Burn Notice Review: The Hero in Us All

at . Comments

For the second week in a row, Burn Notice earned a perfect rating, this time for "Acceptable Loss," which featured the first case Michael has had where the only way to stop to the bad guy was with the very real death of the client.

We've enjoyed many cases where faking the death of the client, Michael, or both has been used to trick the bad guy and stop them. I believed here, to the very end, that they were going to figure out a way to have Ian survive the mission (even with terminal cancer.)

When they didn't, it was so much more powerful and poetic. Kudos, Matt Nix to you and your team; you again raised the bar on what a show like this can do. When you have time, could you give Hawaii Five-0 a call; they could really use your wisdom. 

Dying for a Cause

It was great seeing Gregg Henry (Ian) as the good guy. He gets cast in the bad guy or jerk role so often that you might forget he can play the hero. He also had my favorite quote of the night with the following: Spent most my life as a coward, but I’m gonna die a man. While the line itself is pretty powerful, the emotional reaction it pulled out of Michael was amazing.

Watching Michael's different expressions as he came to the realization (and respect for) Ian as he was facing his demons head on and was going to atone for the bad decision - or lack of action in his life, no matter the cost - reminded me why I love Jeffery Donovan. So much said without ever speaking a word.  

While that alone was enough to make the episode worthy of a high rating, when Michael called Pearce by her first name softly and then let her in on what was going on - explaining that he was shielding her because of Max’s death after he had told him - her reaction with trust and faith in him (see below) pushed it over the top. 

Agent Pearce

Was anyone else as shocked as I was that Michael cautioned Madeline that Anson might have said he killed his father just to get into his head? Michael is handling that totally different than I might have. I guess it's a good thing I'm not a spy. 

I’m not sure if Michael realizes he's in a war, but he certainly is building an army of friends around him anyway. At the same time, Michael was willing to play dirty with Vaughn and ended up blackmailing him into tell what he knew. It was great seeing Mike outsmart him. Sorry, Vaughn, I don’t feel sorry for you at all. 

While last week’s shocker was that Anson killed Frank Westen back in 1998, this week we had the bomb dropped that Anson’s not actually retiring, he's bringing things back online to start up The Organization again.

Can next week’s season finale make it a trifecta of perfect ratings? Less than 165 hours until we find out. Are you excited? Me too!


Editor Rating: 5.0 / 5.0
  • 5.0 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (48 Votes)

Jim G. is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


Oh, man! This was a great ep. I liked the fact that the client's death was part of the charade. Breaking new ground is always nice to see. It's great to see Micheal and Agent Pearce bonding. I just hope this doesn't mean we'll soon be saying bye-bye to Pearce.
I would like to know a little more about Micheal's father to shed some light on why Madeline defends him sometimes. I mean, there are plenty of times she leaves no doubt that he treated her horribly, and other times she defends him. I just don't get it. I'm with FionaGlenanne in that I don't like to watch the previews for the next week. You can't ask other people not to speculate though. I just try to skim over the comment when I see that sort of thing. It's a personal preference. There's no right or wrong.


Well actually someone down there wrote it, and theres nothing wrong with it, but some people don't like it because it ruins something for them, because they don't want to expect any scene in the episode.
Just saying.


were all just guessing there nothing wrong with that


Oh forgot totally, OMG Ansons rebuilding his team? Another reason I cannot wait!


Woah, just one episode left. I wish this episode would be something that could be as good as the finale, which is usually the best, but I can't say this episode gets more than about 4.3 from me.
We saw a lot of Jesse, which was good, because he's hardly under the limelight, and he made his appearance worthy. Can't say much for the rest. I want to, but I'm writing this a day after I saw it, so can't remember much. Oh, yeah, woot for the return of Vaughn and his mustache, and I missed Anson.
Can I just say how annoying it is to see people posting what they see in the promo's, because there happen to be people who don't watch it so they don't have stuff spoiled for them? Thank you.
CanNOT wait for next week (as someone has revealed something in it, pfft). But then next week I'll have to wait for six months for season six :P


i am really truly sorry if i offended any Michaels or Micheals. that was most definitely not my intention, neither was it the point of my comment, i assure you.


@farsia2010 Micheal is the male name for Michelle the right way to spell his name is the same as mine


i agree with the review.
the promo for the next week was unnerving!!!
i think that Anson wanted Micheal to track the law firm and knew he would bring in his "old pal" Vaughn in for Anson. i think he wants to either kill or use him. on the other hand i think Anson is deriving some sort of pleasure from letting Micheal know that all he fights against is truly indestructible and that all the years of fighting against the organization came to nothing in the end. after all Micheal is double hooked now, Anson has the blackmail material for Fi and for Micheal now as he can tell that Micheal helped him plant a virus inside the CIA computers. that can get Mike killed. i think that Jessie might be working with them, even the fact that he was ready to sacrifice his life at the end of season 4 can be explained since he would have known that he was in no real danger.
on the other hand i think that Pierce is a way more probable and logical suspect. Sb gets Max killed, and here comes Pierce to solve it and presto she also becomes Mike's handler that actually doesn't over pressurize him and even all her poking is within reason. when Max was killed Mike said it himself that the best way to cover up your own crime is to be the one who is supposed to solve it. that was Agent Pierce. if Anson is rebuilding his org it means he still has some juice in various orgs, i bet he could have blackmailed sb to put Pierce on the case. and also after all the poking and prodding that she did it was weird to see her just back off in the end of this ep. as for Fi screaming for Mike in the promo, i think he handcuffed her so that she wouldn't go with him and she thinks that where ever he is going is suicidal. she thinks he will die. can it pls be next week already????


here are some thoughts one I think either Pearce or Jesses are with Anson at least that what the promo give off that its one of them I think The reason Finoa Scream for Michael is because when he leave she find a Bomb in the room and its about to go off. I have to say all these twist and Turn are so nice to have in a show again most show are scare to do them because of pissing off the so called fanbase but im glad Burn Notice had the guts to do it. The Organization that he(Arson) bringing back could it be he wants Michael to be the leader?


Excellent. I agree with the review.

Tags: ,

Burn Notice Season 5 Episode 17 Quotes

Fiona: What does Anson want with a man in prison for life?
Michael: We find that out, we finally get one step ahead of Anson.

Madeline: You have a job to do; you have to stop Anson from ruining any more lives.
Michael: Not sure I know how to do that.
Madeline: Figure it out.