I broke eight and a half commandments on the way to work this morning.
Thomas Jefferson "Jeffrey" Barnes is a regular support character, a Nerd Herder, specializing in Apple products. A 'space cadet' in his forties, he was champion of Missile Command in 1983, and is older than most of his coworkers, excepting John Casey and Big Mike. He is portrayed by Scott Krinsky.
He has said he owns a ferret named Roscoe. He has also revealed that he only has eight toes, and does not pay for toilet paper, which he steals from work. He is deaf in his left ear, and he claims his father is partly of the First Nations, allowing Jeff to satisfy a minority quota at the Buy More. His mother is in prison (prisoner 27318) at the Chowchilla state penitentiary, and his sister works (at least part time) as an exotic dancer, and performed at Devon Woodcomb's bachelor party.
Jeff can be seen as Buy More employee of the month in the Season Three episode "Chuck Versus the Three Words", despite his previous actions and attitude. When, in the final season, he stops sleeping in his van, he recovers rapidly from his decades of self-poisoning and shows some actual intelligence and insight, although with lapses.
Character Profile Edit
Jeff's best friend is Lester Patel, and the Buy More stories frequently involves the two scheming together. They also form the band Jeffster!. In "Chuck Versus the Marlin", he and Lester were responsible for the theft of Big Mike's Marlin, which at the time contained a Fulcrum bug receiver. He and Lester frequent the Bennigan's bar across the street from the Buy More, in an often futile attempt to pick up women there. Jeff is frequently shown to be a pervert. He once left his underwear in the back of a company Nerd Herd vehicle. Several episodes have shown that Jeff is attracted to Anna Wu, calling her his muse, but the feeling is not reciprocated; he made a musical montage of Anna featuring several candid stalker photos.
The majority of his Buy More paycheck is spent on alcohol and spy gear. Jeff also has an "office" set up in stall 2 of the Buy More employee bathroom, in which he takes a daily nap from 3pm-5pm. His "office" was first shown in "Chuck Versus the Predator," and contained a toilet used as a cooler for his alcoholic beverages, along with an easy chair, lava lamp, and various wall decorations.
Jeff carries keys to the store, and according to Morgan, is the only employee who is old enough to know how the store's registers work Since both they and he started at the Buy More in the 1980s. When interviewing with Chuck for the assistant manager's position, he reveals he was the store's first employee.
Jeff is the keyboardist, composer, rhythm section, and sound technician of the two-man band "Jeffster!" and auditioned with Toto's Africa for Ellie and Devon's wedding. Though not hired for the wedding, nonetheless performed Styx's Mr. Roboto before the ceremony in an effort to delay matters as per Morgan's instruction "Chuck Versus the Ring". Jeff's interest in music began as a child when he first heard Jethro Tull's Aqualung. After showing great promise as a vibraphone player in his high school's jazz ensemble, he went on to play in a variety of rock bands; Jeffster! is his current project. He claims as influences, Herbie Hancock, Greg Rollie, Rick Wakeman, and John Cage.
According to a card Jeff carries, which was first seen in "Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer", which reads, "My name is Jeff and I'm lost", the reverse has his address; 1629 Handley Avenue, North Hollywood, CA 91601.
In "Chuck Versus the Ring: Part 2", Jeff suggests burning down the Buy More as a way of preserving the employees jobs. After Morgan accidentally blows up the Buy More, Jeff and Lester think they might actaully have done it, and flee, becoming persons of interest in the case.
In Chuck Versus the A-Team Jeff is tested for psychic ability. When trying to find the Stephen Bartowski computer, he predicts that it is with the CIA, which Lester dismissed as the name "Cia". The CIA did indeed have it, it was revealed to be in the NCS section of Castle.
Jeff returns in season 4 in "Chuck Versus the Suitcase" where Casey and Morgan tranq him - it takes 6 tranq darts and a blow from Morgan to knock him out - and bring both him and Lester back the Buy More to resume their Nerd Herd jobs to enhance the CIA substation’s cover.In "Chuck Versus the Fear of Death" Jeff and Lester almost expose a Greta agent serving undercover in the Buy More.
In Chuck Versus the Last Details it is shown that Jeff has a more mature and rather sweet side, side when he made a tasteful video contribution for Chuck and Sarah at their wedding rehearsal dinner, unlike Lester's more grotesque 'pseudo-artsy' video.
In Chuck Versus the Frosted Tips it is revealed that the source for Jeff's strange behavior is the fact that he sleeps in his van with the engine running, resulting in chronic carbon monoxide poisoning. When Devon gets Jeff to stop sleeping in the van, he becomes much more normal.
Place in the Series Edit
Jeff is a supporting character throughout the series, however, he has periodically contributed to the main plot of an episode. His most prominent role was in Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer, where he was targeted by a terrorist as the only person who could potentially reach the "Kill Screen" in the game Missile Command and retrieve the launch codes for an orbiting missile-armed satellite. In this episode Chuck convinced Jeff to come out of "retirement" in an effort to stop the terrorist launch, but Jeff choked, forcing Chuck to attempt to recover the codes himself.
He has indirectly been involved in several other missions as well. His and Lester's theft of Big Mike's marlin in "Chuck Versus the Marlin" initiated much of the plot, as the entire episode centered around locating the stolen fish and the Fulcrum receiver planted inside it. In "Chuck Versus the Colonel" Jeff helped Devon investigate Casey's unusual behavior regarding Chuck, and expressed professional admiration for him as a stalker. Jeffster!'s impromptu performance at Ellie and Devon's wedding in "Chuck Versus the Ring" bought the team time to protect Ellie and capture Ted Roark. In "Chuck Versus the Beard" Jeff assists Casey in taking down one of the Ring agents, who have taken over the Buy More, while being high from chloroform.
Beginning with the second season premiere, actor Scott Krinsky was listed in the opening credits as a series regular. Krinsky was offered the role of Jeff by producer Josh Schwartz largely due to Krinsky's previous work on Schwartz's series The O.C., although he was still required to read for the role for network approval. He describes Jeff as a "lifer," who was at the store before the other characters and will be there after they're gone.
Jeff's bizarre behavior throughout the series has garnered significant attention from critics and viewers. Eric Goldman of IGN.com particularly cited his approval of the writers' willingness to find strange things for Jeff to do in his review of Chuck Versus the Third Dimension, though he also found Jeff overcoming his fear of playing Missile Command again in the final moment of Chuck Versus Tom Sawyer touching.
Alan Sepinwall of the New Jersey Star-Ledger has praised many of Jeff's antics, including intentionally knocking himself out with a bottle of chloroform to "get himself right," hiring his own sister as a stripper for Devon's bachelor party, and his "office" in the men's room stall.
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