Chuck has had its share of great guest stars during its five-year run. But for fans of the NBC series and the network’s other underdog comedy, Community, perhaps no guest appearance has been more hotly anticipated than this Friday’s visit from Abed himself, Danny Pudi.
With Lester (Vik Sahay) in jail for trying to poison Jeff (Scott Krinsky) in the last episode, a space opens up at the Buy More that the Community scene-stealer aptly fills. “He comes in as a Nerd Herder to shake up the other Indian Nerd Herder whose name cannot be uttered apparently,” previews Joshua Gomez with a snicker, “[Lester is] kind of like Voldemort in that way.”
The fact is, the Buy Morons still have a soft spot in their hearts for the evil wizard, so they devise a scheme using Pudi’s character, Vali Chandrasekaren, to “lure Lester [back],” teases Sahay.
“They bring in a lesser brown guy to try to mimic the Lester game” and make him jealous, Sahay continues with a dismissive smile, before conceding, “Maybe it gets to me a little.”
Pudi fit in with the Chuck gang seamlessly. “He looks like he always worked at the Buy More when you see him in his Nerd Herd costume,” says Krinsky.
That’s probably because the part was written with the actor in mind.
As big fans of Community, executive producer Chris Fedak and the writing staff created a character that “only Danny Pudi could do,” says Fedak. “So instead of going, ‘Let’s reconceive this and make it a different person,’ [we thought] let’s try to get Danny Pudi to do it… And he came in, and he killed it. He’s so very funny.”