For all of the questions in the past over whether or not it would continue, "Chuck" is a great TV series. It follows an average gamer/geek named Chuck Bartowski who is inadvertently drawn into the shadowy world of global espionage when an series of events end with him having a CIA supercomputer stuck in his head. Best described as a drama/comedy, the show follows Bartowski as he attempts to juggle his personal life with the spy game, which has been an increasing presence in his life through three seasons.
I spoke last week with Ryan McPartlin, who plays Chuck's brother-in-law Devon -- aka Captain Awesome -- on the show. This season has been an interesting one for Devon, as he's the first in Chuck's circle of family and friends to learn of his secret other life. McPartlin is just about to wrap shooting on this third season. During our interview he refused to spill any of his fictional brother-in-law's secrets, but he did promise that something big will go down.
"All I can is, a lot of s--t goes down." That's it. Interview over.
I kid, I kid. Of course there's more.
For McPartlin, there are a few key components that make the series, created by "The O.C." mastermind Josh Schwartz, work so well. "You have the guy finding himself, looking for love and not being able to actually realize what he yearns for. The comedic undertones, which are fantastic with the Buy More. And the danger of the spy life and the relationship stuff, how it's affecting everything."
"At the end of this year, without revealing too much, I've got to say it all just kind of blows up and blends together," he explained. "They may have to once again reinvent the show for season four."
Don't view "reinvention" as a negative thing. In truth, it's what has kept the show feeling fresh with each new season. "That's been the best part is that each year it's become like a whole new show with all new characters," McPartlin said. "It's a hard job for the writers and the creators of the show, but it's so satisfying to the audience because every year is epic."
He's also quick to praise the writers, people who so consistently rise to the occasion and prove that there are always surprising twists and turns a show like this can take. "I've gotta give our writers a lot of credit, because... we've been a bubble show, so every year they've had to just lay it all on the line because they don't know if we're coming back. But then when we do come back, or they order six more episodes, they go 'Oh s--t, now we've gotta come up with some big stuff again.' And they've been able to pull it off. We've got a lot of talented writers that they can pull that off."
I'm anticipating great things for the rest of this season of "Chuck," in which we've yet to see guest appearances from Fred Willard, Swoosie Kurtz and Christopher Lloyd. There will also be a return visit from Scott Bakula, who plays Chuck's dad. Make sure you tune in for the latest episode tonight at 8pm on NBC.