Agent Superman gets himself in a bind to start this episode. By "bind," I mean that he gets trapped in a vault without oxygen. He needs Chuck to come in and flash on the computer system to save him before the oxygen runs out. Chuck does (with an assist from Hannah, who followed him to the Nerd Herd assignment). Agent Superman still needs the mask he was trying to get, so he sends Chuck and Hannah back there to fix the computers, while he and Sarah pose as a couple at the mask unveiling at the museum. It all goes wrong when Agent Superman sees a Ring guy whose face he burned off, and has to leave. So, Chuck has to join Sarah to complete the mission, totally abandoning Hannah just moments after she kissed him. They get the mask, but Hannah just wants to be professional with Chuck after that one. And, hey, can you blame her?
The bad guy sees Chuck kissing Hannah on the surveillance camera, so locks her in the vault to lure him back there with the mask. Unfortunately, Sarah and Agent Superman get themselves locked in Castle with the real mask, after accidentally setting off the chemical weapon inside it. Casey and Chuck head to the museum to save Hannah and get the counteragent to save Sarah and Agent Superman. Chuck manages to do both, but Agent Superman helps out plenty by carrying Sarah to the museum -- despite being poisoned himself. In the end, Team Bartowski tells Chuck they're just training wheels and will leave him on his own eventually. Then Chuck and Sarah have a heart to heart and let each other go to their new respective hotties.
Morgan and Ellie, who are still trying to figure out what's up with Chuck, find him making out with Hannah at the episode's end. Ellie's thrilled that his secret is a new girlfriend, but Morgan's pretty much broken-hearted. As Agent Superman gives Sarah a massage at Castle and tells him how safe he is, the Ring agent tells the Ring Tribal Council (or whatever they are) that he definitely saw Daniel Shaw. They tell him they'll do the same thing to Agent Superman that they're going to do to him. Then they shoot him in the head. This show sure knows how to leave us wanting more as we head into the Olympics hiatus.
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I know a lot of forum posters didn't like this episode, because they're die-hard Sarah-Chuck shippers and HATE Agent Superman and Hannah, or because they wanted more Casey, or because they miss Chuck interacting with his friends and family outside of his spy life. But I loved it. I think this show has really hit its stride, and I greatly prefer a genuine reason for a relationship not to exist (which Hannah and Agent Superman give us) than just having Sarah and Chuck stare at each other angstily all the time. And, heck, some of their interactions in this episode were cuter and more genuine than they ever have been. Plus, I love Agent Superman and Hannah -- and I think at least one of those relationships isn't exactly what it appears to be (and poster Teitr Styrr might just be a genius for discovering that Yvonne's given Sarah a tell when she lies, and that she used when she told Chuck she likes Shaw). Although I'll relent on the Casey issue: More, please. And I miss Chuck's family dynamic, too. They seem to really be focusing on his spy life this season, so new viewers probably wouldn't even get who the crazy people trying to figure out his secret are anyway. We've seen no reason this season to care about Ellie and Morgan in Chuck's life, and that's just not right. Maybe I'm just an apologist for this show, but I'm loving it as much as (almost) ever -- almost, because the last few episodes of season 2 were just amazing.
So, here are a few things Chuck wants us to know: Hannah got fired, but was happy to meet Chuck, so he offered her a job in Burbank. Morgan liked Hannah. Ellie and Morgan both thought something was up with Chuck and Awesome, so they decided to team up and figure it out. We open on spy music and Agent Superman in all black, including facemask and gloves. After glowering at a gold mask from above, he lowers himself by rope into a vault, but when he reaches out to grab the mask, his hanging mechanism starts to give out, and a nail falls. When it hits the ground in the vault, it sets off alarms. So he tries to reel himself back up (using a remote!) but the ceiling door shuts -- and, uh, why is there a ceiling door other than for burglars to break in and try to steal things? -- right as he gets to the top. So, he's basically stuck in there. What else to do, then, but take off your mask? Which makes me wonder what the point was of wearing it, since now is the time people might actually see him. Anyway, he doesn't seem panicky, and just mutters, "Perfect," then calls Casey on his arm thingy and asks him quite casually to please tell him the Intersect isn't busy...