Plot: We pick up where Season 3 ended: with Michael in a lovely sitting room. It even has fresh fruit! In walks Vaughn, yet another of the people who burned Michael. He wants Michael's help tracking down the people who financed Simon's escape. Once Michael gets bored enough sitting in his cell, he goes through the file and finds a gun runner whose name appears frequently. Mike even gets to go along when they find Mr. Gregory Hart, not that he can tell them much before a drone strike kills him. At any rate, Michael proved helpful enough Vaughn brought him back to Miami an agrees to let Michael work on tracking these people down on his own.
That taken care of, Michael goes to reconnect with his loved ones, only to find Sam and Fi up to their necks in trouble. They're trying to help a well-meaning lawyer stave off an entire biker gang out for blood and their attempts thus far have been failures. Michael comes up with the idea of making it appear Winston is part of the gang, financially, so if he he's killed, the feds will start investigating. This is suitably convincing to Big Ed, but Hunter, the guy Winston originally riled decides this is the time to make a power play. Which leaves Michael, Sam, and Fi trying to save Big Ed so he can cave Winston.
After all that, Michael has to sneak into a government facility and swipe some files that are part of an investigation into the same people Michael's after. He gets the files, but oops, he got a guy named Jesse Porter burned in the process.
The Players: Vaughn (Michael's New Friend), Gregory Hart (Gun Enthusiast), Hunter (Outlaw Biker), Winston (The Client), Big Ed (Big Problem)
Quote of the Episode: Vaughn - 'I know you've had bad experiences with some of our operatives. And look, a few turned out to be unstable, corrupt, occasionally psychopathic. The point is Michael: That's over now.'
Does Fiona blow anything up? No. However, she gets to punch Michael once, tase one biker, and crack another in the face with a helmet.
Sam Axe Drink Count: 1 (1 overall).
Sam Getting Hit Count: I have no idea how to count the scrum between Sam and Mrs. Big Ed. It was mostly a lot of grappling and hair pulling. None of the hits she landed were particularly serious, just flailing. Let's give it a 1 for the effort (1 overall).
Michael's Fake Laugh Count: 0 (0 overall).
Other: No alibis for Michael this week. Man, the CGI on that drone was not good. I can't believe they went to the trouble of getting Michael Ironside, then only used him for like 3 minutes. What the hell?
Seeing as they left Hunter to Big Ed's tender mercies, I think we can chalk that up as "Letting the Bad Guys Take Care of Each Other".
Based on his conversation with Madeline at the end, I'd say Michael never did bother to explain the burn notice in much detail. Probably not his best idea, and you think it would come up that the reason he's around is because he's been accused of doing a bunch of awful stuff he didn't do. I suppose the point was Maddy was so happy to have him back home, she didn't really care why. She didn't like people with guns coming to her home, but she mostly accepted it, and probably rationalized it. These are bad people, they're after my son because he's trying to stop them, because he's a good guy. Now she gets a look at this file full of Simon's activities, told that Michael did them, and it throws all that off. I thought it was a little strange Mike looked as though he was about the cry through the whole conversation. Maybe Jeffrey Donovan had allergies that day.
'I spent my entire career officially being nowhere. So it's not hard to pin things on someone whose job is to never have an alibi.'
I like that Michael's been gone for some indeterminate amount of time, but once he gets back, Fi is immediately questioning his decisions again. She doesn't want him working with the people who burned him, which is fairly valid. Vaughn has rapidly assumed the Carla role, calling Michael in for meetings where he hands out assignments. He's less threatening about it, but there's still the sense he has Mike on a leash, promises to stay hands off or no.
I don't often have much interest in the specific clients, but I like Winston. He's comes as a legitimately good guy. He's in the mess because he helped Hunter's ex-girlfriend get a restraining order. He's scared, but I think it's telling that when they have to rescue Big Ed, he gets out of the car while being shot at and helps haul Ed inside.