In 2007 (wow, has it been that long?), an unassuming Nerd Herd employee named Chuck Bartowski wound up with a supercomputer in his head, becoming the world’s newest (and perhaps most awkward) super-spy. The TV show Chuck lasted five seasons before, but finally met its match in “Chuck Versus the Decreasing Viewership.” But if you were a fan of the show (and particularly of Jeffster), you’re in luck: the original television soundtrack is now available!
Back when I bought CDs regularly, a lot of them were movie soundtracks. I’ve always had trouble reading or writing while listening to music with lyrics, but orchestral soundtracks were great, and I even had some for movies I hadn’t seen before. I love the way that music can set the tone for a scene, and listening to the music on its own makes you more aware of what’s usually happening just in the background.
When I first cued up the Chuck soundtrack (released April 7 by Varèse Sarabande Records), it immediately brought back memories of watching the show: Bryce Larkin’s over-the-top entrance (and exit), Chuck’s nice-guy personality and the Buy More, Captain Awesome. Tim Jones, the composer, does a great job hinting at classic spy themes like James Bond’s while adding his own twists. Playing the soundtrack lets me pretend I’m undercover while typing up some posts or, uh, washing the dishes. Sneakily.
And, of course, there’s Jeffster. On the show, Jeff and Lester, two of Chuck’s coworkers at the Buy More, start a band, and their performances are included on the album as well “Take on Me,” “Fortunate Son,” and “Fat Bottom Girls.” The digital album also includes some bonus tracks, including two more Jeffster songs: “Leaving on a Jet Plane” and “Mr. Roboto.”
The only thing that’s missing, really, is the show’s theme song. I know, it’s just the opening riff from Cake’s “Short Skirt/Long Jacket,” but in my mind that’s the first thing I hear when I think of Chuck, and it’s odd to me that it wouldn’t be included.
If you’re feeling nostalgic for Chuck and the rest of the gang, pick up the soundtrack and give it a spin!
Disclosure: I got an advance digital download of the album for review purposes.