Burn Notice

Season 4 Episode 7

Past and Future Tense

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Jul 22, 2010 on USA

Episode Fan Reviews (5)

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out of 10
171 votes
  • 7/22

    Burt Reynolds used to be a big movie star and I was excited to see him appear on this show, but this role was beneath him. This is something they gave to an unknown, not a former A-lister.

    As a whole, this Burn Notice just did not do it for me. It just seemed like a whole lot of fluff, a lot of thrown-together scenes with no real point to them. Madeline willingly participating in the con, Sam and Michael being able to KO people with one punch, it just seemed out of character for this show, like there were different writers or something.

    Not horrible, but definitely a disappointing episode.
  • Dropped the ball

    I love Burn Notice. It is, by far, my favorite show of the summer. I love it so much because the writers give the characters intricate and very creative ways of dealing with problems. I suppose that I should say almost always because this episode was lacking greatly in that respect. Burt Reynolds was just blah, like he couldn't muster up any emotion. Maybe it was his character, maybe it was his acting. Whatever the case, he brought the episode down. Like others, I did enjoy the parts where Michael freaked people out just be telling them who he was. That was funny. But I really hope that next week they get back to the creativity that makes the show so spectacular.
  • A return to form!

    I'm going to assume that this is roughly the midpoint of this season of "Burn Notice", at least in terms of the summer arc, and maybe that explains why this episode really hit the ground running. After a two-episode skid focusing on the acting abomination that was Kendra, things take a much more substantial turn. And that's not even taking a wonderfully understated performance by none other than Burt Reynolds into account.

    Jesse's hunt for the cause of his burn notice seemed to slip into the ether, but now it's back with a vengeance. It's definitely going to be a huge part of the resolution of the season arc, and it's setting up to be a truly horrific situation. Consider this: the longer Michael and the gang work with Jesse, the more intel they hand him for that inevitable day he decides to come gunning for them. And the more personal they make it, since they are actively destroying information to keep that day from coming. It's a slow-motion train wreck, made worse by the fact that I really like Jesse and his interaction with Team Westen.

    This is the first time I saw evidence that Michael has a reputation in the intelligence community to such a degree. I assume that's because I skipped three seasons. But it does make it odd that his closest confidantes don't have the same level of appreciation for his talents. Maybe because they see the flawed man behind the legend?

    I'm also not sure I get what Fiona was saying at the end of the episode. I don't see Michael losing his empathy, but maybe that's a function of my lack of context. Instead, it feels like a plot point: Michael's work with the Organization is turning him into something he hates. Was Fiona's comment justified, or was it just checking off a bullet point on the wipeboard in the writers' room? I leave it to more informed fans to weigh in.

    Whatever the case, it was a very good episode, and probably my favorite of the season so far.
  • "You know Michael Westen? Is he your Target?"

    This was a really interesting episode, Russians / Soviets are usually always in a great deal of spy-related material because of really, well World History. But I must admit, unlike other shows and movies - Burn Notice came thru with a much needed, modernized and realistic episode. Russian wet work jobs are usually handed out by the KGB and it would be interesting to see if we see another team later on this season or maybe next.

    The whole scaring the Russian, Alexi, in Russian dialect was absolutely phenomenal. Why is that, no matter how scary you can make things seem in English, Russian just seems to take it to a whole other level solely on the language. Tying in Burt Reynolds was phenomenal and well, the surprise ending with him was rather a twist, I might say, I didn't see coming. As ominous as endings go, the whole "conversation" between Michael and Fi at the end was by far really reminiscent of the conversation he had at the loft with his mother. As far as leaving him speechless, those women just have the perfect method of doing that.
  • Every once in a while they remind us of just how Awesome Michael Weston really is. And I love it.

    After a string of low key or "local" jobs, it feels good to see Michael tangle with the best of the best from the international circuit again.
    Bringing in old time spies, Soviet Spetsnaz and sleazy congressmen, this episode provides a lot of ego-stroking for Michael - but also a few depressing realitychecks.

    Being able to scare the living daylights out of hardened professionals merely by introducing yourself is Awesome, in the classic James Bond-style. Having the Soviet Spetsnaz wet work team exclaim "But there's only four of us!" when faced with the "boogeyman" himself is just too funny for words. :D

    The other side of the coin is of course coming face to face with your own possible future in the person of an old, retired, drunk and slightly senile (or just too PTSD-ridden) spy who keeps saying you could have been him 30 years ago...
    Not to mention having to lie and betray people around you for the "good of the cause" - causing your lover to start hating you just a little...

    The "Weston, Michael Weston"-moments were great. The old spy playing the ghost of Christmas future was a bit sad, but not without its lighter moments - it's a POSSIBLE future, not set in stone. But the part where Fiona starts to question his motives and ethics - that's a real kicker. Because we can't help but agree.
    Come on, Michael, you're better than this!