Sometimes I get the feeling that season 1 is not appreciated as much as it should. I find it as magical as season 2 and enjoy every episode. One of my favorite episodes, however, is 1.09 Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami. Not only is it full of great lines and dialogue, but Sarah’s nonverbal communication is top-notch, and the visual symbolism is the icing on the cake.

I love how Sarah tells Chuck that she is sorry he perceived an emotional connection that isn’t there, in stark contrast with her disheveled look, which tells a very different story; Chuck is unable to pick up on the contradiction between her verbal communication and nonverbal cues—a contradiction she herself may very well be unaware of.

Chuck 1.09 Sarah's disheveled look

I love how Casey stings Sarah about her being dumped and she tries to play it cool while, again, her nonverbal communication tells a very different story, all against the background picture of her love rival Lou.

Chuck 1.09 - Casey, she got dumped

Chuck 1.09 - Casey, she got dumped. Sarah's reaction.

The episode is about the war for Chuck between Sarah and Lou. And what battleground could be more appropriate than Club Ares since Ares was the Greek god of war?

The dialogue in this scene is great, and equally great is Sarah’s silent reaction.

Casey, “Why don’t you and your girlfriend hit Club Ares, tonight? I hear it’s all the rage.”

Chuck 1.09 Casey mentions Club Ares

Speaking of rage…

Chuck 1.09 Sarah's silent rage

Since Ares is the god of war, Lester is his prophet, “All is fair in love and war, Sarah.”

Chuck 1.09 Lester, all is fair in love and war, Sarah

So, Sarah gets dressed for battle, ready to be celebrated in victory.

Chuck 1.09 Sarah is dressed for war

Chuck 1.09 Sarah is dressed for war against Lou

And she goes to war…

Chuck 1.09 Sarah goes to war in Chuck vs Club Ares

…Against a fiery enemy.

Chuck 1.09 Lou is the fiery enemy

Caught in a war between two women, Chuck watches Lou slip away in a taxi. Chuck vs Club Ares sees the god of war victorious against him.

Sarah is proud of herself as she says, “Mission accomplished” to Chuck in all its double entendre glory.

Chuck 1.09 Sarah says, "Mssion accomplished."

“How was the date?” asks Casey.

Yes, Chuck, how was your date?

“Is it me or does our government never want me to have sex again?” says Chuck while Sarah unwittingly clears her throat.

Chuck 1.09 Is it me or does our government never want me to have sex again?

Yes, it appears that certain branches of government do indeed feel that way, Chuck.

Chuck 1.09 Sarah's silent reaction to Chuck's words about never having sex again

But, hey, love is a battlefield. Especially if Ares is involved.

Chuck Versus the Imported Hard Salami is a superb episode that sees Sarah as much at war with herself as she is with Lou. Her heart rages against all the feelings she cannot even admit to herself she has and will finally burst in an explosive kiss.

Chuck 1.09 Sarah kisses Chuck by a bomb that is about to explode

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