Chuck's 'Sarah' sees big changes in season 3

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Dec 14, 2012, 3:54 PM EST

For two seasons on NBC's spy-fi comedy Chuck, Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi) has needed agents John Casey (Adam Baldwin) and Sarah Walker (Yvonne Strahovski) to protect him on missions, but things change now that Chuck's Intersect 2.0 gives him fighting skills, complicating his on-again, off-again relationship with Sarah in the coming third season, Strahovski told us.

"I've only read the first script, as have the other cast members, but I think it'll definitely change things," Strahovski said in a group interview last week at the Television Critics Association summer press tour in Pasadena, Calif. "I'm being very cryptic, but I think that's all I can say. It's just going to change things."

If Chuck knows how to fight, maybe he can become Sarah's tag teammate in action? "I'm sure we'll be exploring that," Strahovski said evasively.

At the Chuck Comic-Con panel in San Diego last month, series creator Josh Schwartz told an audience that something traumatic would happen between Chuck and Sarah. Strahovski seems to know what he's talking about. "It's just epic," She teased last week. "That's all I can say."

Why does love have to be so hard? Don't we all just want Chuck and Sarah to be happy? "We can leave that for the season finale of the very last season," Strahovski said. "I think that's what keeps people watching. Every show where there's, like, a 'will they/won't they' love relationship, that's what people live vicariously through. I don't know, people just pine for it."

As it's Chuck, so even the trauma will be fun and funny. "I think tonally we're still going to have the great balance with the comedy and the romance and the action," Strahovski said. "The only thing that's changed is that Chuck has this new Intersect in his head, so we're going to be seeing how he handles it and how it actually operates, because it's a whole new thing."

Strahovski concurred with her co-star Levi, who said that the third-season order of 13 episodes would be good for Chuck. "Look, we're very grateful to even have 13 at this point," she said, acknowledging what it took to get the modestly rated show picked up. "It was a little scary there for a little while, because we weren't sure whether we were coming back. To have the fans do what they did and really push through for us, we are here today only because of them and what they did. So we're really grateful for the 13 and happy to be coming in after the Olympics."

That said, everyone would welcome nine more. "Oh, yeah, absolutely," Strahovski said with a big smile. "Of course we would, with open arms."

Chuck returns to NBC in March 2010.