Bryce Larkin

Bryce Larkin

Seasons:1, 2
Portrayed by:Matthew Bomer
Status: Deceased (1981-2009, classified as 1981-2007 by CIA)
Occupation:CIA Agent
Bank accountant (cover)
Aliases:Mr. Anderson, "Bruce"
Relatives: None known
Relationships: Chuck Bartowski (close friend)
Sarah Walker (ex-girlfriend)
Appearances: "Chuck Versus the Intersect"
"Chuck Versus the Alma Mater"
"Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami"
"Chuck Versus the Nemesis"
"Chuck Versus the Seduction"
"Chuck Versus the Break-Up"
"Chuck Versus the Ring"

Bryce Larkin was a recurring character on the spy action-comedy series Chuck, on NBC. He is portrayed by Matthew Bomer.

Bryce is the former college roommate and fraternity brother of the series' main character, Chuck, and was formerly partnered and once romantically involved with Chuck's CIA handler Sarah Walker. Bryce was responsible for sending Chuck the Intersect, beginning the events of the series.

Biography Edit


Most of what has been revealed about Bryce's background has been in dialogue, with some details provided in flashbacks. "Chuck Versus the Intersect" established that Bryce was originally from Connecticut. He attended Stanford University, where he met Chuck Bartowski on his first day of class in 1999. As shown in "Chuck Versus the Alma Mater", Chuck and Bryce quickly became friends because of their mutual interest in computers and video games. While in Stanford they wrote their own version of the classic computer game Zork in C++. The same episode also established that Bryce was friends with Jill Roberts, who would later begin dating Chuck. Bryce and Chuck enjoyed games of Gotcha! in the school library.

Bryce was recruited into the CIA by Professor Flemming in 2002. The following year, Bryce learned that Flemming intended to recruit Chuck as well for the Omaha Project. As shown in "Chuck Versus the Alma Mater," Bryce sacrificed his close friendship with Chuck to protect his friend from the government, which he told Flemming would destroy him. He conspired with the professor to frame Chuck for cheating on his exams, so when Flemming called Chuck in, instead of interviewing him as intended he expelled Chuck and told him Bryce turned him in. "Chuck Versus the Ring" would reveal that Bryce arranged Chuck's expulsion at the request of Orion, Chuck's father, to keep him away from the government. Jill Roberts also told Chuck that she was leaving him for Bryce. For four years Chuck believed Bryce had betrayed him. Jill later claimed she was never in a relationship with Bryce, and only said she was at the orders of Fulcrum.

"Chuck Versus the Break-Up" established that Bryce was first partnered with Sarah before 2005 (the episode begins with a flashback to a mission they had together on that date), an idea confirmed by the folder of pictures on Sarah's phone in the pilot, marked 'Cabo 2005', and showing what seem to be private photographs of the couple. At some point, their professional relationship spilled over into an intimate one and they became lovers. However, as established in "Chuck Versus the Nemesis", Bryce was later contacted by a CIA splinter group called Fulcrum to steal the Intersect. He decided to destroy it instead, on an apparent rogue mission before Fulcrum could gain access to it; he did not even trust Sarah with knowledge of his plan. Bryce is first introduced in the series in "Chuck Versus the Intersect" by Chuck as having become an accountant. As Chuck recounts his history to an unwilling audience at his birthday party, Bryce is shown stealing the Intersect and sending it to Chuck using their custom Zork game as a code, before he is shot by Casey. It was revealed in "Chuck Versus the Ring" that Bryce's mission to destroy the Intersect was arranged and assisted by Stephen Bartowski.

Series Edit

For much of the first season Bryce Larkin is believed to be dead, and Chuck attends his funeral in "Chuck vs the Helicopter" (curiously, though from Connecticut, Bryce was buried in California). Dialog throughout the first half of season one reinforces Bryce's betrayal of Chuck, and that his accusation of Chuck cheating on his exams destroyed, or at least derailed, Chuck's life. Chuck was unaware of Bryce's work with the CIA and his apparent death until told about both by Sarah in "Chuck Versus the Intersect". Although he only appeared sporadically since the pilot, Bryce's theft of the Intersect and sending it to Chuck gives him an important place in the series' mythology, as his actions set the overall arc in motion.

After the pilot, Bryce's next appearance was in flashbacks throughout "Chuck Versus the Alma Mater", when the team's mission took them to Stanford and forced Chuck to confront his expulsion. During the course of the episode the truth of the events are revealed, and Chuck is made to realize that Bryce only betrayed him to protect him. It was first revealed that Bryce survived being shot by Casey in "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami." However, while being held in a government facility, Bryce refused to speak to anyone but Chuck. He confirmed that it was really him when they spoke Klingon. However, Bryce was dodgy about why he sent Chuck the Intersect. He asked that his friend lean in closer, before he breaks free and holds Chuck hostage. After escaping, Bryce makes his way to Chuck's apartment complex, where he tells him and Sarah that he's not rogue. He confirms his story by stating about the Fulcrum operation "Sandwall", which Chuck flashes on. He explains that Fulcrum, whose agent Tommy was led to believe that Bryce possessed the Intersect in his head, which was the reason Bryce was revived. Bryce needed to tell the CIA about this conspiracy, but needed to know that he was being handed over to the real CIA, not Fulcrum agents. When Chuck doesn't flash on the retrieval agents, Bryce was on his way. Unfortunately, Tommy had deduced that Chuck was the real Intersect, so Bryce and Sarah rushed back to save him. After defeating Tommy, Bryce was ordered by General Beckman to go into deep cover and pursue Fulcrum. According to Bryce, for all intents and purposes he was to remain dead. Thus, certain Fulcrum agents believed that Bryce had the Intersect.

Bryce resurfaced again in "Chuck Versus the Break-Up" to obtain the team's assistance in recovering an update for the Intersect that was stolen by Fulcrum. The operation was nearly botched when Sarah abandoned the assignment to protect Chuck, who had been captured. Bryce also continued to push Sarah on restarting their relationship before he was confronted by Captain Awesome, who proved to Bryce that Sarah loves Chuck. Bryce attempted to warn Chuck off by telling him that Sarah's feelings for him nearly got her killed. Before disappearing, Bryce left his sunglasses behind for Chuck, which contained the Intersect update.

In previous appearances, Bryce has been used to derail Chuck and Sarah's developing relationship. However, in "Chuck Versus the Ring," he ultimately realizes Sarah's true love for Chuck. This love would prevent her from accompanying Bryce in completing their assignment to continue pursuing the Intersect project.

In "Chuck Versus the Ring", He is chosen by the CIA to be the agent to upload the Intersect 2.0 at the Intersect building but the base has been infiltrated by Ring agents and he is mortally wounded in the ensuing gun fight that follows. Dragging himself inside the Intersect room, he meets Chuck who has broken into the room via the ceiling tiles. Bryce asks Chuck to use the Intersect destroyer as the Intersect cannot fall into the Ring's hands before dying from his injury. It is speculated that Bryce's death was due to Matthew Bomer's new role as the main character in the USA series "White Collar."

In episode "Chuck Versus First Class", it is revealed that Bryce and Sarah's first mission together was in Lisbon. In that episode it is mentioned that that city is where Sarah went to spread his ashes.

Development Edit

Rumors of Bryce Larkin's return began to appear in early October, 2007 His return was confirmed with Matthew Bomer's cameo at the end of "Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami," although many reviewers noted that both the promo for the episode, and Bomer's name in the credits for the episode spoiled the ending. Bryce's return for "Chuck Versus the Nemesis" led to an increase in ratings to well over 8 million viewers for the night. Ratings Update: November 27, 2007: Chuck Climbs Again

Bryce Larkin's return in Season Two was first revealed in June, 2008[1] and later confirmed in an interview with Chris Fedak, Josh Schwartz and Zachary Levi in August.[2] noted that once again, Bomer's return was spoiled by his name appearing in the credits of "Chuck Versus the Seduction."[3]

Personality Edit

Bryce Larkin is presented in the series as all the things Chuck is not: confident, athletic, brave under fire, and an excellent spy. Bryce is a skilled martial artist, and a fight scene in the Buy More in "Chuck Versus the Nemesis" proves that he and Sarah's abilities strongly complement each other. Further commendation of Bryce's abilities comes in "Chuck Versus the Nemesis" when Casey calls him dangerous, and later tells Chuck, "When you have a chance to shoot Bryce Larkin, you shoot to kill." In "Chuck Versus the Intersect" a party-goer who knew Bryce at Stanford embarrassed Chuck with all of Bryce's accomplishments while there. On several occasions Chuck has commented how short he falls in comparison with Bryce.

In "Chuck Versus the Intersect" Bryce is already acquainted with Casey, and their dialog together throughout "Chuck Versus the Nemesis" suggests that the two have an antagonistic past. Bryce is still in love with Sarah and has continued to attempt to pursue their relationship. He was hurt in "Chuck Versus the Breakup" when he realized that Sarah had moved on and had feelings for Chuck, and his warning to Chuck that Sarah's feelings put her in danger led Chuck to letting her down. Bryce highly values his friendship with Chuck. He also highly regards Chuck's innocence, honesty and integrity, and he was willing to destroy that relationship to keep him from losing those traits.[4] In "Chuck Versus the Nemesis" he tells him that Chuck is the only friend he really has, which takes steps towards repairing their damaged friendship. The two share many of the same interests, including computers, programming and video games. Both speak Klingon, which they successfully used as a code during a mission.[5]

The series has not revealed how much of a relationship Bryce had with Chuck's family or other friends. Although Devon spoke with him face to face in "Chuck Versus the Breakup" he didn't recognize Bryce. Morgan nearly did in "Chuck Versus the Nemesis," but passed it off as him just being a look-alike. Morgan was the first one to make it clear (inadvertently) to Bryce how badly his actions derailed Chuck's life after he was expelled.

It is implied in the season 2 finale that Bryce had the ability to absorb vast amounts of visual information in a similar manner to Chuck and his father.

References Edit

  1. Development Update: June 5, 2008: Episode 2.03
  2. Development Update: August 9, 2008: Schwartz, Fedak & Zac Spills (some) Beans on Season 2
  3. Review: October 7, 2008: Review
  4. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named mater
  5. "Chuck Versus the Nemesis"