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Chuck Versus the Third Dimension
Season 02, Episode 12
Air Date February 2, 2009
Writer Chris Fedak
Director Robert Duncan McNeill
Previous Chuck Versus Santa Claus
Next Chuck Versus the Suburbs
"What happened to not leaving your wing man?"

Chuck Versus the Third Dimension, also known as Chuck Versus the Rockstar, is the twelfth episode in season two, which aired on February 2, 2009, and as the title suggests, it was filmed in 3D. It is the twenty-fifth episode overall.


Chuck foils a plan to kill international rock star, Tyler Martin, leading Sarah and Casey to acquire the musician to find out who wants him dead. When Chuck is left with Tyler, the party animal rocker convinces Chuck to go out on the town, which only ends in trouble.

Meanwhile, Big Mike enlists Morgan to look out for his old football buddy Jimmy who was just released from jail and hired at the Buy More. In the midst of Morgan’s newly assigned duties, he wins a pair of backstage passes to Tyler’s show and holds a contest to be his plus one in true Super Bowl fashion that pits Jeff against the formidable ex-con Jimmy.

Full Story[]

Chuck is dreaming that Sarah rises from his bed in black lingerie. Then his dream transitions to a nightmare whens he asks Sarah about the killing of Mauser, and she pulls a knife on him, which causes Chuck to wake up screaming. Something Devon and Ellie comment on at breakfast.

At Buy More, Tyler Martin, a famous rock star, is coming to sign autographs. Chuck spots a man in the crowd who seems to be planting a weapon, Chuck investigates and finds an IG-88 bomb. He alerts Casey and Sarah, who rush to get the bomb away from the store. They face a little bit of opposition from Lester, Jeff, and Morgan, however, who think they're involved in a game of keep away, before they get into the receiving area. Because they lack the time to diffuse it, they place the bomb in a lock box, in a refrigerator, inside a supply closet to contain it, where it explodes harmlessly.


IG88 grenade

The grenade is military grade, used in North Africa, and because Tyler had just completed a tour of Africa, General Beckman orders Team Bartowski to bring Tyler in for questioning. The problem is the multitude of fans in Buy More. Sarah then uses her skills look to attract Tyler, and lure him to the back of Buy More, where Casey tranquilizes him. They confine him to Casey's apartment, where Tyler wakes up long before he was expected to, "rock star metabolism," before being tranqed again. Sarah and Casey decide to investigate the bomber's apartment, whilst ordering Chuck to stay behind and look after Tyler. Unfortunately, while they were out, Tyler wakes up and refuses to listen to Chuck. He goes outside and urinates in the fountain, thinking that it's the greatest bathroom he's ever seen. Tyler then convinces Chuck to have a night out.

At Buy More, Morgan is finds a golden ticket to go backstage to Tyler's concert. Since he can bring another person, he has a contest to decide who he will bring. Butterworth, Big Mike's ex-con friend wins the Molly Ringwald Underpants Challenge. Next is a 12 foot long sub sandwich eating contest, Jeff wins this. The last contest is a urinal cake challenge and before Morgan can even state the rules, Jeff grabs it and takes a bite out of it, a horrified Morgan says he only had to touch it. Jeff is the winner of the contest. After reflection, however, Morgan convinces his friends to let Butterworth the pass. He later sees Butterworth selling the pass for a tidy profit.

Tyler and Chuck visit a nightclub, where they meet some hot women. Tyler says Chuck is in his band, and the women take them up to their suite. Chuck flashes on one woman's necklace revealing them to be bad guys. He tries to subtly tell Tyler to leave the hotel but Tyler instead thinks that Chuck needs to get laid, and shoves Chuck into thebed room. Chuck is pushed onto the bed a relieved of his shoes and jeans before he tries running away. He narrowly escapes being skewered by throwing knives. He flees to the roof and jumps onto the top of an exterior elevator in desperation, only for the women to come down to his level. Tyler then arrives, thinking the ladies are ready for him, only for one of them to pull up her gun. Sarah and Casey arrive just in time to save Chuck and Tyler; the latter is tranqued.


When they return to Casey's apartment, Sarah reprimands Chuck for not preventing Tyler from leaving. Tyler then wakes up, confused at what happened to him. He tries call his manager, only to be tranquilized again, and falls forward. Chuck then flashes on Tyler's back tattoo, and realizes it's a message about a private reactor being built in North Africa. Chuck then tries defending himself and Tyler, that he's stuck in spy job, he never asked for, he deserves a night off. Casey tranquilizes him, too.

In Castle, Beckman identifies the bomber as Achmed Gambir, a member of an African private army. She says Tyler has to continue with the planned concert so that Achmed can be lured in and caught. Chuck, talks to Tyler and convinces him to do the show, that a moment of courage will get him a life of normalcy. Chuck stays with him at the venue and when Achmed shows up actually has a viable plan going to stop him, when Tyler messes it up. The two are forced to run, Achmed tries to kill Tyler but Sarah and Casey catch him and eliminate the threat.

Chuck finally confronts Sarah about her execution of Mauser, and asks her why she did it and why she lied to him about it. She says that she had to protect him no matter what, theat Mauser was a real and immediate threat to him and his family. She says that she forgets that he is not a spy, and doesn't have the nature to do these things. She suggests that he can take as much time off as necessary. He's delighted until he sees they are off on a mission without him.

Casey and Sarah leave for another mission without Chuck, but to their surprise, Chuck jumps into the back of the car, wanting to be a part of the next mission.

Guest Stars[]

Nerd Notes[]

  • This episode alludes to the Mandela Effect, an instance of mass false memory, named after the wide spread belief that Nelson Mandela had died in the 1980s. When Tyler Martin lists "the humanitarians who affected [his] work," he mentions Nelson Mandela saying, "God rest his soul." Nelson Mandela would not die until 2013.
  • The grenade shown at the beginning of the episode is an IG-88, which is also the name of an assassin droid from the Star Wars universe.
  • Emmett Milbarge, portrayed by Tony Hale, exclaims "no touching!" in the first act of the episode. The line "no touching!" was a recurring gag from Hale's previous show, Arrested Development.
  • Dominic Monaghan portrays the rock star Tyler Martin in this episode. In Monaghan's other series, Lost, he portrayed fictional rock star, Charlie Pace. He also portrayed Merry Brandybuck in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
  • The closing text of "To Be Continued" is written in a font meant to resemble Back to the Future.
  • The character of Jimmy Butterman is portrayed by former star running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Jerome "The Bus" Bettis.
  • The song "The Final Countdown" is played during Morgan's challenges to determine who will get the other ticket.
  • Golden ticket for a back stage pass to a Tyler Martin benefit concert is meant to resemble the golden ticket in the novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and related movies.
  • The couple Chuck interrupts in the elevator celebrating their second honeymoon is the same couple Chuck interrupted in Chuck Versus the Seduction celebrating their anniversary.
  • Butterman mentions "a ticket to Zihuatanejo" and Big Mike mentions "Zihuatanejo is Mexican for Philadelphia" is a reference to the movie The Shawshank Redemption. A reference to the same movie is made when Butterman says that he has the money to go to Zihuatanejo and Jeff quotes Morgan Freeman's character by saying, "Get busy living, or get busy dying." The music played during two scenes with Butterman is the duet Canzonetta sull'aria that the character, Andy Dufresne, played over the prison sound system in The Shawshank Redemption.


Ellie: Chuck, are you okay?
Chuck: I'm fine. I'm absolutely, 100% on it. Why?
Devon: Dude, you were totally screaming last night. Like a little girl. It was crazy how high it was.
Chuck: I'm sorry about that, but, yeah, I'm fine.
Devon: Bro, you're a tense coil of stressed-out negativity. We don't mean to pry, but...
Ellie: Actually, we do. We do. What's stressing you out?
Chuck: Nothing... particular. You know, it's a little hectic at work and stuff.
Devon: Wow. I didn't realize life got so hectic at the Buy More.

Chuck: How much tranquilizer did you use?
Casey: It's high grade at a heavy dose. Mr. Martin should be out for 12 to 24 hours.
Tyler Martin: [wakes up] Jet lag is brutal.
Chuck: Rock star metabolism.


Chuck: One night of bravery for an entire life of normalcy. I can't even tell you what I'd give for that.
Tyler: How do I know I can trust them? Your people?
Chuck: Because I do. They're the best. I stake my life on it every day.


  • Vienne - “Tales of A Thousand Fears”
  • Okkervil River - “Lost Coastlines”
  • Hot Chip - "Out at the Pictures"
  • Mozart - Le Nozze di Figaro - Canzonetta sull'aria
  • Europe - The Final Countdown
  • Kaiser Chiefs - Good Days Bad Days