Burn Notice Season 3, Episode 9: 'Long Way Back' Review - Featured

Last night brought us the Burn Notice Season 3 summer finale, 'Long Way Back,' and even with the promo teasing trouble for Fiona, I was shocked to see just how much trouble she was in!

After the preview for this week's episode and after last week's Michael-Fiona conflict over Strickler, I was under the assumption that Fiona was going to be kidnapped by Strickler-related people or Strickler enemies who wanted something from Michael.

But while Michael and Sam were still very involved, we got to see Fiona be the center of the episode because of her own past instead of dealing with Michael's case of the week or other personal mission.

We also got a little peek into Fiona's life back in Ireland, and also the early days of Michael and Fiona when he was Ireland undercover as "Michael McBride."

It's always fun to hear Michael put on an accent, and I'm always impressed by how well Jeffrey Donovan does with so many different accents. It was also fun to have the storyline such that a native Irishman, Fi's brother, Sean, so clearly believing Michael really was Irish, and also to have Sean call Michael's American accent "dodgy" when Michael was showing Sean he could easily go undercover as an American.

But while all that was fun, the main issue was that Fi's brother Sean wasn't just in for a visit - he was there to protect Fi from Tommy O'Neal, an Irishman and "mad bomber" who was a big part of Fi's leaving the Irish Republican Army, and now because of all the trouble she caused him back in the day, he was there to kill her. Dun, dun, dun!!!

The case was well-played out and made for a great episode, but having the very sweet husband of Brooke Shields from Lipstick Jungle as the bad guy, Tommy O'Neal, was a little unconvincing to those of us who actually watched Lipstick.

He certainly wasn't a sweetheart this time around, though, as when he was able to capture Fi leaving Sean wounded and Michael incapacitated by gas, our bad guy definitely proved as he punched Fi in the face with no hesitation, that he was quite serious about getting revenge and killing her off.

I think the best part of all this drama was, as mentioned, discovering bits of Fi's past including with the Irish Michael, and discovering that she had many siblings, but her youngest sister was killed. Then with all this past revelation coming to a head in the current life-and-death confrontation, Fi and Michael were working through their current issues as well.

But wait! Let's not forget that though this was a Fiona episode, there was a big development for Michael as well! After Fi was captured and Michael heard the bad guys call him "Westen" and say they had to keep "that one" alive, Michael went to Stickler, assuming he had something to do with it. And yes he did. I never thought Strickler was up to all good, but it became clear he was up to no good when he revealed that he needed Fi to get out of the way so Michael could focus on what Stickler needed him to do, and focus on getting his burn notice taken care of, all of which Fiona was only hindering.

And then shockingly, when Strickler refused to tell Michael where Fi was or say anything but that it was good she was getting out of the way, Michael straight-up shot and killed Strickler! (Which, it was mentioned later, was cleanly swept into Tommy O'Neal's problems as they tossed O'Neal's style of bomb in Strickler's house.)

But while the Strickler issue was so nicely wrapped up and Michael got to save Fi in a wonderfully dramatic scene of him saving her from a hand-cuffed drowning disaster, Michael's far from done being in danger. Right as it seemed everything may turn out alright for now, Michael got a call from his CIA contact, Diego, yelling at Michael for being involved with Strickler. Michael rushed over to see Diego with serious concern from Diego going on about how they were both in a lot of trouble now, only to find his fears realized as Michael arrived to find Diego dead on the sidewalk with a sniper bullet in his head.

So ends this exciting season of Burn Notice! I've been impressed with the step up in the action and interesting plot Burn Notice has taken this season, and after this thrilling finale, I can't wait for more! Unfortunately, it's not returning until January, but while we wait, we can speculate!

So what did you think of the finale? Are you hoping this means Fi and Michael finally get and stay together? What do you think will happen next for Michael? After his mistakes, will Michael's burn notice ever be lifted?


Aug 7, 2009 3:31PM EDT

This was an amazing season finale. Though I was only dissapointed that Fi and Michael didn't kiss! They had two opportunities. Gah. :/

Default avatar cat
Aug 7, 2009 5:21PM EDT

Great Ep! I freakin love this show. It's like MacGuyver on steroids and much sexier!
Check out Mr. Lonely the animated series. www.lonelyshow.com
that's just like steroids!

Default avatar cat
Aug 7, 2009 5:38PM EDT

Its only the summer finale, its back in january to finish the 7 episodes that remain for this season. Great episode thou, I like how they turned the strickler thing into a way to burn Michael even more, now he is running from a giant unseen enemy. A show like this could get repeative with the way they have it setup, but to their credit it never does. Every turn has felt fresh and real, nothing is a black and white; defeat this group then I'm back in. The layers of the onion keep getting peeled nicely, great show.

Default avatar cat
Aug 8, 2009 2:14AM EDT

it was a great summer finale i liked the way the writers are starting to define fionas character more allowing micheal to show more emotion then reason he completely forgot most of his training and circumspect nature when someone he loves was in danger he shot strickler without hesitation i feel like most of these type of shows the main love interests will always have the will they wont they element unfortunately as with chuck,sarah fiona and micheal will only get together at the end of the series if ever due largely to the creator's reluctance to take the tension out of the relationship which has endeared the characters to the audience the timid nature of all showrunners is to keep the same formula without rocking the main premise of the show WHY? tragedy dosent work in television!

Default avatar cat
Aug 8, 2009 12:25PM EDT

This ws a great episode with a lot more feeling than others. I think I'm the only one to notice this is the first time i think in BN history the you see Michael actually kill someone. Honestly, I think that is was this show is missing. I mean giving the story line. I'm not saying i was him to go killing people every episode but givin the context of the show it feel like a puff version of what it should be.

Aug 25, 2009 6:04PM EDT

I'm from the UK and sumbled on this gem of a show. I just love it!I can not fault this show in any way it's spot on, humor, action, drama- it's got it all.A great finale leaving me wanting so much more!

Want to comment on this post? First, you must log in to your SideReel account!