Burn Notice

Season 6 Episode 6

Shock Wave

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Jul 26, 2012 on USA
out of 10
User Rating
99 votes

By TV.com Users

TV.com Episode Review

  • :(

    Burn Notice: Happy Now?

    Usually the random emotional scenes at the end of Burn Notice episodes have me rolling my eyes, but this one had me in a frown-quiver normally reserved for re-watching the ending of Six Feet Under on YouTube.

  • Episode Summary

    Michael and the CIA get closer to discovering Anson's location, allowing them to release Fiona from prison. However, an MI6 agent attempts to put the operation to a stop in favor of bringing Fiona into British custody.

    Who was the Episode MVP ?

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    • shocking ending

      I am dissapointed to see Nate go however Anson was around long enough. Nobody is safe on this show.
    • Poor Nate

      I liked him a lot, so sorry he had to go like that.
    • RIP Nate

      Oh my god, the ending of this episode was so sad. I hadn't seen the promo trailer so I didn't know someone was gonna die. Nate dying came as a shock to me. Nate was only trying to do good for Michael. Michael going home to tell his mom Nate was dead, broke my heart. I think she's going to blame Michael. I hope not, cause I like their relationship.

      Rest in peace Nate, we'll miss you...moreless
    • Three storylines converging in one really good episode

      This was the best episode in a while. The same old same old (Michael getting Anson) was sandwiched with the continuation of Fi's prison antics and a fantastic Sam Axe adventure with our favorite juggler of finance.

      Many viewers, including myself, were tiring of "on-the-edge" Michael's never ending vendetta with Anson. Well, that one ended in a big sad way with Nate's death. The cloud that will put on Michael and his mom will be a big one and it's sure to have major repercussions that the forthcoming episodes will be addressing. In other words: Michael has a new score to settle. It was good to have the Fi in the joint storyline ending too, and it did go in a fairly gratifying way even though it really didn't have the action element of her being murdered at any moment. The big entertainment, however, was exactly what makes Bruce the best sidekick on TV. He was exactly the Sam Axe character we love doing the perfect Sam Axe Burn Notice schtick. Loved that part and it balanced the darkness well.moreless
    • WOW..


      When we're promised a climax episode, Burn Notice almost always delivers the goods (last season's finale was a misstep). But nothing could prepare us for Shock Wave, probably the most fitting name possible for this episode. Promos advertised the death of a main character. As it turns out, two main characters exit the show in a body bag. The first was Anson, but Fi was still able to be released from prison. She is free. The other victim was Michael's brother Nate, someone I didn't think the show had the balls to kill off. But Michael's reaction (especially considering what transpired between them leading up to that point), and then his mother's, was absolutely gut-wrenching. Once again, the BN writers have found the perfect lead-in to a new saga that's so logical, but at the same time nobody (us) seemed to see coming. While running three mostly unrelated plots that were all thrilling to watch. Pretty impressive.

      What made this work so well was that despite being able to rule out who the show would definitely NOT kill, we were still left with several possibilities. Agent Pearce was a strong possibility, killing her off would have left its mark but the show still would have functioned as usual. Barry was my guess heading into the episode. Rebecca wouldn't have surprised me, though she didn't even appear (likely done for good, she has no reason to come back unless she was the assassin; I hope the BN writers don't go that route). I figured Jesse for the traitor in Fail Safe, and still wouldn't have been that surprised if he got hit here. There were those external red herrings, and there were also several that occured within the episode. Fi got a visit from a foreign suit intent on making her life hell, but that's moot since she's no longer locked up. In retrospect, Barry's plot was definitely created just to throw us for a loop in our death pools, but regardless that was pretty damn entertaining filler. Too bad Mapother's character is probably dead, he's someone I'd like to see again.

      Honestly, I think this is the best episode Burn Notice has ever put out. Good Intentions had been my favorite, but this tops it. So much suspense, so much intrigue right down to the final seconds. I thought last year's mid-season twist was excellent and really spiked my interest in what was to come, but now we're shifting into a new saga that should be even more emotionally grueling than Anson's, and we're going in completely cold. This just can't unfold soon enough.moreless
    William Mapother

    William Mapother

    Garret Hartley

    Guest Star

    Zabryna Guevara

    Zabryna Guevara


    Guest Star

    Ward Smith

    Ward Smith

    Arthur Meyers

    Guest Star

    Jere Burns

    Jere Burns

    Anson Fullerton

    Recurring Role

    Lauren Stamile

    Lauren Stamile

    Agent Pearce

    Recurring Role

    Seth Peterson

    Seth Peterson

    Nate Westen

    Recurring Role

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (0)

    • QUOTES (13)

      • Michael: (voice-over) A spy's life is spent preparing: learning languages, researching targets, practicing with weapons. You prepare so when the important moments arrive, you're ready. But there are certain moments, human moments that no amount of training can prepare you for.

      • Michael: (voice-over) As a spy, your job is to avoid detection. But there are times when you're sure to be discovered, and all that's left is how and when. But that's not nothing. Sometimes how and when give your friends an awful lot of leverage.

      • Michael: (voice-over) An explosion can kill you in four different ways. There's the shock wave, the shrapnel, the fire, and the oxygen depletion. The best way to survive that deadly combination of factors is to run like hell. If running isn't an option, your best bet is to create a small, air-tight space from the most flame-retardant material you can find. When an explosion is headed your way, it's hard to argue with an overturned porcelain bathtub. The brisancy or shattering force of a natural-gas explosion is nowhere near as powerful as C-4 or RDX. But just because the blast won't kill you doesn't mean you want to live through it without proper cover.

      • Michael: (voice-over) The motion sensor in a backyard floodlight works by measuring infrared heat. When a change is detected, it triggers a charge in two electrical leads that turn on the lights. With a little creative re-wiring, that same spark can transform a shotgun shell into a primitive, motion-activated zip gun.

      • Michael: (voice-over) Four thousands years ago, warriors disoriented their enemies by setting fire to bushel of straw soaked in grease and turning them into smoke bombs. Even though today soldiers have traded burning crops for hexochloroethane, it doesn't mean those primitive methods aren't still effective.

      • Michael: (voice-over) When you're planning an operation to grab a target, you want as much man power on the ground as you can get. You want to make sure you've covered every approach, every escape route... because no matter how much you've planned, there are always surprises.

      • Michael: (voice-over) When you're on the run, the first few hours are the most likely to get caught. Most fugitives are caught quickly because they are trying so hard to get away, they leave a trail a mile wide. The best plan is usually to hide well and stay out of sight. Of course, it doesn't matter how well you're hidden if they have a canine unit that can smell you as well as see you. In that case, your best option is usually a decoy. Give the dog something to find and hope their handlers don't look too close.

      • Michael: (voice-over) One of the hardest parts in any take down operation is waiting for the target to show. There is nothing to do but to wait and watch, knowing that even the smallest mistake can ruin everything.

      • Michael: Can somebody tell me the story with 111?
        Jesse: Uhhmm it's kind of awkward Mike... this is what a party looks like.

      • Michael: (voice-over) In any covert operation, the closer you get to your goal, the more collateral damage tends to rise. Just because you are dealing with one situation in a city 5000 miles away, doesn't mean another one won't show up on your doorstep back home.

      • Michael: (voice-over) When the CIA plans the capture of a high value target, no expense is spared. Directional microphones, fiber optic cameras, taser-guns all the toys come out.

      • Michael: (voice-over) In any prison contraband is the rule not the exception. Candy, alcohol, even weapons are available at a steep markup. But there are still some things that no amount of cash, credits or cigarettes would buy you.

      • Fiona: I trust you Michael. But if you let that weasel (referring to Anson) slip away again, I'm gonna break of here just to kick your ass.
        Michael: Fair enough.

    • NOTES (1)

    • ALLUSIONS (1)

      • Barry: Hey! How long is it going to take to get this boomstick thing ready?
        Sam: A minute.

        The term "boomstick" is a reference to the movie Army of Darkness. Bruce Campbell (Sam Axe) plays lead character Ash. During a pivotal power struggle, Ash holds a double-barreled shotgun in the air and proclaims to a crowd, "This is my Boomstick!"