Sunday, January 8, 2012

Burn Notice - "Necessary Evil"

by Jonathan Bredemeyer

Burn Notice (S05E15)

In short:  A messy, official CIA op goes wrong in every way, and Maddy is single again.

Best Line of the Episode:
  • Fi: "You really want to argue 300 feet in the air?"
New Spy Lessons:
  • "In any secure facility, the biggest vulnerabilities tend to be at the lowest salary levels."
  • "Spies are surprisingly good recyclers.  The ability to re-purposes items in the field can often mean the difference between life and death."

Fi and Michael are sitting around trying to figure out how to bug Anson. Apparently, they determine that breaking into a defense contractor and stealing data from its server is the best option. After posing as window washers [and to Mission Impossible-type music], Michael and Fi get in, download records from the servers, and walk out under the threat of suing...

They track Anson's phone calls to Benny's house, Maddy's boyfriend. Not letting Fiona jump to conclusions, Michael asserts that Benny could still be innocent. Michael heads off to a meeting with Pearce while Fi stays to spy on Benny.

Photo by: David Giesbrecht/USA Network
Pearce gives Michael a mission to send Sam and Jesse into a Liberian company to learn why they need missile guidance chips. Apparently, the 'target' might recognize Michael.  "The last time I did a favor for the CIA, there were a few hiccups." [...making reference to the movie The Fall of Sax Axe.] The plan is to swap them in as tech guys. Jesse actually does a good job imitating a nerd in glasses as he and Sam are escorted inside the chemical facility.  They learn that the rogue 'scientist' is actually a hostage. As Sam pretends to inspect the missile, Jesse gets the low-down from the hostage, Resnick. He's building a missile for a terrorist who has his daughter. The lunatic warlord (LW) shows up and Sam gives him the excuse. Resnick tries to explain, but gets a backhand. LW argrees to let Sam bring the new chips tomorrow in exchange for Jesse, who now becomes hostage #2.

Back at Pearce's office, she pushes to make the missile design 'mission critical' to get out, and Sam and Michael stress the safety of the hostages. Michael and Sam then head off to disguise rifles to sneak them into the chemical plant.  Fi calls to say that Benny looks like he's had training and is a professional conman. Michael enlists her to recuse Resnick's daughter, who's being held by the terrorists.

Michael heads to his mom's to warn her about her boyfriend's link to Michael's arch nemesis. He breaks the news, but she doesn't believe it. Maddy claims she'll find out the truth 'her own way.' Benny shows up to take Maddy on a date and acts a bit intrusive...

Outside the potential hostage house, Fi and Michael 'kick the hornets nest' with a thermal imaging cookies. Fi delivers brownies and they learn which room Resnick's daughter is in.  Michael sends Sam in to start Jesse's rescue. Sam only gets part of a gun inside after LW doesn't let him drive in. After Sam gets inside, they dream up a new plan to injure Resnick, requiring them to stay and help assemble the missile. Resnick burns his hand, and the plan works... but it's damn painful.

Sam calls Michael and he shares a new location for guns, but the guys inside have to get LW to move an electric fence. The fake nerds and the real nerd rig the missile to spark during testing and convince LW there's interference. Jesse and Resnick are allowed to go outside and look for issues, while Sam stays in with the missile. After some fake testing, Jesse convinces LW that the fence is the cause of the problems, and he agrees to move it.

Michael's mom searches Benny's desk to discover a false bottom in a desk drawer with pictures of Michael & Co. in it. She's heartbroken and damn nervous when Benny shows up.  Her cover of making dinner works, and she plants a bug like she promised Michael she would.

Fiona and Michael head back to the house where Resnick's daughter is being held, but discover it is empty. LW brings the daughter to the chemical plant, screwing up basically every plan currently in place. He gives the nerd squad a new deadline of two hours.

Sam and Jesse talk Resnick out of finishing the missile, but they need a new plan.  While Fi and Pearce are scanning the perimeter of the plant, Sam calls Michael and they decide to pull a fake sabotage ruse they pulled "in 1997." Fi, Michael, and Pearce rig a C4 explosive on a gas line outside the plant in hopes of causing a chain reaction inside the plant. Sam talks to LW and sells the idea of a traitor amongst his men. LW doesn't want to believe it, but the gas line blows up in the middle of the argument. Sam convinces him to move everyone and blow the missile. LW leaves his men behind in favor of rebuilding the missile with the nerd squad. Once outside, Jesse and Sam retrieve the guns near the fence, and, after the missile blows up, knock out LW. Pearce is unhappy since no missile plans were saved for the CIA.

Mike and mom stake out Benny's house, listening to the bug she placed in the phone. Anson calls and they listen in. Discovering that Anson sent him a package, Michael tries to run towards the house, but the bomb blows up nearly immediately, killing Benny.
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