'Burn Notice' recap: Method acting

Burnnotice_lWas it me, or was Madeline much more subtle upon last night’s return? She didn’t whine. She didn’t nag. She didn’t demand Mike get therapy or reconcile with Fiona. Or make him coddle Nate. She just smoked like a dragon, drank like a fish, and kept things light and hilarious. She called her VCR a "home theater system" for Pete’s sake. Between that and her ancient coffee pot, I half expected her to pull out a magic lantern and claim she’d gone HD.

I’m a bit chuffed over how I predicted that Sam and Madeline would be bunking together. Though I assumed it would be because Mike sickened of him, his beer, and his chips, not because Madeline needed protection from a crazy new covert operative (Stargate‘s Michael Shanks) assigned by Carla to "wrangle" our guy. His code name: Victor. His act: insane. His mission: Force Mike to assist with a smash-and-grab heist on a local pier. His vibe: a bit boring, if I do say so myself. "Help us or we’ll come after you and your family"? Snore. Didn’t Timo already pull this on Trevor last week?

addCredit(“Jeffrey Donovan: Glenn Watson”)

Victor wasn’t even a good foil to Mike. He was too predictablyunpredictable. You knew he wasn’t going to let Michael sever his radialartery with a chess piece and that he was packing fire under the table.You knew if Michael ignored him he’d show up and ruin Michael’s job.You also knew he’d want to kill the security guards on the pier, butthat Mike wouldn’t let him. And you tired of his twitchy, psycho killeract ("The last man who insulted me had to fish pieces of his tongue outof a garbage disposal") and his love of rocking flower patterns inabout five to ten minutes.

That said, the heist itself really piqued my interest. First off,can you actually make an X-ray machine in the trunk of your Buick usingold TV parts and a taser gun? Are professional, government-sanctionedthefts pulled off in broad daylight? Why would a Chiquita Bananafacility be hiding sniper rifles? Moreover, what do Carla, Victor, andCo. want with the gun? Is it to use on Mike? To make Mike use? Or, as Ibelieve, is it because they are truly a good operation trying to stopthe bad guys from getting the weapon? Plus, when did Fiona start makingfriends at veterinary clinics that are willing to develop large filmsof scary weaponry for her?

But let’s get back to the bad guy/good guy thing. Last night’s jobinvolved the younger brother of Mike’s childhood best friend Andre.Little Ricky (played by one of the series’ best writers, Ben Watkins)is now all grown up and an accountant to Miami’s most dangerousgangster-turned-hip-hop mogul Valentine (Method Man, in the snazziestwhite suit and smoking the fattest cigar ever). Seems scary enoughwithout adding that Valentine’s number two, Eddie Ash (Felicity‘sRob Benedict), embezzled a boatload of cash from the rapper and framedRicky. Considering that Valentine called a board meeting just so hecould whack a dissenting worker over the head with a platinum record Ãla De Niro in The Untouchables, I’d say Ricky had reason to befreaked. Mike’s plan to pose as Boston-bred, mob-connected,diamond-wearing money launderer Jimmy Glynn and get Ash to admit hestole the money nearly worked — until Victor busted in and told Ashthat Jimmy had the feds after him, which just seemed to raise thestakes. Thinking he needed to clean his money immediately and tie upall lose ends, Ash sent a kill squad to Ricky’s house. Enter Fiona,flashing her abs, her thong, and her rock-throwing abilities to foilthe initial hit and Sam to pose as a disgruntled music lover (so whatif he likes Kenny G., Barbara Mandrell, Captain & Tennille?) inorder to kidnap Valentine and make him watch while Ash tries to do awaywith Ricky on his own.

Still, no matter how terrible Ash was, or how frightening Valentinecould be, I still don’t think it’s right how Mike seems to happily letthe bad guys of Miami murder each other. I buy what you guys said inyour comments about the system sucking and jail not working, but Ican’t help thinking prison would have been better for Eddie Ash thangetting pushed off Valentine’s boat. Nearly five people witnessed himtrying to kill Ricky and admitting to the embezzlement scheme. Soundslike a slam dunk case to me. Then again, Ash could have always turnedon Valentine and gone state’s evidence, ending up in witness protectionout west (I have been watching too much USA). So maybe he did get whathe deserved. And why would such a good guy like Ricky still want towork for Valentine after having proof that he’s a murderer?

Speaking of getting what’s deserved, I’m glad Fiona is finallydemanding things (like money) from Mike for her work. We know Sam’s gota pension, but what does she have to live off of? The odd bounty hunterjob? Selling her snow globes? I’m also happy she’s playing the market —just interested to know when Mike will too. As for Sammy, he once againdelivered my favorite line of the night, when telling Mike to take a"little sippy sip" of his curry.

So what did you guys think about last night? For my money, it wasn’tthe greatest episode, but it was solid. And can anyone tell me whenTricia Helfer is coming back?

Comments (26 total) Add your comment
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  • Jill

    I found Maddie nice and quiet last night too; I liked it. I like that she comes off kind of ditzy but is really astute about other things. I cracked up at the amount of cables Ricky pulled out from under her couch. What I’d like to know is if Mike keeps turning down payments for his “help” then how does he live? Did he score a huge payment that I don’t remember? I’m not missing Tricia Helfer at all; she can keep sending her lackeys instead. I laughed at the pink, jeweled phone Victor gave Mike.

  • CSK

    I’m with Jill – I am not missing Carla either. And I think Mike, Fi and Sam all got a cut of that money that they lit on fire between the bad cops and the gang – remember? I seem to recall that they kept a few million so I have been assuming that is how they all stay afloat cash-wise. I am still enjoying Burn Notice but I would really like to see the plan NOT work out for once. Oh, and my favorite part: when Eddie was trying to beat him up and Michael had to figure out a way to throw the fight. I was cracking up!

  • herb

    I have watched this show from day one and again I have to say—this show is going in the wrong direction. Having Carla and her “goons” (although I like Michael Shanks and think he could work somehow in this show) need to go away. I like the fact Carla was gone, like “Mom” back and would like to see Shanks perhaps work with the FBI and/or Sam. I think direction is just pain off the mark with people “owning” Michael. This just doesn’t make sense for someone who can handle everything. And once again – Fi is the best!

  • Steph

    I thought Michael Shanks knocked “Victor” out of the park. Not only did he chew the scenery, he spit it out all over South Beach. For the past three weeks, I thought this show was cleary lacking in energy. Not anymore. And now I can’t wait to see how Michael is going to take down “the wrangler”.

  • Hemisphire

    I’ve struggled with the decisions the Scooby gang makes about the bad guys, and I think it comes down to if the bad guy’s willing to commit murder, then let them take the consequences whatever they may be. It’s pretty harsh, but they’re not cops.

  • Seth

    In response to the “can you actually make an X-ray machine in the trunk of your Buick using old TV parts and a taser gun?” question. According to the creator commentary on http://www.usanetwork.com. Yes they researched it and you can build this. But they recommend not trying it at home
    Here’s the link
    http://www.usanetwork.com/series/burnnotice/video/commentary/index.html
    Loo

  • Stevedore

    To chime in on the “letting bad guys kill bad guys” thing. You have to remember the character of Mike Weston was a CIA operative for YEARS prior to the events of the show. He might be doing good works these days, but I doubt he loses even a second of sleep over letting bad guys off other bad guys. I doubt he’d lose sleep if HE had to kill bad guys; I’d wager the only reason he doesn’t is because he’d rather not take even the slightest chance of getting caught up in a murder investigation.

  • JB

    I miss Cheese Wagstaff.

  • dasha

    i was excited to see method man play a diddy-type character so well

  • Ness

    I liked this episode because it actually got more into the ‘burn’ side of the story and Micheal Shanks was great.
    I’ve frankly been a bit disappointed with season two what with Micheal’s mother being utterly pointless (I’m sorry I like Sharon Gless but really, most of her scenes could be cut out of episodes with ease), the ‘a’ stories no longer holding my interest (I can predict what happens down to a tee) and most importantly, the ‘Burn’ story moving too slowly for it to hold any suspense.
    I’m hoping Carla (yes, I’m one of those who wants to see/hear from her again) will be seen/heard soon, because the introduction of Victor was a step in the right direction. For me.

  • heloisa Burnip

    I do not miss a single episodi of Burn Notice. Michael and Fiona are great. I love them e the show.

  • heloisa Burnip

    I do not miss a single episodi of Burn Notice. Michael and Fiona are great. I love them e the show.

  • Donna Rose

    Anyone with Carla’s connections can acquire a high-powered sniper rifle so why did she want that particular one? Not to use it, but to cover up it’s use. It was probably part of an illegal op, like an assasination, and whoever ordered the op is the same person who burned Michael.

  • Shara

    I have no problem with what happens to “the bad guys” on Burn Notice. I prefer the way it is written over everything being “wrapped up in a nice package with a pretty bow”. It’s a little more realistic, written this way. I did wonder why, though, Ricky would want to stay at his job. As always, I love Burn Notice! It’s one of my favorites!

  • kaydevo

    I don’t get the squeamishness over criminals paying the ultimate price on Burn Notice. If you like Mike’s character, you’re already overlooking the things he’s done for country as a spy. Mike, Sam and Fi could never testify against the show’s bad guys – when the baddies get what’s comin’ to them, our heroes have to be able to melt away as if they were never there. Also Mike has to make sure no sleezies can never come back & take revenge on the folks he was trying to save in the first place. And putting those people in a position where they’d have to testify is not an option with the level of evil-doers on the show. Mike often uses the words “they’ll never bother you again,” which is his goal in every case. Besides, it’a tv show.
    I thought Victor was a good addition to the show, and glad to see Michael Shanks.

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