Five years ago this Friday, on Jan. 27, 2012, NBC’s Chuck left viewers with a goodbye kiss — but was it “magical,” or a miss?
To recap, on this Throwback Thursday: Sarah entered the two-hour series ender (titled “Chuck Versus Sarah” and “Chuck Versus the Goodbye”) with amnesia, having briefly hosted the Intersect. And her husband’s initial efforts to reconstitute her memories and rekindle their romance came up empty.
The action-comedy’s very final scene (literally) mirrored one from its pilot, as Chuck, on a beach, implored Sarah to let him help her. To that end, Sarah asked Chuck to tell her their story — and he launched into a flashback-filled, “Rivers and Roads”-scored revisiting of the unlikely romance between Buy More nerd and bombshell spy. Chuck then shared BFF Morgan’s idea that with “one magical kiss,” he might be able to give Sarah’s memory the reboot it needs. “Kiss me,” she responded, smiling, leaving us with a liplock that either restored the pair’s “happily ever after”… or didn’t.
But it probably did. Officially, series creators Chris Fedak and Josh Schwartz declined to confirm the outcome, telling TVLine that night, “The ending has a bit of magic to it. People should believe in how they wanted it to end.” Series lead Zachary Levi, however, has been more bullish.
“So many fans were apoplectic,” Chuck’s portrayer notes in the TVLine video below, at the 6:30 mark. “The show for so long was about this romance… and for there to be even an outside chance that they were not [together in the end], people were really, really bummed. But I’ve always interpreted it as, ‘Absolutely Chuck and Sarah end up together.’ They’re on their way to falling in love again.”
TVLine readers gave the series finale at the time an average grade of “B+.” Ratings-wise, the two-hour farewell averaged 4.2 million total viewers and a 1.3 demo rating, rising week-to-week to season highs.
Rewatch the final scene above, then tell us how you, five years later, remember Chuck’s beach buss?