Team Bartowski | Buy More | The CIA and Other Spies | FULCRUM | The Ring | Volkoff Industries | Everyone Else
Beware of unmarked spoilers.
Portrayed by Matt Bomer
Chuck's old college buddy and roommate, Bryce is responsible for getting Chuck kicked out of college by framing him for cheating on a test - in truth, he was only saving Chuck from the spy life since he was already being scouted by the CIA. In the end, however, Bryce ended up sending the Intersect to Chuck and starting the whole chain of events as he only trusted Chuck with the Intersect.
Tropes Associated with Bryce:
- The Ace: Consistently portrayed as one of CIA's best. Even Chuck runs out of things to compliment him on.
- Arch-Enemy: Casey's. The two weren't very fond of each other before, but Casey shooting him and damn near killing him really soured it. Their immediate reaction to seeing one another is to immediately pull a gun and shoot to kill.
- Betty and Veronica: He and Chuck are this for Sarah. He is the cool, capable, and confident Veronica to Chuck's Adorkable Betty. She choses Chuck when she refuses to leave with at the end of Season 2, much to his dismay.
- Big Damn Heroes: His calling card - in almost all of his appearances, he ends up saving Chuck's ass.
- Bilingual Bonus: Like Chuck, he's also quite fluent in Klingon, if not more so as he comments that Chuck has gotten rusty. Yes, Bryce is so much The Ace that he even makes something as hilariously nerdy as speaking Klingon come off badass and efficient.
- Broken Ace: Like Sarah, he too feels like the CIA life ruined him as a person. He outright and utterly betrayed Chuck's friendship and trust so that he doesn't get roped into it.
- Cruel to Be Kind: The master of this. He framed Chuck for cheating on his exams, stole his girlfriend,note and got him kicked out of Stanford all in the hope that it'd prevent Chuck from getting dragged into the unscrupulous espionage world, afraid it would break his kind-hearted friend.
- Foil: He and Chuck were very similar in both skills, background and personality in Stanford and despite outward appearances are surprisingly similar in their geeky interests, taste in women, and Undying Loyalty. It wouldn't have been hard for them to both end up in the same place, however, Bryce always had the will to do what he felt needed to be done and make the hard calls whilst Chuck was always too much of a Nice Guy. Interestingly, the show makes it clear that Bryce's way of doing things isn't necessarily a good thing; it ruined Chuck's life.
- Guile Hero: He plays Chuck like a harp.
- Heartbroken Badass: He loves Sarah but she falls for Chuck. When he realises she intends to stay with Chuck in the Season 2 finale he lets her go but is clearly still in pain. He never really has the chance to get over it before The Ring has him unceremoniously killed.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Is killed by Miles just before he had a chance to destroy the Intersect 2.0 as a final request to Orion.
- Hollywood Nerd: He protected the Intersect images with a password inspired by Zork, plays EverQuest, and speaks fluent Klingon. It's their shared passion for geeky subjects that helped him and Chuck bond at Stanford
- Innocently Insensitive: When he reunites with Chuck he questions why the ambitious friend he remembered is now working a dead-end job and still living with his sister, not realising that getting Chuck kicked out of Stanford is what crushed all self-confidence Chuck had. To his credit, after realizing he's the cause of Chuck's misery, he never teases him about his situation from then on and even tries to show an interest in how Chuck's day working at Buy More was in "Chuck Versus the Break-Up".
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He comes off cold and aloof at best, a total dick at worst. But underneath that he's a good person at heart. He got Chuck kicked out of college by framing him for cheating on a test, but he actually did that to protect Chuck; the CIA was going to recruit him and he didn't think Chuck was suited to that life so he got Chuck expelled to make them think he wasn't qualified.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: That he survives his seemingly fatal shooting in the pilot.
- Love Is a Weakness: An interesting case, he clearly loves Sarah but his The Needs of the Many mentality means that he won't let it get in the way of saving the world and doing the right thing. However, when he finally realises that Sarah is in love with Chuck he warns her that her feelings could jeopardize national security because he doesn't trust her to choose her duty over Chuck.
- Love Triangle: Is trapped in one with his ex-partner, Sarah, and his ex-best friend, Chuck.
- Moment Killer: Bryce is a walking, talking cockblock.
- Mr. Fanservice: It's Matt Bomer. Of course they're gonna put him in sharp outfits and take his shirt off at least once.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Has a minor one when Morgan makes him realise getting Chuck kicked out of Stanford inadvertently ruined his life, for which he's genuinely apologetic for.
- The Needs of the Many: "Chuck Versus the Break-Up" is the one time he's willing to leave Chuck to get captured - and possibly killed - by a FULCRUM agent so he can stop a microchip containing the secret identities of everyone on the Intersect project from falling into FULCRUM's hands. It's clear he'd rather save them both but prioritising the microchip over his friend is another thing that sets him apart from Chuck and Sarah who follow a No One Gets Left Behind way of working.
- Only Friend: Tragically, how he views Chuck, as he is the only person in the world he will always unquestionably trust to be a good person and do the right thing.
- Poisonous Friend: Bryce is/was Chuck's friend. However, Bryce has spent the last few years being a professional spy which has left him willing to do things that Chuck would never even consider.
- Romantic False Lead: He was Sarah's main love interest for the first two seasons, until he was Killed Off for Real in the Season 2 finale.
- Undying Loyalty: Love and loyalty for the country is fine and all, but Bryce's loyalty will always be to Sarah, Chuck and most of all Orion.
- Unknown Rival: The sudden and chaotic nature of his return in Season 1 means he doesn't realise until "Chuck Versus the Break-Up" in Season 2 that he is competing with Chuck for Sarah's affection.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Sacrificed his friendship with Chuck to give Chuck a chance at a normal life. That said he still very much loves him like a brother and tries to look out for him.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Upon finding out that stealing the Intersect was a FULCRUM-issued mission (while he was already well into it), he makes a last-ditch effort to preserve it by sending it to Chuck before Casey can stop him.
Stephen J. Bartowski / Orion
Portrayed by Scott Bakula
Chuck and Ellie's estranged father, he is later revealed to have been a CIA spy, engineer, and creator of the Intersect - codenamed Orion. After discovering what the Intersect was truly capable of, he abandoned Chuck and Ellie to protect them from Fulcrum and The Ring.
He was later shot and killed by Daniel Shaw.
Tropes associated with Stephen:
- Actor Allusion: Done twice in Stephen's first appearance.
- A very familiar Catch Phrase shows up quite early in the episode.
- A meta example occurred in the network lead-in to the episode, done by Bakula in which he mentions feeling like he's "been here before." Quantum Leap aired on NBC (though regrettably for the reference, never on the Mondays at 8pm Eastern Time slot Chuck occupied at the time).
- The Atoner: He feels really bad about abandoning his kids.
- He also seems to have spent years trying to atone for turning his best friend, Hartley Winterbottom into the ax crazy arms dealer Alexei Volkroff, and convincing his wife (a CIA agent) to go rogue to look after him.
- Badass Bookworm: The man was on the run from the government and Fulcrum for ten years and regularly kicks the crap out of secret agents.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Eccentric and little air-headed, certainly, but no less capable.
- Catch Phrase: "Aces, Charles".
- Disappeared Dad: A good chunk of the show's drama is Chuck and Ellie coming to terms with his leaving them when they were young, and that was after their own mom left. He needed to run to protect them from Ted Roark.
- I Always Wanted to Say That: "This disk will self-destruct in 5 seconds".
- Ironic Nickname: Orion the Hunter yet he has spent most of his adult life being the hunted.
- Makes more sense with the backstory revealed in season four. Seeing how he spent years keeping track of his best friend Hartley, (AKA Alexei Volkroff) who he accidentally turned into an ax crazy arms dealer, and his wife, who took it upon herself to look after Hartley.
- Killed Off for Real: Courtesy of Daniel Shaw.
- Minored in Ass-Kicking: He's a Techno Wizard first and foremost, but can most definitely hold his own in a fight. He knocked out and incapacitated Vincent and his goons without much effort, and it's implied he had to do this regularly while on the run.
- Omniscient Database: A beta version of the Intersect is in his head. When we see his flashes, the images move much more slowly than they do when Chuck flashes.
- Properly Paranoid: He thinks that "the bastards are watching [his] every move". He says that in a room with Sarah, and he's completely right.
- Of course he knew Sarah was CIA all along, and only allowed her to find him in the first place because he allowed her to.
- Techno Wizard: Whether it's a computer, a phone or a microwave, there's NOTHING this guy can't do with technology.
Portrayed by Tony Todd
Graham was the Director of the CIA, and the direct supervisor of the Intersect Project, along with Sarah's superior. He recruited Sarah when she was in high school after he apprehended her father for conning a dangerous individual - claiming he saved them both. It is assumed he is the only other person to have known Sarah's real full name.
He was killed at the beginning of Season 2 after the rebuilt Intersect was sabotaged by Fulcrum.
Tropes associated with Graham:
- Actually Pretty Funny: A Jerkass who is always a Consummate Professional, he's nevertheless amused when he receives a Fedex package from Chuck... with a priceless diamond used to fund terrorism just bouncing around inside.
- Da Chief: The director of the CIA.
- Jerkass: He's essentially Beckman without any of the sympathetic qualities.
- Killed Off for Real: Dies in an explosion in the Season 2 premiere.
- Manipulative Bastard: If his interactions with Sarah were any indicator, he's very fond of using emotional blackmail to get people to do what he wants.
- The Mentor: He mentored Sarah in the CIA, after her father got arrested.
- Mission Control: Shared this role along with Beckman in season 1, giving the agents their briefings on the mission of the week.
- Posthumous Character: He plays a role in the story even after his death, since his actions played a large role on why Daniel Shaw joined the Ring, as he was the one who arranged the hit on Eve Shaw.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Graham was supposed to have survived longer than intended, but his death came about due to Tony Todd appearing on 24 that same year.
- The Stoic: Has a perpetual poker-face that he only shed twice: When Chuck mailed him a priceless diamond in a Fedex box, and when he was blown up by FULCRUM.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Seems to have this attitude even more than Beckman. The only thing that saved Chuck's life was Graham's own demise - and the destruction of the Intersect with him.
Portrayed by Jonathan Cake
Barker is a MI6 agent who infiltrated the ranks of Fulcrum as one of their top operatives - only to have his cover blown by Chuck & crew after a case of mistaken identity. Throughout his stay in Castle, some static was caused between him and Chuck, with Barker shamelessly hitting on Sarah at every chance he got. Regardless, he proved he was ultimately a good guy, and a dependable agent.
Tropes associated with Barker:
- The Ace: Like Bryce, Cole is pretty much good at everything.
- Big Damn Heroes: Twice he takes a bullet to save Chuck and Sarah.
- The Charmer: Every second sentence he says to Sarah is a pick-up line. Even Casey is impressed with his attempts to seduce Sarah.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Was on the receiving end of so many of these, he's developed a case of Too Kinky to Torture.
- Deadpan Snarker: Half of his dialogue is snark, especially when he's being tortured.
- Extreme Libido: He is confident in his sexual prowess and is eager to sleep with beautiful women. When he learns he'll have to stay overnight in Castle with Sarah he automatically pushes their beds together in plain view of everyone and tells Chuck he intends to "butter that muffin."
- Graceful Loser: Very calmly accepts that Sarah's loyalties and affections lie with Chuck, to the point of even giving Chuck some advice regarding pursuing her.
- Guns Akimbo: Takes on a helicopter of bad guys with this to save Sarah.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Wears a leather jacket in "Chuck Versus the Lethal Weapon".
- Humble Hero: A big deal out is made out of the fact he took out nine FULCRUM agents after enduring Cold-Blooded Torture. He later reveals it was actually twelve but he didn't want to boast about it.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Comes off like a womanizing wanker, but he's a very good friend to have nonetheless.
- Made of Iron: Torture, gunshots, drugs, nothing slows or stops this man.
- Mr. Fanservice: He is shirtless for the majority of his scenes and is the eponymous "beefcake" for "Chuck Versus the Beefcake"
- Not in the Face!: Very dryly asks a man torturing him to at least not punch him in the face.
- Odd Friendship: After a bit of initial static with Chuck regarding Sarah, the two have surprisingly learned to get along and work together rather well. Cole himself seems particularly fond of Chuck; both times he got shot he was more worried about Chuck's well being, even though Chuck's current injuries weren't nearly as serious.Cole: "Just doing my job, General. Actually, Chuck showed great courage on this mission. He got injured in the line of duty."
Casey: "He got clipped by a window sill. It's as pathetic as it sounds."
- Quintessential British Gentleman: A lecherous, suave Anti-Hero variation.
- Running Gag: He unintentionally starts one of the shows most reoccurring ones by giving Chuck an innocent bit of advice on how to take down an assailant.Cole: "Always go for the knee."
Chuck: "You mean like "sweep the leg?""
- Taking the Bullet: He takes a bullet for Sarah, fired by Duncan, the enemy agent who tortured him. He later also takes a bullet for Chuck when they tracked down Perseus.
- Undercover Cop Reveal: Introduced as a FULCRUM agent, he is later revealed to have spent the last eighteen months undercover within their organization to obtain vital information in taking them down.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: Has a lot with Sarah, their first encounter has them in an UST-filled fight with him shirtless while she was wearing Black Bra and Panties.
Mary Elizabeth Bartowski / Frost
Portrayed by Linda Hamilton
Mary is Chuck and Ellie's mother. She disappeared when they were children, leaving Ellie to raise Chuck after Stephen left as well. She first appears in "Chuck Versus the Anniversary" where she is a prisoner of Marco, an agent of Volkoff. She escapes, effortlessly killing her captors. Though at first its a mystery as to who she's working for and who she's loyal to, the one thing that's clear is that she does not want to hurt her family.
Eventually it's revealed that her original mission of infiltrating Volkoff Industries is still her primary goal, due to her husband's Intersect project being responsible for turning the previously harmless Hartley Winterbottom into the Axe-Crazy Alexei Volkoff.
Tropes associated with Mary:
- Action Mom: Chuck and Ellie's mother, and one of the show's premiere ass-kickers.
- Back for the Finale: She was absent for most of the final season, only showing up in the final episode.
- Deep Cover Agent: Was this for years in Volkoff's Industries, to the point she became Volkoff's The Dragon, all to keep her family safe.
- HeelFace Revolving Door: Betrayals and double-crosses are her forte, but she will always protect her family.
- Mama Bear: Do not even THINK of hurting her family. Even Volkoff has to be on guard when she was her mama face on.
- Parental Abandonment: Abandoned her children and Stephen to wedge herself deeper into Volkoff's operation. She considered it an obligation and guilt out of what she and her husband did to him.
- Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You: Her Parental Abandonment of Chuck and Ellie was due to her being a Deep Cover Agent for Volkoff so she could protect them from a monster she and Stephen created. She says she made an effort not to know anything about them in order not to reveal anything if she's ever caught or was tortured.
Portrayed by Mini Anden
One of Sarah's old spy buddies (they were part of a four-woman team called the CAT Squad), Carina is a spy who is equally comfortable with either kicking ass or seducing unwitting marks.
Tropes Associated with Carina:
- Accidental Misnaming: It's a Running Gag that Carina never refers to Morgan by his name and always calls him "Martin". It later turns into an Affectionate Nickname after she knows better.
- Action Girl: Carina is able to hold her own in a fight against Sarah.
- Badass in Distress: She's made a hostage by "her husband" after Chuck blows her cover.
- Big Damn Heroes: Pulls one in the Season 4 finale.
- Classy Cat-Burglar: Not as classy as some examples, but she is a master thief when one is needed.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: She genuinely seems to have a crush for Morgan in Season 4, but doesn't handle it too maturely when Morgan keeps proving to her that he loves Alex. She gets over it eventually.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Towards Morgan. Originally she couldn't even remember his name, and shows very little respect for him. She warms up to him significantly after he stands up to her, and even sleeps with him.
- Femme Fatale: Her main modus operandi is seduction. She's so good at it that she's even able to get Casey to drop his guard, even when he's completely aware of her intentions. She's done this TWICE.
- The Gadfly: She loves messing with people, Casey, in particular, seems to be her favorite target.
- Indy Ploy: She's prone to improvising or coming up with plans on the fly, much to Sarah's and Casey irritation.
- Honey Trap: Her Heroic Seductress skill makes this her specialty. Her second appearance even has her Marrying the Villain of the Week, as part of her assignment.
- Ms. Fanservice: She is a Head-Turning Beauty and spends a lot of her appearances in her underwear, swimsuits, and sexy cocktail dresses, and very much uses her appearance to advantage.
- Noodle Incident: Her and Casey had an "incident" in Prague that never gets elaborated on, but it apparently involved her sleeping with him and leaving him Chained to a Bed.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: When she and Sarah first talk in "Chuck Versus the Wookiee", Sarah asks her what her current cover is and she answers "Carina", which implies that Carina might not be her real name.
- Rejection Affection: She takes an interest in Morgan when he turns her down after she plays him one time too many.Carina: No one ever said "no" to me before...
- Sex Goddess: Casey is very willing to sleep with her, despite being fully aware she's playing him. Morgan is shown to be overwhelmed after sleeping with her.
- Sexy Scandinavian: She seems to share her actress's Swedish background, as Morgan calls her "almost six feet of pure Swede".
- Shipper on Deck: For Sarah/Chuck. She's the first person that tells Chuck that his feelings for Sarah aren't one-sided.
- Sleeps in the Nude: Morgan is shocked to find her sleeping naked in his bed when she visits Chuck and Sarah for their engagement part, all wrapped up in his goofy bedsheets.
- Statuesque Stunner: She's a Head-Turning Beauty and very tall, as her actress is 5' 10".
- The Tease: She acts flirtatious even outside of her spy life, apparently just enjoying getting a rise out of men.
- Unrequited Love Switcheroo: In her first appearance Morgan is a Hopeless Suitor to her. In her second she sleeps with him just for having the gall to say "no" to her, and in her third appearance she tries hooking up with him again but he turns her down since he's in a relationship with Alex.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: She had no qualms double-crossing Sarah to make herself look better to the government.
Greta / Richard Noble / Victoria Dunwoody
An agent(s) under Beckman's direct orders who is stationed at the rebuilt, CIA-run Buy More. Many different individuals assume the identity of Greta, for mission ambiguity and other...unclear purposes.
Eventually, it is revealed that the Gretas were candidates for a new NCS project in which they were candidates vying to be new Intersect Agents. Greta-2 and Greta-3 and became the first members of this program, before a nearly catastrophic disaster resulted in the program being taken under Chuck's lead, and the two Gretas are subsequently de-Intersected.
Tropes Associated with the Gretas:
- The Ace: The Greta agents are some of the CIA's finest, but it's taken to absurd levels with Greta 3. He makes being a Buy More employee look awesome.
- Actor Allusion:
- Ax-Crazy: Greta 4 is a little too kill-crazy, though to be fair, she was aiming for Jeff and Lester. And they were being way more obnoxious than usual.
- Emotionless Girl: Greta 1 doesn't display any emotion aside from vague disdain towards Morgan flirting with her.
- Guttural Growler: Greta 4 has a mean grunt, though not quite as impressive as Casey's as demonstrated in their grunt-off.
- Head-Turning Beauty: A trait shared by all agents. Many people at the Buy More are seen Eating the Eye Candy whenever they're around. Lester and Jeff actually start becoming suspicious of how they always have hot new employees named Greta.
- Knife Nut: Greta 4 really likes her knife, being seen wickedly sharpening it while giving Death Glares to people.
- Legacy Character: There are four of them.
- Mr. Fanservice: Greta #2 is just as ridiculously attractive as the last one, to the point that even Morgan is into him.
- Ms. Fanservice: All the female Gretas are played for fanservice.
- Greta 1 is introduced in a Sexy Walk with a slow pan up her rather nice stems.
- Greta 3 gets a similar Feet-First Introduction that gives a slow pan up to her figure.
- Greta 4 also has the obligatory pan up shot of her body when Jeff and Lester are stalking her around the But More, and she also gets a scene with her Erotic Eating a subway sandwich.
- No Name Given: Of the four Gretas, two are eventually named: Isaiah Mustafa's Greta-2 (Richard Noble) and Stacey Keibler's Greta-3 (Victoria Dunwoody).
- Not So Stoic: Greta 4 is the only Greta that ever breaks the façade in the Buy More. It seems not even a spy trained to control their emotions can deal with the annoyance that is Jeff and Lester.
- Omniscient Database: Agents Noble and Dunwoody had access to the Intersect 2.0.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Greta 4 is a master of this. Lampshaded by Lester who gets suspicious about her repeatedly disappearing into thin air. She even scares Morgan by doing this at one point. Casey later makes up a story to Lester and Jeff that she was a thief that was using old walkway behind the walls in the HTR for electrical repairs.
- Twofer Token Minority: The One Guy is also the only African-American.
- What Could Have Been: Olivia Munn's incarnation of Greta was intended to have been a recurring role, however other commitments forced her to reluctantly drop out after her first appearance. It was then decided to rotate different actors into the role each appearance rather than drop the character.
Portrayed by John Laroquette
Was one of the best spies in the US government and known for his legendary exploits with the ladies, but is now....past his expiration date. Has a historical relationship with Gen. Beckman.
Tropes Associated with Roan:
- The Alcoholic: Loves his martinis far too much.
- Butt-Monkey: Beckman fully enjoys torturing him....by making his next assignment be a Buy More employee. That's not even the first humiliation he goes through.
- Broken Ace: Despite his reputation and abilities he's a Jaded Washout.
- The Casanova: For God and Country, there is no woman on the planet he won't have sex with.
- Cool Old Guy: Tries to be one, but it's clear his glory days are behind him.
- Leitmotif: "65 Bars And A Taste Of Soul" by Watts 103rd St Rhythm Band.
- The theme perfectly fits him, AND the song actually accompanies Chuck's intersect flash of him. Yes. His own personal theme song is inside the Intersect database.
- The Mentor: Roan taught his own class in seduction when he was in the CIA.
- Non-Action Guy: He has yet to display his spy skills aside from pointing his gun.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: So much so, he's never worn cotton in his life. He hates how the Buy More green shirt chafes.
Portrayed by Robin Givens
NCS Director in charge of the GRETA project to find field agents to imprint with the Intersect. After the project was scrapped, she was demoted to work directly under Chuck himself, much, much to her displeasure.
Tropes associated with Bentley:
- Defrosting Ice Queen: By the end, she warms up to Chuck and his unorthodox methods.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Subverted in that Chuck saves her when she was prepared to die.
- Jerkass: Casey calls her "...our Beckman but without the sparkling personality".
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: She's still loyal to her country, but getting on her good side is...challenging.
- Smug Snake: Is she ever. Or was anyway.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Despises Chuck and gleefully antagonizes him at every chance she gets. She finally gets over it after he saves her life.
Portrayed by Richard Burgi
Described as the CIA's toughest and most ruthless agent, Decker was hell-bent on getting rid of Volkoff and foiling Chuck. In the final season, along with a team of corrupt CIA agents, he was once more determined to destroy Carmichael Industries and eliminate Chuck, for rather mysterious reasons. Those reasons were blackmail: Daniel Shaw discovered traces of his corruption, and used it to blackmail him into acting as his lackey. He was killed by Verbanski.
Tropes Associated with Decker:
- Asshole Victim: Probably the most despicable character in the series. Absolutely no one wept for him when Verbanski blew his ass up. Even Shaw saw him as little more than a "slug" and a means to an end.
- Big Bad: Of the first half of the final season. Subverted. He's The Dragon to Shaw.
- The Dragon: To Shaw. Though he WAS blackmailed, he still very much enjoyed tormenting Chuck.
- The Dreaded: Has a fierce reputation as a serious task master - even Casey is wary of him.
- Hate Sink: Intensely unlikable and is an absolute bastard to pretty much everyone around him. Even Beckman despises him.
- Last Episode, New Character: Debuts as a major antagonist in the final episode of Season 4, and has a much bigger role throughout the final season.
- Manipulative Bastard: Uses every trick in the book to get what he wants.
- Smug Snake: Every bad thing he does, he does with glee and satisfaction. He really likes to gloat especially.