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After a so-so season opening, I am very relieved to see the team back on track with a truly awesome episode. To me, at least, it was also a bit of a relief to be spared more Buy More-time - I didn't miss it at all. This episode had it all - Awesome and Ellie being cute and wonderful, Chuck and Sarah growing closer again (I loved those agonizing gazes across the dancefloor) and Casey being badass as usual. :D
It was refreshing to see Chuck being quietly competent rather than a walking disaster area, and I really liked the conversations he had with his brother-in-law - allowing him to sound professional and competent, as well as bringing out the contrast between his in essence unsatisfying life and the down-to-earth happiness of Awesome and Ellie.
While Chuck should never lose his charming goofball personality, he has been putting his life on the line for three years (and has finally had six months of training) and I'm happy that it's allowed to show. A goal-oriented Chuck who - while still getting nervous - doesn't squeak or flap his hands is a much more attractive and believable character to me at this point in the series. His relaxed and utter trust in Sarah is also a point in his favour - here is a man who is not threatened by a strong woman, but is secure enough to lean back and enjoy the show, with an almost Modesty Blaise/Willie Garvin-ish feel to it. The whole episode was chock full of goodness, allowing all the characters to shine in their own special way, and the ending blindsided me completely. I can't wait for the next episode, and I sincerely hope they manage to keep up this level of excellence!