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Season 5 Re-Watch


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#1 Tilly11

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 03:34 PM

Good Morning and Happy New Year! Welcome to the Season 5 Re-watch Talk Show. I'm Tilly, and joining me are my friends Philliesfan ("Hi!" *waves*), DuctTape ("Good morning!" *waves too*) and bcmom ("hello!" *dazzling smile*). We're looking forward to the coming 5+ months without new Burn Notice episodes almost as eagerly as Fiona is looking forward to prison time, and Michael to life without Fiona. Happily, we have each other to look to for support. With the help of iTunes, Amazon, DVR, Tivo, and download sites I had no idea existed, we'll re-watch Season 5 one episode per week, and talk about whatever strikes our fancy.

Phillie brings to us her gift with words and her piercing insights and understanding of the complex relationships of Michael Westen's existence. We have all enjoyed her Day of the Week posts, her episode posts, and her lyrical gifts as song-rewriter extraordinaire, to name but a few of her contributions to this forum. During the Season 5 Re-watch, we can count on her to shed more light on the shippery goodness that was Season 5, as well as pose questions that will have us all looking at our favorite episodes in a new light. Let's welcome her with a round of applause! (*round of applause*)

DT's photo talents bring a fresh colorful look to every page of the forum that she blesses with her thoughts. During Season 5 she and bcmom brought us screencap threads of each episode, which can be referenced as we re-watch Season 5. Her observations have brought to light the parallels to film and songs that many of us may never have noticed, such as The Count of Monte Cristo, and her recent "MW as Johnny Cash" in phillie's "Anson Got Run Over by a Reindeer" Christmas song thread. She can be counted on to have fresh ideas when we least expect them- let's give here a warm welcome too! (*warm applause*)

Last year the incomparable bcmom contributed thousands of screencaps in the Series Re-Watch thread's companion episode threads. We can look forward to more BN photo goodness thanks to her, so please, one more show of appreciation to another dedicated member of the Re-Watch team! (*more clapping, and some cheers!*)

I've always enjoyed puzzling out the Burn story, looking at the way each episode contributes to the larger narrative. Season 5 has been just huge with Michael's past, and answers about his Burn Notice. And I like to count things. So I'll brush off and update the more pertinent items of last year's Series Re-Watch counting list. Suggestions? (might not bother keeping count of Mike, Sam, and Fi BadAss-ness. Explosions will be counted, and of course characters named "Tom") Maybe now and then I'll come up with a few multiple choice questions, to keep us all on our toes.

What would a "Talk Show" be without guests? We look forward to hearing from many many many guests- namely all of YOU! Everyone who reads our conversations is our audience AND our guest! Agree, disagree, share ideas, answer questions and ask some of your own!

Besides re-watching Season 5, we can't help but notice and comment on USA Network's Thursday Burn Notice Marathons. Comments, insights, love and questions that come to mind while viewing any Burn Notice episode are welcome as well!

Discussion of 501, "Company Man" will begin on Sunday, January 8, 2012. We hope everyone in need of Burn Notice will join us through the week!

Edited by Tilly11, 05 January 2012 - 03:42 PM.

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#2 bcmom

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 06:22 PM

Hi all :) Thanks Tilly for that awesome introduction B)

Myself or DT will set up the companion S5 re-watch screencaps thread. Do you want it set up now or Sunday? I will try my best to keep up this time. B)

Looking forward to reading what you all thought of each episode. hope you like the upcoming screencaps.

Thanks again Tilly :)
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#3 philliesfan

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 07:40 PM

Thanks, Tilly. You make a great talk show hostess! Thank you for the spirit of fun which pervades your threads and posts, as well as the great ideas you have for sharing the BN joy. Round of applause for Tilly!

For example, there was this thread you began, to feed the excitement between the NYC summer sneak peek of 501 and the airing of 501 on USA Network: http://forums.usanet...1

Check it out to see how well the "undercover operatives" who viewed 501 at the summer screening did on the questions you posed before seeing the ep yourselves.


Bcmom, you & DT already began several of the screencap threads for S5. Here's a link, for everyone, to the thread for 501 screencaps: http://forums.usanet...1

Enjoy them this week, add to them as you wish, and come back to share your 501 comments with us! And if you have any questions for BurnEditor, who worked on 501, you may post them here & maybe he'll be able to answer them!

Edited by philliesfan, 05 January 2012 - 08:38 PM.

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#4 beancheile

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 08:14 PM

So glad to see the season 5 rewatch begin! Thank you, Tilly. Looking forward to revisiting this season. Watching the BN mini marathon off and on today. Not even the beaches of Hawaii can keep me away Posted Image
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#5 MsSully

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 08:32 PM

Thank you guys for starting this up again. I have needed a trip to Miami and this is great. I hope to join in, but I will enjoy the reading and watching the best. Many thanks again!!!! :)

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#6 bcmom

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 10:11 PM

Thanks for the reminder philliesfan and the link. I have bumped the thread for the screencaps back to the first page. B)
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#7 TinChicago

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 12:03 AM

Fabulous intro, Tilly! You are a natural, my dear! And what a team you have assembled!! The best of the best!! :D ;) Tilly, philliesfan, bcmom, and DT? It doesn't get much better!! I also hope everyone out there who ventures on in here feels free to comment away and share his or her thoughts and insights. Truly, the more the merrier! B)

I look forward to participating this season. Oh, and Tilly, I have a counting idea for you. I thought I might do a new thread on this topic, for the whole series I suppose, but for some reason it struck me in S5 (though there are many, many to choose from in S1-S4) about the number of -- "Uncomfortable Moments in BN." I can think of a few just now, but I will refrain from mentioning them until we go episode by episode. And maybe others will mention those scenes that they find "uncomfortable," either for the characters or indeed the viewer. Just an idea I thought I would throw out there...

Thanks again for inviting us all to be in the studio audience for your talk show, the very INTERACTIVE studio audience, that is!! We are all guests on the program!! I love it! ;)

ETA: I suppose I should offer up a definition of "uncomfortable." This, from Dictionary.com:

1. causing discomfort or distress; painful; irritating.

2. in a state of discomfort; uneasy; conscious of stress or strain.


And perhaps the best indicator, at least for me, is a synonym: awkward.

Edited by TinChicago, 06 January 2012 - 12:12 AM.

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Michael has this weekend circled on his calendar every year."

#8 Tilly11

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 01:17 AM

Hello and welcome to the re-watch Talk Show, beanie, Sully, and Tin!

bcmom, I'm so happy to see that you have the episode 501 screencap thread bumped to page 1 already! Those who don't have the ability to re-watch the actual episode can relive it through photos. Niiiice!

I look forward to participating this season. Oh, and Tilly, I have a counting idea for you. I thought I might do a new thread on this topic, for the whole series I suppose, but for some reason it struck me in S5 (though there are many, many to choose from in S1-S4) about the number of -- "Uncomfortable Moments in BN." I can think of a few just now, but I will refrain from mentioning them until we go episode by episode. And maybe others will mention those scenes that they find "uncomfortable," either for the characters or indeed the viewer. Just an idea I thought I would throw out there...


Tin, this is a great idea, and I'm so happy to share counting! It'll be fun to note and quote the "Awkward" situations. FWIW, I think it would be fine to do your counting right here in the S-5 Re-Watch thread, as I will be doing my "countings" here as well.

Phillie, thanks for linking the Interrogate an Undercover Operative thread! I just read through the whole thing, and laughed out loud several times. That was fun!

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#9 MsSully

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 07:37 AM

That's a great idea, Tin. There are certainly a few of those moments. That might make a great thread topic too.

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#10 Lucazzy

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 09:01 PM

Awesome idea. I was wondering if someone was going to start this up again, and even if I have Lost to watch (Finished 24...*sad face*) the wait for Season 6 is going to be long. Can't want to participate.
Shows that everyone should watch:

-Burn Notice (Best characters, great acting)
-Breaking Bad (Best character development and excellent acting)
-24 (Master of cliffhanger, thrilling show)
-Prison Break (Similar to 24, massive government conspiracy and that good stuff)
-Lost (Great acting, character development. Great sci-fi show)
-Homeland (Realistic, entertaining thriller)
-Game of Thrones (Fantasy for people that hate fantasy. Awesome actors, well written characters, tons of twists. Read books first!)

#11 DuctTape

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 10:02 PM

:D So glad you got everything rolling Tilly. Wonderful intro.
Phillie, thank you for the links.
Can't wait to see your pics bcmom.
Love the "this is awkward"/"Uncomfortable Moments in BN" - idea TC. :lol:
And beancheile, MsSully, Lucazzy it's great to see you. Let's get this party going.

I just flew in, am exhausted, and can't wait to curl up and watch epi 501. Back with comments soon.



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Edited by DuctTape, 07 January 2012 - 10:48 PM.


 

 

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#12 philliesfan

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 10:14 PM

Another link for us: the 501 episode thread
http://forums.usanet...pic=452967&st=0

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#13 Tilly11

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 09:12 AM

Tin and Sully- Good point! The "Awkward Moments" would make a great thread as well, because of course there will be more awkward moments yet to come in Season 6. And 7, I hope! You remind me that we should bump Sully's "Comedy in BN" thread, and even my "Everything I need to know..." thread, because additions to them are coming our way. B)

Lucazzy, it's great to see you here! :) Looking forward to your posts!




Yes, DT, Let’s get this Party started!

Have you re-watched 501 “Company Man” or viewed the episode by way of bcmom's photos yet? Have you read the Interrogation thread, and reviewed the Episode 501 discussion thread? (thank you for the links, phillie!) Speaking for myself, “Yes”, “Yes”, and “Just a little bit”. For a while, I’ve been at a loss for something new to say about 501. Panic set in sometime last night. A little stage fright, if you will. This is, after all, a TALK show. My own big post in the 501 thread was interesting- I couldn’t have been more wrong in many ways, which I’ll have fun talking about this week.

But for now, the thought that strikes me is that among other themes that have run through Season 5, “Daddy” is a sinister undercurrent. “Daddy” has proven to be Michael’s undoing, “Daddy” took the wind out of his sails. Michael lost his Westen edge when Anson used “Daddy” to crack a huge hole in his armor.

Up to this point in the series, Frank had been mentioned a few times. As I recall, more in the early part of the series. Right away in the Pilot we learned about Michael’s background. I’m trying to remember word for word here: "Mom, we were nothing alike. Everything I did antagonized him. Being alive antagonized him. Everything I did was a reason for him to smack me around." And, “People from happy families don’t become spies. A bad childhood is the perfect background for a covert ops. You’re used to getting smacked around, and you never get homesick”. Later, Michael says “I have this to remember him by” (touching the scar beside his eye) in Old Friends, was it? Please remind me of other mentions of Frank Westen through seasons 1-4 if you can think of them.

Here in 501, Frank Westen is introduced to Season 5 by Madeline, when she says, “You know, all those years I lived with your father, I used to think through millions of ways I could confront him. Everything that I wanted to say. And all of a sudden he drops dead. That’s it. You know, people talk about “closure”, but I don’t buy it. Somebody blasts a hole in your life, it tends to stay open.”

MsSully said it first: there is a lot of foreshadowing in “Company Man”. This line is a peek at Anson’s trump card in the hand he will first reveal on the beach at the end of 512 “Dead to Rights”. In that episode, Michael will be stunned when Anson gloats that he had been Madeline’s therapist. He seems altogether stupefied by Anson’s mention of his father, “The things that man gave us before he passed away.” Then to Fiona, “Look at your boyfriend honey. He can barely hear a word I’m saying.”

That line of Madeline’s also set the stage for the revelation that Frank had been murdered. “All of a sudden he drops dead.” We learn that he didn’t die in a car accident or a bar brawl, and assume it was a heart attack that killed Frank. As I type this, I wonder, though. Story-wise, wouldn’t it have been better for Frank to have died in a car crash or a bar brawl? I find it easier to believe that Anson’s Machine could have “arranged” a car accident or drunken brawl than a heart attack. Then again, the thought of Anson sprinkling some deadly powder into Franks whiskey in a dark smoky bar seems absolutely perfectly evil. With an assured outcome. So never mind.

Also interesting- Michael missed Frank’s funeral 8 years before the pilot. Which means he had been on the Machine’s “watch list” for 8 years before they burned him. Talking about Anson’s beach revelation has me a little ahead of our re-watch, but it is all part of the “Daddy” theme of the season.

When I watched the Season 5 opener, I had no idea where the story could possibly go, now that Michael seemed to be back “in”. The “Daddy” card was already in play, but I missed how significant it was going to be.

Edited by Tilly11, 08 January 2012 - 09:25 AM.

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#14 bcmom

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 10:58 AM

Good morning everyone :)

Not the wordy one here so I just wanted to add my thoughts on how long Anson and the machine had been watching Michael. If I remember correctly (tell me if I am wrong) Michael had been in the 'service' combined Army and Agency for 20 years before getting burned. So back up 8 years from the Pilot puts Michael in for 12 years when his father died. Michael came home once after 10 years (if I recall that right?) (What was the time frame for Sam Axe moive?)(maddie mentions him coming home in Center of the Storm). So the Machine had been watching him since his Army days. They propbably set it up for him to work with Larry so they could make another Larry but hopefully keep this one from going psycho on them. Okay that's it for me. (too many fanfics my brain is scrambled. :lol:)
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#15 beancheile

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 02:11 PM

Unfortunately,I haven't done my "homework" and rewatched Company Man yet. It isn't one of the 20 episodes on my ipad currently and my video library is on my home computer, not in the Apple cloud, so I will have to rely on my failing memory.

One of the reasons I can watch and rewatch Burn Notice is how your perspective changes from a distance. What we know from the end of season 5 now effects how we see the season open and build. I remember being struck by just how happy Michael seemed through most of the first episode, a stark contrast to how the season concluded. It appeared he was getting what he wanted--finally. He was slowly getting back into the good graces of the CIA. He had earned a little trust and was beginning to rebuild his tarnished reputation. He had a second chance towork for his country again and eliminate the organization that ruined his and other's lives. It was a new beginning for him with the Agency.

Despite what Strickler said, in Company Man we see that maybe Michael can get to have the girl and the job. Apparently a gun-running, bomb-making girlfriend can be useful to the Agency, as well, especially one that helped take down that "secret quasi-governmental organization". At their reunion at the loft, Michael is smiling and truly happy---something we do not get to see much.A new beginning for Michael and Fi, time to be an acknowledged couple. He thinks that they are safe, just a few loose ends to tie up and they can move forward with their new life.

Michael is only in town a few hours but he makes a point of going to Madeline's the next day. Mother and son greet each other joyfully--how far their relationship has come. Madeline has redecorated the house. It looks warmer, more inviting. Another new beginning as Madeline attempts to move away from the family's dysfunctional past and toward a life with her sons, their "wives",and friends.

Michael greets his friends who have each new lives of their own. Sam admits to stress eating through their ordeal but now is fit and healthy and we will shortly learn of his new relationship. Jesse has found the constraints of government work no longer suit him and has found a life beyond the Agency (a bit of foreshadowing perhaps for Michael). Even though Jesse desperately wanted back in, he was not the same person and the job no longer fit. At that sad dinner in Fearless Leader, Fi remarked that people change, priorities change but Michael's tunnel vision about getting back in negated that he would change but he sees living proof that even a burned spy, Jesse, can move on and find a new life.

Michael and Max form a new partnership. Michael has to readapt to the Agency's ways of doing things. His old partners, Sam and Fi, are wrestling with these new ways and aren't quite ready to follow the rules. It is a new beginning for the team, finding a way to accomplish a government sanctioned mission in their own way while Max learns to accept a divergent method for accomplishing their goals.

It is a new beginning for everything and everyone. As happy as Michael is in this episode,as close as he is to getting everything he thought he wanted, things don't go exactly as he wished. Kessler, "the last one" (oh, how I wish he had truly been), dies and Michael doesn't get the closure he hoped for.

It's a bittersweet moment for Michael and Madeline in the garage. As you mentioned,Tilly, lots of foreshadowing about "daddy". But at the end, Michael unveils the Charger. He has repaired a great deal of this shattered life but he is not quite done. There is still some wreckage to undo. It is a new beginning for him and those around him, but it doesn't mean there isn't more to do. Season 5 begins.

Edited by beancheile, 08 January 2012 - 02:16 PM.

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#16 auroracat

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 02:16 PM

Anson may have been watching Michael in his official capacity as an analysis for the DIA early on and not so much for the Machine and through this Michael may have come to attention as a possible recruitment for the Machine. I would think around the time Anson filled in for Maddie's therapist, which seems like it was after Frank died. So a few years before Michael was burned?

Killing Frank (and I'm still not convinced that Anson wasn't lying about this) using a drug to simulate a heart attack is a mucher safer way to do it. A staged accident could raise questions and there's no guarantee that it would be fatal. An alcoholic having a heart attack is so totally plausible that most under paid, over worked coroners wouldn't think twice about it.

#17 beancheile

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:26 PM

Awkward moment...when Fi finds out she, Michael, and Sam are sharing the same room. "You really know how to show a girl a good time."
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#18 DuctTape

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 05:20 PM

RESOURCES
These will help me with the seminar, both to find things as well as to organize my thoughts, see parallels, and follow character development. I hope they may be useful.


LINKS
USA Episode 5 Guides

USA Episode 5 Burn Notes

Season 5 Quotes

Season 5 Episode Discussion Threads

Petunia's Prezi - Venn diagram that looks at the various organizations (As Season 4 closed)
Petunia's Prezi - Burn Notice Mythology Storyline: Seasons 1-4

All Season 5 Screencaps:
501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 510 511 512 513 514 515 516 517

Seasons 1-4 Re-Watch



PLOT LINES - Established in the PILOT
1) Who Burned Michael Westen?

a. He wants answers. (Pilot 101: Calling old handler Dan Siebels)

b. Who is still pulling the strings? Watching. Playing him.
(101: Pictures on loft floor with “Welcome to Miami” postcard)

c. CIA leaves MW out in the cold.
(101: Endangered in Africa, alone in US, unconscious in Miami motel room while surveillance outside).

2) Clients

“Fighting for the little guy is for suckers. We all do it sometimes, but
the trick is to get in and out without getting involved.
That’s one trick I never really mastered.”

3) Relationships ...just not my thing.”

Michael: ”I traveled half way around the world to get away from those.
Fi: ”Maybe when you stop running around you can maintain a normal relationship.

a. Fiona loves MW
but it's dangerous physically (thug w gun to their head) & emotionally ("leaving, you're good at that")
b. Sam the buddy
c. Late father Frank (101: “Just being alive was an excuse to knock me around.

He said, ‘I’ll see you in hell boy.' So I figured we had something on the books.”

d. Maddie, abused mom, yet focused on reminding Michael of importance of family
e. Team Westen additions/support: 101 Barry introduced, later Nate, Jesse



FUN BURN NOTICE
Let me know, and I can add to this list.

a. Spy tricks, building spy bugs & gadgets
b. Yogurt
c. Duct Tape
d. Sam and beer
e. Sam living it up with his "lady friend"
f. Lack of LOFT security (101: Sugar’s thug surprises them after sushi bar)
g. Fi sexy and violent.
h. Chemistry and a passionate kiss
i. "Borrowing without asking" cars and ...
j. Zip ties
k. MW: “Don’t worry about the money”



SEASON 5 THEMES
Let me know, and I can add to this master list.


a. ASSET - of CIA, then also Anson

b. Michael wants answers

c. LOVE & Commitment - Fi & Michael declare their love

d. "Daddy" (Tilly)

e. New Beginnings (Beancheile)

f. Awkward, when someone is “uncomfortable.” (TC)
- can we add the opposite, when someone says “comfortable” too? (Fi, Anson)

g. Danger/Sacrifice in loving a spy
Danger to spy of loving back.

h. "She loves me more than her own life." To which Michael replies, "That's a lot." (Phillie)


EPISODE GUIDES by Li_Ann
Burn Notice Season 1 and Season 2Posted Image
Burn Notice Season 3
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Burn Notice Season 4
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Burn Notice Season 5

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5.16 ...Depth Perception ...Writers: Peter Lalayanis

& Ryan Johnson ........Director: Craig Siebels

5.17 ...Acceptable Loss ......Writer: Ben Watkins .......Director: Jonathan Frakes
5.18 ...Fail Safe ..................Writer: Matt Nix..............Director: Renny Harlin


.


Edited by DuctTape, 03 May 2012 - 04:48 AM.


 

 

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#19 bcmom

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 05:43 PM

Thank you DT!!! * applause* :D
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#20 philliesfan

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 01:15 AM

Thanks for a terrific kick-off about themes, Tilly! You do well to remind us that Frank Westen is mentioned in 501 and to point out that this is one of the season's themes.

DT does a great job, as well, reminding us that the broad themes of burn notice, relationships, & clients are established in the pilot. They, of course, continue in S5 - although, is it just me, or does it seem that clients were a lesser theme this season? Which is not to say they are insignificant, however. Still, as ever, the clients serve to emphasize certain qualites of our team - and even to make Michael & his friends realize certain truths about their own situations and lives.

Something struck me some time ago, and I've been saving it for this re-watch (although it occurs to me now I should have just posted it in the Discussion Of Michael & Fiona's Relationship or the Fiona Glenanne Character Development thread). But since I've been saving it, here it is:
202: Raoul claims to Michael about Sophia: "She loves me more than her own life." To which Michael replies, "That's a lot."

What struck me is that Fiona has now demonstrated the kind of love that Raoul imagined he had in Sophia, and which Michael was skeptical of (when Raoul said it) - and moved by (when he realized it of Fi):
418: Fiona proves that she loves Michael more than her own life, as she chooses to follow him on his suicide mission and die with him rather than live without him. "I belong out there with him. For better or worse."
518: Fiona proves it again, as she gives up her freedom for Michael's integrity and freedom. "You do what's right no matter the cost to you, and I've learned that when you love a spy, you have to be willing to make that sacrifice, too....I have to force you to tell what you know. If you don't, you won't be the man I love."

Just reinforcing & giving an example of DT's point that one of the themes of the series is how much Michael & Fiona love each other. It certainly continues in S5, as we see how far each will go to protect and help the other.

* * * * * * * * * *

One of the reasons I can watch and rewatch Burn Notice is how your perspective changes from a distance. What we know from the end of season 5 now effects how we see the season open and build. I remember being struck by just how happy Michael seemed through most of the first episode, a stark contrast to how the season concluded. It appeared he was getting what he wanted--finally. He was slowly getting back into the good graces of the CIA. He had earned a little trust and was beginning to rebuild his tarnished reputation. He had a second chance towork for his country again and eliminate the organization that ruined his and other's lives. It was a new beginning for him with the Agency.

.....

It is a new beginning for everything and everyone. As happy as Michael is in this episode,as close as he is to getting everything he thought he wanted, things don't go exactly as he wished. Kessler, "the last one" (oh, how I wish he had truly been), dies and Michael doesn't get the closure he hoped for.


Great write-up of 501, bean! I'd like to add something that struck me about 501, which I think is at least tangentially related to your remarks as I've cited them in part - and also ties in to Tilly's & Sully's (as referred to by Tilly) points about foreshadowing and themes.

As Michael & Fiona lie in bed, she reminds him: "When you got burned, it wasn't just you. These last four years have been hard on all of us."
Michael:
"I know. I'm really sorry. But we are so close to wrapping this up. And then I can move on."
Fiona:
"I hope you find what you're looking for, Michael. I really do. And then we can all move on."

This is a key conversation, I think, and one of sad irony. As bean said, it appears that Michael's ship is righting and he's close to getting what he wants, both professionally and personally. However, as it turns out, things don't get wrapped up, Michael can't move on, and the impending future will be even harder on Michael & Fiona than the recent past. They can't even imagine what's in store, how far Michael is from wrapping up the burn notice situation, and how much it will affect them.

Wrap things up? Move on? Ha!

Edited by philliesfan, 09 January 2012 - 11:52 AM.

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