Burn Notice

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Past & Future Tense

After the titles and ads, Sam has joined Michael and Fi (and Jesse's been ditched somewhere along the way) at an abandoned shipyard to interrogate their captive, because Michael's in a big hurry to find out whether he's the target. As Michael VOs about how sometimes an interrogation has to be rushed, Sam relieves the spook of his passport, which according to the subtitles identifies him as "Alexi -- Russian Operative." "That's kind of a girly name for a Russian operative, isn't it?" Sam taunts. He asks Alexi if Michael Westen's the target, but to Alexi, that's just a famous but fictional name, like Keyser Soze or Santa Claus. Nice intelligence, Russia. Enter Michael, looking all bad-ass and with the soundtrack obviously mistaking him for fucking Danny Trejo or something. He shows Alexi his driver's license, the photo for which was apparently taken on a break from shooting an 80s music video. Alexi isn't convinced, so Michael busts out the Russian, claiming to have shot a guy who looked like Alexi in Kiev in '93 and wondering if it might have been Alexi's brother. Well, since Alex looks like he would have been about three years old back then, Alexi's father is a more likely candidate. Small world, either way. "The Spetsnaz team that tried to sell a warhead...nobody ever saw them again," Michael reminisces darkly. Alexi still refuses to talk, so up comes Fi with a knife, saying all he has to do to save his team from...well, them -- is tell them what their mission is. After some more threats from Michael, Alexi cracks and says they're after a guy named Paul Anderson, who has a job at the Banana Fish bar. Well, that was easy.

After getting Alexi back in the trunk (the piece of luggage, that is) to put it in the trunk (of the car, that is), Michael asks Sam if he knows where that bar is. Sam: "Uh, yeah? It's a bar?" Michael tasks Fi with keeping an eye on Jesse, because they'll have problems if Marv happens to find out who really committed the crime that Jesse was burned for. Because as we all know, the one who did that was Michael. Although what that has to do with a bank heist is kind of an open question if you ask me.

Michael and Sam head over to a crowded bar -- an outdoor one on the beach, like one-third of Miami's bars -- and ask the bartender where to find Paul Anderson. Because they're not expecting Paul to be played by an actor that you and I recognize, so he's able to easily misdirect them, giving himself a chance to get behind them and stick a gun in Sam's ribs. Of, course, that's not as scary as what's holding the gun, which is a creepy marionette carved to look like an old Burt Reynolds, complete with a jaunty neckerchief that it'll be wearing all episode, presumably to hide the head-joint. "It's been a long time since anyone called me Paul," says Paul. Michael tells Paul about the Russian team that's coming after him. "That's the worst news I've heard all day," Paul says mildly. If true, that probably makes him the luckiest bartender in the world.

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Burn Notice

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