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October 8, 2015

Burn Notice: Fearless Leader

by Allison Waldman, posted Jun 26th 2009 9:33AM
Michael_Burn_Notice_Jeffrey_Donovan(S03E04) That pesky Detective Paxson of the Miami PD continued to be a thorn in Michael's side, to the point that Michael decided it was time to extract her from his life. To get Paxson -- one royal pain in the butt who doesn't believe that Michael's one of the good guys -- Michael concocts a plan to help her close her case against Rick Matheson, a real bad guy.

Matheson was a one-note Rock look-alike, without Dwayne Johnson's charm. Mostly Matheson was a scumbag who deserved to be brought down.

Tommy, on the other hand, wasn't really a nasty moke. He was broadly hammed up by former NYPD Blue star Nick Turturro, and turned out to be Michael's way into Matheson's organization.

Tommy wrangled Michael and the "crew" -- Sam and Fiona -- into knocking off a dry cleaners. The look on Michael's face as he tried to follow Tommy's idiotic leadership was priceless. He was clearly the Fearless Leader of the title, more than the demonic Matheson, and for those who remember Rocky and Bullwinkle, the title was a good in-joke.

Sam's IRS auditor turned out to be immune to the Axe charm, including his colorful shirts, calypso music and pink cocktails, because Stacey was a he, not a she. The twist that Stacey and Sam had a history -- Stacey's mom was one of Sam's lady friends -- was unexpected. Even more unexpected, though, was the notion that somehow Sam's fuzzy navels and lessons in how to order a drink were going to get him off the hook with the IRS. But then, whatever made Sam think that spa treatments were a legitimate deductible?

Serving up Matheson to Paxson on a silver platter earned Michael a modicum of freedom. As he explained to Fiona, he was at a moment he had been waiting for since he was burned. The fact that Michael's where he wants to be -- available to rejoin the spy game and resume his career -- was crushing to Fiona.

He may want back "in" but she doesn't. Her dream was to keep on working with Michael in their quasi-Good Samaritan detective business ... and hopefully she had become a priority in his life. The truth is that Fiona is a priority, just not the top priority. Her tears touched his heart, but they probably didn't change his mind. It was perhaps one of the most bittersweet scenes in Burn Notice's run.

So, I put it to you, now that Michael's at this moment in time, will he get back into the business before someone from his past comes after him again, like Management? The way I see it, something is going to prevent Michael from getting what he thinks he wants. Frankly, if he were to rejoin the FBI, CIA or NSA, he would be more vulnerable than he is now. At least in Miami, he has the crew -- more like family really -- that he can trust. Take this poll and share your thoughts -- oh, don't forget, it'll be two weeks till the next new episode.

What should Michael do now that he has his moment?
Get back into a spy organization87 (19.4%)
Tell Fiona he wants to stay with her and continue their work292 (65.0%)
Start over by becoming a Miami cop8 (1.8%)
Open a detective agency with Nate62 (13.8%)

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BC McKinney

I was sure Sam had used his skills and sources to investigate Stacey's background and was playing him, and was a little disappointed when it was implied their previous connection was real.

June 26 2009 at 12:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I don't like any of your choices! I think the team will keep helping people but Michael will never tell Fi that he is staying for her. And, even though Bruce Campbell may not be the greatest actor, it wouldn't be Burn Notice without him.

June 26 2009 at 11:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Richard's comment

I think Campbell is a great part of the cast. He has great comedic timing (which is rare) and is a hoot playing off Sharon Gless as Michael's mother.

June 26 2009 at 12:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Now this was more like the episodes I've been missing this season. Even Detective Paxson wasn't as annoying. I hope we've seen the end of her vendetta against Michael. What would be far more interesting is if she became Michael's confidante in the Miami PD.

I agree with you about the scene in the restaurant. Both Donovan and Anwar played that scene so well. These two have such great chemistry as actors. We could really see the hurt in Fi's eyes as Michael put her second to being a spy. Really great scene.

June 26 2009 at 11:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Jimmy's comment

Couldn't have said it better - on all points! I actually delayed watching this episode awhile because the first couple of episodes were just not drawing me in like the past two seasons, but now, it's seems like the "vehicle" is set in the proper gear and I can't wait to see what's ahead. I still would have liked to have seen the "Det. Paxson" character cast with more edge and imagination, but this episode at least opened up some new possibilities.... (as long as they don't make the mistake of veering off into a romantic nature!)

July 06 2009 at 1:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I was impressed with Fi's cover accent and amused with Bruce Campbell's lack of an accent.

June 26 2009 at 9:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to Ryan's comment

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