If you ever want to save the world again, you know where I am.
Brigadier General Diane Beckman, is the National Security Agency Director and Colonel John Casey's superior until he leaves government service at the end of season four. She is portrayed by Bonita Friedericy.
Beckman's primary role is to provide Team Bartowski with intelligence updates on Chuck's flashes, and assign their mission objectives, which is often done via video conference from her office. It has been speculated that she resides in Dallas, Texas, referenced in Chuck Versus the Seduction, but it is clear she works in Washington, DC.
Often missions assigned are the result of one of Chuck's flashes in the course of his day. On several occasions, however, Beckman has issued assignments based on events or intelligence derived elsewhere, to which Chuck's abilities as the Intersect are particularly well-suited. Beckman is seldom personally involved on these assignments and allows the team to proceed on their own.
In Chuck Versus the Crown Vic, however, she benched the team when a flash by Chuck was proven wrong, and in Chuck Versus the Ex, she ordered Casey to lock down, when his personal vendetta against his former mentor botched a mission.
Beckman personally involved herself when Chuck was contacted by Orion after Chuck's rogue search to find him, and flew to Burbank to debrief the team herself. It was the first time since the pilot episode one of the team's supervisors met with them in person, and the first time one was directly involved in a mission.
General Beckman first appeared in Chuck Versus the Intersect as General Mary Beckman, originally the National Intelligence Director, portrayed by Wendy Makkena. She sends NSA agent Major John Casey to Burbank to track the whereabouts of the stolen First Intersect. From Chuck Versus the Helicopter, the character is portrayed by Bonita Friedericy, initially one of two overseers for Team Bartowsk,i along side CIA Director Langston Graham. Her character serves as the NSA Director.
Casey and Sarah Walker are to protect Chuck Bartowski until the replacement Intersect can be brought online. Sarah and Chuck believe that once this occurs, Chuck will be free to go back to his life; however, Beckman secretly issues a kill order to Casey that Chuck was to be eliminated to prevent the government secrets he retained from falling into the wrong hands.
The kill order on Chuck is rescinded after the destruction of the Second Intersect. Because Operation Bartowski is the only effective weapon against CIA splinter group Fulcrum, Beckman decides that Chuck is a too valuable resource. She, therefore, blocks his attempts to contact Orion in order to prevent having his Intersect removed. Beckman has also made it clear that if Chuck is ever identified, he will be taken underground into protective custody.
General Beckman typically doesn't interfere directly with the team's dynamic. Sarah's confrontational attitude towards her treatment of Chuck in Chuck Versus the Predator, however, leads to concern that Sarah is too emotionally attached to the asset. Knowing Casey's attempt to cover for them, she immediately demands he provide an unedited report on Chuck and Sarah's relationship. This led to her assigning CIA Agent Alexandra Forrest as Chuck's handler under directive 49-B as the Walker-Bartowski connection is investigated. After Forrest subsequently fails to protect Chuck, as she lacks Sarah's close connection and understanding of him, Beckman is forced to acknowledge that Sarah's feelings for the asset make her the best choice to protect him.
When Chuck fails to find his father, Stephen Bartowski, and allows Fulcrum agent, Jill Roberts, to escape, Beckman decides to pull the plug on Operation Bartowski, and orders Sarah to take Chuck into permanent custody. When Sarah and Chuck flee instead, Beckman orders Casey to bring them back, dead or alive. She later commends the team who cover for each other after the Intersect is finally removed from Chuck's brain in Chuck Versus the Colonel. In the season two finale, Chuck Versus the Ring, she offers Chuck a position as an analyst on the Intersect Project. She also allows Casey to return to his old special ops unit, and assigns Sarah to the Intersect Project with Bryce Larkin.
In Chuck Versus the Tic Tac, she orders Sarah to apprehend Casey upon learning from Chuck that he had stolen a new drug from a CIA facility, and when Casey was broken out, she came to Castle herself and ordered Sarah and Chuck to capture him, dead or alive. Despite this, the three agents still work together, and take down the Ring cell that had coerced Casey into stealing from the CIA in the first place. Beckman could not brook Casey's treason, however, and he was dismissed from service, though she pressed no charges. Beckman discusses Sarah's previous request for transfer out of Burbank, as Chuck has needed her less and less.
Beckman sends Chuck to Prague for training, then dismisses him when he does not perform to expected specifications. When he is reappointed, she tells him she does not look lightly on the three years and the "untold millions of dollars" spent helping Chuck reach his potential as a spy, and has come to understand that Chuck's "hand-wringing" and "second-guessing" as part of his process.
Beckman insists that until watching a video recovered from the Ring, she had no knowledge that Sarah had killed CIA agent Daniel Shaw's wife, Evelyn Shaw, but isists that Shaw's claim that he can still work with Sarah is legitimate, seeing him as the consummate professional rather than the "emotional train wreak" that Chuck saw.
In the Chuck Versus the Subway, Beckman meets the joint chiefs if the intelligence community, who were concerned about Operation Bartowski and Chuck in particular. She gets swept away in a setup staged by Shaw, the purpose of which was to discredit her so that Shaw could take her place at the spies' convention, where the Five Elders of the Ring were going to take over the NSA and the CIA. Team Bartowski, however, under Chuck's direction, arrest the Elders along with Shaw and his Ring associate, Justin Sullivan, who had made the mistake of involving Ellie Woodcomb in the plot, and clear Beckman. This led to the disintegration of the Ring. Beckman was reinstated, and she grudgingly allowed Chuck to retire from the spy world.
Beckman returns to Burbank in Chuck Versus the Anniversary, having rebuilt the Buy More as a cover for a full-fledged CIA/NSA substation, and all of its new staff are undercover operatives. She said she had been instructed by the President to keep Chuck as a priority. She, therefore, tampers with all of Chuck's job interviews, and a series of HR Guys fell to her machinations. Chuck all but gives up on his search for a new job until he drives by the rebuilt Buy More and reluctantly enters to present his resume. He is scooped up by Beckman who makes it clear that this is the only job he is going to get.
In Chuck Versus the Suitcase, Morgan earns his position as store manager when he advises Beckman to down play the perfectionism enacted by all the undercover agents who staff the Buy More's far in excess of the usual operation parameters. Beckman appreciates the advice and to prevent future suspicions, Beckman withdraws herself from her cover as Store Manager and gives Morgan the job, telling him to enact what changes are needed to maintain the cover.
In Chuck Versus the Frosted Tips, she arranges a secret meeting with Chuck to give him a contract. Sarah later contacts her about the flaws in the Intersect. Beckman also reveals that she never sent the Intersect Glasses to Chuck, given to him at the end of season four, and later contacts him to warn about the CIA's ordered hit on Morgan. In Chuck Versus the Business Trip, Beckman visits Castle to remove the corrupted Intersect 2.0 from Morgan at the request of Team Bartowski. Eventually, Beckman helps convince the CIA to cancel the hit on Morgan.
In Chuck Versus the Santa Suit, the team depends on Beckman to get Chuck into a Los Angeles CIA base. To achieve this, Chuck dresses up in a Santa suit to avoid being identified. Beckman then must kiss Chuck, to cover their breaking into an office. Beckman was invited and attends the Bartowski Christmas party at the end of the episode. She is, by series end, once more a rirm ally of Team Bartowski.
Beckman maintains an on again-off again relationship with CIA seduction specialist, Roan Montgomery. The two have been involved for many decades and are still ongoing. The two have been seeing each other since 1989, during the fall of the Berlin Wall. Neither she nor Roan has never wanted to settle down, but they do still dance about the idea.
During Season one she was seen to wear a wedding ring. A man, possibly a husband, has been seen in the background at her home during conference calls with the team. It is also worth noting that she maintains a friendship with former Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice.
The awards and decorations on Beckman's uniform, from top to bottom, left to right are as follows:
- Air Force Master Intelligence Badge (erroneously worn inverted in many episodes)
- Air Force Cross
- Air Force Distinguished Service Medal
- Defense Superior Service Medal
- Legion of Merit
- Distinguished Flying Cross
- Bronze Star with Valor device
- Defense Meritorious Service Medal
- Meritorious Service Medal
- Outstanding Unit Award
- Air Force Recognition Ribbon
- National Defense Service Medal with two service stars
- Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
- Southwest Asia Service Medal with two campaign stars
- Humanitarian Service Medal
- Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)
- Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait)
- Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
- Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Note: some ribbons are shown out of sequence (according to the USAF order of precedence). For example, the Kuwait Liberation medals, being foreign awards, should be worn AFTER all U.S. awards, not before the GWTEM and GWTSM.
- In the second season, she is the only recurring character not to have a place in the opening credits despite having more screen time than both Ellie and Anna.
- In a season two episode, it is mentioned that one of her personal friends is former Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice.
- Beckman was at one point a blonde, Roan states that in the 80s, everyone was a "dirty blonde".
- Roan was the first character to have spoken of Beckman's first name, constantly referring to her as Diane in Chuck Versus the Seduction.
- During development, the character was originally to be named as General Mary Beckman as seen in several casting lists, and was portrayed by Wendy Makkena in the pilot.
Anna Wu • Alex McHugh • Alexei Volkoff • Bryce Larkin • Carina Miller • Clara Woodcomb • Clyde Decker • Daniel Shaw • Diane Beckman • Emmett Milbarge • Gertrude Verbanski • Hannah • Harry Tang • Jane Bentley • Jill Roberts • Langston Graham • Mary Bartowski • Nicholas Quinn • Stephen Bartowski • Vivian Volkoff