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USA (ended 2013)

Burn Notice S07E12: "Sea Change"


Toward the end of "Sea Change," Miami’s seven-year king of subterfuge Michael Westen told an ugly truth to a dear friend: Above all else—including loved ones and personal safety—he ultimately craves power. It was a clarifying moment for the penultimate episode of Burn Notice, which up to this point had laid the groundwork for a possible double-cross on Westen’s part. Closer than he’s ever been to both the inner-workings of the CIA and James’ mysterious operation, the possibility was there for Michael to reveal some brilliant scheme to play the two factions off one another in the name of saving the day. The fun had run out on trying to guess his point of view, and seeing exactly where his head was at strengthened the rest of the episode. In presenting an overwhelmed hero who had betrayed his friends for a more difficult path, this meaty, emotional hour benefitted by examining the dark side of what it means to be such a regularly solitary force.       


Granted, Westen wasn’t really in his right mind while declaring his intentions to Sam, but he wasn’t necessarily out of his mind, either. As far as offers go, James presented a real doozie to his protege: The folksy-warrior would take a fake fall, thus saving Fi, Sam, Jesse, and Maddie, and making Michael a hero capable of protecting James and Sonya's operation from the inside. Michael would lead alongside Sonya and carry out global justice his own way. While ideally this sort of arrangement might be good for the world, to continue fighting and lying would be terrible for Westen as a person. In a season largely dedicated to our hero's search for inner-peace, Burn Notice has done a commendable job delving into Michael Westen’s character and illustrating how his unique traits are just as much a burden as a blessing. Someone so used to self-sacrifice would of course have as hard a time as Westen’s having letting someone else do the rescuing.      


THEN SAM AND MIKE FOUGHT (which basically went something like this):












Tough love, baby! What’s to say? This was pretty cool, seeing the two buddies duke it out, but let’s face it—Westen's in way better shape so ultimately the win was going to go to him. For that reason, Sam taking the battle into the ocean, where presumably he’d excel as a Navy SEAL, was a nice touch, but Westen’s narration about playing possum quickly did away with the chance for a surprise victory. Still though, Sam's brute force came in handy. Good effort! A few more body slams and this would’ve been yours, dude!


The downside to this whole intervention structure is that the gang has spent a good part of this final season separate from Westen. Ostensibly the super friends want to get things back to the way they were and be there for their buddy, but with Westen on his own journey, it's up to the viewers to remember these happier team times, then reference those memories as a reminder of what’s at stake. So much time has passed since they've all been cool with each other that it's easy to forget how much fun their group dynamic can be. Kind of a Catch-22 situation, though, because it probably wouldn't mean that much if Westen rescued himself without any help from the people who care about him. Just saying. 


Fi taking matters into her own hands seemed to genuinely jog Westen’s heart and mind, like a robot malfunctioning after trying to compute the emotion known as "love." If there’s any person who can summon Michael back from the edge it’s her, and I don’t see Maddie or Jesse making a huge impression on the set-in-his-ways spy (maybe Charlie, if he says "uncle" in a super cute way). It’s no small feat to take a superhuman like Michael Westen and reveal his vulnerable core while staying true to the action-packed world of Burn Notice. It’ll be sad to see it all end next week, but it looks like it’s going to be something every warrior hopes for: a good death.   


BURNING QUESTIONS:

– How does Fi survive that gunshot?

– How will this all resolve?

– Will James and Sonya turn on Westen?

– Will Maddie die and force Westen to leave this world for good?

– How will Westen make good with the CIA?

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 9/12/2013

Season 7 : Episode 13

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I will have to admit the Micheal that we saw at the beginning/ season 1 is different from this Micheal.....This Micheal is darker,angrier and a little bit uncaring...Back to Sea Change i think Micheal wants to bring down James and his Organization and not make the same mistake that he made earlier that got Nate killed problem is that his friends don't seem to see it that way....
secondly Fi breaking up with Micheal kind of got to his head so he is trying to make everything right for her which she doesn't seem to see...
Lastly i don't think Fi died.....! Sonya did....
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I don't think Michael craves power... but he's tired of the incompetent jerks at the CIA that are apparently willing to do bad stuff.

The head intelligence guy was bad-mouthing Michael saying how incompetent he is. REALLY? WTF?
  • They chased their tails for 7-10 years and didn't even know about James. Congrats, 7-10 years and you don't know there's even a top to the pyramid, let alone who's there.
  • Prior to that, they had no clue about Management's organization.
  • And when they finally believed about Management's organization and took it down, they wouldn't believe Michael that there was MORE to that organization and that it was still running... which let to Nate's death.
And they're calling MICHAEL incompetent? He's almost single-handed revealed the existence of 2.5 covert organizations that were running under your nose (Management's organization's rebirth counts as at LEAST 0.5).

The guy's been through the ringer... the organization he believed so much in was confirmed to be A) run by schmucks and B) willing to use real monsters to do what they want. Add to that he lost his brother most due to agency incompetence, he thinks he's lost Fiona, and his mother is quite distant lately.

He feels he can do better than the CIA... and maybe he's not wrong. But Sam made a solid point: good intentions are one thing, but what happens when someone crosses you? You'll be just as bad as the monsters you hate.
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1 - How does Fi survive that gunshot?
I imagine it's simple... SHE wasn't shot.

My guess is we'll see that when Michael closed his eyes, he chose Fiona and then shot Sonya. James will see it from the helicopter and fly off and be VERY upset.

And the finale will be about Michael & company taking down James before he can exact his revenge on Michael for betraying him and killing Sonya.


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1. Don't know, TV magic? Or something happens that changes the previous second of when Sonya made the shot which makes the cliffhanger poorly done.

2-5. I don't know how it will all turn out but two things I don't want from the endings: Happy ending with Westen leaving the spy business or joining the CIA yet again.

The only ending that I want is that he takes over James's organization. With their resources he'll be able to lean back in the shadows just like Anson did or James in a way and he'll be able to protect his family while at the same time carry out ops all over the world that will help people.

As for Sonya and James, I'm not really sure I care either way. Sonya seems like she's crazy, she loves her job more than her life so she would sacrifice herself or anyone else just for one operation and James who can't seem to decide between being a hyprocrite or failure sometimes.

I'm voting for them both dead in a situation that Westen takes advantage of so he can take over without the CIA knowing it but for them he'll seemingly get out of the business leaving him clear in the air.
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I've very much enjoyed Burn Notice. And, this last season had so much potential. But, as others have said, it was just a bit off.

Random "offness":

* James became who he was because he refused to follow orders to kill innocents just to get the bad guy. One of the reasons he wanted Michael is because he hates collateral damage, too. YET, time and again James showed a willingness to allow collateral damage to get the job done. Huh? And, Sonja is WORSE. She was about to order a missile strike on a whole island to get one man. EXACTLY what James had refused to do.

* Michael MIGHT be able to buy into James' mission, but no way he could feel comfortable working with Sonja, who is so willing to kill anyone that gets in the way (see above).

* James knows how much Fi means to Michael. He even agreed to turn himself in to save Michael and his friends. Then, he has Michael and Sonja hold hands as if he's just married them?

* The whole scene in the "principles office" at the CIA was just stupid. The head of the CIA is berating Michael for not trying to single handedly take down James? When no one else has EVER gotten as far as Michael has? And, that stupid line about "isn't that what he's trained to do? Take risks?" Stupid. Not when it botches the mission.

* The whole intervention thing was intense and fun but the premise for it was so flimsy. As has been said by others, Mike did not have to push them away because he was "trying to protect them". All he had to say was, "We've got it covered. I'll be bringing James in in 2 days". And, if they insisted on being there? So what? James' team could just be told to be extra careful and not shoot them. Why was it so important for Michael to keep them away? Just lazy writing. There are many more plausible ways for the team to find out that Michael has turned.

* There was no evidence that the henchman would have the same loyalty to Michael as they did to James. How could they? Michael hasn't even been shown the full organization or mission statement. I'm guessing most of the organization has never met Michael. Why would anyone assume they'd just do whatever Michael says after James is gone?

* Sonja continue to act like she's the boss and Michael the subordinate. James should know that you can't have TWO bosses. ONE person has to be in charge.

---
BTW, do we know if James was really the head of all the enemies Michael had over the years? (Management? Anson?) Or, was James uninvolved in all that?

This whole switching sides thing would be a lot more believable and acceptable if they had shown us that the CIA is wrong about James. That they want him just because he's too powerful and beyond their control. If the writers had shown us that James does the right things WITHOUT collateral damage (which got James started) and his only real crime is that he does what he does without the government's blessing.
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Even though I don't think they can top last weeks episode this one was still pretty good. All the people on here complaining about it... Just don't watch it, go watch whatever shows you find entertaining that will just end up getting cancelled while the rest of us enjoy a show that's going out on it own terms. nswers: 1. Mike probably knocks the guaway. 2. I have about 20 different ways I've thought of that this could all end and I'm excited to see which one will happen. 3. I doubt it. That would not make much sense without him turning on them first. 4. I don't think she will die anymore I did before but after that trailer I realize its got to be ex military that dies soit Sam Mike or Jessie. 5. Hopefully he doesn't unless its just to play them like James plans says.
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I must admit i really Enjoyed this week's episode & i am really looking foward tonext week's episode even though its going to be a bittersweat moment for me since i really liked burn notice over the years & do not want to see it end... I really liked the whole turn james over to the cia & have micheal & sonya run the organzation & live happily ever after idea. I think that wouldve been a great way to end the show. But i doubt that will happen now & its starting to look like that it wont be fiona who gets shot but sonya which saddens me a bit not because fiona lives but because i wouldve love to see micheal & sonya not only do good withthe organization but see them blossom together romantically. I also wanted to see the rest of the crew to live happily after too but im not sure that will happen. & I all i know is i hope they do the show justice.
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The best ending I can think of is for Mike and gang to to walk off toward new lives and leave the CIA and the spy business behind them. I just cannot see Mike choosing Sophia over Fi.
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Ok, first of all, I love Burn Notice and like many of us, I will be sad when the show is off the air.

And yes, let's be honest, sometimes, there are scenarios in the show which are played off that don't always make sense, but, for the most part, I'm pretty forgiving.

However..

This season is full of those, "WTF?" moments.

Let's take this episode for example:

For the greater good of the cause, James is willing to let himself be taken by the CIA. It solves everybody's problem and having faith in both Sonya and Micheal, it allows the cause to continue without being endangered.

Ok, a bit weird, but James recognizes that his anonymity has been compromised and seeing how Michael did the right thing with Sonya, and furthermore Michael's honest take of the situation, James does believe he finally has someone worthy to take over, which makes sense as with Michael on the inside, perfect place to protect James and keep the cause going

Ok. That can be taken as logical. A real true believer in a cause, should be able to self-assess himself and see the wisdom of passing along the torch to those who can take the lead and further it.

Now, here's where things go bad:

Fiona at Michael's loft:

Fiona's pleading with him. All he has to do to shut her up is tell her that there is a plan in motion to capture James and that for now, they had to back off, and let him work his magic, until he needed them. He could have told her that in one or 2 days, all of this would be over.

That's all, he just needed to buy himself 2 days.

He's a freakin' super-spy and he couldn't do that? Can't sell that? It's exactly what everybody wants?

Instead, he keeps telling her that's he's trying to protect them. As if he doesn't know how his crew gets when they are kept out of the loop.

Where's the logic in that?

But obviously, that (very weak) plot point, is how they (the writers) can justify the rest of the episode.

They need to get the crew to realize that's he "on the other side".
And they want to force a showdown between Fiona and Michael and the best time is when all is about to wrap itself up as when James is about to get 'caught'.

So, let's start by making up some lame rescue mission to get Michael away from it all.

This means that the 'family', Fiona, Maddie, Charlie, Sam and Jesse, all need to go away.

Let's get away from James' men by burning down Maddie's house.

Sure, after all, it's not like it won't get to James' attention.. ? Which is how they keep Sonia in paranoid state about Fiona.

Let's con Michael into showing up to fix some imagination issue involving a destructive Fiona.. Forget that's he's in a mission..

Let's burn Maddie's house..

Let's get Sam to fight with Michael so that he can slip up about his intentions.

Let's get Fiona all fired up about saving Michael, best way? let's screw up his mission?

As you can see, for me anyways, there is a lot about this episode which did not make sense, because it's badly and/or poorly executed.

It's like, they needed maybe 3 or 4 more episodes to come up to a better climax for the series, but didn't have it.

So, everything now seems forced to concluded, but not in an organic flow.

The end results are not credible plot points all designed to wrap up the show.

Logic? Character motivation? it's all an interwoven mess.

It's really not how I want to see this show finish off, so poorly.

I hope the last episode will redeem itself.
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I agree. It might have been better if he had just told them he was capturing James, they go hang out while its happening, and Mike takes over with Sonya. Then when Sam and Friends find out what actually happened, they try to have an intervention. Basically the same outcome but less unrealistic drama.
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Yeah, well, too bad we don't work for Burn Notice.. :)
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I would have to disagree and say its a great thing Yall don't work for burn notice.
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fine.. thank you for sharing..
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Mike will shoot Sonya before she gets a chance to shoot Fi. Maddie will die protecting Charlie and Mike and Fi will get back together in the end and raise Charlie themselves. Sam and Jessie will go off to star in their own spin-off running a private investigating business. Come on - isn't this all pretty obvious to yall too? :)
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That's is obvious that's why I'm hoping we are wrong there are several possibilities that could end this.
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What didn't go well for me this episode was how Mike saying that he didn't want to work with Fi and telling Sam that he was meeting James a few days later instantly turned to "Mike is a traitor." Like OMG he doesn't want to work with us? He must be a traitor.
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Him lying to them after all they been trough made them think he was a traitor. That's pretty believable.
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I speculate that Sonya is the one that gets shot by someone else, possibly by James.
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Damn this episode was so hard to watch!
I really hope that Fi's plea broke through to Michael I so want him to make up with her, Sam Jesse, & Madeline before the show ends! I also want them to finally take down James's organization once and for all!
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I think you’ve all missed it.

After a lot of the action that will take place the first 50 minutes the scene will shift and we will see Michael waking up in some European city. He shakes his head as if to get rid of his sleepiness, looking groggy, confused and upset. He gets up, walks around the room and looks out the window as though to get his bearings. He then sits down, grabs the phone and calls Sam.

“Hello Sam, this is Michael.”

“Michael, its been a long time. How are you doing. Still working for the Company.”

“Sure Sam. Same as always. But I wanted to call you because I just had the weirdest dream, and you were in it.”

“Really. Tell me about it.”

“Well in the dream I had been burned and was dumped in Miami in a room with Fiona Glenanne. You remember Fiona, right?”

“Sure. So tell me about the dream.”

Oh, man – it was a nightmare. One impossible scenario after another. And the end of the dream was unbelievable!”

“So Mike, it’s been a while. Are you still with Fiona?”

“No way, Sam. That girl is crazy!”

Fade to black.


Hooray for Hollywood!!
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Man, loved it from beginning to end. It's really gonna hurt to see this show go, but I am loving the way it's leaving. There was a lot I enjoyed from this episode, from an entertainment standpoint. However, it got real emotional and dangerous very quick. The fight between Sam and Michael was good, but it hurt to see those two come to blows like that, especially after everything they've been through the past seven seasons. Good acting by Bruce Campbell, cause I definitely felt the hurt in his voice and facial expression when he finally admitted that Michael was gone. From his standpoint and the rest of the gang, I completely understand where they're coming from. I really just wish he could've told them, despite telling them would've ruined everything he went through to save them.

James, in my opinion, is in the position Michael wants to be: heading an organization of dedicated soldiers that would rather die than betray him. Like Michael said, his methods can be ruthless, but nothing about him says terrorist, or even bad guy period. I was pleasantly shocked he agreed to turn himself in to save Michael's friends. Brave move from a brave man. Loved it!!!
Questions:
1. I actually think that Sonya gets shot by someone else. I don't have a clue who though.
2. I don't know, but am very intrigued, of course , to find out.
3. No they won't. Honestly I think those three definitely share one hell of a bond at this point.
4. I think she'll die but given Michael's argument with Sam, I don't think he'll ever leave this work because it's just not in him. I thought he was capable of leaving it all behind, but being in control and saving people is just what he was made for. He's been doing it for so long and has done it so well that getting James' position in this organization is practically a dream come true. It hurt to hear that, but hey, that's just how he feels; and I want the guy to be alive and happy.
5. At this point, he doesn't owe them a DAMN THING!!! They owe him a hell of a lot more than he owes them. So to me, making good with the CIA in any way after making his life a living hell on numerous occasions is complete bullcrap to me.
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A lot of you seem pretty upset, but i thought this episode was really good. Especially when Mike was trying to figure a way to get Fi out alive, and was stumped. And his fight with Sam. For Burn Notice, I feel like the stakes are pretty high and I hope they can find a way to redeem him without it feeling like a cop out.
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This may be heading to the worst ending to a TV series even worse than lost!
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Just what I was thinking! And that TV show Merlin, ruined the whole series with just one episode.
I see no hope here, this last episode made no sense... But tnetennba is right, you can't really compete with Lost for the worst ending possible but it seems like Burn Notice is trying.
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That's not even close to possible.
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It's getting tiring to listen over and over again how Westen is protecting them. If he just tells them what is going on, then they would understand and back off. Like in this episode, if he told them James was going to turn himself in, they would have waited with their intervention because then they would all be free from the CIA, but no, he just says he is protecting them, giving them nothing to work with. Couldn't the writers come up with anything else? Did the writers give up already knowing it's the last season ever?

I'm pretty sure, Fi is not shot because it was Michaels gun that went off and shot Sonya.
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By considering only one angle here, you're doing yourself a disservice. Really, especially for a Burn Notice episode, this is more nuanced than the show has ever been, and that goes for most of the episodes this season.

The show is not trying to sell you on practicality. If these were all purely practical people, Michael would trust his friends with the same information you are screaming at him to give and they would indeed back off. But, the show is selling you morality. Fiona, Sam and Jesse aren't there to let things skate if it means they won't be thrown in jail. In fact, they're all so close to each other that one would not hesitate to go prison for the other.

His friends DO NOT WANT HIM to go down this path, as they had continually tried to explain to him. They know how dark it gets and as Sam correctly emphasized, how easy it will be to get rid of whoever is in your way, if you are free to do anything and are not answerable to anyone.

Knowing this, then, if Michael had told them about James' "surrender", they would call the CIA and say, "Umm dudes Michael is totes running James' show now, joke's on you L O L".

In the end, they care far less about James going to prison or the CIA sending them to prison than they do about Michael keeping his humanity. After all, Michael would do it for them.
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No, I think YOU'RE missing the point. No one, here, is saying the team wouldn't sacrifice themselves.

They're saying (and I agree) that there was no need for them to be suspicious at all.

If Mike had just said, "I have a plan to capture Jason. It's handled. There's very little danger. Give me 2 days.", that would have been fine. No worries.

The writers were lazy. They could have come up with a dozen more plausable ways to reach the same confrontation, but for Mike to just tell them to back off, "I'm protecting you" was pretty stupid.
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I meant James, of course. Not Jason. Sry.
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I really hope that the reason this season is betraying its core cannon is because they want a spin off or a movie to wrap things up. Otherwise why would they create all this turmoil on such a short season? I mean if it is the final season why not having the team work together the way the fandom wants to and destroy this yet again shady organization? That way they could all walk into the sunset and the series would be wrapped up in a pretty bow with Michael and Fiona together with Charlie etc. Granted this way is much more interesting and deep but it came a little too late. what is the point of breaking up the great chemistry between the actors if there won't be another season? I don't see the point.
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Are you kiddin' me? It's precisely because it's the last season. They can do pretty much anything, because it's the endgame. And you don't play the endgame like it's everygame. And if they did this kind of thing with more seasons to come, there'd be no tension. We'd know Westen was gonna go back to his white hat hero self, get back with Fiona and Sam and Jesse. We'd know beforehand that Fiona would survive, because - another season. But if she were to die now? Micheal going on a revenge spree *is* series finale material. I'm not saying that's what's gonna happen, 'cause I don't know. And this *not knowing* is the best part of the season. We know it's the end. And the end can be anything, and that's the most exciting part of it all.
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The nonsense of this final season has been quite spectacular and meaningless. I'm tired of Weston's voice-overs to the point I just want him to shut the fuck up. It was a great run for 3 seasons until the wheels came off always trying to up the ante, and I just want it over and let the spies fall where they may. This is a wonderful cast and, for the most part, fun to watch. But their luck should have run out long ago. It hasn't been even remotely believable for a long time. Plans made on the fly sometimes work, but, but c'mon, nobody has this much luck unless they have a Warehouse 13 artifact up their ass...
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"Myka, I think we've located the Marquis de Sade's pear of anguish. It's in Miami, and you and Pete are not going to believe what it's being used for, bring extra purple gloves."
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I don't go along with the idea that Michael has become power hungry. I think its more just wanting something meaningful, and dare I say it, honorable. All of Michaels CIA handlers have screwed him over time and again. James actually came back for Michael which the CIA never would have done.

I don't think there is much doubt that Fi will survive. I don't think thre writers would want to alienate the viewers that much. I would guess that most viewers want to see Michael and Fi ride off into the sunset and live happily ever after, but that ain't happnin. This is Hollyweird after all.

As for that gunshot at the end, I think that it will turn out to be James that shoots Sonya. I think he should have been within range by then even as slowly as that chopper was flying. James' plan is for him to be captured and his organization to be co-run by Michael and Sonya. NOT!!!! He wants Sonya out of the way so only Michael will run his organization. If James were to allow Sonya to punch Fi's clock, Michael would not take command and it would ruin all of his plans for Michael.

As an alternative to that gushot, Michael may have jumped in front of Fi and was injured, or perhaps deflected Sonya's aim. I will have to say, though, that Michael did not appear to be hurt in any of the previews, but it wouldn't be the first time that he was hurt and then went on with the rest of the show like nothing ever happened.

What will happen to all of the characters? I am sad to say that I don't think Michael will survive in the end. Even if they don't kill him off, I don't think he will get back in the CIA's good graces. He has gone too far into the dark side, foiled too many CIA ops, and committed too many unnecessary murders. He can't get away with killing Card in cold blood for one, and the CIA would never ever be able to trust him again. Besides, he wouldn't want to anyway. He has been lied to and manipulated too much.

Jesse? I have been hoping for a long time that he gets killed. He was the WORST actor on the show, and I also think the worst character. Maybe they will finally get around to it but I doubt it. He will be offered a chance to get back into the CIA, but I don't think he will take it seeing what the CIA has done to Michael. He will become a freelance good guy. Maybe even start his own company or something.

Sam will finally drive off into the sunset with his lady friend, a Mojito, and her Caddies. :-)

Maddie - the writers won't kill off Charlie's only surviving relative (not counting Michael in the event the writers don't kill him off too). She will just live out the rest of her life screwing up another kid.

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1. As long as they don't pull another Strickland Im fine with whatever. Though I really hope it's not Fi dies and Michael turns on Sonya and James.
2. What really does Michael owe the CIA. I mean think about it. CIA burned him because they got a fake file (still funny that the CIA has no idea about any of these major organizations)... CIA killed his brother... CIA tried to kill him and his family... CIA threatened to imprison him and his family FOREVER... CIA basically let Simon out to do their dirty work... Granted these were all just parts of the CIA but from this episode we find out the Director knows pretty much everything and seems to be okay with it so yeah... The only CIA people that were on Michael's side were either banished to random assignment no where or killed. At no real point has it ever really been shown that the CIA are better than any of the other organizations that Michael and crew have taken down. Oh, and the CIA left Sam to pretty much die.
3. What does Michael owe Fi? She made it known several times that it is over and she has moved on. I mean I know why things will probably turn out the way they will, but eh. Plus, I personally like Sonya's cold calculating nature a lot more than Fi's kind of manic crazy whimsy.

I think the direction the writers are taking the show is a good one, at least for DRAMA. But I think another way could very easily have been Michael and crew realizing the CIA are terrible (for hiring Simon) and figuring out a way to get out from under. Either way, Im pretty sure the show is going to end with Michael saying... "Im Michael Westen and I use to be a spy..."
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Why hasn't 'Dexter' been this good this season? Props to Matt Nix.
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Dexter has been AWFUL this season (and the last...). I'm watching it mostly to see how it ends, but man is it painful at times.

Burn Notice has also been painful to watch in the past, but I think they're doing a good job at wrapping things up with these last few episodes.

Considering that both shows knew it would be their last season before they started working on the seasons, I think the quality of both should have been better. But at least BN has gotten quite emotional and exciting towards the end. Dexter is even worse now at the end than it was at the beginning of the season! (And I say this as a fan.)
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What does that even mean?
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What it means is... Dexter is overrated now! No where near the level it used to be. Neither is burn notice but they haven't fallen off as bad as dexter did.
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Are you kidding? The CIA is God and they have to beat God! Gimme a break, Burn Notice is nothing more than a cruel joke. "When you're fighting God, make sure you have a horseshoe and a couple of rabbit's feet up your ass...
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Fi taking matters into her own hands seemed to genuinely jog Westen’s heart and mind, like a robot malfunctioning after trying to compute the emotion known as "love." << While I'm itching to see the next episode, I'm not ready to see it. I feel as if I should be bracing for impact.
Answers: I don't think that Fi will survive the gunshot. Mike is crying in the preview for next week's episode. James and Sonya will die, and Mike will fake his, Maddie's, and Charlie's deaths and move to some podunk town in the Midwest to live in peace. Screw the CIA, Mike doesn't owe them ANYthing.
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Oh, and on another note, Alona Tal's fake Russian accent was MIA in a few too many scenes. ;)
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"Sea Change" laid bare this season's biggest problem, it exposed how painfully contrived this whole plotline has been. The plot this season has been too much in control of characters, taking them this way and that without letting them "be". Michael Westen's craving of "power" is as contrived as it gets, but the way it got there is worse, the whole plotline of getting James to want to turn himself in, to trusting Michael, all that stuff came out of thin air and required split second deus ex machina timing to come off as it did. This episode was the culmination of an entirely dishonest season, ultimately turning the character motivations for Mike on their ear to create drama - and worse, "final drama" which is downright frustrating. Who is this Michael Westen who has so thoroughly changed direction? You call it a commendable job delving into character traits, but I'd say it manufactured too many of those character traits to do so.

Burning Answers:

- She won't have been shot at all, Michael will have intervened, either Sonya will be catching the bullet or the sky will.

- I have no idea how this will resolve, it's entirely off the rails now. Ok, James' chopper will spot Michael, Fi, and Sonya struggling on the roof and try to leave, the CIA will try to intervene on the chopper and muff that job because that's what they do best on this show, Michael will come to his senses and save the day by capturing his biggest enemy that he didn't know he had until a few episodes ago.

- Sonya and James will definitely turn on Michael.

- Maddie won't die, maybe she'll accidentally hug Charlie to death and then walk the earth as a hollow spirit though. More likely she'll end up in the hospital with some fake heart scare and Charlie will be playing at her side as the doctor tells Michael she's fine.

- Michael will capture James and the CIA will try to re-recruit him or change the deal and he'll walk on them.

And nobody cares about Jesse in this episode, sorry buddy.
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Last season ended with Michael and friends in a CIA jail for a few months, then he was always drunk and living solitary in DR, then pumped full of drugs, and found out that Simon was still doing his thing. Seems like enough to make someone change how they see things. I don"t know if it would get that specific result but it kind of makes sense that someone tired of being jerked around would want to be their own boss.

Mike didn't sell it too well to Sam. He should have told him that when he was in charge they could continue doing their gratis jobs for normal people but they would have more stuff to do it with. I mean they were basically running their own spy business anyway just really small scale.
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Perhaps if Michael wasn't providing voiceover explaining why a trained, experienced spy has to counter those things, has to maintain perspective, and it was played out 3 times slower I could have bought that, but that's not how this season was.
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Me sentiments, exactly...
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Love the Popeye way you put that. X-D
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I yam whad I yam--toot-toot...
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I think the problem is the 13 ep season... They just don't have the time to develop too much. I mean if this turn happened across 2 seasons and we saw more good James missions and more douchey CIA meetings it would probably be more believable.

They have talked about Michael's dark side off and on pretty much every season and they really tried to show just how far Michael was willing to go this season with Psychological Warfare. Plus, you have to assume Michael has done some pretty terrible things to get all of Russia terrified of him.

Im pretty sure James and Sonya will turn on Michael as well, especially given Sonya's "the job always comes first..." line. It would kind of annoy me if this was all some crazy James plan that would have taken down the CIA or something.
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If they had sprinkled in this James/Sonya stuff 2 or 3 seasons ago, slowly built it up into something, that'd have been more organic. The seasons are always 13 episodes, it's part of what keeps the show light and fun, so they should have worked harder to figure it into those confines.

As for "the CIA" in the show being the big bad, it's pointless to build that up since the show starts with that conceit. Hell, it starts with that conceit every week during the intro.

This isn't how far Michael is willing to go anymore, that's my problem with it, it's how much Michael really wants, and that's what feels off to me. Michael will fight for what he believes in tooth and nail, he believes in the greater good. Nothing about James' organization really has that in mind, so it's a switch being flipped.

If James gets captured by the CIA, how long until they turn him into another asset a la Simon and Michael? It's only reasonable that James would end up in better shape and rising by allowing himself to get caught, but the episode straight up ignores that thought because it hasn't got the time.
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I think the writer Matt Nix. Missed a chance to reclaim the Burn Notice"Client In Need Of A Solution"plot theme. "Sea Change"had set up the perfect answer while also showing that "Good Guys".Come in shades of "gray". Never purely good or bad. This episode and "Reckoning"upcoming. Should of been returning to the "Client Help"formula in a double way. James turning himself in to the CIA. Would of been poetic justice for his delta force Mogadishi killing of his delta squad in order to keep them from killing innocent village women and kids. Due to bad intel given the squad. This seems to be what caused James to become the"James"he is. His big demon in the room. However,his private,black-ops organization being kept alive with Mike as "New Captain". Would of allowed Mike to continue his "client helping missions". On a truely world scale. While clearing his obligation to bring James to justice.As the founder and leader of the organization. Originally. The CIA gets its mission accomplished. Mike`s mother,Sam,Fiona,and Jesse,do not get put in prison forever by the CIA. Then,Micheal Westen can "fake deaths of himself". Leave ,Miami. To start a life clear of CIA manipulation and drama. While making a living walking in the sunset.With his friends,Sam Axe,Jessie Porter,and Fiona Glennanne. Talking of being in a "better place". What`s lost in Mike`s friends thinking. Mike would lead James organization as Mike Westen lives.Not as James Kendrick. Doesn`t this make more sense? Even if Maddie is killed and Charley is raised with Mike and Fiona. Then the upcoming ending of Mike and the team.Forgiving being screwed many times by the CIA. Branding a darker"Good Guy"as a "Bad Guy". As this show has shown.There is no such fantasy in spy-land and covert ops. Then,rejoining forces to oppose and kill James,his organization,and what good both stand for. This last ending is "fairy-tale predictable"and the ending I would of preferred. Is more realistic,understandable,and adherent to Burn Notice,"Good Guy Client Helping"formula. For Mike Westen and James Kendrick. Mural of my ending would be."I`am Mike Westen.And I used to be a CIA spy. Now,I thrive.Doing black-ops client helping missions. For peace to every good guy".
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Fortunately, our heroes are badder than the CIA. Unfortunately, this is all nonsense.
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Here's my best guess for the last show. I'm afraid that the beloved character shot will be Jesse. It has to be either Sam or Jesse because they are down below when Fi runs up the stairs. My guess is Jesse runs up the stairs to be backup for Fi. Sonya raises her gun to shoot Fi and instead sees Jesse with his gun raised at the door by the stair. After Sonya shoots Jesse, Michael wrestles the gun away from her and changes sides again. Fi and Michael walk/carry Jesse down the stairs to get away from both James and the CIA. Back at the boat house Jesse dies with the whole family surrounding him. Jesse always was a hero in my book. Michael decides to get even with both the CIA and James and then leave the country with his family.

I loved this episode because it was the last layer of what Michael needed personally. He had to evolve and shed his tortured childhood in order to be whole again. He acts the part beautifully. Michael's eyes and face perfectly reflect his confusion with being faced with something that for once he can't think through. The little boy in him wanted power over his abusive father. Now he has to grow up completely into a man. He can't be the little boy anymore who was always trying to fix things for his brother Nate. He can't allow himself to do good things in the bad way the way that James does. Sonya coming that close to killing Fiona proves the point perfectly. James' group has always been ready to do bad things for their cause and Michael can't join them without sacrificing his soul. No man can be completely outside of the law. This applies to the CIA also. The group that burned Michael where operating outside of the law inside of the CIA because they wanted more power. All people of power including the good members of the CIA, the President of the USA, etc are also responsible to a higher kind of law which answers to virtue and justice.

The CIA are bad guys (they are going to put everyone in jail no matter what Michael has done for their cause in the past) and James is a bad guy (even if he believes in his cause it doesn't excuse his methods.) Many terrorists believe in their cause and will strap a bomb to their body and kill thousands. Thank God Michael isn't going to end up being a bad guy too. Probably power is the highest temptation that any Hero can have, to rationalize first that your taking that power for the good of others. Fiona brought an end to that bullshit right away. Finally Michael will see the light that she was always trying to show him. Way to go FI. Everyone is a hero. Fi for facing death to love Michael. Sam for risking his life during the fight on the bridge. Jesse for being a good and brave soldier. Maddie for blowing up her house and risking all for her son and Michael for finally deciding he doesn't have to be a one man force.

I love how this show is turning out on every level. Amazing writing. It has been hard sometimes to watch, but kept Nix on track in exploring the deep issues inside of a hero like Michael. I'm really sad that next week will be the last show.

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I'm glad you brought up the Hero, because it brings up the title of the episode, "Sea Change", from Shakespeare's "The Tempest", where Ariel sings to Ferdinand "Full fathom five thy father lies, /Of his bones are coral made; /Those are pearls that were his eyes / Nothing of him that doth fade /But doth suffer a SEA CHANGE /Into something rich and strange. . . ." In "The Tempest," Prospero, like James, the ruler of an island kingdom, wants to marry off his daughter Miranda/Sonya to his successor Ferdinand/Michael. The question is, will Michael be able to transmute his father's legacy into something rich and strange?
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– How does Fi survive that gunshot?

the gunshot we heard is probably Sam or Jesse firing at Sonya and she's the one to be killed.
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This was an interesting and mostly good episode. But it was really stupid that they tried to convince Mike that Fiona was a danger to his mom. ("...who knows what she'll do? I mean, when she gets like this Mike, things tend to go boom.") It didn't make any sense.

I really liked James's idea. James is awesome.

Sonya is pretty messed up if she thinks it's OK to kill someone like Fiona just to make it easier to get the job done. I hope Mike punched her in the nose or something when the screen went black. If he can't get her to see that you don't kill people just because it's convenient, he should kill her himself. (Not because it's convenient, but because innocent people will die if he lets her do things her way).

The CIA are not in any way better than James's organization. It's annoying that Sam and the others are too stubborn to see that. I would very much prefer if Mike sticks to his choice. Ideally, he should make the others see his side too. The "answer to somebody" argument is bullshit, because the CIA (on this show at least) doesn't really answer to anyone either. When they do something terrible, they'll just classify it so that no one finds out.

Why doesn't Mike tell Fiona that if she doesn't leave, then it's game over? Mike can't exactly leave with her, because if he does, then the plan to capture James falls apart. And then they're all screwed.



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I think he may have considered her a danger to his mom in the sense that he thought her actions against James' men would put Maddie & Charlie in harm's way. James could have considered it a betrayal by Mike in regards to Fi's actions and gone after his family.
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Right, but he would still react to Sam's story as if he had said "Hey Mike, monkeys are flying out of my butt and they're threatening to kill your mom". And Sam would know that, so he would never say anything that silly.
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There's one moral issue with Mike taking over James's operation that I don't think anyone has mentioned here. How will Mike pay the people working for them? I mean, they're not all volunteers, right? Is he going to start robbing drug lords or something?
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It's been a LONG time since I felt this way about Burn Notice, but I genuinely can't wait until the next episode.

That gunshot at the end bothered me a bit, though, just because they did it the "mysterious cliffhanger" way. I generally like cliffhangers but having the gunshot be off-screen gave the show room to reveal in the next episode that it wasn't Fi who got shot. I really hope they don't go that route because, well, that sucks. Not that I want to see Fi shot, but because if they're gonna build up to that point, I'd hate it when the next episode shows maybe Sam or Jesse up on the roof having shot Sonya. Just show me Fi getting shot and end the episode there, if that's the case. That's still a cliffhanger! Meh.

I'm not a big fan of Bruce Campbell's acting, but I still teared up a tiny bit when his voice actually sounded emotional during his talk with Fi about it being too late for Mike. Speaking of acting, I do kinda hope (but really don't expect) Maddie to die... it'd be a nice reward for me considering I've hated Sharon Gless' acting (and also often the writing of Maddie) since early on in the series.
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Oh my God....shocked after watching the end of this one...and yes it'll definitely be sad to see it all end next week. Bruce Campbell did say before these remaining 2 episodes that fans are gonna have to brace themselves for the death of a beloved character. Will Fi survive? Unfortunately I had a sinking feeling that the beloved character would be her unless she survives and it's someone else. Looks like Michael may have finally taken the path of no return. Unfortunately it was coming...the fact that he'd probably have to betray his old team to follow his agenda....but....oh noo. I really am wanting to see how it all ends but sad also to see the end of this show. It's certainly hard now to see if Michael can ever make good with the CIA.
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That thing you say Bruce Campbell has said is a pretty major spoiler, so you really shouldn't say it here.
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