Sunday, November 25, 2012

Burn Notice 3.16 - Devil You Know

Plot: We pick up where the last episode left off: With Michael bailing out of an SUV before the bomb strapped to Gilroy explodes. Farewell Gilroy, you were one of my favorite sub-bosses. After a quick phone call to Sam (who is not happy to hear Simon escaped), it's time for Michael to run from the police. He even incorporates a jet ski into it. The whole crew is supposed to meet at the 'emergency emergency spot', but Madeline is intercepted by FBI Agent Callahan before she can get out the door. He finds the shotgun she packed incriminating, and begins badgering her to get Michael to come home. Maddy, naturally, tells Michael to stay away, and they set off to find Simon, after Mike promises no more 'lone wolf crap'. Combat knives for everyone.

When goes to pick up the Charger, he finds Simon as well. More accurately, Simon found him. Turns out Simon did all the really awful things Michael's burn notice accuses him of doing. Simon isn't happy he was locked in a hole while someone else got credit for his work. Simon wants Michael to get Management to Miami, or else he'll detonate a bomb he had stashed in a hotel somewhere. So Michael has to keep Simon happy while Fi and Sam try to track down first, Simon's explosives connection, and then the bomb. Meanwhile, Callahan has finally figured out Maddy warned Michael off, so she tells him they were going to meet at a mall. Fi and Sam take the bomber by surprise (by driving through his living room), and Fi gets him to reveal the location of the bomb in her usual pleasant manner.

Michael gets in touch with Management, even warns him it's Simon. Despite the ruthlessness with which these people have dispatched people they don't like, Michael still figures he's better off siding with them than the 'lone crazy guy'. Simon and Mike elude police pursuit with a bit more collateral damage than Michael would like, but since Simon has his cell phone, Mike has no way of knowing Sam and Fi found the bomb. Thus he doesn't realize that he could go ahead and shoot Simon. Until Simon's dropped him off, promising to see him again at the meeting with Management. By this point, Callahan has returned from the mall, now thoroughly steamed, and finding all Michael's supplies (ammo, explosives) in Maddy's garage, has him in a mood to arrest someone. And Madeline decides it's going to be her. So Callahan, unable to intimidate an old woman, arrests her instead. Bravo, sir. You have yourself a nice tumbler of scotch when you get home tonight. You've earned that manly drink.

Michael, Sam, and Fi reunite at the meeting point, and Mike is ready to kill Simon if they get the chance. Which they don't, because Management is just a little too cocky. He honestly thought Simon would entrust this to a bunch of local hired guns, ignoring Simon's expertise in explosives. Michael avoids getting two in the head, thanks to his combat knife, but has to flee, leaving Management in Simon's clutches. Well, the old man's a bastard, he deserves it, but Michael isn't content to leave it there. Breaking his promise to cut out the lone wolf crap, Michael steals a truck and chases Simon, who is driving an ambulance. There's a crash, a big fight, and Michael accedes to Management's wishes and does not kill Simon when he has the chance. He gets arrested, but we learn along with Madeline, that the feds had him for about 10 minutes before he was taken into someone else's custody, somewhere else. Somewhere rainy, with guards, chain link fences, and headbags. Somewhere. . . with opulently decorated sitting rooms. Um, what?

The Players: Agent Callahan (FBI), Simon (?), Simon (The Client), Keith (Hotel Bomber), Management

Quote of the Episode: Simon - 'Just think of me as an instrument of justice.' Michael - 'Yeah, I'll try to wrap my head around that.'

Does Fiona blow anything up? No. I'm not counting the detonator. It wasn't her bomb, and Sam threw it anyway.

Sam Axe Drink Count: 0 (41 overall). Drinking is down a little bit. It was 46 drinks last season.

Sam Getting Hit Count: 0 (2 overall). Definite drop off in Sam getting hit this season.

Michael's Fake Laugh Count: 0 (5 overall).

Other: There are certain things about this episode I don't understand. How did Simon find Michael's car? It doesn't seem to be anywhere near the deserted bridge Mike was ordered to defend. How has Simon been keeping track of Michael's career well enough to know about his helping people? I can buy him getting messages to Gilroy from a secret prison, but regular updates of Westen's comings and goings. Did Michael really never tell Maddy about the things he was falsely accused of doing? He's seen the file, he didn't ever tell her anything? I'm not talking specifics, I'm talking a general mention that they pinned a bunch of awful crap on him. He may have done so, but I don't recall it offhand. And it may not have mattered anyway. With all the secrets he keeps from her normally, she might have thought he was lying to her. I just thought it was strange she was fazed for even a second by Callahan's accusations.

I'm annoyed that after Michael promised to work as part of a team, he went off and did everything by himself again. And he didn't buckle his seat belt again! He is the worst role model for small children. Doesn't follow the rules, doesn't play well with others. I'm being sarcastic, sort of. It did bother me he felt he had to do everything on his own, again. I understand his desire to keep Fi and Sam clear of the shitstorm that was about to land on his head, but I think 3 people could have stopped Simon, rescued Management, and slipped away clean, whereas one could not. Didn't they demonstrate at the end of last season they could tkae care of themselves? They shot Carla and got away clean.

Also, how the heck did Management come out of that car wreck unscathed? I know Mike hit the cab of the ambulance, and presumably Management was in the back, but he's still an old man. Getting thrown around like that couldn't have done him any good. Maybe he's the only one smart enough to wear a seat belt.

It's not one of my favorite finales. I don't find Simon that interesting compared to Victor, Gilroy, or Carla. It might be something if I though Simon regarded himself as an artist, angry someone else got credit for his work. But he's just another guy screwed over by Management, and not a particularly sympathetic one. I don't disagree with Mike's decision to team up with Management against Simon, but that feels wrong. Management and his cronies are the bad guys, we shouldn't want him to prosper or survive.

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