gallery Chuck vs Coup d’Etat

The fourth episode of season four comes with another returning guest star. It provides another beautiful actress, but above all it hosts one of my personal favorite songs from the series.

This song is played quite often when I am listening to music.  The song is played during a very key scene for Sarah Walker as well.

The returning guest star would be the Generalissimo played by Armand Assante. He would call for Devon and Ellie to be guests on his island. Allejandro_GoyaThe Woodcombs would meet his wife Hortensia Goya played by the beautiful Tia Texada. Tia provided some nice expressions and can see how she feeling throughout the episode.

Tia Texada The New York Premiere of THE BALLAD OF JACK & ROSE, at Chelsea West Theater, 23rd street. March 23, 2005. John Spellman / Retna Ltd.

There will be a lover’s spat between the general and his wife that would spur a revolution in Costa Gravis, but there might be more to this story then just a wife gone mad.

So let’s find out what all the fuss was about.

The episode begins with a flashback to the closing moments of Cubic Z, Do you remember? The moment in which Big Mike’s ring falls to the ground of Castle. A moment when Sarah thought Chuck was preparing to propose, but wasn’t. Chuck403-01226

However, when it comes to Chuck and Sarah a simple moment becomes unbelievably awkward because of being crap communicators. A word used by Morgan not me.

Morgan and Chuck were watching the video feed from the awkward moment, and while Chuck was not sure if Sarah would have said yes to a not so real proposal. The question for Morgan was Chuck ready to hear a yes from a not so real proposal. Chuck404-00030 Chuck404-00031

The interesting thing was how a misunderstanding may be foreshadowing of things to come. We can leave it to Morgan to be Chuck’s version of Dr. Phil. Morgan and Chuck continue to talk about the accidental proposal by suggesting Chuck read a book.

A book that would totally be against what Sarah requested last episode. When Sarah asked to take things slow, Chuck was afraid of bringing up the subject of whether or not their relationship was ready to move on to the next level. Chuck404-00065Chuck404-00067 Chuck404-00068Meanwhile in the Woodcombs household, Devon was having a conversation with baby Woodcomb. He was talking about what music to listen to when working out. While Devon was having fun, Ellie was feeling lonely rather overwhelmed by the baby. She would ask for some alone time with her hubby that now drives a caravan. Chuck404-00074 Chuck404-00075Chuck404-00079They would talk about typical parent issues like the safety of a car and preparing a college fund for baby Woodcomb. However, all this baby talk was starting to get to Ellie. She would suggest they take a babymoon. Chuck404-00089The episode would shift to Castle, and we see Sarah and Chuck getting debriefed about the unannounced trip of Comandante Juan Pablo Turrini who was played by Alex Fernandez. Beckman believed Juan was headed to the Costa Gravis consulate. Thus, the general would order Charah to stakeout the consulate. Chuck404-00103

Beckman would also remind Casey he should be in bed resting after being shot during the shootout between the team and Volkoff’s men. Chuck404-00106 Chuck404-00108

While watching surveillance of the consulate, Chuck thought it was the right time to suggest the book. Chuck would ask Sarah about why they were bad communicators. He would explain how Morgan suggested this book that had a series of questions that would help develop better communication.  Chuck404-00127 Chuck404-00128 Chuck404-00134

Sarah asked if she should read it, and Chuck said, “no.” He would ask the questions which should help create emotional stimulating conversations. We will discuss this more when rewatch arrives, but for now we shall carry on.

Beckman would advise the team about the Comandante not heading to the consulate, but instead to the Woodcombs. The words he said, “Costa Gravis calls once more.” Chuck404-00167 Chuck404-00170

Chuck and Sarah would rush to Ellie and Devon’s home, and it wouldn’t be a long wait for the reason for the sudden visit. The generalissimo was extending an invitation to the Woodcombs to spend a weekend on his island for a vacation. Chuck404-00198 Chuck404-00202 Chuck404-00208

The Woodcombs would get their opportunity for a babymoon and accept the trip to Costa Gravis, where they would stay as guests in the general’s palace. Ellie would ask Sarah if it was safe. Walker and the Comandante would assure Ellie about the great improvements Costa Gravis has done since the general had a change of heart. Chuck404-00210 Chuck404-00216Chuck404-00224Chuck404-00229

Chuck and Sarah would also take the opportunity to take some time off. Thus, Charah would join the Woodcombs in Costa Gravis.

Meanwhile in Casey’s apartment, we begin to see Casey and Morgan begin a friendship. Morgan is seen taking care of the big fella. Casey bound to a wheelchair was being taken care of by the little bearded man. Chuck404-00244 Chuck404-00248

Casey was becoming tiresome of Morgan’s TLC when the doorbell rings. Alex came to visit her father. Alex was under the assumption Casey was sick, but instead was shocked to see her father was shot. All a part of the job, but concerning for a daughter nonetheless. Alex was rather pleased to see Morgan too.

In fact, Alex would ask Morgan about how the pot roast came out. This would put warning flags inside Casey’s head. Chuck404-00256 Chuck404-00258 Chuck404-00266The smitten feeling Casey was able to ascertain would cause him to ask how often the two were talking. Alex would leave with Morgan in pursuit. However, John was putting the breaks on that by giving Alex five minute head start. Chuck404-00270 Chuck404-00278 Chuck404-00285 Chuck404-00290It’s classic Chuck. A relationship is blooming only to be curtailed by a disapproving force. Casey isn’t fond of the idea of his daughter and the bearded one getting close.

The next scene would consist of music beginning to play.  The tune of Sleepwalk would begin to play as we witness the swimsuit testing Sarah Walker trying out various swim suits, and yes Bartowski all of the above would do for most men. Chuck404-00297 Chuck404-00299 Chuck404-00302 Chuck404-00303After Chuck picks out his favorite, Sarah was poised to ask Chuck about a vacation. This gave Bartowski time to explain more of his plan to get to know or even better become better communicators. Sarah was very keen on making sure verbal communication wasn’t the only thing happening on this vacation. Chuck404-00307 Chuck404-00309 Chuck404-00310

Sarah: That’s what you’re excited about? Our communication exercises?

Chuck: Well, there are many ways in which to communicate.

For Chuck and Sarah, nothing can be more true. Yes, they are crap communicators, but were very good at being intimate even if a cluster muck was on the horizon. Chuck404-00312 Chuck404-00313 Chuck404-00317

However, Bartowski had other motives behind the communication exercises. He was bringing the book with him Bad move Bartowski, Bad move.

The two couples arrive at the palace of Alejandro Goya. The much eager Generalissimo was rather pleased to see them. What do we remember of the general? Well, he was rather attracted to one Ellie Woodcomb. Wife or not Alejandro would take strong affection for Mrs. Woodcomb. It would not be a pleasurable experience for Devon in the least.Chuck404-00343The general also couldn’t resist to point out the lady before him was pregnant with child.Chuck404-00337 Chuck404-00338Unlike last time we saw him, Alejandro would introduce his wife to the two couple. A stunning woman in her own right. Another woman to add to the wonderful list of beautiful women the casting department provided the viewer.Chuck404-00351Hortensia comes strutting her own stuff. The Stunning Mrs. Goya would greet the Americans with kindness and the party was on. Chuck404-00359Inside the palace, Chuck and Sarah continued their stimulating conversation. Question after question including game night with Morgan and Sarah’s need for silent nights. Everything was going smoothly. Chuck404-00371 Chuck404-00376 (1) Chuck404-00377The generalissimo would put Chuck and Sarah’s conversation on hold when he rewarded Devon with a marble version of Captain Awesome. A Chuck iconic moment as Ryan McPartlin himself would hold close to his heart. It was a thank you present for saving the general’s life. Chuck404-00388 Chuck404-00387 Chuck404-00389While Chuck and Sarah were in astonishment over the awesome marble structure standing before them, Chuck would glance at the sign on the wall which would trigger the Intersect. The timing could not be great especially when Sarah didn’t miss the flash. Chuck404-00395 Chuck404-00399 Chuck404-00400Chuck tried to play it off since they were on vacation, but Sarah reminded him if there was a danger, but Sarah and Chuck’s problem wouldn’t be the flash, but more on Hortensia who was plotting a coup. Mrs. Goya spoke to the guards and told them to prepare for the d’Etat. Chuck404-00406 Chuck404-00414While Goya was plotting, Chuck reminded Sarah about not spying around his sister. They would call Casey, who was eager to help. He told them where to go to find the nuclear room hidden under the palace. Business was about to pick up.

Devon was staring at his statue when he mentioned the word baby. Ellie would remind Devon about no baby talk. Ellie was feeling a little well caliente as Devon put it. Thus, they would find a dark corner in the palace to have some alone time.

Chuck and Sarah would head for the door they were looking for. In midst of the probing, Chuck took the time to continue their stimulating conversation. He would ask Sarah about what was some of his best qualities. All Sarah would list would be his physical features. Chuck404-00471 Chuck404-00472 Chuck404-00473 Chuck404-00475

While the general was singing, we can see Hortensia looking for her men. Time was closing in for her to begin her plan. Chuck404-00487 Chuck404-00497 Chuck404-00496Chuck404-00502They would approach the door Chuck flashed on, and Sarah picked the lock to enter the room, but it would lead to a second door. Sarah began to pick that lock, but were cut short due to Awesome and Ellie’s not so secret escape for some love making.

It was quite comical when Chuck asked Sarah to help him be free from this horrible moment for him. I love the scene because Zach’s expressions were on point with how a brother acts when his sister is about to get off the good foot and do the bad thing. Chuck404-00502 Chuck404-00513 Chuck404-00517 Chuck404-00521 Chuck404-00524As the group were sharing a weird moment together, it would be cut short by sudden sound of gunfire and screaming. Hortensia screaming for her husband’s head. Chuck404-00527 Chuck404-00528 Chuck404-00529 Chuck404-00531 Chuck404-00543While Chuck and Sarah were trying to process the moment, Ellie would ask her spy brother to do some spy stuff. I hate this moment because Ellie comes off like an idiot in my view. It’s not ok for him to be a spy, but when danger comes to life. It’s ok to be a spy. Makes no sense in my view.

It was weird for the Comandante to just stand in his post watching the general flee without rushing to his side once the shots were being fired. He didn’t even order his men to take down Hortensia, which only means one thing in my view. He was in on this coup.

The palace guards would try to attack Chuck, but Chuck flashed Kung Fu. He took out the guard and went to help Sarah who was struggling with her guard. Chuck404-00546 Chuck404-00559 Chuck404-00562

The Woodcombs and Charah were trying to flee the palace, they would call Casey for help, but didn’t need him once they were joined by the Generalissimo.  Devon asked the general to save his life like he did his.  Chuck404-00571 Chuck404-00572 Chuck404-00579 Chuck404-00582The general would help Chuck and Sarah’s work by bringing them through the weapons room, which Sarah took pictures of for Beckman. Chuck404-00592Chuck404-00594On the plane back to the states, Chuck continued to try to have stimulating conversation with Sarah, but a homeless dictator was more important for Walker. The general and Turrini would discuss where Alejandro were going to go. The Costa Gravis consulate was not an option. There was only one place for him to go. The man once known as Angel de la Muerte was the only person the Generalissimo would trust. Chuck404-00628 Chuck404-00630 Chuck404-00638It’s worth mentioning how Alejandro was explaining how him and his wife were having trouble in their marriage. The constant fighting between the two seemed to be just typical marriage woes, but he had no idea Hortensia was setting him up. A lesson for Chuck and Sarah was staring them right in the face. Let’s see if they can either learn from it or just another brick in the wall. I know a cheap Pink Floyd pop.

It’s almost like Suit Case and d’Etat were foreshadowing on the basis of the new season was going to be about. Hard lessons like day to day struggles a marriage deals with or simply unpacking are real issues couples must face when a relationship is gravitating to the next level.

When Alejandro arrive at Casey’s pad, The General was a bit disappointed in seeing his protector, the giver of life was wheelchair bound at the moment. Chuck404-00641 Chuck404-00642

Relationship problems seemed to run throughout the episode as Morgan was dealing with falling for Alex and the potential amount of pain he would be in once Casey found out the courtship that was going on between the two.

However, Big Mike would be the voice of reason. Morgan would reveal his feelings for Alex to his future father. He would also inform Big Mike who Alex’s father was. The man named John Casey. All Mike would say in a very subtle way was “No arm or leg is worth more than a woman’s love.”  Chuck404-00663 Chuck404-00666 Chuck404-00669In Castle, Sarah was uploading the photos from Costa Gravis and would apologize to Chuck for the vacation being cut short. Chuck wouldn’t wallow, but saw a silver lining in they still could continue their conversation. He would reveal what the next set of questions were going to be about their sex life.

Sarah wasn’t for discussing that particular subject, but Chuck very cleverly brought out the real notion of there was always going to be a mission, but if they were going to make it as a couple, they needed to find time to discuss the difficult subjects. However, Chuck’s mouth and gesture to the monitor would all but blow Chuck’s cover on the purpose of his inquiry lately. Chuck404-00686 Chuck404-00688 Chuck404-00697

Something Sarah was adamantly disappointed due to what they discussed about taking things slow. I would like to save some material for rewatch so this portion of the episode will be discuss more when we return with rewatch.Chuck404-00700 Chuck404-00702 Chuck404-00705 Chuck404-00707

Chuck tried to redeem himself before a very important moment will happen. I just want to finish up on one thing before moving on with the episode. What Chuck and Sarah did in this scene was something I have been stressing about in Chemistry Blinds Us, it has to do with how they talked it out.

When Sarah saw the rings on the book, Sarah knew the topics were leading towards marriage, and while she balked at the idea. Chuck spoke his piece and so did Sarah. He said, “I know, I know we did, and we are going to take it slow. It’s just you know, someday maybe we could talk about that.”Chuck404-00711Sarah’s responses during moment likes these were often non existent or a mission would come about, but no Sarah follows with “Why do we always have to talk and push and change things? Why can’t we just be?”

What I love about the moment is the communication. They are talking the issues out, but in the midst of the progress Chuck and Sarah were making, the the ghost of Christmas past would disturb the moment. Chuck would flash on one of the photos. The flash would expose Costa Gravis was nuclear. Chuck404-00722Chuck would try to tell Sarah by saying “It’s Nuclear.” All at the same time as Sarah questioning the idea of saying “I do,” and everything they love about each other would change.

It’s a real issue facing a couple exploring the depths of how far the relationship is going. The question of I do is a very real one for Chuck and Sarah. It’s the same question Devon and Ellie faced. It’s the same question Frost and Orion had to answer.

Even the Turners went down the path of I do. Chuck and Sarah are facing a question Beckman or Graham can’t tell them how to answer, but something tells me Sarah will find the answer shortly.

Chuck and Sarah would relay the message to Beckman, which would put The Generalissimo on the spot with the U.S. Government. The general told them the truth about the arms. He said, ” There are two keys.” He had one, and the other was with a person he thought he could trust. He gave it to his wife Hortensia.

If you noticed in the scene, Turrini was interested in  seeing the key Alejandro would show Beckman. Chuck404-00726 Chuck404-00732 Chuck404-00747The commandante would step in and remind everyone on how stressful the day was for him. Alejandro lost his country and the woman he loves all in the same night. Beckman agreed, but requested Chuck and Sarah to continue the discussion on a private line. Beckman would order Chuck and Sarah to return to Costa Gravis and disarm the nukes.

At Casey’s, the general and Casey were sharing a cigar and going over old history. Casey would begin to piece things together and started to warn Alejandro on what he knew about his commandante and what it pertained to Hortensia.

Furthermore, he would state how he always thought the generalissimo would fall, but not this way. He would pull his weapon on Turrini and request Alejandro to get behind him. Chuck404-00777 Chuck404-00778 Chuck404-00779 Chuck404-00789Chuck404-00788

The standoff would end badly for Casey, but not because of Alejandro’s alliance with his commandante, but because he saved the Colonel from being shot by Turrini and his men. Chuck404-00795 Chuck404-00802 Chuck404-00811 Chuck404-00812 Chuck404-00816

The thought of being bitter enemies didn’t seem to matter anymore. The general saved Casey much like John did for the general with his blood. A request Alejandro would ask of his former commandant when he asked “No harm comes of this man.”  Alejandro would leave with Turrini and return to Costa Gravis. Chuck404-00824

The next morning Beckman would give her final orders and the team was ready only this time Casey was joining the party. Beckman tried to protest, but the team was very sure of John’s decision. Chuck404-00833

One of the more important scenes of the series would happen next. While s small portion compared to other significant scenes. Sarah finds religion in this scene. A couple’s issue brought to life the question in Sarah’s mind. Thus, Chuck’s words hit home for both the Goyas and for Sarah.

Team Bartowski are crawling in the walls of the palace as Hortensia is preparing a speech. A threat she was preparing as she possessed a powerful weapon. However, Alejandro was interrupting her causing Hortensia to reproduce the video.

It was frustrating her and brought out the issues she had with their marriage. Chuck404-00856 Chuck404-00900 Chuck404-00910One of the things that strike me in this scene comes from Hortensia. Is she revolting? Yes, but you don’t see anger in her expression at all, but more of frustration in her husband’s demeaning of her. She doesn’t want to be on the sidelines. Where does this sound familiar? Sarah’s gripe with Chuck becoming the leader of the group or spy was one of her biggest fears.

The notion of change comes to the forefront. The biggest fear facing all relationships. Chuck realizes the problem and instead of blowing up the room like Casey suggested. He decides to be a mediator instead and refreshingly Sarah joins in on the conversation. A big step for Walker. Chuck404-00921 Chuck404-00933 Chuck404-00939Chuck404-00942Chuck404-00941Chuck404-00945Hortensia asked Chuck and Sarah how they got back into her country. She would also ask who they were working for. Chuck would reveal being CIA, which meant Hortensia would order for them to be killed, but Chuck quickly would make her change her mind when he sided with her about being undermined by Alejandro.

Hortensia’s expression said it all, she is showing signs of being underappreciated and ignored by her husband. Chuck404-00952 Chuck404-00959 Chuck404-00950Chuck would say “You two clearly still care about each other.
You could have killed the Generalissimo at any point, and you haven’t done it.” Chuck is right. The general could’ve been murdered at any moment. This means Hortensia loves her husband still, but rather than talk it out. She chose to turn on him and stage a coup.

While Chuck was mediating the situation, Hortensia says a word that sits inside of Sarah, Chuck404-00979 Chuck404-00980 Chuck404-00982 Chuck404-00983While Chuck was talking about how they lived in a cave and were making sweet love things were great, but Hortensia said, “But then we moved into the palace, and he changed.”

It was important for this to be out in the open. The beauty of communication was being displayed. Chuck and Sarah were crap communicators but so were the Goyas. Change was the issue and now it was being discussed in what became a group session.

Chuck said, “But change is unavoidable. Unavoidable. Life is full of changes. Constantly changing, and the question is, no matter what the changes are, is the love still there?” With what Sarah was experiencing with the Goyas and her love for Chuck. Sarah saw the light sort to speak.

It takes a simple “Yes” to a better understanding of the meaning of the word. The fear of change is a fear most have, but as long as you love each other the change can be approached better.

Turrini would attempt to shoot them, but Chuck and Casey would put the break on that move. Sarah would ask Chuck to keep talking. Hortensia would continue pointing out her issues with Alejandro. Chuck404-00990 Chuck404-00994However, Sarah was the one to talk some sense into the couple. “That love doesn’t have to change.” Chuck404-01014 Chuck404-01019Chuck404-01023This would leave Alejandro to inform his wife how much his love never died. He would give her an official role in government which was music to her ears. The coup was over. Chuck404-01041The question for discussion purposes would Chuck and Sarah be better off having the kind of discussion the Goyas had here in Pink Slip or would things be the same.

A conversation between Chuck and Sarah about Sarah’s fears of being put to the sidelines once Chuck’s training and position as the top spy in the agency was done. Remember he was going to be 2.0, which meant he worked alone. No Sarah. How would Sarah react to such terms. I don’t believe she travelled to Lisbon only to bury Bryce’s ashes. She couldn’t stay away from Chuck. Remember she was away from Chuck for seven days here, Sarah unleashes real tears

The Goyas are a key scene in how a couple handle being both partners on a professional and personal level. You would think the Turners proved to be something of a tutor in this kind of relationship, but the Goyas required communication to fix their problems. A great moment for a minor scene in my view.

While Team Bartowski were thwarting a revolution, Morgan was online to speak to the author of the book, but before Morgan could ask his question Big Mike grabbed him and talked sense into him.

Mike would ask when did anyone learn something important from a book. The best way to find out about how a woman feels about you is by kissing her. If he felt smooth jams rise while doing it than that would be his answer. Chuck404-00889Alex would come by the store and after Morgan totally botched his chance. He looked outside the window and saw Big Mike coaching him. He just went with it and kissed Alex. Chuck404-01060 Chuck404-01069As the team was finishing up, Chuck would flash on something that would trigger something about Volkoff Industries. The team would learn the weapons Costa Gravis had came through the pipeline of Volkoff. Chuck404-01107 Chuck404-01108Chuck would ask about Frost, but the general would state he never met her. Alexie kept her in Moscow almost like a kept woman. The project was called Project Beacon. The very one Heather Chandler mentioned in Cubic Z. Alejandro provided the team with files and papers he had on Volkoff, but with caution as Volkoff Industries was a dangerous faction. The kind of people they didn’t want to find.

so, we know how bad Fulcrum was. We saw how dangerous The Ring was. We are dealing with people they don’t want to find. The organizations are getting tougher as we go.

We close this episode with a bit of an explanation on how I categorize episodes or scenes. Some are classic or some are deemed great, but the ending of this episode is what I call Iconic.

The song selection was great for the moment. The song She Brings Me the Music plays. A lyric in the song is fitting for the scene “Through the darkness, I’m a calling you calling you
Oh bring me home I’m a calling you calling you, bring me home I know I’m calling for you Now bring me home.

It’s fitting because after Chuck tells Ellie he is looking for mom. Sarah is seen thinking about her future. She is thinking about coming home in a sense because of what she says. Instead of writing about it. I will post the video of the moment. 

Sarah speaking from the heart about saying yes was something new. Again, A simple yes with more of a elaborate meaning behind it. Thanks to Gary, Do You Love Me Sarah seems to weaken after rewatch. Chuck was awake as we saw, but made Sarah speak freely. So, we know now Sarah wants to get married. The question of what lies ahead will soon be revealed.

While we move on from Chuck vs Coup d’Etat, the next episode is a very underrated episode. Zachary Levi will have a reunion with a former co-star as well as another wrestler turned actor makes his one and only appearance. Chuck vs the Couch Lock is up next. 

Remember Chuckaholics is  your site. So play, engage, but most of all it’s hard to say goodbye because we didn’t.


  1. Very good review Chris.

    I love this episode; it is definitely one of my favorite. I really enjoyed how Sarah, although first being freak out, is finally excepting her emotions and her possible future. This episode is a great conclusion (at least for now) of the “Sarah’s emotional growth arc” that started in suitcase.

    And about Ellie and spy stuff: Ellie doesn’t come off as an idiot. She is an idiot when it comes to spy stuff. After this episode she should have at least asked Chuck at the fountain if he wants to be a spy again. This is what I really hate about Ellie, she never asked anyone what they want, she only ever cared about what she wants. But then again it made sense: she’s Frost’s daughter, isn’t she?

    • I like your association between Ellie and we will learn from Frost, but the end result is Ellie has been this way since the beginning with Chuck. It’s why I hate when she asks Chuck to quit spying after asking for years for him to do something bigger than the Buymore. But with witnessing the death of her father. I understand it in a way.

  2. If you are wrong, sure. She should have made it right. and apologized (and while apologizing for this she could start to appolgize for allthe other stuff as well, especially for beefcake)

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