and then mirrored by Chuck]] in "Chuck Versus the Tic Tac."
** Casey '''again''' (noticing a pattern here?) does it to Morgan in "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II" upon discovering a certain someone's phone number in the possession of The Bearded One.
** Guess what happens when Morgan has to provoke Casey into a state of fury in "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock"...
* NeverMessWithGranny: In "Chuck versus Agent X" we meet Agent X's mother, a sweet old English lady who serves tea, but is also ready with a shotgun and happens to have a machine gun hidden. She has Casey feed '''her''' the bullet belt while she fires at mercenaries shooting at her house. Then she rigs her own house to blow up when they break in!
-->'''Casey''': You're like the mother I never had!
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: The whole situation with [[spoiler:Vivian]], although it was the CIA that landed the critical blow when they denied her permission to see her father.
** In "Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer", Chuck saving Jeff caused the bad guys to go after Mr. Morimoto and get him killed.
* NightmareFuelStationAttendant: Jeff becomes one in "Chuck Versus the Aisle of Terror," putting on the video screens in said aisle images of such things as interspecies relations, babies in costume, [[note]]Is it a baby, or a snail?[[/note]] public showers, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking old people!]]
* NoMrBondIExpectYouToDine: [[spoiler:Inverted as BigBad Alexei Volkoff]] dines at Ellie's house with Chuck and Sarah. Ellie and Awesome are of course completely unaware that he's the villain.
* NoodleIncident:
** Casey has many: the incident in Prague with Carina in "Chuck Versus the Wookiee", the "Buy More company picnic volleyball incident" mentioned in "Chuck Versus First Class", and the "Yves Saint-Laurent incident" mentioned in "Chuck Versus the Suitcase."
-->'''Casey''': Stab one guy with a stiletto...
** "Chuck Versus The Predator" began with them coming back from a mission where they dressed up as plumbers to recover a piece of intel whose significance is never revealed.
** Chuck and Morgan also keep alluding to a certain incident they had in Tangiers in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary".
* NotAGame
* NotQuiteDead:
** [[spoiler: Bryce, Orion, Shaw]]
** [[spoiler: As of the end of Season 3, Orion probably is actually dead]].
* NotWithTheSafetyOnYouWont: Played with in the "Chuck Versus the Dream Job" where [[spoiler:Chuck points a gun at Casey. Casey point out that it's a ''tranq'' gun. He also takes two to the chest before disarming Chuck, and one to the neck before he actually falls asleep]].
* NotWhatItLooksLike: "Chuck Versus the Fat Lady":
-->'''Chuck''': How did Jill know what time to walk in on us? What are the chances?
* NowOrNeverKiss: In "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami", Chuck and Sarah think a bomb is about to go off, so they start kissing... making things very awkward when the explosion fails to occur.
--> '''Sarah:''' Well, the good news is we're alive. And the bad news is that this is kind of an uncomfortable moment right now.\\
'''Chuck:''' This is completely comfortable on my end. (pause) Just sayin'.
* ObliviousGuiltSlinging: Pretty much par for the course when you have to lie to friends and family about what you're really doing.
* ObfuscatingStupidity:
** Stephen J. Bartowski spends most of "Chuck Versus the Dream Job" as a cranky, paranoid old man, and ends the episode as a cranky, paranoid old man. [[spoiler:It's just that he's also Orion, and he's being whisked away by his old partner]].
** "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners" has Morgan [[spoiler:addressing two foreign agents about banal touristy crap regarding the town they're in that he read in the guide book on the over, generally being completely annoying and showing just how ill-suited for the spy-life that he really is... until he reveals that it was actually a test to see how genuine the agents were, convincing Casey to draw his gun on them]].
** Volkoff [[spoiler:pretends to be an incompetent and nerdy British agent as a plan to find Orion's file storeroom]].
** [[spoiler: Amy, Sarah's old teammate in "Chuck Versus the CAT Squad". She appeared to always be TheDitz of the group but turns out to be TheMole that betrayed the CAT Squad to their ArchEnemy Augusto Gaez]].
* ObviouslyEvil: Riley, Volkoff's [[TheDragon lawyer]].
* ObviousStuntDouble: The first episode has Chuck being burglarized by a "mysterious" masked ninja, later clearly revealed to be Sarah. The masked figure, however is clearly a powerfully built male.
* PacManFever: The depiction of ''DuckHunt'' in "Chuck Versus the Beard" is a little off; the infamous sniggering dog appears despite Chuck getting a perfect score. Also, the Zapper wouldn't work with a modern TV like the one used.
* PatrickStewartSpeech: Called an "Ellie Speech" here.
* PocketProtector
* PortmanteauCoupleName: Charah for Chuck and Sarah. Invoked by Casey in "Chuck Versus the Masquerade".
* PracticeKiss: Chuck and Sarah share one of these as a demonstration of his seduction skills in the aptly-named "Chuck Versus the Seduction".
* ThePowerOfFriendship: In "Chuck Versus the Beard", when Ring agents capture a flash-less Chuck, it seems that all is lost. But... all it takes is a heart-to-heart with his buddy Morgan to literally reboot his powers.
* PsychicPowers: Surprisingly, [[spoiler: Jeff correctly guesses where the missing laptop is in "Chuck VS the A Team" using automatic writing]], complete with DramaticWind, but Lester [[ComicallyMissingThePoint dismisses it]].
* RecordNeedleScratch: When Ellie reaches her breaking point with Captain Awesome's attempts to seduce her using "tips" from Morgan in "Chuck Versus the Seduction".
* ReplacedTheThemeTune: It went through several incarnations before settling on "Short Skirt Long Jacket".
* {{Retirony}}: Played with in "Chuck Versus Bo," in which they discover something that requires their immediate attention, just after coming to a major decision about their future:
-->'''Casey''': Guess we're not retired after all, hmm?\\
'''Sarah''': Well, it doesn't change the plan; it just means we have [[OneLastJob one last mission]].\\
(''Team Bartowski gasps and groans at Sarah in utter disbelief'')\\
'''Sarah''': [[GenreBlindness What?]]\\
'''Chuck''': [[TemptingFate Things never turn out well when you say "one last mission!"]]\\
'''Sarah''': [[LampshadeHanging Is this just because of some stupid movie?]]\\
(''Team Bartowski groans "yes"'')\\
'''Casey''': You ''never'' say "one last mission."
* RetroactiveWish: The "Thanksgiving Miracle" in "Chuck Versus the Gravitron".
--> '''Morgan:''' Chuck and Sarah are gonna walk through that door, they're gonna be as happy as could be and everything's gonna be fine.\\
''(they do)''\\
'''Morgan:''' I could have asked for anything! Swedish bikini team. Uh, [=DeLorean=], flying [=DeLorean=]!
** Strangely enough it works! Morgan ''gets'' a [=DeLorean=] two episodes later. But... [[BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor Be careful]] [[TheAllegedCar what you wish for]]...
** [[spoiler: And as of "Chuck Versus the Three Words", he even landed a Swedish bikini girl! [[BrickJoke Good things come to those who wait]]]].
* RewindReplayRepeat: Harry Tang, extremely upset over an apparent dalliance by his wife, insists that the video footage of her apparently setting up the tryst be played over and over and over.
* RingRingCRUNCH: In "Chuck Versus the Crown Vic", Sarah kills her alarm clock with a thrown knife, which she keeps under a pillow.
* RoaringRampageOfRescue:
** Pretty much the entirety of "Chuck Versus Phase Three". Doubles as RoaringRampageOfRevenge as the episode even invokes that [[Film/KillBill Trope Namer]] early on.
** "Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger" also counts, although the "Rampage" part gets toned down halfway through the episode.
** We see the start of one at the end of "Chuck Versus Bo," and then it's already mostly over by the time "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train" begins.
* RockBeatsLaser: After Chuck beats a high-tech, dart-shooting CIA security system in "Chuck Versus the Tic Tac", a new system is installed and stops Chuck cold when he tries to break into the same hallway later. The new security system? A transparent plate of simple bulletproof glass.
* RootingForTheEmpire: In-universe example in "Chuck Versus the Sandworm": Laszlo sympathizes with Max Zorin, a villain in the ''Film/JamesBond'' movie ''Film/AViewToAKill'', who he sees as a highly talented man who was manipulated by his government.
* RuleOfCool: Pretty much ''everything'' that happens in "Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer". Including the big fat ShoutOut to {{Futurama}}.
* RunningGag:
** "Chuck Versus the [=DeLorean=]" has "It's personal" (not to be confused with [[ItsPersonal It's Personal]]) as the dismissive response whenever someone asks what they're doing.
** "Chuck Versus the Angel de la Muerte" brings us the dramatically-over-pronounced [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast "EL ANGHEL DE LA MUERTE!"]]
** The [[ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight Giant Blonde She-male]] running around in "Chuck Versus Phase Three".
** "Chuck Versus the Muuurder" gets into [[FunWithAcronyms tons of fun]] with the fact that the Buy More's initials are BM, as Big Mike wears a giant sign with "BM" emblazoned on it for a promotion.
--->'''Big Mike''': Other men wear college shirts all day, while ''I'' get to wear a ''great'' big [[GettingCrapPastTheRadar BM on my chest!]] ''That's'' job satisfaction!
::They continue to talk about the BM (and the fact that Big Mike is the Number Two) in manners befitting the DoubleEntendre.
* SamusIsAGirl: [[spoiler:La Ciudad in]] "Chuck Versus the Tango" and [[spoiler:Viper in]] "Chuck Versus the Business Trip".
* SarcasticConfession
* SatchelSwitcheroo: In "Chuck Versus Agent X," apparently Ellie and Awesome have the same kind of luggage, and both of them use it to pack for bachelor/ette parties.
* SayMyNameTrailer: The TV ads for the show run on this.
-->'''Morgan''': Chuck.
-->'''Ellie''': Chuck?
-->'''Jeff''': Chuck.
-->'''Anna''': Chuck!
-->'''Lester''': Lester! ...no, Chuck.
* SeriesFauxnale: Since the show's future was to be in a state of perpetual doubt, seasons two, three, and four all have them. In fact, seasons three and four each have ''two''.
* SexySantaDress: Anna wears one for a Christmas episode.
* ShootTheHostage:
** In "Chuck Versus the Nemesis," Bryce does this to Chuck. Bryce is nice enough to first ask Chuck (in Klingon!) if he's wearing a BulletProofVest before he shoots Chuck in the chest. Chuck is, but he still whines about how much getting shot while wearing one hurts.
** Played with in "Chuck Versus the Gravitron".
** In "Chuck Versus the [=DeLorean=]", Sarah shoots her father, who is being held hostage.
* ShootYourMate: [[spoiler: Volkoff orders Sarah to kill Casey to prove she really is a traitor. They work together to fake his death in]] "Chuck Versus the Gobbler".
* ShutUpKiss:
** Chuck and Lou. "He had me at pastrami."
** And as of "Chuck Versus the Other Guy", [[spoiler:Sarah to Chuck: "Shut up and kiss me." Cue the {{Squee}} from shippers '''everywhere''']].
** ''Twice'' in "Chuck Versus the Coup d'Etat". [[spoiler:Both of them to Morgan. One of those by Morgan ''himself'']].
** Another in "Chuck Versus the Frosted Tips" [[spoiler: Casey saves Gertrude's life. "I knew you were into me, John." "Shut up, Gertrude". And a kiss]].
* SlowClap: Big Mike starts one for Morgan, who had been tricked into [[spoiler:deposing]] him by Emmett, when he decides to fall on his sword by [[spoiler:walking out of his job and moving to Hawaii with Anna to become a Benihana chef]]. With his shirt off, for some reason.
* SoftGlass: In "Chuck Versus the First Date"... when ''[[ScaryBlackMan Michael Clarke Duncan]]'' throws Chuck through a window, and in "Chuck Versus the Zoom", when Chuck ''deliberately'' jumps through a window to flee his pursuers.
* SoftWater:
** Casey and Chuck fall about 15 stories into the hotel pool in "Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover".
** Sarah jumps from a plane into the sea in "Chuck Versus the Goodbye".
* SorryILeftTheBGMOn: The pilot and "Chuck Versus The Leftovers".
* SpecialEditionTitle:
** For the season 4 finale, "Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger", the usual upbeat, fun titles would have caused some serious MoodWhiplash and so were replaced by a quick title screen.
** Season 5's "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train" features a very 80s-esque [[WhooshingCredits title sequence]] for the episode.
** [[GrandFinale "Chuck Versus the Goodbye"]] used the titles from the pilot instead of the usual one.
* SpiritualSuccessor: To ''[[{{Jake 20}} Jake 2.0]]''.
* SpyCatsuit: Sarah wears one, Carina wears one; heck, all the CAT Squad members wear catsuits!
* StartOfDarkness: If "Chuck Versus the Masquerade" wasn't this for [[spoiler:Vivian Volkoff]], "Chuck Versus the First Bank Of Evil" definitely is.
* StayingAlive: Happens at the end of "Chuck Versus the Colonel", with [[spoiler:Roark]].
* StealthHiBye: Lampshaded by Lester in "Chuck Versus the Fear of Death", where the current Greta repeatedly disappears into thin air. May also be an ActorAllusion, as this Greta is played by SummerGlau, whose characters are known for this trick.
* StealthPun: In "Chuck Versus the Beard", while trying to get himself to flash, Chuck uses a bunch of memory-training cards with images of spies on them. To the savvy viewer, these are better known as ''flash cards''.
* StepfordSuburbia: The suburbs in "Chuck Versus the Suburbs" are a comic version [[spoiler:and then fit the dramatic version since all of its StepfordSmiler inhabitants are Fulcrum agents]].
* StereotypeFlip: In "Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover," Ellie and Awesome want to buy an anniversary gift, but spend time arguing over what it should be--either a large-scale TV or a washer[=/=]dryer combo. Guess who wants what.
--> '''Ellie:''' Think of all the great things we can ''watch''!\\
'''Devon:''' Think of all the great things we can ''wash''!
* StockScream:
** In "Chuck Versus the Truth", [[MonsteroftheWeek Reardon Payne]] does a triple backwards handspring (he was once a gymnast, after all) to escape from Team Bartowski, and when [[spoiler:[[JustShootHim Sarah shoots him in the knee]]]] the Wilhelm Scream can be heard.
** Also in "Chuck Versus the Baby" when one mook falls down some stairs.
* StrangeMindsThinkAlike: Both Jeff and Dr. Wheelwright (played by [[Franchise/ANightmareOnElmStreet Robert Englund]]) are frightened by things that scare only the most insane people: Old people, public showers, babies in snail suits, etc.
* SuddenlyAlwaysKnewThat:
** Used in "Chuck Versus the Fat Lady" when [[MacGuffin a box]] needs a high C note to unlock it. [[CrowningMomentOfFunny Casey provides it]], being a former choirboy. What? He wasn't hatched.
** "Chuck Versus First Class" reveals that Sarah is a licensed pilot.
*** Although she ''did'' walk Chuck through landing a helicopter.
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial: A variation when Chuck is trying to get a message to Casey in front of his family at Thanksgiving dinner. His sister asks him to say what he's thankful for.
-->'''Chuck:''' I'm thankful that Bryce Larkin is dead and is not in my room making out with my girlfriend.\\
''(Casey excuses himself from the table)''\\
'''Morgan:''' Wow, Chuck, that was... dark.\\
'''Devon:''' And specific.
* TakeANumber: In "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami", Chuck goes to Lou's deli to try and make up with her. When his number comes up, she tells him that if he's not ordering food he'll have to take another number and wait. Finally, his number comes up at closing time... but he manages to make up with her anyway.
* TakeThat
** In "Chuck Versus the A Team", Chuck and Sarah conduct a search of [[spoiler:Casey's apartment]] to find a hand print. Before they start, Sarah and Chuck put on glasses that act like a black light; after Sarah explains what they do, Chuck derisively comments that it "Sounds like a CBS show".
** In "Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover", when Jeff brags that he found Tara Reid's phone number while he was supposed to be working, Chuck asks "who ''doesn't'' have her phone number?" before chastising him.
* TaughtByTelevision:
-->'''Chuck:''' I knew those seven years of ''MacGyver'' would pay off!
* ThatCameOutWrong: Natural territory for a show that likes GettingCrapPastTheRadar.
-->'''Captain Awesome''': ''[after Chuck returns his great-grandmother's engagement ring]'' Way to go Chuck. I always knew you could handle my family jewels. [[VerbalBackspace So to speak]].
-->'''Chuck''': Charles Carmichael ''always'' comes quickly.
* ThreeDimensionalEpisode: "Chuck Versus the Third Dimension", of course.
* ThrillerOnTheExpress:
** "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners", Chuck and Sarah are on a train and see an ETA member and try for an impromptu mission using the other passengers' items as gadgets.
** A large part of "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train", for obvious reasons.
* TimeBomb: Several times. But in "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami", it's not a bomb.
* TookALevelInBadass:
** Chuck [[strike:took]] uploaded a level in badass at the end of "Chuck Versus the Ring".
** Unbelievably, Morgan. It takes a lot of badass to [[spoiler: break your own thumbs to save yourself]], especially on nothing but Casey's orders.
* TortureAlwaysWorks: In "Chuck Versus the Beefcake" the mantra is, "Everyone talks." Subverted in that Cole actually '''doesn't''' talk.
* TerribleIntervieweesMontage:
** Chuck is required to interview the Buy More employees to see which one would become assistant manager in "Chuck Versus the First Date". Jeff and Lester, of course, are two of the interviewees.
** Emmett Millbarge also has one in "Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer." Again, any montage where the interviewees include Jeff and Lester are going to be this.
** Chuck's search for a job in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary". Inverted in that it is the ''interviewers'' who are bad, but only because of CIA sabotage.
* ThereIsOnlyOneBed: When Chuck and Sarah go on the run in "Chuck Versus the Colonel", and Chuck offers to sleep on the motel floor. Invoked by Sarah when they get arrested and Chuck mentions he'd like to share a two-bedroom cell with her, and she points they'd only need one.
* ThisIsNoTimeForKnitting: In the pilot, the main characters are trying to defuse a bomb that is attached to a computer. When nothing else works, Chuck remembers a computer virus he was talking about earlier that is spread by porn sites. So he logs onto the computer and accesses the porn site, eliciting this type of cry.
* ThisIsReality: In "Chuck Versus the Anniversary", Chuck tells Morgan that this is not the opening to a TV show.
* TooDumbToLive: The Fulcrum agent in "Chuck vs. Santa Claus". Seriously, what did he ''think'' Sarah was going to do when he taunted her--at length--about how there was no way to stop him from revealing Chuck's identity to Fulcrum?
* TranquillizerDart:
** Every time tranquillizers are used, unless the victim is [[{{Badass}} Casey]]. When they have to tranquilize Jeff and Lester, Lester goes down instantly but Jeff takes multiple darts and a few minutes to lose consciousness. Jeff is a bigger guy and his past drug use made him more resistant.
*** When they use tranquillizer darts on hard-partying rock star Tyler Martin in "Chuck Versus the Third Dimension," he wakes up almost immediately even though the darts should have knocked him out for several hours.
* TrueLovesKiss: In "Chuck Versus the Goodbye", Morgan is convinced that this [[spoiler: is an effective way for Chuck to get Sarah to remember the past five years after having memories of said years being wiped out. Chuck brings up Morgan's theory to Sarah and she invites it. While we're not given a definitive answer, given what comes before it, the kiss restoring Sarah's memories to normal is a distinct possibility]].
** You can argue that [[spoiler:the fact that Sarah invited the kiss in the first place is the important part, regardless of whether or not it worked]].
* TruthSerum: "Chuck Versus the Truth", as well as the Liar Liar example above.
* TwoWayTapping: * One episode had Chuck accidentally reveal the bug he'd planted when he got tired of a love interest's friend bashing him and snarkily said that he makes ''twelve'' dollars an hour, okay?
* TwoWords: "Chuck Versus the Dream Job":
-->'''Lester''': [=NextExpo=].\\
'''Jeff''': That's one word.\\
'''Lester''': Stop counting.
* TyrantTakesTheHelm: Emmett Milbarge at the Buy More in "Chuck Versus the First Kill".
* TheUnreveal:
** In "Chuck Versus the Cougars," we unfortunately do not get to find out [[spoiler: Sarah's real name]].
** In "Chuck Versus the Fake Name," [[spoiler: Sarah's real name is revealed to be Sam]].
* UnwinnableTrainingSimulation: [[spoiler: The opening of "Chuck Versus the Pink Slip"]].
* VanityLicensePlate: DEMORGAN in "Chuck Versus the [=DeLorean=]"
* VictoriasSecretCompartment: In "Chuck Versus the Other Guy", Sarah reaches into her neckline and pulls out a switchblade knife.
* ViewerStockPhrases: If you watch ''{{Chuck}}'', you might've said some of the following things once or twice....
** "This show is actually pretty good."
** "How does he (Chuck) manage to survive these episodes?" -- Chuck sometimes gives off the aura of being TooDumbToLive. But the RuleOfFunny makes this okay.
** "Female villain. Yay!" -- This series ups the MsFanservice by casting a lot of cuties as villains.
** "That was freakin' cool! Made no sense, but whatever...." -- RuleOfFunny / RuleOfCool rules this show.
** "Get off his back already." -- Chuck is TheHero and TheWoobie. No word on whether this was intentional.
** Or thought something along the lines of: "Holy crap, a reference to ! [[{{Squee}} Nerdgasm!!!]]"
** You're probably saying "Please! Please! Don't cancel it!"
** After NBC performing a kind of NetworkToTheRescue and not canceling it in spite of its low ratings -- "{{Squee}}!!!".
* VillainousBreakdown: In "Chuck Versus the Family Volkoff", Alexei Volkoff [[spoiler:fakes one while playing a deadly chess game, then does it for real (and much more calmly) when Vivian betrays him]].
* WaifFu: Normally, this is '''not''' how Sarah fights. However, when she's going toe to toe with [[http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0003817/ Michael Clarke Duncan]]?
* WakingUpElsewhere:
** In "Chuck Versus the Nacho Sampler," Manoosh repeatedly wakes up in what he believes is Sarah's bedroom, when in fact it's actually a disguised holding cell in Castle.
** In "Chuck Versus Bo," Jeff and Lester find themselves crashed in a stolen car in the middle of nowhere, trying to figure out how they got there. [[spoiler:Repeatedly, because they keep discovering Carmichael Industries]].
** At the end of "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train," [[spoiler:having her memories wiped out due to Quinn forcing her to flash repeatedly, Sarah wakes up sometime later in her old apartment--which is now unfamiliar to her--and is then commanded by Quinn to kill Chuck]].
* WhamEpisode: One season of Chuck can cram in two or three seasons' worth of plot and twists, so there are a lot of these.
** Season One has "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami."
** Season Two may be a good example of a season laden with {{Wham Episode}}s:
*** "Chuck Versus the Fat Lady"
*** "Chuck Versus Santa Claus"
*** "Chuck Versus the Suburbs"
*** "Chuck Versus the Lethal Weapon"
*** "Chuck Versus the Dream Job"
*** "Chuck Versus the Colonel"
*** "Chuck Versus the Ring"
** Season Three:
*** "Chuck Versus the Beard"
*** "Chuck Versus the Tic Tac"
*** "Chuck Versus the American Hero"
*** "Chuck Versus the Other Guy"
*** The two-parter, "Chuck Versus the Subway" and "Chuck Versus the Ring, Part II"
** Season Four:
*** "Chuck Versus the First Fight"
*** "Chuck Versus Phase Three"
*** "Chuck Versus the Balcony"
*** "Chuck Versus the Push Mix"
*** "Chuck Versus Agent X"
*** "Chuck Versus The Last Details"
*** "Chuck Versus the Cliffhanger" and oh boy, what a cliffhanger it is!
** Season Five. Just because it's the show's final season, doesn't mean the show hasn't let up with the Wham:
*** "Chuck Versus the Bearded Bandit"
*** "Chuck Versus the Hack Off"
*** "Chuck Versus the Curse"
*** "Chuck Versus the Santa Suit"
*** "Chuck Versus Bo"
*** "Chuck Versus the Bullet Train"
*** The two-part series finale episodes "Chuck Versus Sarah" and "Chuck Versus the Goodbye"
* WhatDoTheyFearEpisode: "Chuck Versus the Aisle of Terror"
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Very minor one in "Chuck Versus the Leftovers," in which [[VillainsOutShopping the villain of the episode is playing a game of Charades]]. Although the correct answer is never disclosed on screen, WordOfGod [[http://twitter.com/JoshSchwartz76/status/9456110339629056 states]] that the answer is LawrenceOfArabia.
* WheresTheFunInThat: "Chuck Versus First Class":
-->'''Chuck:''' The review's about me? Shouldn't Shaw be asking me about me?\\
'''Casey:''' Where's the fun in that?
* WholePlotReference:
** WordOfGod states that "Chuck Versus the Seduction" is the Chuck take on ''MyFavoriteYear''. Both plots feature rookies meeting highly-respected members of their fields who are now drunk wash-outs, the senior teaching the junior on how to seduce the girl of their dreams, a scene where the junior chews the senior on how great he once was, and a swinging-in-from-above rescue scene.
** "Chuck Versus the Ring" is pretty much ripped off, soup to nuts, from the 2003 remake of ''The In-Laws''.
** "Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover" is a tribute to ''{{Casablanca}}''.
** In what is either intentional or a very very big co-incidence, the episode ''Chuck Versus the Baby'' has a startling similarity to the Miranda Lawson loyalty mission from the game ''VideoGame/MassEffect2''. Miranda is [[InkSuitActor modeled after and voiced by]] Yvonne Strahovski. They both involve a child taken by Sarah/Miranda at a young age, it being put into a safe place that isn't with Sarah/Miranda, operatives of the person who wants the child back attempt to take it back, and this is foiled by the character and their main partner (in Miranda's case the partner is Shepard, in Sarah's the partner is Chuck), and the child is safe. At the end, the child is introduced to Miranda/Sarah as their 'sister'. Finally, the little girl from Chuck has a pet dog named Rex, while one of the main character in ''Franchise/MassEffect'' is a huge ProudWarriorRace alien named Wrex.
** "Chuck Versus the Cougars" and ''GrossePointeBlank'' are both about professional assassins reluctantly attending their high school reunions after a long time out of touch, including dealing with the goons who show up without blowing their cover.
* WireDilemma
* WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief: "Chuck Versus The Honeymooners." It does NOT take a train two or three days to go from Paris to the Swiss border (the journey is closer to two or three hours), nor can you do it through the Gare Montparnasse (Paris-Switzerland is Gare de Lyon), nor can you go through France and Switzerland on the same train (you need to change at Geneva). Does Charah or anyone watching at home care? No. No they do not.
* WorkingTheSameCase: "Chuck Versus the Anniversary" features two plotlines: Chuck searching for his mother, and Casey and Sarah investigating an arms dealer. They cross paths.
** Frequently happens with Team Bartowski butting heads with {{MI6}}, to the point of a RunningGag.
* WorkingWithTheEx: In a second season arc, Chuck is forced to work with his ex-girlfriend Jill.
* WorstNewsJudgmentEver: "Chuck Versus The Wedding Planner". He fake-flashes on the name Artur Novokov who turned out to be a world-class terrorist. He tells Sarah that the story was bumped to page 13 because one of the Kardashians got her GED. ''Allegedly''.
* WrestlerInAllOfUs:
** Subverted in "Chuck Versus First Class": StoneColdSteveAustin plays a Ring agent, who is mentioned to be a specialist in "close quarters combat". Later in the episode, it turns out that he's an expert ''swordsman''.
** Also lampshaded in that, when Chuck and Hannah are speculating as to what he does, "professional wrestler" is brought up.
* XanatosSpeedChess: Chuck is forced to play against someone who's stolen the Cipher in "Chuck Versus the First Date." After walking into a trap with both Casey and Sarah across town, Chuck bluffs the bad guys and takes it away by using nothing more than his Charles Carmichael alias, Morgan on the phone confirming their Call of Duty strategy, and finally... running like a little girl.
* YouCalledMeXItMustBeSerious: Almost any time Chuck or Morgan call Captain Awesome by his given name, Devon, it's usually serious. In "Chuck Versus the Subway", Morgan can't get through to Awesome that [[spoiler: Ellie may be having an affair]] until he invokes his real name.
* YouSaidYouCouldntDance: Many times in the third season, thanks to Intersect 2.0 ("I didn't know I could!").
[[/folder]]

[[folder:'Chuck' Comics]]
* TheCameo: Dr. Zarnow, La Ciudad, "The Gymnast" and the Pita Girl all make appearances in the Threatmax prison, while all of the Buy More staff appear in the main story & several back-ups, Emmett only appears in ''Buy More Odyssey'' briefly.
* CaptainErsatz: The presidential candidate ''Brandon Obannon''.
* CompletelyMissingThePoint: Morgan, when Chuck describes his dream at the start of the series. Morgan's upset that he's the only one of the main cast not to appear in the dream, ignoring the fact that all of them (Except Jeff and Lester) are killed by a bomb planted by Jeff and Lester.
* DemotedToExtra: Ellie, Devon & the Buy More staff all suffer this in the main story, although the Buy More staff are the most prominent non-Team Bartowski characters. Devon & Ellie appear in ''two'' panels in the main story, only speaking in one of them. Perhaps justified in that the Buy More staff get two back-up stories with Chuck, Sarah & Casey being DemotedToExtra in those. However, three of the remaining four back-ups are Captain Awesome-centric, and Ellie appears in one panel across all three back-ups.
* ForkliftFu: Casey pulls this on [[spoiler:Tommy]]
* FilmNoir: The back-up story, [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Buy Noir]]
* GoofyPrintUnderwear : Casey [AGAIN!], after parachuting out of a plane
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: [[spoiler:Blaine's only revealed when fighting the real Obannon]] when he cuts Chuck off when he tries to tell Casey [[spoiler:which one's the real Obannon]] with the remark "With the badass old school roundhouse kick to the face! That's what!"
* MirrorMatch: [[spoiler:Presidential Candidate Brandon Obannon versus FULCRUM agent Blaine who has been turned into Obannon's physical copy]].
* MundaneMadeAwesome: Morgan's narration in ''Buy More Odyssey''. The story essentially amounts to Morgan's epic quest... to get a Grape Soda.
* ShoutOut:
** The series starts with Chuck having a dream reminiscent of ''[[GilligansIsland Gilligan's Island]]'', complete with Chuck referring to Big Mike as "Skipper" & the two of them wearing the appropriate headgear to take the roles of Gilligan & Skipper respectively.
** Jeff's worries over the planet being taken over by clones, with Chuck remarking it'd only happen in a "[[AttackOfTheClones Buy More far, far away...]]." and Lester asking if Jeff realizes ''StarWars'' wasn't a documentary.
** Chuck quotes the "Suntory Time" line from ''LostInTranslation'', before flat out explaining it's a line from the film when Sarah doesn't get it.
** Casey knocks a guy out with a fish. Chuck immediately remarks that it's used in the Jackie Chan film ''Project A II''.
** Casey bursting through a door with an ax and saying "[[Film/TheShining Heeeeeeerrre's Johnny!]]" Immediately lampshaded by Sarah, as she remarks about how long Casey must have been waiting to say that.
** Brandon Obannon quotes Muhammad Ali's "float like a butterfly, sting like a bee" after knocking out [[spoiler:his FULCRUM agent double]].
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: [[spoiler: Tommy from FULCRUM]] escapes from the Threatmax, and Team Bartowski chase him to Japan & Rio De Janeiro. However, after he eludes them in Japan, he doesn't appear again in the series & no mention is made of his recapture, with Team Bartowski being sidetracked into [[spoiler:stopping a plot to replace the likely winner of the 2008 Presidential Election with a FULCRUM agent]].
* YourPrincessIsInAnotherCastle: Many, many times.
[[/folder]]
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