Burn Notice

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M. Giant: A- | Grade It Now!
Under the Counter

After the ads, it's the next morning. Fi's watching from her parked car in the woods as Gerard and Michael and crew load up a big Zodiac boat with stuff. She delivers some awkward expository dialogue -- awkwardly -- over the phone to Sam, telling him to hurry up because it's looking like the job is about to go down. Sam promises to be there; they're just taking the time to do this right. "We've just got to find a place to put Mike's yogurt while we do the job," Sam says, since apparently Michael's refrigerator is being drafted for this project. Sam asks how Michael seems to be doing. As Fi watches him fidget geekily with a couple of grappling hooks, she complains, "I wish they'd smack him around a little." She's still bitter about missing her date, and having to use the excuse of food poisoning. And he believed it? That's like me claiming to be sick from exposure to dilithium crystals.

Now we spend some time with Sam and Virgil in Michael's kitchen area as Michael explains how easy it is to counterfeit pharmaceuticals. The first step: "Fill some vials with your favorite beverage." Looks like it's some green-yellow Amp energy drink, which the ex-SEALs store along with compressed gas and some cryogenic containers. Oh, is that all it takes? Michael's VO continues that the trick is to keep people from wanting to look too closely lest they freeze off a finger. Sam pops the vials into a metal canister filled with mist, doing his best to look like a mad scientist.

We then catch up with Gerard, Michael, and crew on their speedboat, en route to intercept the yacht. Michael wants his mask, and Gerard says it doesn't matter if the courier recognizes him: "He can tell it to the fishes." As Michael realizes that Gerard plans to kill Virgil, he VOs, "Dealing with a trained operative is like playing chess with a master. Dealing with criminals, on the other hand, is like playing checkers with a three-year-old. They like to change the rules." So Michael does some rule-changing of his own and demands a gun. He's still rambling about how if there's going to be shooting he wants to be armed as well when Gerard hands him a weapon and says, "You happy?" Michael "clumsily" points it at Gerard's head while cocking it. Gerard's surprisingly cool about it. Must be one of those types whose mood gets better the closer he is to a job.

As the boat closes in on Virgil's borrowed yacht, Michael talks about the advantages of Gerard's approach: the Zodiac is low to the water, fast, and maneuverable. It can just get a little bumpy, to the point where it's hard to tell if Michael's faking his seasickness. The boat's pretty close behind Virgil by the time he turns around to see it. The pirates board the boat easily, and Gerard sends Virgil to the bow to wait while his men get the goods from the fridge in the cabin. While they're busy with that, Michael approaches Virgil alone and tells him, "Go with this." Then he starts yelling at Virgil, insisting they don't know each other. Virgil plays his part, acting like he knows Michael from the lab and that everyone's going to know it was him. Michael pretends to panic, and with his back to Gerard, fires two bullets past Virgil's gut at point-blank range. Thus he prevents Gerard from killing Virgil by "killing" Virgil first. As Virgil falls headfirst into the ocean, Michael VOs, "Navy SEALs are trained to hold their breath for three to five minutes underwater. If you're an ex Navy SEAL, you probably still have the chops. But there's only one way to find out" And, worst-case scenario, you won't have to spend as much time cockblocking your mom any more. Michael leans over the gunwale staring at the water in feigned horror, but Gerard is proud of him for breaking his cherry. I'd say Michael's lucky that Gerard gave him a gun with live ammo in it, or the jig would be up right now. Michael takes a hit from his inhaler and goes back to the aft deck to yell at Gerard's guys for touching the drugs. He even calls one an idiot, nearly starting a fight. Gerard takes Michael's side and orders, "Load 'em up!" "Load 'em up!" Michael repeats, then does a double-take when he spots his familiar rusty Coldspot standing there in the cabin. For once, his VO nearly loses its cool. "Great," it says, as a very pissy Michael follows the crew back to the Zodiac. After it's gone, Virgil pops back to the surface, looking a smidge winded.

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Burn Notice




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