Entertainment Magazine

Review #2992: Burn Notice 5.11: “Better Halves”

Posted on the 04 September 2011 by Entil2001 @criticalmyth

Contributor: Henry T.

Written by Lisa Joy
Directed by Michael Smith

The missions that the writers keep pushing on the characters to divide them are becoming the old standard this season. It’s starting to get tiring. Now that Agent Pearce has sort of caught up to where Michael and his team are (with a piece of evidence that isn’t all that conveniently clarifying of the situation), there should be less of what has become the modus operandi. I’m saying this, of course, because both missions didn’t interest me. What little stakes there were existed purely in Sam and Jesse’s mission to find Tavian, the European assassin who framed Michael. The other mission had Michael-Fiona drama and a somewhat forgettable appearance by Charisma Carpenter.

Review #2992: Burn Notice 5.11: “Better Halves”

Since there was very little time spent on the Tavian subplot, I’ll start there. I’ll admit that for dangerous European spies and criminals, it’s not all that difficult to find these people. The organization seems awfully streamlined. Find the money man, which Sam and Jesse easily do, get to him, then set up a meeting with the guy who framed Michael. Sam has to get caught by Tavian for the end to be set up so the subplot advances rather quickly. Knowing how the show usually operates, I doubt Tavian will provide all of the answers Michael and company are really looking for.

There’s no real palpable sense of danger from Tavian. Perhaps that is to come in the next episode. Tavian will likely clash with Agent Pearce and a zip-tied Michael. As I said before, the evidence that Agent Pearce got doesn’t look as incriminating as it was meant to be presented. It just had to set up the inevitable moment where Pearce doesn’t look quite as incompetent as she has been shown so far. It just doesn’t go anywhere. Curious also for the show to set up a device like the hidden bomb meant for Tavian’s car to end up not getting used. The series doesn’t usually do something like that.

There seemed to be subtext behind Michael and Fiona’s “romantic work getaway” to Venezuela (which looked remarkably like Miami). I got the sense that the writers are setting up the friction and Fiona’s increasing distaste for the ignorance of their relationship Michael has shown this season as an indicator that they will break up. “Burn Notice” doesn’t usually delve into relationship dynamics between characters too much so it’ll be interesting if they decide to go on that path. Fiona doesn’t seem like the kind of girl who cuts and runs, but her angst has to be there for a reason. Their retrieval mission for a bioweapons chemist lacked much tension, probably because it’s played like a con game instead of a clean extraction.

Charisma Carpenter provides plenty of eye candy (especially at the pool scene, where I couldn’t take my eyes off her considerable “assets”) but isn’t too much more than your standard whiny, delicate girl who’s in over her head. The series needs and deserves better than what they got in this episode. Let’s hope the midseason finale is more interesting from start to finish than this one.

Grade: 6/10

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog