Thursday, July 17, 2014

Burn Notice, Season 3, Episode 6

A fruit basket, or in the case of Michael Westen, a yoghurt basket (blueberry of course) arrives on his door step. Both Fiona and Michael assume it's a welcome back gift from the CIA. Fiona is none too happy about this.

The card that came with the basket gives Michael a meeting place. only the man he meets with is not CIA. His name is Tom Strickler, he's described as an agent to the spies and he wants to put Michael on his books. If you look up the word sleaze in the dictionary I could imagine there would be a picture of Strickler next to it. Michael refuses his deal, but does get told that there's a grudge holding Ukrainian from Michael's past who is in town and looking to settle an old score. This is another example of what Management told him life would be like without them.

Interesting aside. The bad guy is called Chechik and the previous episode of the show was directed by a Jeremiah Chechik, they're not the same person, because the Ukrainian's first name is Piotr. (The things you find out when looking up Wiki for information).

Fiona has knowledge of a local gun runner by the name of John Beck who may be able to help. While Michael is trying to negotiate with Beck, it's not going well, Beck has just offered to shoot Michael in the face, Chechik makes his move and sends in an extraction team.

They take both Michael and Beck into their van and head off to a rendezvous point somewhere in the Everglades. Michael escapes and takes Beck with him, and thus sets off a manhunt through the swamps. This is the first time that the show ever exploited the Everglades in an episode and its surprising that it took so long. No alligators show up, but we do get swamps and air boats. Chechik and his men use them and Sam and Fiona come to the rescue in one.

Beck gets shot although not fatally and Michael uses him as bait to draw Chechik and his men after him, where he uses guerrilla warfare tactics to get the upper hand.

Michael managed to leave a clue in the restaurant before he was taken, so that Fiona and Sam could come after him. They find the pilot who brought Chechik into Florida and take him back to Maddie's house to interrogate. They get precisely nowhere and it's actually Maddie that gets the information needed. She does this very cleverly. Just sits down smoking and talking casually about how Sam and Fiona simply kill people off hand if they don't get what they're after. Offers him a smoke, because it's not like he'll live long enough to worry about cancer, and very soon after strolls into the kitchen and provides a location. Maddie has come a long way since Season 1, and we've got an indication of maybe where Michael picked up some of his unique skills.

Once Chechik and his men are subdued, Beck calls some of his own people and there's a definite hint that he's going to follow the example set by Marcellus Wallace in Pulp Fiction of what to do to people who hurt him.

Apparently Chechik had a price on his head, and Strickler offers that to Michael. Michael turns it down, because while he did earn it, taking it makes him owe Strickler for something and that just smacks of how Carla treated him in the previous season. We haven't seen the last of him either. He's not a Big Bad as such, but he could be working for one.

There's also an indication that Sam and Maddie have a bit of an Odd Couple thing happening. Their friendship is totally platonic, but when Maddie thinks Michael is in danger she tells Sam to get him back or remember that he lives in her house and she can kill him in his sleep. Like I said, Michael is his mother's son.

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