If you think that NBC's Chuck would be improved if it had less Chuck, less spy stuff and much more BuyMore, then congratulations! You're the target audience for the new series of Chuck webisodes that play up the wacky and play down the... well, the everything else, really. Didn't we get tired of this faux-documentary style comedy three seasons of The Office ago?
The first episode, "Buy More #15: Employee Health," is supposed to be footage shot for a BuyMore training video, so we get some short cheesy moments of the cast "at work" - including the first appearance of Arrested Development's Tony Hale, giving a thumbs up to the camera - before the director starts talking to Casey about his methods to stop shoplifting. Even for something that's less than ninety seconds long, the punchline to the clip feels ridiculously telegraphed: Hey, Casey, how do you stop crime with that apple in your hand? There's someone stealing something and they're about to leave the store while you stand there with that apple in your hand! Hey, you threw that apple that was in your hand and knocked him out with it! I totally didn't see that coming. It's sad that anything could make Heroes' webisodes look both imaginative and like they'd had a lot of time and attention spent on them, but maybe that's the point of the Chuck shorts. That or making you sit through thirty long, long seconds of Windows trying to convince you that they're nothing like John Hodgman at all honest as punishment for daring to hope that you were about to watch something other than a minute and a half of tired filler. Better luck next time, hopefully. Buy More #15 [NBC.com]