The Master of Expressions: Yvonne Strahovski’s Mastery of Sarah Walker Part 4

Did Chuck Really Accept Sarah Into His World Part IV

We have come to the next chapter of Yvonne’s mastery of Sarah Walker. Her ability to bring her character alive comes full throttle in Chuck vs the Nemesis.

The reason being is Bryce Larkin has return from the dead much to dismay of Chuck Bartowski and the fragile state that was Sarah Walker.

Larkin’s return will test the relationship of Chuck and Sarah, and it’s a test that will help shape the foundation of the relationship. It is a mere framing of the foundation. It’s not the concrete.

Bryce is alive

Sarah shocked face said it all

Larkin is alive, and Sarah has a lot going on in her mind. How can this be? How can Larkin be in the room in front of her? For the first time in her life Sarah doesn’t understand what is going on.

You can tell Sarah is bewildered

Meanwhile, Chuck has his own issues. Sarah did this to him.

Passionate Kiss 1His reaction would of course be one of pleasure because she kissed him, and if things weren’t compromised before. There  are no questions now.

Chuck calling Sarah to make a date

When Sarah returned to the Buymore to find Chuck, Sarah was a walking ghost, and nobody seems to notice. Chuck would not wait and asked her did she get his calls.

Sarah returns to the Buymore Sarah has fear in her eyesSarah has problem here, How does Sarah tell Chuck the man he hated was back from  the dead. It’s hard because she doesn’t  understand it either.

Sarah doesn't know how to tell Chuck about Bryce

When she does find the words to use. She just told him. “Chuck, Bryce is alive.”

Great acting from YvonneScenes like this really show how special Yvonne is as an actress. Her moments are natural and lifelike. She has given her character Sarah Walker life, and Chuck’s reaction to Bryce being alive?

Chuck has a problem now too

When they arrived at the facility where Bryce was being held. Both Chuck and Sarah are lost in this revelation. Nobody more than Sarah. She began to fall for Chuck, and now in the room in front of her was Bryce her former boyfriend. How can one live with this without cracking. A spy could because thats what they are trained to do.

Charah in a state of shock

Sarah has begun to change, and with that comes emotions that she has let come to the surface. Especially when it comes to Bryce. He was her first real relationship, and she never had that closure. She never thought she would see him again, and moved on. Bryce being back changes the game for her.

Bryze reunited with SarahSarah reunited with BryceI am sure in Sarah’s mind she never envisioned herself pointing her gun at Bryce. She never needed to think this day would come. Her job was to protect Chuck, but she also still was struggling with seeing Bryce in the flesh.

Especially, when she was in tears watching his casket be lowered into the ground. Chuck also has a hard time with this. He immediately questions why he sent the intersect to him.

So many questions than answers that this point.

Chuck has questions about the whereabouts of Bryce Chuck already is asking tons of questions. He is worried about himself, and completely oblivious to how Sarah is feeling about this.

Its difficult for her too Chuck

When Sarah entered Agent Mode, she becomes in attack mode. There is no sugarcoating she went from seeing a ghost to angry. There was still a lot to figure out and Chuck’s questions weren’t making it any easier.

Chuck: I think i can handle it from here. So, are you and casey gonna go after Bryce?

Sarah: No. Bryce is probably halfway around the world by now. It’s someone else’s job to find him.

Chuck: Sarah, this is Bryce Larkin we’re talking about here– your old flame, my old nemesis. We have to do something.

Sarah: We each have our own assignment.

Chuck:  Right. And i’m yours, so what What does this mean For us? Nothing.

Sarah:  You’re protected.

Chuck: No. For us. Our fake relationship– i mean, you and Bryce were You’re really not making this easy.

Sarah not going to make it easy

 Not until Ellie walked in on them, did Sarah say she was coming to Thanksgiving. In my arc article, The Truth about The Imported Ex Nemesis discussed the details about the return of Bryce and how it impacted character change.

While at Thanksgiving, Sarah knew something was wrong with Chuck, and her watching him while she was eating was like she was expecting Chuck to spill the beans.

She knows something is up with Chuck Sarah watching Chuck like a hawk Sarah already knows there is something wrongSarah knew something happened in the courtyard because Chuck was not the same person when he returned, but Chuck couldn’t keep his secret, and told her that Bryce Larking was in his Bedroom. I will reserve my feelings on this issue when the time comes.

When Sarah heads for the bedroom. How does one confront and ex Boyfriend presume dead. All the questions Sarah wanted to ask on her mind. Questions about his actions before he was shot by Casey.

Sarah does the best thing she could think of. She walked in gingerly. Prepared for anything.

Sarah  walking gingerly

Sarah suvvumbing to the power of Bryce

because your still in love with meBryce and Sarah kissing in Chuck's bedroomBryce still has it

 When Sarah walked into the bedroom, it would mark the first one on one conversation with Bryce since his return. The power he has over her is easily portrayed. She isn’t a girlfriend or agent. She is succumbing like prey for a predator. He wins in the end much to the chagrin of Chuck

Chuck worst nightmare continuesIt is understandable for Chuck to make a rash decision, and alert Casey that Bryce was in the bedroom along with Walker. It is a knee jerk reaction.

In the courtyard, Sarah knew Chuck saw because of Casey interfering with the conversation.  Here is where it gets good. Sarah is caught in the middle between two men. Two men she is quite fond of.

You saw Bryce Kiss me

No response from Sarah

A dejecyed Chuck

Chuck upset still with seeing Bryce and Sarah kissing, she asked “you saw Bryce kiss me, didn’t you.” She didn’t say she kissed him, but she never pulled away. It’s typical of Sarah to not take responsibility for her actions. She should of remembered whose room they were in.

It crossed the line in my opinion.  and it gets a even better response from Chuck.  Everything that happened at Stanford between Bryce and Jill in Chuck’s mind was reoccuring with Sarah. Bryce was taking his girl again.

The situation would only get worse once the three are in the same room.  Revelation will take place, and old feelings begin to arise.

They can see someone was in Casey’s apartment, and it would be Bryce.

Bryce inside Casey;s apartment

Sarah closing in

Again Bryce makes Sarah pull her gun on him. and they will learn about Bryce’s intentions when sending the Intersect and how Fulcrum kept him alive all for the computer in Chuck’s head.

So, the plan was to have Chuck flash on the agents assigned to extract Bryce, and if he didn’t flash then the agents would be CIA. It was a tough day for Walker

what a day for Sarah

Something happened in the store that questions Bryce’s love for Sarah, and it really started at the beginning of Nemesis. If your Bryce and you have a girlfriend, who thinks your dead. wouldn’t you have asked to see Sarah rather then Chuck, but as the episode unfolded.

In the bedroom, Bryce said “because your still in love with me.” He has not mentioned his love for her, and in the store when talking to Chuck. He said “I have only one friend in this store.” We know he was referring to Chuck

All Sarah can do is watch as these two men converse.

Sarah watching Chuck and Bryce Talk to each other

Chuck and Bryce being nice Sarah strugging with seeing them together

Sarah and Bryce have history, and he said to Chuck he only had one friend. Wouldn’t Sarah be considered a friend?

When Sarah and Bryce leave the Buymore, they have their one on one chat, and this time Bryce makes it about them. The ideal situation for Bryce.

Bryce asking Sarah about them

I have my assignment BryceWhen watching this scene, Sarah’s shock and awe  seemed to be wearing off. She is smiling and conversing with Bryce.  However, When Bryce asked her about the status of their relationship. Sarah acted like Agent Sarah.

We have our missionBryce: Are we good?

Sarah: Yeah, we’re clear.

Bryce:  No. Us.

Sarah: I thought you were dead, bryce.

Bryce” Come back with me.

Sarah: I have my assignment.

Bryce:  You were never good at this The saying your feelings part.

Sarah: Well, i don’t like to talk much.

While we know Sarah didn’t speak about her feelings with Chuck, it can be assumed that it would be Sarah’s character flaw. Apparently, she didn’t like talking about her feelings even with Bryce.

It is amazing how all three characters are the same. From what we learn about Bryce, we can see the hero in Chuck and framing Chuck to take the fall for cheating is very noble in protecting his friend.

Fast forward to after the fight scenes. Here is where Sarah’s emotions take shape.  while working with Bryce, she has that connection again. The fire that once burned for Bryce while trying to complete a mission. Something she will do with Chuck in season 3.

Feels like old times

but while things seem to be coming together between Sarah and Bryce. Sarah quickly was reminded of what kind of person Bryce can be when he shot Chuck in order to be able to take down Tommy.

shocked at seeing Bryce shoot Chuck in the chestAfter dealing with this latest act from Bryce and Chuck, Sarah realized she has feelings for both men. A decision had to be made because Bryce used a code phrase only Sarah would be able to understand. “We will always have Omaha.” As you can see Sarah is torn, and Yvonne demonstrates it perfectly.

Torn Sarah Do I stay or do I goAll the training in the world can’t deliver emotions like Yvonne can. I am in awe in how natural everything looks. Sarah is torn. She is going to need to make a decision we all know this, and while she may still have feelings for Bryce. Her heart belongs to Chuck.

She told him so in the car, its why when faced with the choice between Chuck and Bryce, and might I add a great job done by the creative team with the metaphor.

making real life decisions can be hard  Agents don’t have to make decisions. They follow orders, the orders make decisions for them. When Sarah was faced with a real life problem. Orders can’t save her. Her agent persona can’t save her. Two men, who want her for themselves, and the only one who can make the decision for her is herself, and Yvonne helped show the heartache Sarah was going through.

If you have any questions about Sarah’s feeling towards Chuck must see this episode in order to better understand. This is a very convincing response to that question. It is why this arc was used to establish Sarah’s feelings for Chuck.  She could of left with Bryce. The agency would of allowed it, since Bryce was going deep, and the only one he would trust was Sarah.

The metaphor was very well done,

The old phone Represents Bryce
The Old Flame

Bryce wants Sarah

Sarah going to pick up the phone

Before Sarah can reach the old flame, the new boyfriend called her on the cellphone, which represents the new flame.

Sarah gets a call on her cellphone Chuck on the cell Chuck fighting for her

Sarah needed to make the decision on her own
Nobody’s gonna Love you more.

Its hard for Sarah to decideSarah made her decisionI know this is a story, and it was no doubt Sarah was going to choose Chuck, but what I want to discuss would be more of my frame of thinking.

When Sarah walked in the Buymore, it was like she was walking away from her past. She was looking to start a new, and when she found Chuck. She realized rather quickly that it would be an easy transition.

She was telling the truth when she said, she needed a big change. Chuck provided that change. When she was fighting with Bryce, she was reminded of the good times the two had, but was quickly reminded why she wanted a change to begin with. Bryce was willing to shoot Chuck in order to end the siege on the Buymore.

However, as I mentioned above, Sarah succumbed to the power of Bryce. All he had to say was Omaha, and she felt right back into the trance that is Larkin. Her bags were packed and ready to go, but her stare out the window was a sign even if she went. She was going to return to Burbank.

Her heart was with Chuck and the kind of normalcy he represented. Agent Walker wasn’t standing by that window because she wasn’t given orders. Sarah was going to have to make this decision, and she would choose Chuck.

The next episode Crown Vic ends the first arc of the series. She would need to overcome the torment of letting your first love go. It’s hard but Bryce represented her old life. Something she didn’t want apart of anymore.

Yvonne illustrated that point flawlessly. The minute the package open to reveal Bryce, Sarah was going to go through a major character change, and that change was done smoothly.

The next chapter in Master of expressions will be about Crown Vic an episode that really showcased Yvonne’s ability to flow nicely with facial features and emotions.  Please stay tune.


  1. Not much to disagree with here, Chris. Two points I would make that may dull some of your own points, though. Bryce asked for Chuck because he knew Chuck wasn’t a spy…it made it easier for him to escape knowing that no one ( especially Casey and Sarah ) would shoot at the Intersect.
    In the Buy More, although Sarah didn’t know what Chuck and Bryce were saying in Klingon, he shot Chuck’s vest to save him…it wasn’t in any way nefarious. Don’t really know if that is really what you were meaning, but that seems to be what you were getting at. “Willing to shoot Chuck”, seems a bit of a harsh assessment of that particular scene.

    • What I was trying to get at was I dont believe Sarah would of shot Chuck but then again she dud shot her father.

      Is it fait then to say the method in which Bryce operated represented her old life which she was trying to escape

      • Yeah.. you know my feelings. With Sarah, she becomes somewhat emotional with Bryce, but not all the emotions released would be good. And Bryce never provided that counterbalance….he was a mirror of Sarah…keep your emotions in check, bury the remorse and regret. It was easier to go with Bryce to “Omaha”, but it wouldn’t have worked because she would be in a bad place. Being with Chuck was her “comfort zone”, even though she wasn’t sure she should be comfortable with him.

      • yea, I know your feeling on it, but Bryce made her fall for his spell, but it goes to show you how special Chuck is. She chose him despite that grip he had over her.

        Its why I disagree with you about leaving with bryce in Ring, because again she fell under the trap of orders and Bryce.

        She was already disappointed with Chuck turning down the government when asked if he would like to work on the new Intersect Project

        She didn’t know Bryce was in the building, and her look of annoyance of Bryce was apparent.
        I know a romantic vacation is no big deal, but the way Sarah looked and touch his chest. you can see she doesn’t want to go by choice.

        now its not the ideal place to tell Chuck she was leaving I would give you that, but was there really going to be a right time that day?

        then when he gave his money up to help Ellie, it was the last piece to make Sarah tell Bryce I am staying.

  2. Crazy that Chuck always had to remind Sarah he was a good guy. It really doesn’t matter why she was going with Bryce in The Ring, she was going with him in Chuck’s mind. I don’t think I can agree that she was disappointed Chuck didn’t want to work at the Intersect Project..afterall, he was planning on asking Sarah to go away with him, and he didn’t want to be working in the background as Bryce had all the glory… I never saw or heard any indication that she was disappointed in his decision, too.

    • I don’t think it was so much reminding her. I feel it was more reassuring herself. For the first time in her life, she met someone as she said in her vows “Chuck, “you’re a gift.
      “You’re a gift I never dreamed I could want or need, “and every day, I will show you “that you’re a gift that I deserve.
      “You make me the best person I could ever hope to be, “and I want to spend and learn and love the rest of my life with you.”

      Its why she freaked out so much in season 3 the Chuck she grew use to was disappearing as you said the balancing of her life was altered and she didn’t like it.

      If we need to accept when she said that she feel in love with him between fixing her phone and defusing the bomb. Then we should accept what she said in her vows no?

      • Oh I agree….but after all Chuck went through in Season 2 to get the Intersect out of his head so he could be with Sarah…and then coming oh so close in Barstow…for her to turn around and say she’s leaving with Bryce was devastating. Why did she have to be reminded that Chuck wasn’t a “normal ” guy when he spent all his money on Ellie’s wedding ? Why didn’t she see that Chuck was a gift when he risked it all for Devon and Casey ? She had to have Chuck do something extraordinary for her…like rescuing Shaw, for her to see he was a gift. And even then, it wasn’t enough, because she never trusted him enough or believed him when he said he didn’t kill the mole. What was worse is that she didn’t even trust him enough that he would do the right thing, which is what he was doing.
        So yes, Chuck was a gift, but it was Chuck who had to show everyday that he deserved Sarah, not the other way around. There were always conditions on Chuck as a gift to Sarah. Chuck accepted Sarah as a gift unconditionally.

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