New York Comic Con 2009: CHUCK Panel Live Blog

josh schwartz, chris fedak, yvonne Strahovski chuck comic con

On Sunday, your very own TV Addict had the pleasure of attending the CHUCK panel at New York Comic Con 2009. Featuring co-creators Josh Schwartz, Chris Fedak and the absolutely stunning Yvonne Strahovski (Sarah Walker) the panel was in a word: Awesome! With serious kudos going out to panel moderator Alan Sepinwall, who offered up his own intelligent questions, kept the panel moving and remembered that first and foremost and for better or for worse, NY Comic Con is about giving the fans their opportunity to interact with their favorites (TVGuide’s Damian Holbrook, who sucked the energy out of yesterday’s FRINGE panel, please take note)

11:30AM: After viewing a spoiler-heavy trailer designed specifically for New York Comic Con that showed Big Mike hooking up with Morgan’s mom, Tricia Helfer seducing Captain Awesome (in what looks to be a stripper cop uniform, naturally), Casey punching out Emmitt and the not-so-super-secret casting of Scott Bakula as Chuck’s Dad and Chevy Chase as some sort of technology visionary (think: Steve Jobs) co-creator Josh Schwartz joked that they may have given away too much.

11:31AM: CHUCK co-creator Chris Fedak on the casting of Chevy Chase, “Fletch and Spies Like Us are very much within the DNA of our show. Zach [Levi] really reminds us of Fletch and Chevy, so when the opportunity came to get a guy who’s Chuck’s spiritual godfather it was an opportunity that was too good to pass up.” Added Josh Schwartz, “We love the 80’s!”

11:33AM: Yvonne Strahovski on her favorite types of scenes, “I love doing the fight scenes but equally loved going back and playing young Sarah — being nerdy, not having to worry about being pretty.” Or as Josh Schwartz sees it, “You know, how Chris and I go through everyday of our lives!”

11:36AM: Attention fans of Fulcrum, in an upcoming episode in which Arnold Vosloo (The Mummy) plays as Fedak puts it, “a super badass,” fans will get to see what it’s like inside Fulcrum Headquarters.

11:38AM: Josh reveals that Chuck will have his first kill and his very own cool spy move before the season ends.

11:39AM: Awkward Fan Question #1: The webmaster of asks if he can give Yvonne a bear he made bought on cafepress. Paging restraining order… line one!

11:41PM: “We got more promotion during the Super Bowl than TRANSFORMERS, STAR TREK and TERMINATOR combined,” said Josh Schwartz when asked about the chances for a third season of CHUCK, “the 3D episode did really well and NBC has been as positive as they can be without saying we’re officially coming back.”

11:42PM: Josh Schwartz versus Obama: Monday’s episode of CHUCK will be preempted to allow President Obama to address the nation. Begging the question, since when did ‘change we can believe in’ include the new President having absolutely no regard for the momentum CHUCK built up after last week’s highly rated 3D episode?

11:45PM: The biggest mystery of CHUCK thus far is finally put to rest with Chris Fedak promising that the issue of whether or not Chuck gets paid for working for the CIA will be addressed in an upcoming episode.

11:47PM: Really Awkward Fan Question #2: After Schwartz and Fedak professed their love for Scott Bakula and QUANTUM LEAP earlier in the panel, a fan personally invites the creative twosome to an upcoming QUANTUM LEAP Convention. Note to fan: Don’t hold your breath!

11:48PM: A BUFFY fan proclaims that Sarah could totally take Buffy. Any Buffy fan want to offer up a rebuttal?

11:52PM: When asked for an Adam Baldwin anecdote Josh reveals that, “there are a lot of touches that are his own. The Ronald Reagan picture, that was all Baldwin.”

11:53PM: Really Really Awkward Fan Question #3: Yvonne Strahovski is asked to be the grand martial in New York’s upcoming Poland Day Parade in New York. Seriously.

11:55PM: After Chris Fedak uses the phrase, “caps the guy” when discussing Sarah’s killing of the Fulcrum agent in CHUCK’s Christmas episode, Josh Schwartz reveals that Fedak loves writing Casey and writes Casey, “with an angry face.”

11:57AM: Adorable Kid Question of the day, “In the Christmas episode, when Casey’s toe got shot off, did he get a robotic toe?” Answer Josh Schwartz, “He does now, as of today.” Adds Fedak, “It’s actually a toe and a missile.” Cuing a final response on behalf of the kid, “Does that mean he’s like Darth Vader?”

12:04PM: And the award for fan suggestion of the day goes to the fan who wants to see Casey and Chuck as roommates, equating the odd couple to comedy gold. “We’ve talked about it,” explains Josh Schwartz, “If Awesome and Ellie get married, maybe they move out and we’ve also played with the idea of Chuck and Sarah living together.”

12:05PM: Reason #45 to love Chris Fedak: “I live my life trying to cast Whedon and STAR TREK actors.”

12:05PM: On the possibility of Harry Tang returning to the Buy More, Josh Schwartz joked that, “We’ve been eagerly awaiting DEXTER to kill him off and that hasn’t happened yet!”

12:10PM: “Yeah, that’s what America wants to see.” joked Josh Schwartz when asked by a fan whether the economic crisis will affect the Buy More, “You’re actually going to see the Beverly Hills Buy More which to Emmitt is so so sweet.”

12:10PM: On whether or not Schwartz and Fedak resent not being given the hallowed post-Super Bowl slot. “Yeah we definitely did everything we could and threw our hat in the ring early.” Admits Schwartz, “But we felt like we got the next best thing and as the Super Bowl came to a close I thought that I wouldn’t have wanted the pressure.” Adds Fedak, “We were impressed and happy with the amount of support from NBC.”

12:11PM: For the answer to the obligatory Chuck/Sarah will-they-or-won’t-they question, see Dan Feinberg’s excellent interview with Josh Schwartz over at where Schwartz pretty much repeats his answer verbatim.

12:14PM: Are you ready to rock? Because “Jefster,” Jeff and Lester’s band is coming to a Buy More near you!

12:15PM: After Yvonne half-jokingly says that the creepiest craziest fan encounter she’s ever had is the guy who runs and made her a bear, Schwartz says, “Way to play to your fans Yvonne.”

Be sure to check back with tomorrow for our exclusive interview with Creators Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak.

  • Mel

    Casey = Darth Vader? Awesome!

  • Why does this sound so familiar… oh, right. I was there. 🙂

  • Scott

    How about getting your info straight? The quote about the webmaster was “craziest”, not “creepiest”, and the reports are that she was laughing when she said it as if it was all in good fun. Further, he didn’t make the teddy bear himself, it’s a souvenir from his site that he ordered from and brought to her.

    Rather than make fun of the fans, how about stating that much of the so-called fan craziness during the panel Q&A could have been prevented if a separate meet and greet/autograph session had been scheduled in the first place.

  • Although I’m sure blogs are doing this in order to spin a better tale about obsessed fans, I’d like to at least get my chance to clear up some purely factual errors.

    Foremost of such errors is the fact that question was ‘craziest’ and not ‘creepiest’. There is a big difference in connotation, and it’s disappointing that you would change the facts for a funnier punch line.

    Sure, I’m a crazy fan. I run a fansite for Yvonne. But I feel that I was respectful and quick on the mic. I did not ask for an autograph or to meet her. I spoke fast, and I got the bear to them and sat down.

    I realize that it’s funnier to insult the fans, but ta least get the facts straight and try to have a bit of integrity for the story.


  • TVFan

    Thanks for the great recap, which I was there.

  • Dear Lykaon,

    My apologies for the error, it has been amended in the recap above. But for the record, as a veteran comic con attendee, I do stand by my belief that giving actors/creators gifts and/or asking for autographs/hugs is self indulgent and something that annoys the majority of the fans (myself included) in the audience. It’s a Q&A, not an opportunity to plug your own web site. Although, kudos on the plug, you undoubtedly are getting a nice bump in traffic from it!

  • bakfan

    Since both Josh and Chris are QL fans I don’t get why you feel the invitation to the QL con was awkward. I was there and watch it happen and it didn’t seem any different than anything else that was said or requested from the fans

  • Hil

    I’ve always been extremely uncomfortable in the Q&A panels at cons because the “fans” who have me wanting to hide under the chair or apologize to the poor panelists for the inappropriate and self indulgent things they do. Just ask your question and move along. We really don’t want to hear about your site plugs or emotional baggage or gifts or kinky fantasies. Don’t get me started on the “hug/kiss my child and/or me please” people. Especially since after 4-5 straight people doing this kind of thing it gives maybe one or two chances for an actual legit question being fielded.

  • It’s a perfectly fine view to believe fans shouldn’t ask for things or give things to the stars, etc.

    I debated giving her the bear; I would have preferred to give it directly to her in an autograph session or something.

    I do accept responsibility for my actions, and I do apologize for making people mad or uncomfortable. I don’t go to a lot of conventions, so I don’t have a lot of experience with what is or what is not kosher.

    In this case, I also feel that the moderator/comic con organizers should have done a better job setting expectations and rules if that was necessary.

    There was no autograph session with the Chuck panelists, so it was an inevitable eventuality that people would ask for autographs in the Q&A. That was, at least in some small part, a failure of the organizers imo.

    Perhaps the panelist are just really good actors, but I’ve rewatched video of me giving the bear to Yvonne and none of them looked upset, angry, or creeped out in my opinion. Perhaps fans who find the act self-indulgent are projecting those feelings onto the panelists?

    After having seen how it all went down, I wouldn’t do it again. I’m glad I got her the bear, and it was a fun experience for me. But it seems to have created a non-fun experience for other people. I didn’t wish or foresee that.

    As for the traffic bump, I was actually disappointed. Our numbers were no higher than an episode of Chuck. 😉


  • You say it’s a failure of the event organizers for not setting up an autograph session, well what if Yvonne & the guys didn’t want to do one? You could tell clearly from the Q&A that Schwartz was getting a little annoyed with all the requests and even said that he didn’t want to take photos when that one person asked.

    The sob-stories/sucking up really got to me as well. At the height of cold/flu season, is it unreasonable to not want people touching or getting up close to you? I know that I felt like I should have had a can of Lysol on one hip and a bottle of Purell on the other while I was there yesterday.

    Those complaining should be grateful Yvonne was as gracious as she was. Not everyone who attends a Con is required to spend hours autographing, taking pictures and making meaningless small talk.

  • @Tim

    Sorry if that was unclear. It wasn’t a failure of organizers to forego an autograph session. Perhaps you are correct and they didn’t want to have one.

    If so, then it is a failure of event organizers to not make that clear, or at least not to step in after the first person crossed the line.

    I am extremely grateful at how gracious Yvonne was with all of her fans. She came across as a genuinely nice person who cared about her fans.

    I agree Josh Schwartz was getting annoyed; but I saw no indication that Yvonne was.

    Like I said, I can understand why people got annoyed in retrospect. And I do apologize for my part in that.

    I run a fansite for Yvonne; I’m a big fan. I enjoyed the experience that I got to have by giving her that bear.

    But the repercussions weren’t all roses. I regret that it pissed people off; and I would especially regret if it creeped Yvonne out. I honestly don’t think it bothered her.

    I gave her the bear and was in my seat within 40 seconds. That’s fast. I tried to be fast and respectful of both her space and peoples’ time. I intentionally did not ask or try to approach her.

    Clearly, there is a contingent of fans who feel that the Q&A got out of hand and was disrespectful to the panelists. I question whether that contingent was really the majority as stated above, but I recognize that the contingent exists.

    I can’t speak for Polish Parade Guy, ‘Date me in NYC’ guy or the kids with nothing to sign, but I can speak for me.

    And I am sorry that my actions ruffled feathers. To me it was more than just a plug for the site, but also a way to let her know that I was a big fan of her work and I supported her.

    Clearly, I should have expressed that differently.

  • Thanks for the report! Really nice job!

  • Can we play baseball? You have a nice bat but instead of a b@11- lets use my H01$!


  • Anonymous

    I was there too 🙂

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