Up to Speed: Burn Notice Season 6

 

What: Burn Notice on USA

When: Thursdays at 10 PM

Key Characters:

  • Michael Westen (Jeffrey Donovan): The protagonist of the show, Michael is a former spy who was “burned” after his CIA record was falsified with criminal acts he never committed.  Michael was locked down in his hometown of Miami with no assets or assistance and he worked for four years to try and clear his name and get reinstated.  He also started performing odd jobs for people around the city who needed help or protection from various criminals using his spy skills.  Michael eventually learned that a shadowy organization had burned him in order to recruit him and his new goal was to find out who they were and take them down.  Michael is an expert in social engineering, armed and unarmed combat and impersonation.
  • Sam Axe (Bruce Campbell): Sam is Michael’s best friend and a former Navy SEAL.  After a botched mission in Colombia, Sam was forced to retire and was honorably discharged.  At the beginning of the series, Sam was blackmailed into reporting to the FBI about Michael’s activities but the gang quickly figured out how to get the FBI to back off.  Sam is usually never far from a drink and is always able to call in favors from his various friends in the local and federal government to get the team intelligence and he often goes undercover as his alter ego, Chuck Finley.
  • Fiona Glenanne (Gabrielle Anwar): Michael’s on again/off again, Fiona is a former IRA gun runner whom Michael met while undercover in Ireland.  Fiona is the first person to greet Michael when he wakes up in Miami, as she was still listed as his emergency contact at the CIA.  Fiona’s solution to most of the gang’s predicaments is to blow their way out with C4 and guns, but is usually talked down by Sam or Michael.  She and Michael’s relationship was firmly “on” during Season 5, as Fiona moved in to Michael loft and started to add a woman’s touch to it’s total sparseness (It’s basically an abandoned warehouse).
  • Jesse Porter (Coby Bell): Jesse is a former Counter Intelligence Agent, or spy hunter, that Michael unwittingly burns while investigating a group related to the organization that burned him after he breaks into the CIA field office Jesse was working at.  Jesse comes to Michael for help to find out who burned him and eventually finds out it was Michael.  Jesse briefly consider killing Michael but decides against it and the two eventually mend their relationship.  Jesse is reinstated based on evidence Michael gathers but decides to quit government work and starts working for a private security company in Miami.  His new job allows the team access to a number assets and supplies during their Season 5 jobs.
  • Madeline Westen (Sharon Gless): Michael’s mother and a gradually more willing participant in the gang’s various jobs.  Madeline frequently allows Michael’s “clients” to hide at her house and is sometimes recruited by the gang to go undercover to gain information.  

Other Characters:

  • Kim Pearce (Lauren Stamile): Michael’s CIA liaison during Season 5, she is his contact with the agency and starts to assign him jobs to kidnap or protect key CIA assets in various countries.
  • Max (Grant Show): Michael’s CIA partner, who is murdered about halfway through the season and Michael is framed for the murder.
  • Larry Sizemore (Tim Matheson): A recurring Burn Notice villain, Larry worked with Michael at the CIA, doing covert jobs but Larry’s violent tactics forced him to fake his own death and become a mercenary.
  • Anson Fullerton (Jere Burns): At first seeming like a kidnapping victim of Larry, Anson is revealed to be the head of the organization that burned Michael and gains evidence against Fiona that he uses to blackmail Michael into performing tasks that Michael eventually learns are to help Anson rebuild his organization.

Major Events

  • At the end of Season 4, Michael gains a Non Official Cover list (or NOC list) for all the members of the organization that burned him.  He brings it to the attention of the CIA and is welcomed back as a  consultant to help them track down and either capture or kill everyone on the list.  Over six months, Michael and the CIA team work their way up to who they think is the head of organization, but he kills himself before the team can capture him.
  • Michael returns to Miami but is unable to let go of the fact that the organization is gone and starts to obsessively recheck all the evidence he collected.
  • Michael starts doing assignment for the CIA, under the direction of Agent Kim Pearce.  After a mission where he and Max recover some stolen information, Michael heads to the CIA field office to debrief but finds Max dying on the floor and a gun next to him.  Michael is shot at by an unknown assailant and picks up the gun to return fire.  Michael realizes he was set up and destroys the gun, which was the murder weapon and starts to investigate Max’s murder
  • Michael helps Fiona and Sam with their various clients who need Michael’s spy skills
  • Michael eventually figures out that Romanian agent, Tavian Korzha, was the man who killed Max.  Before he can confront him, Agent Pearce arrests him after getting surveillance footage of Michael’s car leaving the scene immediately after Max’s murder.  Sam and Jesse intercept the convoy and convince Pearce to allow Michael to talk to Korzha.  Korzha admits to the murder but throws himself off the roof of a building to avoid capture.
  • Larry Sizemore, one of Michael’s main enemies, returns and forces Michael to help him break into the British consulate to steal diplomatic documents.  He has DIA psychiatrist Anson Fullerton hostage and says he will kill Anson’s wife if Michael doesn’t help.  Sam and Fiona try to free Anson’s wife but find her already dead, killed in an explosion.  Fiona decides to stop Larry once and for all and attaches a block of high explosive to the window under the office Larry is using to monitor Michael.  Fiona lures Larry over to the window by shooting at the bulletproof glass with a sniper rifle and then detonates the bomb. Unknown to Fiona, there were already explosives wired in the building and the entire first floor of the building is leveled, killing two guards.
  • Fiona and Michael return home to find Anson in their loft and he reveals himself to be the head of the organization that burned Michael.  He also hid a bug in the loft and has Fiona confessing to the bombing on tape.
  • Anson forces Michael to start doing tasks for him, including stealing a computer program that will wipe out all traces of Anson from the CIA database.
  • Michael uploads the program but gains a lead that leads him to question of one of Anson’s former associates, Vaughn, the main villain of season 4.  Vaughn reveals that Anson isn’t having Michael help him disappear, he’s getting him to help him rebuild the organization.
  • Michael is put in charge of a high priority mission for the CIA and is put in charge of a team of operatives.  Anson tells Michael to sabotage the mission and get the entire team, and Pearce, burned to give Anson his first team of operatives but Michael has Jesse intervene and the mission is successful.
  • Fiona, in a last ditch effort to free Michael from Anson’s clutches, turns herself in to the authorities and is arrested for the bombing of the consulate.
  • Earlier, Anson also revealed that he was the one who killed Michael’s father, who died of a heart attack a few years after Michael joined the CIA.  Anson was Frank Westen’s psychiatrist and Frank became suspicious of Anson’s interest in Michael, so Anson killed him and made it look like a heart attack.

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