Review: Burn Notice - A Dark Road (mid-season premiere)
by Allison Waldman, posted Jan 22nd 2010 3:00AM
(S03E10) "People get hurt and things get complicated no matter what you do." - Fiona
Welcome back, Burn Notice. We've missed you. The story picked up a day or two after the resolution of the Strickler thing, with Fiona still on the mend and Michael more than a little miffed by the missed opportunity to get back in the spy game. And if sore feelings and healing wounds weren't painful enough, there's a new threat for Michael.
The good news was the Miami authorities weren't blaming Diego's death on Michael, the bad news is Michael's a target. But while the plan to unburn Michael Westen has been shelved, Fiona still has a side business going as a local Irish Robin Hood. That's right, she presented herself as the boss with Sam and Michael her lackeys. Sweet.
The whole insurance scam was a perfect excuse for plenty of car chases ... or as Michael referred to it, "precision driving." If you think you can only get high speed chases in exotic locales in the movies, think again. The stuff on this episode was top notch, especially the group driving to set up planned accidents. And there were at least three really good action scenes.
Jeffrey Donovan got a chance to pull out his good old boy accent. His obnoxious North Carolina character played a bit like a leftover from Smokey and the Bandit.
Not surprisingly, the best part of the episode was the subplot involving Tyne Daly as Tina, a county records lady who was immune to "Sam's magic." To get the information they needed, Michael gave Madeline a cover ID and sent her in.
Before you could say Christine and Mary Beth, Madeline and Tina were quaffing gin and tonics and playing canasta. Unfortunately, that was a problem. Tina was an asset, a concept foreign to Madeline's way of thinking. And when it was time for Maddie to squeeze Tina to get the records Michael had to have, Madeline was forced to turn on her friend. It was painful to watch, but it was a nice piece of acting for Tyne Daly and Sharon Gless, the two old pros. Gless turned to ice and Daly has all the vulnerability in her eyes. The subtext just got to you because you knew their was affection there.
So Gilroy is the new man menacing Michael. The scene in the Marine Stadium was excellent. Where the hell were the bullets coming from? If there's one thing that I love about Burn Notice, it's the great use of locations. You could almost imagine some scouting director finding that spot and figuring out how to fit it into the show.
Other points of interest
-- Intimacy for Fi and Michael is getting cheek to cheek while soddering a listening device. Just another way to say I love you ... and thanks for saving my life.
-- Despite the burn Maddie gives to Tina, at least Michael covered her theft. Could Tina ever come back into Madeline's life and resume the friendship? Probably not.
-- Loved the biker shop fire business. There was also lots of fire in the hotel room. Hot stuff.
-- What, no lady friends for Sam? He didn't even allude to a Mrs. Reynolds or a babe in Boca.
[Watch clips from Burn Notice on SlashControl.]