Survey Says: Most People Liked the Chuck Finale & More Survey Results

Following the series finale of Chuck, we launched our fourth Chuck Fan Survey to gather quantitative data in addition to the qualitative (comments left on the site, in the forum, emails, etc.) about the final episodes, season 5, and the entire series.

The Chuck Fan Survey is, obviously, representative of online fan opinions, meaning those Chuck fans who are seek out Chuck fansites for information and discussion. We structured this survey similarly to the first 3 in order to provide valid data for comparison. The previous survey results are available here: survey 1.0survey 2.0, survey 3.0

General Overview

4,103 people took the survey, compared to 2,131 in May 2011. This represents about 4% of the average visitors per month to during season 5 (around 102,000/mo – forum visitors not included), by far the highest percentage ever.

Of those 4,131 people, 68.7% were male and 31.3% were female, representing a higher number of males than in previous polls. The results do consistently show that Chuck skews more male than female, however, in keeping with previous results and NBC’s ratings data.

The age breakdown shows some fluctuation, probably because time marches on and birthdays insist on appearing with alarming regularity. As in previous years, the 18-24 demographic were most represented with 32.5% of respondents falling into that age range. Another 15.7% were 25-30 and 13.7% were under 18, meaning 61.9% of those polled were 30 or younger. This is down one percentage point from 62.9% in May 2011. Rounding out the demographic data, 9.4% were 31-35, 8.1% were 36-40, 6.9% were 41-45, 5.5% were 46-50, 7.1% were 51-60, 1% were 61-70, and a lone respondent – representing 0.0% of the total – was over 71 years old. Of those age ranges, all of them saw percentage increases of May 2011′s numbers except the 41-45 demo which dropped 0.9%. What does this tell us? The (online) Chuck fanbase is aging. Stupid birthdays!

We again note that because this is an online survey, on a fansite, the odds of reaching older viewers is much lower than reaching younger.

Not every person answered every question, but the bulk of respondents did complete the survey with the exception of the addendum to Question 7 which was added a few days after the main survey was posted. Each question except Question 6 was restricted to one answer per respondent. Click the charts to see larger versions.

Question 1: Which element of Chuck is the main reason you watch?

On a show like Chuck that combines action, romance, drama, comedy, and more pop culture references than the number of licks it takes to get to the middle of a Tootsie Pop, a consistent debate within the fandom is what the main focus of the show is or should be. After five years of debates, it’s interesting to see quantitative data measuring such a subjective item.

In a season that featured Chuck and Sarah as Mr. & Mrs. Bartowski, it isn’t surprising that their relationship was the most popular element for fans, but by a whopping 52%? That is a surprise! In May 2011, The Romance was on top but with just 37.9% of the votes. Impressive, Bartowskis! Team Bartowski was in second place with 21.4% (down from 31%), The Comedy once again came in third with 10% (down from 10.4%), and The Hero’s Journey was in fourth place with 7.8% (up from 6.9%).

Those four elements have been the top four in all of our surveys, which gives us a strong indication of what fans looked for the most: the Chuck and Sarah relationship, Team Bartowski, comedy, and Chuck’s journey.

The least popular elements of the show this year were, once again, The Buy More with .5% (up from .4%) and Morgan the Magnet with .2% (down from .5%).

Question 2: Rank the various elements of Chuck by MOST favorite to LEAST favorite.

We know you don’t like being forced to rank the elements, but these kinds of questions reveal even more about what fans think of the different elements of the show. Answers were restricted so only one could be ranked at 10 (MOST favorite), one at 9, etc. The results fall in line with Question 1, but show some movement compared to May 2011.

Reflecting Question 1’s results, The Romance was again most popular with 53% of the votes for MOST favorite (10 ranking). Team Bartowski came in a strong second with 30.9% of the 9 rank votes, but votes for Team Bartowski as most favorite (10) fell from 25.3% to 17.1%. You guys really, really like Chuck & Sarah! Coming in third and fourth, respectively, were The Comedy and The Hero’s Journey, again matching Question 1.

Your least favorite elements were Morgan the Magnet, Family Ties, and The Buy More which garnered 38.7% of the LEAST favorite (1 ranking) votes. At least that’s better than last year when The Buy More received 48.4% of the least favorite votes. Yay customer service?

Question 3: Rank these season 5 developments in order of MOST favorite to LEAST favorite.

Chuck‘s final season was a short one that was more about wrapping up storylines than creating big new developments, but we still had a fair number of revelations and events to absorb on our way to the finale. This question was another one where you were required to rank choices from LEAST favorite (1) to MOST favorite (10).

Your favorite season 5 development was Chuck downloading the Intersect with 36.3% of you marking it your top choice. After that definitive pronouncement, the results get a little murky as elements ended up in ties based on percentages which were unequal. Confused? You can examine the chart for clarity, but suffice to say, you really liked Sarah downloading the Intersect and meeting Sarah’s mom, and you liked Casey falling for Verbanski, discovering Chuck’s mad hacker skillz, and the flashback to Sarah rescuing a baby.

What’s more clear is what you did not like. Namely, Morgan having the Intersect and Decker going after Team Bartowski. Both ranked at the bottom of the list, with Quinn seeking revenge on Chuck also on your list of Things We Didn’t Like. Even Shaw’s return ranked better!

Question 4: Who do you think exhibited the best character development over the course of the series?

Shifting our focus from season 5 to the series as a whole, we wondered, now that we’d watched these characters for five years, who did you think experienced the best character development? The options were only those who had been on the show since the pilot, to even the odds a bit.

Given the outcry over the finale, we were a little surprised when 49.4% of you voted for Sarah as the one who exhibited the best character development. The question included the final two episodes, so it would appear that the majority of fans still found Sarah’s story to be the most compelling over the course of five seasons. Chuck was second with 33.7% of the vote and Casey was a distant third with 8.3%.

The characters you felt had the least development were Big Mike (0.0%), Devon (0.2%), and Lester (0.3%). Jeff managed to eke out 1.3% of the votes, most likely thanks to his transformation after he quit sleeping in his van.

Question 5: Rank the “goodbyes” in the series finale in order of MOST favorite to LEAST favorite.

From broad to narrow, next we focused on the final episode of Chuck. And we made it a ranking question. You’re welcome. This question had seven options, so MOST favorite was 7 and LEAST favorite was 1.

Chuck & Sarah beginning to rebuild their life together took the top spot by a landslide, receiving 67.1% of the top votes. Tied for second were Casey joining Verbanski on dangerous missions (24%) and Beckman leaving the option open for Team Bartowski to work for her again (19.3%). (Again, these two elements tied based on their highest votes individually, meaning they received more ‘6’ votes than any other rank.) You also really liked that Morgan & Alex moved in together. Awww.

Your least favorite “goodbye” was Big Mike continuing to work at the Buy More/Subway. At least he has sandwiches to comfort him.

Question 6: Which moments from the series finale (“Chuck vs. the Goodbye”) are your favorites?

With so many callbacks and Easter eggs and shoutouts, we wondered, what were your favorite moments in the series finale? This question allowed multiple answers, and boy did you have fun clicking them! There were nearly 30,000 responses given to this question as you chose the moments that meant the most.

The top 4 favorite moments were the final scene on the beach. Sarah asking Chuck to kiss her received the most votes (84.4%), followed by Sarah asking Chuck to tell her their story (74.7%), Chuck finding Sarah at the beach (71.4%), and the montage of the Chuck & Sarah story (69.8%). What a bunch of romantics we are.

Also popular were JEFFSTER’s performance in the concert hall (62.3%) and Casey hugging Chuck as he left Castle (62%).

7. What did you think of the Chuck series finale (“Chuck vs. the Goodbye”)?

As the very last episode of the series, “Chuck vs. the Goodbye” proved to be rather polarizing. We had already planned to ask this question, but a few days after the episode aired, we decided to create an additional question based on fan reaction (see 7a below).

But first, the results of this question. The majority of respondents (34.5%) said that they loved it with another 27.8% saying that while they had a couple of quibbles, overall they liked the finale. Another 26.2% chose the more neutral option, indicating that while the series didn’t end the way that they wanted it to, they could accept it.

In the negative column, 6.9% didn’t like “Chuck vs. the Goodbye”, but said they’d still watch other episodes while 4.7% outright hated the finale and said it ruined the entire series for them.

Question 7a: What did you think of the final scene in “Chuck vs. the Goodbye”?

In deference to those who said that Question 7 didn’t allow them to truly express their feelings about the finale – several emailed us to say that their opinion of the episode overall was different than their opinion of the final scene – we added this question about four days after the survey was launched. Although many had already taken the main survey, this addendum still received 2,548 responses, proving what a hot topic it was.

The results do still match up pretty closely to the original question, however. The most votes went to the Too Ambiguous option with 30%, which coincides closely with the more neutral option in Question 7 that received 26.2% of the votes. In second place with 27% was Liked It and in third with 21% was Loved It. Not too far off from the numbers above, although obviously “Loved It” and “Too Ambiguous” swapped places in this question.

Again bringing up the rear were the negative opinions with Awful receiving 4% of the votes and Hated It getting 3%. Those results are on par with the results in Question 7 as well.

The variations in the results between Question 7 and Question 7a do provide evidence that there are those whose opinion of the finale overall is separate from their opinion of the final scene. Most notably the results suggest that some fans who voted for the two positive and two negative options in Question 7 then clarified their opinion by choosing the Too Ambiguous option in Question 7a.

Question 8: Which season of Chuck is your favorite?

Back to the broad overview! This time we wondered, looking back over all 5 seasons of Chuck, which did you like the most?

Season 2 was the winner here with 37.2% of the votes, followed by season 4 (23%) and, surprise!, season 3 outranked seasons 1 and 5 combined with 20% of the vote. Maybe Shaw wasn’t so bad after all.

Season 5 ranked as least favorite with 8.4% while season 1 wasn’t that much higher, receiving just 11.4% of your votes. No love for Chuck’s “animal shapes” hair?

Question 9: Do you want to see Chuck continue in another medium?

Looking ahead, and knowing that most fans wanted more Chuck – indeed, many were already seeking to campaign for more – we wondered how you wanted Chuck to continue.

The majority of fans want a Chuck TV movie or reunion (40.1%) with the idea of a Chuck feature film coming in a close second (37.8%). Some of you (8.9%) are interested in a spinoff TV series, but about the same number (8.3%) aren’t ready to think about options for more Chuck yet. A handful (3.2%) are happy with how the show ended and don’t need it to continue, and just a few (1.7%) thought a comic book was the way to go.

We did hear from several of you that you would have liked to be able to choose more than one option on this question, but the purpose was to see which single medium had the most support & interest from Chuck fans.


So what does all this data mean? It means that we loved Chuck & Sarah together, we thought Sarah’s character development was great, we liked the series finale but thought the ending could have been more definitive, and we’d like to see more Chuck in our future.

It also means that Chuck fans are a diverse and opinionated bunch. With that in mind, as you take to the comments section to discuss these results, please remember our rules and guidelines and be excellent to each other.

This survey was conducted by and measured opinions of fans who visit our site. It was not endorsed, sponsored, or affiliated with NBC, College Hill, Wonderland Sound and Vision, or anyone associated with Chuck.

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  1. Thanks for the great write up Mel!

    Nothing super exciting or surprising except maybe how popular S3 was! Really, was it better than S1? I debate that personally!!! I recently rewatched S3 and Shaw seemed less worse but I’d still rank them 2, 1, 4, 3, 5; personally.

    Stil, I agree I would love to see a Chuck movie in a couple of years once every one has had time to catch a breath.

    Many thanks to you guys at chucktv for keeping us in the loop!

    • 3 2 5 4 1

      Scott Bakula is the man!!!!!!

      I mean really… Is it possible to beat seeing the captain of the NX-01 Enterprise on CHUCK?!?

  2. Great job! This was fascinating, and I was happy with your addition to Q7 as I was one who loved the finale but needed more from the ending.
    And seeing how James ranked his seasons I thought I’d do so as well.

    • I agree with you exactly, Mike about the finale/ending and about the season ranking. For me it was, very strongly, 4,2,3,1,5.

  3. Yay lots of love for season 3! And it doesn’t surprise me at all. Seasons 3 and 2 are the best easily.

  4. Interesting stuff! I’m actually pretty surprised at the season rankings – no surprise about season 2 being ranked the best, but that seasons 4 and 3 are afterward. To me, there’s no doubt that season 1 is right up there with season 2, with season 3 being the inconsistent middle and the last 2 seasons rounding out the bottom.

    The results on the series finale aren’t terribly surprising – it’s pretty much what I would expect…most people were okay with it, but the final scene definitely makes it a much cloudier judgment.

  5. Carmen aka mr2boynz

    Thanks again for your hard work in analysing and compiling the result of the survey Mel.

    There was no surprises for me, and as I thought, I think people in general seem to just be unsatisfied with the final scene in the finale rather than the whole series or most of season 5.

    I think you are right in saying that the Chuck fandom is generally a diverse bunch of opinionate romantics!!!

  6. As always, you did a yeoman’s job on this survey, Mel! Thanks for all your hard work!

    It’s really validating to see my own opinions mirrored in the results of several of the poll questions, particularly questions 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6. And while I can only look at the results of question 3 and scratch my head, it probably just speaks to the diversity of elements that people are drawn to.

    I was one of the people who emailed you after the initial survey went up, bringing your attention to the possibility that the results might be misleading with regard to the finale. I tried to explain how someone could both like the finale and be very disappointed at the same time, but apparently I didn’t do a very good job with that. It’s commendable that you attempted to improve the sampling with a followup question (7a) anyway, and I think it did manage to capture part of the previously missed dissatisfaction.

    But I still think it missed its mark, because I don’t think it was the right question.

    Everyone seems to be focusing on that last scene on the beach and whether Sarah gets her memory back or not. But with all due respect, the horse has left the barn by that point. The ending was beautiful. The amnesia plot that forced it to play out as it did was anything but.

    The plot, starting all the way back at “Chuck vs. the Bullet Train” should never have been deployed and especially not for the finale. It put the writers in a bind. If Sarah doesn’t regain her memories by episode’s end, it tells the audience that the entire time they’ve spent on the Charah roller-coaster was a waste. But if she suddenly regains her memory it cheapens the amnesia plot significantly. Lose-lose. Is it any wonder that the writers decided to leave the ending ambiguous?

    So while question 7a managed to capture some of the fan discontent focused on the final scene, a better question might have been:

    “Was Sarah losing all memory of her time with Chuck the right story to tell for the series finale, or would you have preferred something else?”

    If the majority of Chuck fans answered “yes, I loved that they used the amnesia plot”, I’d be willing to accept it and assume I’m the outlier. But it’s hard to believe that that 52% from question one really wanted that.

    Oh, and S3’s surprisingly high ranking? My theory is that the back six boosted that ranking substantially. Try and imagine what ranking it’d achieve based solely on the first 13 episodes.

    My ranking? 1, 2, 4, 3, 5.

    • But Aardie, if we asked that question, then for validity we would have had to ask if fans thought telling the story of Orion’s death was right for the end of season 3 or if they’d have preferred something else. Or if they thought telling the story of Vivian Volkoff was right or if they’d have preferred something else. You get the idea. This site has never been in the business of asking fans if they thought a story was right or wrong. None of us were on the writing staff. None of us were producers. I think that as fans have the privilege of saying whether or not we liked a story, but not whether or not it was the “right” story because Chuck was not our story to tell.

      • Point taken.

        I guess “Sarah having her memories of the last five years wiped” could have been presented as a “moment” like the ones in question 6. Except, of course, this happened two episodes prior to “Goodbye” and therefore doesn’t belong in question 6. Nice conundrum. 🙂

        I’ll give up now. I was probably just overly enamored with the idea that the poll could capture this feeling that seemed so prevalent elsewhere. But it’s clearly too complicated.

        Thanks for taking the time to reply!

  7. The results of the poll are spot on!

    I firmly believed when Chuck first started out, the writers never really focused on the Chuck & Sarah relationship until they saw the chemistry between the two on set. It is hard not to get drawn into those two especially the delectable Sarah Walker. Chuck has always been about Chuck and Sarah, without them, the show would have been cancelled. I remember getting really interested in the show when Sarah started to show how much she cares for Chuck and started the will they won’t they roller coaster. Without that crucial element in the show, we would all have stopped watching – who would want to watch just the Buy More, Jeffster and even Devon & Ellie?

    I think the creators/writers designed the finale plot in this way because they wanted to incorporate flashbacks of Chuck & Sarah’s journey throughout the five seasons in the final two hours. It was meant as a parting romantic gift to us Chucksters. A reminiscent montage of the memorable scenes throughout the series. Unfortunately, whilst I liked the ending, I felt it could have been so much better. What they should have done in my opinion was to partition slightly more time on the beach…. Sarah would ask Chuck to tell her their story…. then he would mention Morgan’s crazy idea to her and she would say, chuck kiss me… and when he kisses her – a montage of their most memorable moments should have been shown flooding in….and the show ending when the montage ended. That would have been the perfect ending in my opinion.

    I would love a Chuck movie…. but not just one – MANY! I love Chuck and it ranks as my favourite tv show of all time. No tv show has ever won me over completely like Chuck has and I am an avid movie buff. Heck I even own signed memorabilia of my favourite TV couple which is proudly hanging on my wall! (my first ever TV celebrity memorabilia)

    I will miss Chuck passionately. As the saying goes….”If you love something, Set it free… If it comes back, it’s yours, If it doesn’t, it never was yours….”
    Let’s hope Chuck returns on Screen – in one form or another (stories involving Chuck and Sarah – I don’t want web episodes of Jeffsters & Morgan et. al.)
    is there a God? We Chucksters hope so!

  8. Wow, 30% for Too Ambiguous? To quote smallscreenscoop’s great review of the finale – “Do you really need the show to say “And Chuck and Sarah lived happily ever after?” Don’t you have faith? Don’t you think it’s incredibly fun to think about everything that would happen after the beach? If you want good storytelling, you can’t think every happy ending will be just as you expected.”

    • I personally would have liked that, so sue me, and no I dont think its “incredibly fun to think about everything that would happen after the beach” because I feel the way the finale left it, there is the possibility that they didnt get a happily ever after. Do I really think they didnt? No. But it bugs me a lot that they left it ambiguous enough to leave that as even a remote possibility. Heck, I didnt even need to see them in their house with a baby, ect. All I actually needed was Sarah to say “I remember”. Then I would know for certain things worked out for them, and I would also leave the show knowing my favorite character had actually returned as person she’d come to be over the course of the series rather than as the person she was in S1.

      **For the record, I actually did like the finale as a whole. I thought it was well done up until the final scene, in which Im clearly partly of that 30%.

      • Tagging “I remember” onto the ending would have been an easy fix, I think. Didn’t you get the sense that her memory was returning from the moments in Sarah/Goodbye? Sure, they were unsure and cloudy, but when she remembered that she wrote “Sarah + Chuck” at the house her memory had been wiped, what, a day? To me, this is the kind of thing that should take time to fix.

        And, again, after everything that they’ve been through in the past 5 seasons, you really need the show to tell you they’d be okay?

        I don’t think they left it in an ambiguous-ish way to make the fans believe that there was the possibility that things weren’t going to work out for them. I think they gave fans the chance to envision their own future for them. If they did show us the white picket future, it would have never matched everyone’s expectations. It’s why I imagine the Lost writers didn’t answer everything at the end. It’s a different situation, but still.

      • I too was disappointed by the finale, but agreed with the survey. All I would’ve needed at the scene on the beach was Sarah touching Chuck’s face when she kissed him. No words. That would’ve said a lot to me. But it’s over and done with. And I think I’m getting tired of explaining. But I agree with aardvark on what he/she said, and it’s not our place to question the writers reasons for this, but I would’ve liked Sarah touching Chuck’s face because that’s what she does when she kisses Chuck.

      • Yes she remembered that and then the next day said she wasnt feeling it… And yes, I would have preferred to know things would be ok, that the show actually told us, with an “I remember” I think after 5 seasons of will they or wont they ecct that it was owed to the fans to resolve the MAIN storyline in a less ambiguous way than theyy did. With an “I remember” fans could sill have envisioned a future for Chuck and Sarah on their own, I think it would have just allowed people to imagine a much more definitive future, or at least for me. I actually thought it was a bit of a cliche the way they ended it. And yes, it real life, this would most likely take time but come on, its Chuck, not real life. And yes, I would agree, the ending wasnt designed to give fans a sense that they wouldnt go on to live their lives together, I acknowledged it was a very remote possibility in my post above, but it bugs me that its there, that it is a possibility.

      • Chris Fedak proudly says “How could you imagine anything better?” – you know, his comment really creases me up every time I see it in print. My reply to that is “How could you imagine that was good enough, Chris?”. Just suppose I spend 5 years lovingly and painstakingly building, say, a beautiful light aircraft from a kit. It is my pride and joy. Chris Fedak comes along and smashes it up with a sledge hammer, saying, “Hey, now you can have the fun and pleasure of rebuilding it all again, from scratch. How could you imagine anything better?”. Actually, I can imagine something a lot better. The finale was sufficient to satisfy me. It was satisfactory. Just sufficient, not a jot more.

      • This is not a thread to debate the ending yet again. It’s a thread to talk about the results of the fan survey.

  9. Mel- Under question 2 you made the comment: “You guys really, really like Chuck and Sarah”. You sounded a bit surprised. If I am right, then I have to say that I understand your tone. I think I blew my own socks off somewhere in season 3 when I realized how obsessed I had become with Chuck and Sarah’s romantic development. It just overtook everything else for me. Which surprised me. I don’t think the fans like me had a chance because not only did Yvonne and Zach do a brilliant job “acting”, it was like they were not “acting” at all.

    Thanks again.

  10. Count me in as one disappointed by the whole “imagine your own ending” philosophy. You don’t go into a restaurant and get told to cook your own meal. That’s the chef’s job. I put myself into the hands of a storyteller, in whatever form, so that they can tell me a story, and finish it. I do that because they’re better at it than I am. If I could create my own story I’d be doing it, and I wouldn’t need their show to do it for me. Joining some dots and filling in blanks is fine. “Imagine your own ending” to me is a writer not doing their job.
    I could live with it if Chuck had been written that way over 5 years – if ambiguity was a characteristic of the writing, or if we’d been asked to imagine other aspects of the show or previous finales. We weren’t. How often have we concluded that the simple explanation is usually the correct one on the show? Chuck plays its storylines out on the screen, and previous finales have left nothing open to interpretation. Until this one.
    I loved the last 2 episodes and I’ve calmed down to a state of only mild annoyance at the ending, but why they chose a completely different ending style to anything they’d ever hinted at before, for the ending that counted, baffles me. Very much looking forward to hearing Fedak’s thoughts on the matter next week!

  11. People who visit this site are predisposed to love the show in the first place. To have 38% of them indicate they were either “neutral” or didn’t like the finale seems like an awfully high number in that context.

    Did “didn’t end the way I expected but I accepted” mean neutral? I thought is was a positive spin on disappointed. I’d think the showrunners would be disappointed with a “neutral” response.

    Results skewed toward the positive in the survey should be expected. There were too many negative repsonses.

    • Agree in what you said. It was definitely a positive spin on disappointed. And I dont think series finales are generally supposed to leave people feeling neutral especially not with Chuck. 38% is really high to me. I would be so curious how people would have liked it if the ending had been more definitive. I really enjoyed the final up til those last few minutes.

      Also, this is a random thought, but the more I think about it, the more odd I think it is that Casey and Ellie and Awesome all left Sarah and Chuck at the end of the finale. I mean, they all love her, and clearly being around people who were familiar to her would probably help her regain her memory. Im not saying they should have just all stopped their lives entirely but leaving the way they did is just weird.

      • I think we’ll get more insight into what Casey, Ellie, and Awesome were feeling from those extra minutes on the DVD that had to be sacrificed for the broadcast version. I’m curious about that, too.

      • I don’t think it’s a random thought llama because I thought about the same thing. I felt we should have seen more of a concerted effort by Chuck, Casey, Ellie, Awesome, Mary Bartowski and Morgan telling Sarah that she was part of their family and as much as she didn’t feel it she was a vital part of who they are. After all, as Chuck said to Volkoff in season 4 he learned from his dad to “fight for your family.”

    • “Results skewed toward the positive in the survey should be expected. There were too many negative repsonses.”

      The results skewed positive because there were too many negative responses? Am I reading that correctly?

      We know the survey isn’t perfect, no survey is, but it is the most valid one we could create for what we intended to measure in our audience. If it doesn’t measure what you wanted, then by all means, create a survey that does, make sure it passes validity & reliability tests, and we’ll post it here for fans to take.

      • It’s not like a Gallop poll where people are selected randomly to participate. People are coming here because they love your site and love the show. As such, I think under those circumstances folks are going to be predisposed (biased) to give you more positive responses. I don’t think there’s any way for you to get around that. I’m not trying to say you have a bad poll. Just that negative responses are more significant than the percentages may lend them to be. Does that make sense?

      • I get your point, but have you read the comments over the past few years? I’d say those with a negative reaction/outlook are well-represented in the poll. In fact, the number of positive responses surprised me given the negative tone of the comments in most threads. My interpretation of that phenomenon is that those with something good to say about the show either don’t feel like taking the time to comment or don’t want to deal with the negative comments.

  12. Seasons 1 and 2 were the best-written, but season 1 was short (only 13 eps) and the romantic progress was too ambiguous, where season 2 gave us a full season and a demonstrable evolution in the Chuck-Sarah romance. Season 3 gave us the Shaw-Hannah mess with too much angst. Season 4 showed Chuck and Sarah as a solid couple, which is what many of us had long awaited. Since the C-S romance seems to be the development that the fan polls seem to favour, I think that these factors have a bearing on the ranking of the seasons amongst the fans.

    • Carmen aka mr2boynz

      Well said Doctor Bob!!

    • If the writers strike didn’t happen the first season, I wonder if we would have received more stories that worked to keep Chuck & Sarah apart similar to how Season 3 unfolded. Jill being introduced Season 1 might have created more appearances throughout the series for the character as a true foil to Sarah for Chuck’s unbridled love. Or many more Bryce Larkin appearances driving a wedge in Chuck’s life. Maybe the origin story of Jeffster in their basement – lol

  13. I’m perhaps that most outspoken (in quanity if not quality ;)) critic of the ending. Yet I voted with the majority right down the line.

    I’m also not surprised by S3’s popularity. If the love story is why you watched, the stretch of episodes from Other Guy thru Tooth was the climax of the series. I’ll bet a lot that Honneymooners is the most rewatched episode by a large margin.

  14. I guess I was a weird one who liked season 5 the best…

    • Not weird at all! Season 5 has been working its way up and is now my second favorite season. My ranking currently is 2,5,3,4,1. But in all seriousness, every season is excellent in their own way.

  15. Some would be surprised by the season 3 ranking. Shaw love? Not necessarily.

    Here’s why. If you broke Season 2 into an a/b (2a / 2b) for the front-half and back-half and did the same with seasons 3 and 4, I’m willing to bet these numbers/statistics change. The front half of season 3 was hard to watch if you were a Chara shipper, the back half of season 3 starting with Chuck & Sarah on the train was bliss for the viewer waiting for these two to get together. I would guess that is where the support for season 3 resonates.

    However, there could be those Shaw fans who quite honestly were pleased at the progress the character had made with Sarah and preferred that over anything else. You know who you are, and the majority of us will find you and hunt you down for such thoughts. -lol

  16. I enjoyed ALL of season 3, including Shaw/Sarah and Hanna/Chuck. That was fun for me, but then I’m not a Chuck/Sarah shipper, I actually just tolerate them as a couple. There was a lot more to season 3 than just the romance. I loved all the storylines: Chuck becoming a spy, Sarah’s struggle with his change, Shaw’s as a controversial spy and his amazing turn to the dark side, Morgan growth and becoming part of the team, Casey’s humanization, the Intersect 2.0, especially at the beginning, the music, Jeffster. Such a FUN and exciting season for me! 😀

  17. Well said gqdaddy but I think the season rankings are what they are for good reason. Bottom line and others are free to disagree but bottom line in my opinion that eveyrone loved this show is “chuck and sarah.” I think it’s safe to say that fans spent the better part of 5 years simply wondering and rooting for chuck and sarah, a super spy and a nerd making it despite all the odds. In some cases for myself personally while I absolutely LOVE everything about the show it was the final 2-3 minutes of the show with the two of them speaking showing their progression that really did it in for me because despite everything I firmly believe that’s what many fans wanted at the end of the day.

    So that in mind I think that easily explains ratings simply because season 1 was too early for fans to worry about the future of chuck and sarah so it being so far behind doesn’t surprise me and why season 2 is first doesn’t surprise me either. The reason being was because sarah showed enough progress during that season in subtle ways to show her feelings towards chuck so for fans it was a at that point a matter of when rather then if. This is why that season ranks the highest because that was the breakthrough everyone was waiting for and once that elephant was out of the room fans were comfortable and had faith in the writers to progress with chuck and sarah from there

    Once that was blown wide open and season 3 began I’m not surprised that it didn’t end up high on the ranking list because despite the shaw and sarah romance it being so early in the season fans were fairly certain that this would only be a temporary set back and wouldn’t last all season so it wouldn’t be long before that issue was resolved and chuck and sarah declared themselves official.

    Season 4 is no surprise to be in second because while the burning question to begin with was always will sarah ever love chuck and that question was answered it was nice to finally c them together and working on eachother because it’s what they deserved and what I do believe fans love most about the show.

    Finally I’m not surprised 5 ended up in last place simply because while I’m not bashing the show and I love it dearly I do believe that a lot of those votes came out harshly due to how the end simply played out. Again this is my opinion I strongly believe that the biggest plot line and what people care about most is chuck and sarah and fans spent the majority of 5 years hoping it would all end well and especially after seeing sarah come around a lot during the 4th season to a real future with chuck it made a lot of people happy. So seeing all that it brings my to the goodbye scene…while I agree “I remember chuck” might have been an easy cliche of fixing things and while I know that I couldn’t do a better job then the writers and the episode was an emotional homage to an amazing show I still can’t help but feel like after all the progression felt like, and forgive my lack of a better term, a huge kick in the nuts. In prior seasons when ever something tragic like shaw happened or sarah almost dying happened we knew there was time in future episodes to resolve the issue with interesting plots and that chuck and sarah would find their way so we didn’t mind the twists and turns but like I had originally stated and I firmly believe that a lot of the fans spent the better part of 5 years waiting for chuck and sarah to “make it” and again while the “I remember” would have been too easy the ending left a lot of people heart broken becuase the two of them is basically what many people tuned in for for many years so no reassurance left people feeling empty I think

    • Well said. I think as time goes by it will be easier to see the series as a whole, and it will not be defined by those last moments. It will then be easier to believe, imagine, etc that Sarah’s memories will return in full, and that her journey as an individual and with Chuck was not all for naught and as you so aptly put it “a huge kick in the nuts”.

      However as of right now…it boggels my mind why they chose to end this aspect of the series, by not really ending it.

  18. Well I guess it proves the saying that there’s ‘lies, damn lies and statistics’.
    You can spin this positively and you can spin this negatively.
    You can say that most fans like the ending or you can say that 37.8% of fans didn’t like the ending (accepting is most certainly not liking, I accept that I should pay taxes but I don’t like it) and of those that did like it 27.8% still had some problems with it. So, only 1/3 actually unconditionally liked the ending. Looking at it from that angle, that’s a pretty poor ending. Lets be honest, the fact this survey has come out and straight away we’re spiraling straight into another debate about the ending speaks volumes. We have to accept that you can never please everyone, but a good ending will leave a small minority of fans unhappy or disappointed. The ending we got failed pretty miserably to achieve this goal 🙁

    • Every one of these surveys prompts debates, especially among those who’s opinions weren’t in the majority. It happens on our other sites where we survey fans, too. 😉

  19. I personally agree with the findings of the survey.

    I think at the heart of Chuck is the relationship between Chuck and Sarah. That is what captivates the audience. I think it wasn’t set out to be that way initially when the pilot launched but the chemistry between the two leads is so powerful that the creators & writers recognised it early on and started focusing on the “will they, won’t they” relationship. I can understand why the ratings weren’t spectacular because it took me a few episodes to start loving the show but once you start watching and falling in love with the characters, I just couldn’t stop! I have now literally watched the whole series 3 times and still love looking back at the memorable Chuck and Sarah moments. Chuck ranks as my favourite TV series of all time because the show has completely won me over. It has everything – Heart felt moments, Romance, Comedy, Action & Drama.

    I think the creators/writers intended to make an ending that would let the fans reflect back on Chuck and Sarah’s journey throughout the series. It was their parting gift to the fans! There were always going to be flashbacks… (which most of us definitely wants)

    However, I felt the ending could have been so much better…. I would still have kept the beach scene. I wouldn’t have changed the plot of Sarah losing her memory…. the only thing I would have changed to make a perfect ending would be when Sarah asked Chuck to kiss her, this would trigger the flashbacks of their memorable moments together (not when Sarah asked him to tell her their story) and the show ends when the flashback finishes… no words, nothing…. that would have been perfect ending to the best tv series ever! Think the creators missed an opportunity there! It would also leave it kinda open ended but would be much better than the ending they chose.

  20. Hey.

    Guys, I didn’t like Season Four more than any of the other seasons. The fourth season had some of the worst episodes in the entire series–the one that really comes to mind is “Muuurder.”

    Also, the end of Season Three made me really want to learn about Chuck’s mother and her story. But Frost’s history was so ridiculous, it really disappointed me. There were some good Chuck and Sarah moments, but overall, it wasn’t as fun as the other seasons.

    Is there any reason to like Season Four other than Chuck and Sarah’s moments together and Dalton’s impressive acting?

    Storywise, it falls flat.

  21. Am I the only one who thinks that Season 3 was the best of all the seasons?

    • You’re obviously Not alone (look at the poll results!).

      This is my ranking, though not sure about season 5 yet. I liked it but the beginning and ending were weak for me.

      3 2 1 5 4

      I still can’t understand how season 4 got so many votes. It’s the weakest season for me.

    • Season 3 is my favorite season. I judge it on its entirety and not just a few episodes that weren’t so good (e.g. “Mask”). Season 3 had the most growth for Chuck as a hero and the “hero’s journey” is an important part of the show for me.

      • Yes, I judge the seasons by its entirety as well. Season 2 is great but it had some weak episodes as well. I think I liked season 3 the best for the same reason you do. The whole thing was very compelling and still lots of fun, IMO.

      • Yes, if you rate a season based on difference in Chuck’s situation from where he started in the first episode to where he ends in the final episode of the season, Season 3 is it–and that includes his relationship with Sarah.

  22. Thank you for your analysis of the poll results. It alway intrigues me that the poll is 2/3rds male because the show was about 50/50 according to Nielsen this last season.

    I was wondering if the people who were super-negative on the finale had a gender skew. I other words, did the people who hated the finale the most tend to be more Male or less male or about the same as the survey in general. Was there an age skew?

    Similarly, did the positive people have a gender or age skew?

    I know answering that could entail extra work. But I am very curious. If you don’t want to answer it, I understand.

    • The survey software does allow me to filter for both variables, and I am curious, but I haven’t had time to run that data yet.

  23. Thanks Mel for the awesome job with the survey! I’m also curious to see how it broke down men vs women re:feelings on the season/finale. That Sarah’s character arc was the favorite is totally in line with the strong emotions the finale evoked since it was her story that was left the most open. And I’d like to advocate for changing “most” to a “majority” (!) in your headline of those who liked the finale based on the top two responses. It’s a much stronger statement, and absolutely statistically true. 😉

  24. My main quibble wasn’t really with the finale, but more the final story arc. I just thought that an amnesia arc to end the show was really weak. I thought they did a good job with the finale given the direction they chose to take the show, but I just thought it had a real soap opera feel. I absolutely loved the second season, and became less interested in the show each year. Watching this last season felt more like a weekly chore with several poorly written episodes. I just thought that this season as a whole was really weak, and on some level am kind of glad the show ended, so that a show I truly enjoyed couldn’t get drug through the mud anymore.

    • I have completely different feel. I have thinking that this propably were the only show which remains great til the end.

  25. Unfortunately, the survey really didn’t let me say how I felt. And it’s funny in the weeks since that last episode, my feelings about have changed. Not for the better.

    Up until then, when I wanted to feel good, I’d pull out an old Chuck episode or two and watch it and generally finish up refreshed. But, with the “payoff” that they did, I have lost any interest in doing that. I know this has been hashed around a lot, but for me, with how they ended up destroying five years of Sarah’s growth, and leaving a shell of a relationship where, at best, Chuck implants “memories” into Sarah about their past (rather than have her actually feel what she developed), everything that came before feels like an absolute waste.

    Don’t know if that will change, but that’s, sadly, where I am.

  26. im so sad its over!!!!1