NBC’s ‘Chuck’ Season 3 premieres with extra superspy powers

Backed by a fast-food sponsor known for its slimming-down ad campaign, a beefed-upChuck returns for a third season with a two-hour premiere Sunday (NBC, 9 ET/PT). The action, comedy and romance hybrid about nerd turned reluctant spy Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi) has been a critical and fan favorite, but a lackluster ratings performer, in its regular Monday slot, to which it returns the following night at 8 ET/PT.

Series producers Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak hope to boost viewership beyond the show's ardent base with story lines focusing on the often-hapless Bartowski's upgraded spy powers — thanks to a new Intersect brain implant that provides Chuck a limitless reservoir of newfound abilities, from martial arts expertise to MacGyver-like survivor skills.

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