08 January, 2012

21-Days of CHUCK! Day 4: The Bracelet is Important!

Fans sometimes latch onto things that the writers only introduce with the intent to never reference again, but sometimes they become so important to the fans that they take on a life all their own.

Probably the most important piece of shiny CHUCK fans latched onto was an object mentioned in the title of this article. "The Bracelet." Specifically, and I shouldn't even need to define it, Mama B's bracelet that Chuck gave to Sarah for Christmas, in season 2 episode 11, while being held hostage by what they would later discover was a Fulcrum agent.

It wasn't just that he gave her the bracelet. It was when he did it, how he did it, and her reaction to receiving it. Plus, and this may be what elevated its importance in the hearts and minds of fans, it was their words to each other about its meaning. If he was giving it to her, it was because he considered her his girlfriend. And by accepting it, she was acknowledging it.

Oh shipper hearts were a flutter!

Sure, the bracelet would appear several times throughout the life of the show, and would become a small piece of importance in the next Christmas hostage episode 3-seasons later. But it never became for the writers what it did for the fans.

Another piece of Chuck fan lore that became crazy important to some was Sarah's "sister" that she mentioned as part of some sunbathing accident cover story, or something. Once Sarah said it, some fans became obsessed with the idea that Sarah had a sister. Eventually we did discover that Sarah had a "sister" but she wasn't actually related to her and was too young to have been the one she was talking about anyway, proving yet again that she never existed.

And how about Sarah's real name, or names? Her middle name is Lisa? Then, her first name is Sam? Suddenly fans needed to know her full name! Sam Lisa what? SAM LISA WHAT?! But the writers never told (at least they haven't as of this writing, with four episodes to go).

To a lesser degree, some Casey fans have spent a few years talking about meeting his mother, the one he was apparently talking to on his cell phone in the same episode Chuck gave Sarah "The Bracelet." For all we know, Casey was faking it and actually talking to a sex-line operator.

Not to mention, what happened to Morgan's mom that Big Mike apparently married? WE NEVER SAW HER AGAIN! HUH?! WRITERS?! HUH?!

I lost it there for a second.

What was your show obsession that the writers never paid off or referenced again? Anonymous posting is, as always, enabled.


53 comments:

  1. For all we know, Casey was faking it and actually talking to a sex-line operator... AKA GERTRUDE VERBANTSKI.

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  2. It's a rather recent item, but I'm not impressed with how they handled the Volkoff fortune inheritance. First was the way in which the large sum was initially handled, are we really supposed to believe they spent upwards of $50million or more? Secondly, after their names were cleared, the remaining money that had been seized wasn't returned. I assume it was done for plot purposes, it just didn't make sense to me.

    I was actually looking forward to the unbelievably wealthy spy team story line, but it, like so many other great Chuck story lines was far too short lived. I still love the show, just wish they would invest more time in the stories they develop because they are all so good!

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  3. You nailed it with the bracelet Magnus, as i said before i was very surprised when i read several reviews for Santa Suit and neither one mentioned the bracelet parallel(probably they didn't noticed or they didn't think it mattered)

    for me another nice use for the bracelet was in season3 when Carina discovered it in Sarah's jewelery box, that sort of reassured Chuck was still close to her hart

    as for the original scene from season2 in my opinion that was one of the most emotional charged scenes between Chuck/Sarah
    everything worked out flawless the moment,the lines,the actors performance

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  4. Yeah... it makes sense why the bracelet became so important. That is still one of the best Chuck and Sarah romance moments in the series. Maybe the best.

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  5. I remember Heather Chandler mentioning that she had worked on something called "Project Beacon" with agent Frost last season. At the time, I thought it was going to be important because it sounded kind of ominous and we still didn't know for sure whether Chuck's mom was a good or bad guy. I guess it was just one of those throwaway things, though, because it was never referenced again at any point in the season.

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  6. I took the bracelet as just a symbol that showed Chuck loved Sarah or was in a way telling her for the first time that he was in love with her. So why fans saw past that message is endearing but odd. She does not have to wear it all the time but as long as she kept it safe and close is all that should have mattered. Plus as a spy, it probably would not be wise to wear it on missions.

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  7. Gina, are you even a fan?! OF COURSE SHE HAS TO WEAR IT AND KISS IT AND KEEP IT SHINY AND GET A MATCHING NECKLACE!!!!!

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  8. I wish the prop guys had picked a nicer bracelet. The one they used is fugly. That's all I can think when I see it.

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  9. No obsession, but what font DID he choose for that five-year plan?

    Will we find out in the finale?

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  10. I think you just created a new obsession. What font indeed.

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  11. As it turned out the bracelet in season 2 was pretty good foreshadowing. It was on Sarah's wrist when she killed the Fulcrum agent, so it went from one killer woman in Chucks Life (his Mom) to another Killer in Sarah.....

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  12. You do bring up a good point, when chuck was on 12 dollars an hour (remember he only received his first pay check at the end of season 2) he took Sarah on dates and talked lots to her in a very sweet and mature way....but lately he has not done that or bought her jewellery or much else. I know the budget on this show is tiny but I did hope they could be a little better.

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  13. The bracelet scene was indeed one of the most romantic momemnts of the show. IMO, you can't even refer to it as a "shippery" moment, since probably even non-shippers got misty eyed a bit.

    Of the ones noted above, I would have to say that the way the "Sam" name reveal was done is easily my biggest disappointment in 5 seasons. How a piece of Sarah "backstory", that was set up ideally in Wookie, was f---ed up so bad, still leaves me shaking my head.

    Now thinking in the opposite direction one item the showrunners seem to attach a higher value to than the fans is the picture of C&S that Sarah kept on her nightstand. Apparently (although I never saw it that way), Sarah had already made her decision to leave with Chuck because that picture was on the nightstand (that was always a bit of a reach for me, but some saw it that way). The same picture reappears in Suitcase and is put to much better use.

    CM

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  14. I like the idea of the bracelet, but I always thought the actual bracelet looked like something a 5 year old would wear. Its like they didn't take much care in picking it out. Its cheap looking, but I realize its the meaning of it. Maybe they didn't think about the fact that they would show it again.

    Really, with all the little things that the writers never followed up on or explained, its a miracle we all love this show so much. I will chalk it up to the terrific characters and the actors who portrayed them.

    These questions might be off-tangent but..
    -What is Omaha?
    -Why did Graham say it was funny (or something like that) that Sarah Walker would be her new name? in vs. Cougars
    -Is Chuck's brain special or what? I was disappointed that they kept putting the intersect into people's brains and sometimes it worked, sometimes it had problems, sometimes the people instantly died. I wish they stayed with the idea that it slowly hurt you (like with Stephen B, like vs. Tooth)
    -the most recent one - why in the hell didn't Sarah's Mom demand that Sarah grow up with her?
    -And if you almost sleep with someone after pining for each other for over a year but were interrupted (motel wake-up), then immediately go thru some death-defying situations, then attend a rehearsal dinner as dates...what possible reason would their be that you wouldn't sleep together that night after the dinner!

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  15. It was Mama B's "charm bracelet" given to her by Papa B when Ellie was born. It should look kind of cheap. Charm bracelets aren't usually high end pieces of jewelry.

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  16. With all the little things that the writers never followed up on or explained, its a miracle we all love this show still to the bitter end. Now what is Sam Lisa's last name ? Larkin ? Did anybody notice when she was going through boy baby names Levi popped up. Hint, Hint. Spoiler ?

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  17. Yvonne and I already decided on the name. It isn't Levi.

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  18. Good old jonny the intern probably put that name on there for an inside joke :)

    Now all fans are going to go all AWWWWW.

    Hehe

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  19. Yeah, probably some AD tossed it in there.

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  20. I would be surprised if even Yvonne noticed, lol. Probably just focussing on delivering her lines. They could have put Adam, Josh, Ryan, Scott and Zach on there and I doubt she would have noticed.

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  21. I heard that Yvonne chose Sarah's real name Sam, so it would not surprise me if there were kids in a flash forward she would choose their names too.

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  22. Noticed what? She was most likely looking at a green screen. They don't have that shit on while they shoot the episode.

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  23. Of course! Screens reflect badly on camera so it probably was green screen. Duh!

    I totally forgot that.

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  24. Nothing is ever on when they shoot. Everything is done in post.

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. I have loved the charm bracelet from the beginning, but if they auction off the props, I would love to get Orion's computer or the TRON poster!

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  27. I'm still hoping they will explain the Omaha Project...

    And, did Mrs. Winterbottom ever see her son, Hartley, again?

    Sg

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  28. I've never found the bracelet to be a big deal. I absolutely loved the moment when he first gave it to her and the fact that they brought it up afterwards, but it was never a big point of obsession for me. On the point of its looks, in the moment he gave it to her, I didn't give a damn about how it looked. The moment was too sweet for me too give a crap. When they showed it afterwards, I noticed how crappy it is. I think they could've done better. I got a charm bracelet from my mother when I was 12 and it looked ten times better than that one.

    I agree with Lev. The only thing that has ever really constantly bothered me is the whole 'Oh, Chuck's brain is so special... But we won't ever tell you how!!' I especially thought about it when Shaw wanted the Intersect 3.0. And many many other episodes before that. So that has annoyed me quite a bit.

    Lindz

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  29. And some of the box labels in Stephen's basement suggested several storylines that were never referred to again.

    Sg

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  30. The Omaha Project.

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  31. The name thing still hurts me & is probably one of the biggest disapointments from the show for me. I remember what a big deal it was when she whispered her middle name and I always thought that one day she would tell him her first name and that would be a pivotal turning point in their relationship and at a time that would signal Sarah starting to be more open with Chuck. It would be this epic Chuck and Sarah moment that I was SO sure would happen someday. Boy was I wrong. To this day I still can't believe the writers wasted it on Shaw. Shaw!!!

    And now I'm also still confused on the name, and when she decided to fully stick with Sarah Walker. So she considers herself Sarah now. It's not Sam or Lisa or whatever. She's Sarah. I wish we had a speech from Sarah about how she wants to stay Sarah.

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  32. I think we were supposed to understand that once Sam became something "special" between her and Shaw, that it stopped being special to her. It became more of a taunting reminder of him. So, Chuck knows her as Sarah and that's who she wants to be.

    But yeah, it would have been nice to see that conversation, or some acknowledgement that she had gone through that thought process.

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  33. It is Sarah Lisa Bartowski. The reason she keeps Sarah is because Chuck said I love you Sarah Walker, not I love you Sam. So I guess Sarah made peace with her life and name a little knowing a good man loved her as is.

    As for all those files in Orions basement. The only one that mattered that could come back to haunt chuck and ellie was the volkoff ones. Other projects orion may have done could be seen as irrelevant because no actual personal connection existed between chuck and the other Orion enemies, but volkoff was personal. When Steven did that voice over telling chuck that his family had spies in them...he did not mean grand parents, etc, just their mom.

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  34. "When Steven did that voice over telling chuck that his family had spies in them...he did not mean grand parents, etc, just their mom."

    LOL! I love how confident you are. But they were definitely considering doing a whole family of spies story line.

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  35. Ok let me rephrase...they left it ambiguous enough that what Orion said...fitted with what mostly happened in season 4. The beauty of ambiguity...no exact right or wrong answers.

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  36. Ok here is a good question....how come network shows that do mythology or have serialised elements can drag season after season being so ambiguous or never totally answering question? Like this whole discussion about the bracelet....as you said the writers never considered the total impact.

    Cable shows are by design just so more tightly compartmentalised...ever question almost has an answer. I like lost, fringe and chuck but these three shows do leave a lot on the table and are incredibly ambiguous.

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  37. Because when cable shoots their seasons, they are usually 13 or less and are picked up for a whole season immediately. They can afford to do it because of the subscription fees they get from the cable providers.

    So, they can map out a full season arc from day one. They don't have to worry about back 9s and such (usually). Their seasons are split up into easier story telling pieces.

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  38. AND... they don't rely solely on ad revenue.

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  39. Oh, cool. I hope there is something networks can do to even the balance a little. Cable is killing it right now. In my top 10 most are cable:

    1) the wire
    2) mad men
    3) breaking bad
    4) bsg
    5) homeland
    6) justified
    7) lost
    8) quantum leap
    9) chuck
    10) lost

    No particular order.

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  40. It would have been nice to see the thought process from Sarah about her name.

    After she revealed it to Shaw it was never really brought up again was it? I guess the writers wanted to forget that it happened. I know I do.

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  41. It's pretty obvious to me from the context of "Chuck vs.The Alma Mater" that the Omaha Project was either a codename for the Intersect Project or an offshoot connected to it.

    After all, they were testing students for their ability to process images quickly. And Chuck got a great score. They were looking for people who would be good Intersects. That's what I got out of it when I watched.

    That's all it was.

    On "Family of Spies", I think that was one of the cards on Jeff's board.

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  42. Ahh. But as fans we will continue to torture the writers to the very end. Muhaha

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  43. "Ahh. But as fans we will continue to torture the writers to the very end. Muhaha"

    But the writers finished up their job even before the actors. So "torturing" them is the functional equivalent of standing in the street and ranting at a fire hydrant.

    Although come to think of it, yeah, that's probably exactly what fans will do.

    Jim

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  44. Yep... the writers have already moved on and don't give two shits.

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  45. After 27 so will we Magnus so no biggie : )

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  46. And are currently out of work. Muhahahaha torture.

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  47. I doubt it will take long for them to get back on the horse so to speak. Josh Schwartz is always starting new shows, I would not be suprised if Fedak starts a new show with him soon. We shall see, but good luck writers.

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  48. The new show will be called "Writers Block" the Chuck spin -off.

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  49. I had always thought Casey was talking to Beckman in code in that Christmas episode, but yeah, I'm totally on the "sexy chat with Gertrude" train now. ;)

    Cor

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  50. Now we know where Langston Graham sent Sarah before she met Chuck: www.imdb.com/video/hulu/vi2568068633/

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  51. yes bracelet, very very important, got so happy that they mentioned it again on this season!!! crazy me, clearly not just me!!!

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