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White Collar: Trading Up

White Collar S04E02: "Most Wanted"

Last week's tropical-flavored episode of White Collar ended with our beloved Neal betrayed by his ex-pat benefactor Dobbs and finding himself held at gunpoint by the dastardly semi-rogue Agent Collins. (Whew!) So "Most Wanted" picked up more or less where that one left off, but now Neal was being held captive in some rinky-dink homemade jail cell. Seriously, in the span of about ten seconds he'd disassembled his handcuffs and part of the cage before he was interrupted by Dobbs and Collins. When Collins discovered that Neal had been up to mischief, guess what he did? He SHOT Neal in the leg! Oh Collins, you despicable jerk.

Meanwhile Peter and Mozzie were surveilling Dobbs' seaside mansion and plotting Neal's escape. And, you know, just generally laying low:

Recognizing that it was only a matter of time before Collins would drag Neal to the airport for his forcible extradition, Peter and Mozzie took advantage of the fact that the only way to access the airport was through a choked, one-lane alleyway. And that's how Lil' Hector got yet another opportunity to show that he's basically Cape Verde's answer to Short Round from Indiana Jones. What WOULDN'T this kid do for a couple bucks? Upon pulling into the alleyway, Collins found himself blocked in by a toppled papaya cart. After Collins reluctantly got out to help clear the strewn fruit, Peter snuck up and freed Neal. Yep, the ol' spilled papaya in the alleway to the airport scheme. The oldest trick in the book, basically!

Anyway, this still left the issue of how to get Neal back to the States and reinstated as a white collar crimes consultant and Peter-best-friend. Well, get ready for this bit of serendipity: Noting that all of Dobbs' model ships had womens' names—the same names contained in a lullaby mnemonic device Peter once learned to study a notorious criminal on the FBI's Most Wanted List—it was discovered that Dobbs was actually someone named McLeish, a much bigger "get" for the FBI than Neal. So Peter promptly cut an informal deal with headquarters that if they retrieved McLeish, Neal would get his old gig back. But HOW would they wrangle such a powerful man?

Honestly, their plan was as complicated as it was ludicrous. It involved Peter learning how to bartend in a montage straight out of the '80s. It also involved a scheme that would make Wile E. Coyote blush:

That's right, somehow they were going to frame Dobbs for having absconded with tons of money that he was supposed to be doling it out to local law enforcement at that night's party. For one reason or another this fake empty safe thing didn't work out, so Plan B was Neal running into Dobbs' party and accusing him of stealing money in front of everybody. It worked! Pretty soon the local cops were super mad at Dobbs and he was boarding a plane to get out of there.

Meanwhile Mia had gotten in on the action by getting Collins to show up at the Dobbs party just in time to arrest Neal and take him to the airport alongside Dobbs. Then, once everyone was present, Peter presented Collins with the bargain of a lifetime: Give him Neal and Peter would allow Collins to take full credit for nabbing one of America's most wanted criminals. Always the opportunist, Collins made the right choice and it was hopefully the last we ever saw of him. (Still all mad about that bullet hole in Neal's thigh.)

Finally, back in the FBI Headquarters, Diana and Jones (that might as well be his first name, right?) greeted Neal with open arms and it was like the whole gang was back together! Except for Mozzie, who opted to stay put in Cape Verde, but I have a feeling we'll be seeing him soon. Anyway, after Jones ceremonially placed the ankle bracelet back on Neal, all was right again. EXCEPT then Peter was called into bossman's office and informed that he was being demoted. That's right, no more white collar crimes for him. It wasn't made clear, but I'm guessing Peter will now have to investigate people who defy those FBI warnings at the beginning of DVDs or maybe people who tear tags off of mattresses. Whatever it is, it won't be as fun and it won't feature as much Neal. Bummer!

If we're being honest, there's a good chance that "Most Wanted" was not the BEST episode of White Collar we've ever seen. While it certainly had its fun moments (even if they were more cartoonishly over the top than usual), it wasn't exactly the most compelling hour of television ever. But it'll be interesting to see how Peter's demotion is carried out, not to mention Neal's newfound interest in his own past (of which he made clear during a visit from Ellen). Will this be the season we meet Neal's dad??

Last thing: The below .GIF was featured in the "last week on White Collar..." montage, but I do NOT remember seeing this part!

Do you think there's a treasure trove of footage of Neal gallivanting around Cape Verde that they're saving for the DVDs? Fingers-crossed!

Oh, and BIG BTW, here's how Neal looked this week:

Matt Bomer in White Collar "Most Wanted" (Photos)


QUESTIONS:

... Will Neal get over Mia or will she be back?

... Was Collins the worst?

... What kinds of crime will Peter deal with now?

... Do you miss Sara?

Comments (34)
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I believe you have the character of "Maya" mixed up with the actress, MIA MAESTRO...She also played Nadia Santos, Sydney [Jennifer Garner]'s younger sister, on "ALIAS"...
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Really? Collins found Neal because Peter called using Ellen Parker's last resort pager number??? And a map was left at Peter's house with Neal's exact location circled? Could any of us be more insulted? The writers should have worked harder on how Neal's location was discovered. Collins couldn't find his way out of a paper bag. It was utterly ridiculous that Peter would use bells and waves/tides to discover Neal's location. Neal would have never been found had it not been for this very implausible storyline.
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-Honestly, I hope Maya comes back (it's Maya not Mia)!

-Yes, the absolute worst.

-Vampire and Werewolf attacks?

-Kinda sorta but not too much..



I actually loved this episode and not IN SPITE of the 80s montage and exaggerated scenes, but BECAUSE of them! I loved the bar tending scene, that was classic.
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Jonesy's name is "Clinton Jones." (I originally misheard it as "Lincoln Jones.") Collins refers to him by that name -- I watched the two episodes together, but believe it is about half way through the first one.



Meanwhile, I want to know more about Diana's relationship. In the middle of last season her long-time girl friend had proposed, with Neal approving of the idea -- and mentioning that SSM was now legal in NY. Diana was -- iirc -- reluctant to agree, but I don't know if the thread was moved along after that. I hope Diana accepts and the marriage -- with accompaning plot problems of course, maybe one of these 'something goes wrong for everybody and it looks like no one will be able to show up until the last section' plots. Whatever, it would be nice to see what i believe would be the first SSM involving a regular character -- at least on either boradcast or basic cable (I don't get the Premium channels).
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-Better than he got over Alex, not as good as he got over Kate ; )

-He.Shot.My.Neal. That is punishable by death....time infinity, where I come from.

-I'd like to see him scaring the crap at this poor souls who still use VHS' and refuse to be kind and rewind. Piracy...something very fitting about piracy.

- Who? (surely that answers the question)



Who I do miss is June. I love that woman and I was sort of hoping to see what her and Neal's reunion would have looked like. She's sort of had this awesome cool older aunt vibe with him that I always loved. Also a reuninion with Mrs.Suit would have been nice. She'a always been in his corner, sort of like the mom who spoils the son while the father is tasked with being the disciplinarian.

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This episode was okay. It was fun enough, but I found a lot of the schemes and plotting to be a little far-fetched. The move back to NY also felt a little rushed; I'd have liked more time on whatever island they were on.



I don't necessarily miss Sara, but I think she was infinitely better than Mia. A big part of that, of course, is that Sara's been around a lot, while Mia was just sporadically shown in two episodes. With that, I don't think Mia will be back. She may have a cameo or something in a future episode, but I don't think it'll be anything big.



I expect Peter to handle FBI recruiting, not crimes. He'll be all: "Hey kids, I'm a fed and you should be one too! Why? First and foremost, I get to look at THIS GUY all day." And he shows a photo of Neal to the class. Awesome recruiting pitch.
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Mia will definitely be back, Collins should lose his job for shooting Neil or ANY suspect the way he did, Peter looks to be in some filing job, and no I don't miss Sara.



This episode truly wasn't the best but it was entertaining, it kept juggling a lot of balls in the air and made each scenario fun. It was a dopey plan though, the only white guys on the island getting a lot of nondescript labor jobs didn't seem terribly believable, but it was mostly fun.
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O come on... Collins would never have found Neal, if Peter had not circled the island. And why? Because of a bell and a storm. Little bit far fetched.

And how does this affect Neal's sentence? Does he now have two years left or does he have to do more time? And how is it, that he can be safe from Kramer now? He still could put him to a lot of other crimes. That's all kinda weird..
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Collins has bee watching too much "Person of Interest."
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I'll be miffed if Moz isn't in every single ep this season! Mia was just convenient filler for Neal IMO. If they bring Sara back, I hope they feed her a few meals first, she was getting kinda bony towards the end of last season.
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Haha, I agree about Sara. Maybe she was wearing more sleeveless shirts and dresses or something because near the end of the season, I couldn't help but notice her TINY itsy-bitsy arms.
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1. as we all seem to agree mia was blah, so what ever

2. he was the worst! but why not. now we know neal is human, u know - he bleeds!! hes not apolo walking among us or anything

3. maybe peter will be in Blue collar now!! O.o eeep (btw 'I'm guessing Peter will now have to investigate people who defy those FBI warnings at the beginning of DVDs or maybe people who tear tags off of mattresses' made me piss with laughter)

4. miss sara so much. loved her best of all women around neal. and love her without neal too
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that drawing of mia, maya, or whatever... was awful.
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Staff
Haha totally.
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The tropical adventure could have been longer (Neal does look good with a tan and less clothes on) but I am just SO GLAD they have left the fake Cape Verde where actors playing locals speak Spanish instead of Portuguese.... I can believe any of Neal's insane plans but they went a bit far with this ....
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Was the show really filmed at Cape Verde?
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Staff
Puerto Rico I believe.
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Yes i miss Sara hope she makes a return stop
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Yes I miss Sara!!!!! She made Neal better something that Kate never did.
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Good episode to me. They probably could've stuck with Neal and Mozzie on the run for a little longer, but it would be pretty darn expensive to do so. Besides, I'd rather have Neal in NY than on the run when he totally deserves the NY treatment. Gotta keep the bromance going!!



Collins made for quite a good villain. Two thumbs up!!



Who knows what crimes Peter will deal with. Can't wait to find out though!!



I definitely miss Sara. It'll be good to see her back.
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Staff
I would've liked to see different locales as Neal/Mozzie were on the run... All the different countries without extradition laws.
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Neal loves women. Not a woman in particular. Maybe he'll miss her, maybe not. I like his annoying charm with them but that's not the main reason to watch White Collar :) I prefer his relationships with Mozzie, Peter or Ellen Parker (because she's important to the main storyline behind Neal's father). Yes, Collins was the worst. Peter choosed his friend over his job: that's so cute. He will get to meet "FBI's most unwanted agent" and solve cases with a X on them :)
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I totally miss Sara!
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I feel like they've been rushing this season along too much already. They had a great new place for the show with neal on the run, & they fix everything in two episodes. Ah well, let's hope pete's demotion turns into a good plot and makes up for it. Sara was okay but not too exciting.. to be honest kate's mysteriousness and the way she had neal wrapped around her finger was the most intriguing of neal's ladies to me.
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Totally agree with you on that. They definitely could have build the first half of the season of Neil and Mozzie on the run. My guess is that the show doesn't have the budget to pull off a convincing around the world romp, but their island definitely had enough compelling characters to go a few more episodes.
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1. Mia was meh at best. I mean I liked her, but Sara is INFINITELY better.

2. Collins be crazy. I said last week he just seemed rabid and he sure did prove it this week. I mean talk about crossing the line.

3. I bet it's organized crime. I kind of expect what's her name, E. Parker, to die before she tells Neil and Neil realizes it's his father that put out the hit and this season is all about Neil and Peter going after Neil's father who just happens to be some crazy huge crime boss.

4. YES, YES, YES, YES!!! I really hope Sara will be back. She is by far the most awesome. Sara >>> Alex > Kate (let's be honest, Kate was kind of terrible for Neil)
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-Nothing against Mia/Maya, but I hope he just gets over her. I prefer the other girl who did the insurance stuff for Neal, I forget her name right now.

-Collins was pretty rough. But I do like Mekhi Phifer.

-Peter will deal with the crappiest crap, like the white collar basement work. Someone who slipped in a line to a contract to get free water bottles each shipment of whatever. The stupid stuff.

-Is Sara the Insurance girl? (Sorry, answered the first question before I looked at this last one.) If so, then YES! If not, then who's Sara?
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maya ( i think that was her name) was just another one of neal's girls, and while she was the luckiest girl in the world for five minutes, i doubt she;ll be back.

COLLINS SHOT NEAL!! i;m sorry, i;m still appalled by that! nobody actually shoots neal! and he was so smirky about it! wanted to punch his i;m-so-clever-i-shot-neal-caffrey-face.

I imagine Peter will be back with Neal and the gang in a few eps, as I imagine Mozzie will be back soon enough. Can anyone imagine a white collar with no Mozzie?
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I agree it was a "meh" episode, especially the mirror. And yes, I miss Sara. I wonder if they can frame Collins as trying to take credit for Peter's capture, using the bullet in Neil's leg as proof that Neil wasn't really working for Collins...Truthfully, I'm just looking for some angle that lands Mekhi Phifer's character in prison and off the show.
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Agreed! Please tell me this is the last we've seen of Mekhi Phifer on this show...
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Sharif Atkins is finally listed as a regular \o/
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SARA! SARA! SARA!
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I WANT SARA BACK!!!
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It was a good episode. I would have preferred if they would have kept the chase going for a little bit.



Questions;



Unknown, could be. She seemed to like him enough to turn down 500k.



I am not sure Collins was the worst. I think there is going to be another big bad. And he was just kind of an arse. Practical though. What do you do to a guy that is a noted escape artist and runs. You shoot him in the leg.



Peter I think will get grunt work for at least one episode until Neil figures out a way to get him in good with the DC again.



I do miss Sara. Who doesn't love a girl that keeps an ASP baton in her purse.
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