Burn Notice

Season 1 Episode 7

Broken Rules

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Aug 09, 2007 on USA
out of 10
User Rating
353 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Michael poses as a thief to infiltrate a crime gang who are terrorizing a local store owner.

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  • Starting to move forward

    Finally got one over the CSS agent, and finally going to back off and on top of that gave him the file on him. The case was very good dealing with a drug lord and taking her off the streets, Fiona and Michael are getting closer. And it seems like Sam has permanently found someone to start a relationship with. Very good episode and looking forward to watching the next episode.moreless
  • good episode...

    Michael helps a store owner get rid of a group that comes around and terrorizes the community. I love how Michael dealt with the situation. He was halarious when he was acting like a crazy criminal. I also liked how the story ended. The crime boss was killed and it shows that sometimes you have to do bad to do a greater good. I like the development of Michael and the CSS agent. They are halarious together. Also, Fiona and Michael have great dynamics. I think Sam's relationship is interesting and adds to his character. Overall, good episode with a good story and great character development.moreless
  • Not a bad episode. Michaels make-up (especially his eyeliner) in this episode is shocking! - He looks like a drag queen in some shots. I sense the show is losing momentum.moreless

    Overall i've enjoyed this series but IMHO it's starting to slow down a little. How long can the writers continue with the same plot-line?

    I'm not sure how long they can drag out Michael's journey to find out why he was burnt. His modern day Robin Hood adventures are fun to watch, but I just think its going to run out of steam.

    Personally I find Fiona's character annoying at times. The fact she keeps dragging up the same old relationship (and mother) lines makes her character very 1 dimensional. Plus why did her accent change from an Irish one in episode 1 (it was pretty bad).moreless
  • Review

    Just over the halfway mark of the first season, this show is beginning to hit a stride and hopefully from here on out it won't take a look back. Every episode seems to have the big three. Something with Micheal and Fiona, which might have just pivoted in this episode as the question of will they try to be together again may have been answered by the ending scene of this episode. Every episode is beginning to have a case that is interesting, but doesn't take up so much screen time for us to grow bored with it. And every episode is beginning to have something to do with the overall main story arch that we were presented with in the pilot episode: What happened to Micheal Weston. He cons the CSS agent in this episode to get the information, which is sure to play a major part in the next episode. I don't know where the show will go from here with five episodes remaining in the season, but they certainly have enough to work with and can introduce some new characters now that Weston has some information on his Burn Notice.moreless
  • Fine Exapmle

    Just when I was getting slightly tired of millionaire playboys and well groomed cartel lords I get this! I'm so happy. Michael finally gets into the drug crazed maniac role. Don't let my elation fool you, this series is built on Michael being playboy, but in order to avoid getting slightly stale, a new perspective is needed every so often. So before the fans started clamoring for something other than polite champagne sipping spy business, we get the Frayed-sleeveless Vest Look from Michael (Very 1991) who walks around with a baseball bat and terrorizes the local cartel with a power drill (Dewalt 18volt) and turpentine. An excellent idea to show some variety in Michael Westen's character database.moreless
Audrey Landers

Audrey Landers


Guest Star

Alex Carter

Alex Carter

Agent Jason Bly

Guest Star

Esai Morales

Esai Morales

Ernie Paseo

Guest Star

Paul Tei

Paul Tei

Barry Burkowski

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • When Michael and Bly are talking and Fiona pulls up she is seen putting on makeup without gloves but when Michael asks if the car is clean she is shown wearing gloves

    • When Michael is shown just having come out of the shower still toweling off and talking on the phone with Sam, the waistband on his jeans is wet. In the few seconds it takes Michael and Fiona to begin fighting, they are dry.

    • Michael enters Ernie's store and locks the door. However, when leaving, Michael does so without unlocking the door.

  • QUOTES (22)

    • (Michael is sitting in a restaurant when Bly walks in)
      Michael: Jason? Jason Bly. Good to see you. I figured you'd find me sooner or later. Everyone! Everyone! This is Officer Jason Bly of the CSS. It is a branch of the NSA performing covert intelligence support for the military.
      Bly: All right, that's enough.
      Michael: You think so? I was gonna go into the history of the service a little, give people some background. Not a bad picture. I take terrible photo IDs. One of the reasons I never worked for any service branch directly.
      Bly: I suppose you think you're gonna be able to leverage stealing my service ID card into a ticket off the blacklist?
      Michael: No, I hadn't really thought about it. I just wanted to get to know you better.

    • Michael: (voice-over) In any kind of covert intelligence operations, it's important to be careful what you wish for. The information that you fight so hard to get, may be everything you wished for. Or, it may just make your life more complicated.

    • Michael: (voice-over) Military firebombs are typically white phosphorus or chlorine trifluoride. These are remarkably effective, but they are also unstable, lethally toxic and hard to find at the grocery store. The main ingredient in a home-made firebomb, on the other hand, is Styrofoam. A military demolition expert can put something together in a few hours. An IRA trained guerrilla can do it in 20 minutes...give or take.

    • Michael: (voice-over) In any new job there's always friction with your co-workers. They are wondering if the boss likes the new guy better, if he's going to make them look bad… in some jobs that can get you a dark look in the break room, in other jobs that can get you a bullet in the back of the head.

    • Michael: (voice-over) Any new employer is looking for the same things: are you willing to go the extra mile? Can you take the initiative; impress them?

    • Michael: (voice-over) They say you only get one chance to make a first impression with an employer. It doesn't matter if you're a store manager or a strong armed guy. You've got to put your best foot forward.

    • Michael: (voice-over) There's no substitute for improvisation. Even the best plans can't anticipate everything. You better be able to roll with the punches…

    • Michael: (voice-over) In intelligence work, surveillance is called coverage. It's like basketball; you can run zone defense or man to man. Man to man is risky; follow someone too long, they're going to get suspicious. Zone is usually the way to go. Stay put and let targets come to you. Less obvious, easier on the feet...and you can catch up on your celebrity gossip.

    • Michael: (voice-over) The longer you run form the police, the more certain you are to get caught. There's a small window of time after a chase begins before back-up arrives, before helicopters are deployed. If you want any chance of getting away, you'd best use this time to find some place secluded...and bail out.

    • Michael: (voice-over) The term "shock and awe" gets misused a lot these days. It's a popular name for a military tactic called "rapid dominance". Whether you do it with a 1000 pound bomb or a can of turpentine and a power drill. It's all about being spectacular. Kill the electronic brain in any late model car, and it's dead, won't start, windows won't open. And you can pretty much do whatever you want.

    • Agent Bly: I came by to see if you'd reconsidered your position at all. I've been reading up on your exploits, you are a man of many talents.
      Michael: Nice to be appreciated.
      Agent Bly: My hope. My commitment really is that you'll find a new outlet for your skills here in Miami. A new outlet that involves you settling down and no longer causing problems for the intelligence community.
      Michael: I see. You got any ideas?
      Agent Bly: Well, I realize that you probably don't have much in the way of job references from your times in Afghanistan and the former Soviet Republics. So I am prepared to offer you full time employment, papers and references. You'll start as a security guard at a bank. And who knows where things might go from there.
      Michael: Really - a security guard.

    • Michael: Jason Bly! Always a pleasure.
      Agent Bly: Nice job ditching the police the other day. I knew you'd do it, of course, but you always manage those things with such style. Maybe it's the sunglasses. Where did you get them?
      Michael: Oh, an Algerian special ops guy I tangled with a while back. He didn't need 'em any more.

    • Ernie: I talked to my friend Javier, you helped him with that guy. (Michael shrugs) They came after his kid.
      Michael: And asked him not to talk about it, ya.

    • Michael: How did you get here so fast?
      Fiona: Oh, I got a ride from a pleasant retired gentleman named Hubert. He was concerned for my safety.

    • Michael: (voice-over) Explaining the rules of covert ops is always a challenge. It's a world where good guys look like bad guys. And two wrongs do in fact make a right.

    • Fiona: I have to say Sam's romantic side is surprising.
      Michael: Not now, Fi.
      Fiona: I'm talking about Sam.
      Michael: And you're gonna use Sam as a way to talk about us. (She opens her mouth to say something) After. All right?
      Fiona: All right. But I promise you that if I am not satisfied I am gonna kick your ass.

    • Fiona: You have always had a problem with my work. I have always supported you.
      Michael: I'm helping people, you're running guns! Big difference.

    • (In car being chased by cops)
      Michael: Do you have guns in the trunk, Fi?!
      Fiona: A few semi automatics, yeah. I got a deal, Michael. This guy was selling Browning 9mm for 200 bucks a piece.
      Michael: You have unregistered weapons in a stolen car, Fi!

    • Fiona: So once Bly is taken care of, we can discuss us?
      Michael: Sure.
      Fiona: I don't suppose killing him will expedite that?
      Michael: No, Fi, no.

    • Michael: I gotta bust up your counter.
      Ernie: You wanna smash up my counter?
      Michael: Yeah, and a few other things. It's part of the plan, Ernie.

    • Ernie: So my job is to say that a psycho robbed my store. What's your job?
      Michael: Me? I get to be the psycho. Trust me, that's the hard part. AAAAH!

    • Ernie: She can kill my whole family?
      Michael: Well, she's a shark, Ernie. She plans on killing me, too, if that makes you feel any better.

  • NOTES (3)

    • International Episode Titles:
      Czech Republic: Porušená pravidla (Broken Rules)

    • Original International Air Dates:
      New Zealand: December 16, 2007 on TV3
      Australia: March 4, 2008 on TEN
      Czech Republic: March 26, 2008 on Prima
      Sweden: March 30, 2008 on TV6
      United Kingdom: November 16, 2008 on FX
      Germany: November 9, 2009 on Vox
      Slovakia: February 23, 2010 on JOJ
      Finland: March 15, 2010 on MTV3

    • Although credited, Sharon Gless (Madeline Westen) does not appear in this episode.