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Burn Notice - Season Finale - Advance Review

The CIA is hot on the team’s trail after a few comical episodes with Patton Oswalt. I read quite a few complaints online the last few weeks about the episodes featuring the conniving Schmidt (I found his name ironic considering his character on Two and a Half Men) who found his character boring, but I have found his episodes quite entertaining. Patton Oswalt is a funny guy and was perfect for the part. Unfortunately, we do not see Schmidt return for these episodes. They just stay in his house the whole time rent free, rather like Alan Harper on Two and a Half Men.To put it mildly, this season finale of Burn Notice kicks major ass! There are enough explosions, chases, and gunfights for an entire season of 24. So without spoiling too much I’ll go over some of the highlights of the episode.

Agent Olivia (Dunham, umm no) Riley is pursuing Mike with more hatred thought possible of a human being. In the last few episodes, we have seen Sonja Sohn (Body of Proof) scream orders into a walkie talkie with a voice faster than an auctioneer. Sonja Sohn was perfectly cast as Riley and is fun to watch. My first thought when I watched this episode was, “She’s just doing her job. How can you blame her? Mike would do the same thing in her position.” I immediately thought of (DEXTER SPOILER ALERT) the recently deceased Captain Laguerta of Showtime’s Dexter. They are both major pains for our protagonists, extremely determined, but also with good intentions. Laguerta wants to catch the real Bay Harbor Butcher and clear her ex’s name. Riley simply wants to catch the murderer of a decorated CIA official. My thoughts on Riley were changed drastically in the episode. I won’t say exactly what it is, but Riley crosses the line in a big way. Good intentioned no more; Olivia Riley is just as bad as Tom Card.

Speaking of bad people, Michael Westen isn’t exactly in the clear. Last we saw him, Mike found a note from someone wanting to meet. That someone, we will learn, is CSS agent Jason Bly. Bly wants to offer Mike a deal, but there is no way to sugar coat it. Even as vague as the offer is, you can tell that it doesn’t end up nice for anyone.  As Bly puts it, his deal is the, “Last, best, and only deal you’re going to get.” But, I’ll leave the rest of Bly’s story to everyone on Thursday night.

I do want to talk a little about how Michael Westen has changed the last few seasons. When we first met him, all Michael cared about was getting back to the CIA. Then, he gets back and just wants out. Now he’s more than out, and… what now? The problem Westen has is setting a limit. It’s like Walter on Fringe not setting himself any boundaries in the lab. Michael has lost countless friends and even his brother to this entire situation over the last 6 seasons and still does not know his limits. All this time, Michael has had 3 people who always remain loyal to him; Sam, Fiona, and his Mom. Throw Jesse into the mix and you have 4 musketeers for Michael. As has been teased throughout the season, Michael is going to continue to put those people directly in the line of fire. If we were to see a figurative translation of what Mike has done the last few seasons, we would see him cowering in the corner while his Mom, girlfriend, and 2 best friends do all the talking (and shooting). This is a major part of the season finale and leads one of the most beloved Burn Notice characters to a slippery slope.

Favorite Quotes of the Episode

“Mr. Porter is a clever one.” – Olivia Riley
“Come on Campbell.” – Sam Axe (Which is ironic considering the the actor who plays Sam is named Bruce Campbell)
“He owes me $20.” – Jesse Porter
“Who uses a phonebook these days? You guys don’t have internet?” – Jesse Porter
"Did you take pictures?" - Sam Axe
“This ends now!” – Michael Westen (Seriously Mike, how many times have you said that?)

Action: 10/10
Plausibility: 6/10
Writing: 10/10

Overall: 8.7/10

The Burn Notice season finale airs on December 20th at 9/8c on USA Network. After you watch, be sure to come back to this page to let everyone know what you thought. 

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