Recap / Burn Notice S 2 E 16 Lesser Evil

So Michael now has Victor as a captive. After trying to get Carla to back off Michael gets Victor to explain his actions. Victor was burned and had his family killed by Carla so he's been attacking the organisation from the inside.

Fi and Mike check out Victor's boat and find proof of his story. Meanwhile Victor warns Sam Carla is sure to find out he is working with Mike and rain down hell upon them all. Mike comes back and sends Sam to protect his Mum. He asks Fi to act normally to try and prevent Carla getting suspicious. Then he and Victor try and escape. They end up stealing a car and having Fi detonate several vehicles on a prearranged street to escape.

Meanwhile Sam isn't able to persuade Madeline to leave in time and they end up having to blow up her sun room to sneak past the men outside her house with guns. They sneak off in a borrowed Buick and Madeline persuades Sam to ditch her and go help Michael. Sam finds Fi after Michael has said goodbye to her and they decide to go back to the Marina and help Mike.

Then they steal Victor's evidence of Carla's dirty deeds from a fake utility box under the nose of Carla's security guards. They plan to head to Cuba using Victor's boat and then call in the higher ups of the Burn Notice organisation to deal with Carla. Unfortunately Carla is at the marina and shoots Victor in the chest. She warns Michael that he can either kill Victor and help her lie to Management or she'll blow the boat up. She's about to press the button when Fi kills her.

Victor then tells Michael his only shot is to pretend Victor and Carla were rogue operatives and he killed them. Michael doesn't want to give up on saving Victor but Victor points out either way he's finished. Michael shoots him in the chest and after a moment puts on his game face and heads out to the helicopter to meet Management (aka Martin Crane). Management asks what he wants and he says he wants to be left alone. Management opens the helicopter door and tells Michael that's the way out then.

Michael jumps and starts swimming back to Miami.


  • Alas, Poor Villain: Honestly, despite everything that Victor has done, it's hard not to feel bad for him after learning his past.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Management has one for Michael:
    "All your old enemies from your spy days, all the people who have scores to settle with Michael Westen? where do you think they've been? Did they just forget about you or has someone been keeping them at bay?"
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: Victor knows that he will be tortured to death if the Organization gets him, so he tells Michael to kill him.
  • Bond One-Liner: "Finally."
  • Cliffhanger: Michael opts to take his chances, but his narration acknowledges that he's truly out in the cold and more vulnerable than ever.
  • Cool Car: Maddie and Sam steal Maddie's neighbor's car, a classic cherry red Buick.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Victor. He booby trapped the cabin of his boat with a claymore mine, he made a file of damning enough evidence against Carla to earn her a "retirement bullet," he stored said file at one of multiple safehouses he set up - though Carla still finds the one where it is - and instead of hiding the file inside, he hid it in a fake utility box nearby, which even impresses Michael.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Apparently Carla's go-to response to problems. As Michael surmises, she would send a black ops team to deal with a parking ticket. This is part of the team's blackmail gambit against her - her superiors don't appreciate a lack of subtlety, and they really wouldn't appreciate her using organization resources for off-the-books jobs.
  • Dual Wielding: Sam, briefly. He doesn't hit anything, but he wasn't trying to.
  • Formerly Good Cannot Comprehend Good Isn't Evil: Victor legitimately doesn't understand until it's spelled out for him that Michael isn't planning on turning him in to Carla even if it means getting his life back. Or that Michael isn't willingly working for Carla.
  • Foreshadowing: "You have no idea what Hell will rain down if we stop watching out for you!"
  • It Has Been an Honor: Victor to Michael. "Good playing with you, sport."
  • Killed Off for Real: Victor and Carla.
  • Kill 'em All: Victor's initial plan. He wanted to burn the entire organization to the ground after he found out they were behind his family's deaths.
  • Mama Bear: Maddie sends Sam back after Michael, noting that if there's one thing a woman her age can do in Miami, it's blend in.
  • Now or Never Kiss: Fi lays one on Michael. "It's not goodbye, it's case." Then she smacks him across the face, telling him that's a reminder to be careful.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Sam sternly refuses Maddie's offer for a beer, which makes Maddie realize:
    Maddie: This is serious.
  • Sadistic Choice: Take Carla's position in the Organization or demand they stay out of his life (knowing that will leave him open to all sorts of old enemies). Michael chooses the latter.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Victor is as crazy as he is because he lost his wife and 4-year-old son thanks to Carla. Lampshaded by Fiona and Michael:
    Fiona: Who knew you could feel this bad for a psychopath on the edge of sanity.
    Michael: People don't get there on their own, Fi. Being under Carla's thumb- it's a strain.
    Fiona: You've done okay.
    Michael: I haven't lost everybody I care about.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Victor has photos and clippings about his dead family. It's all he has left of them.
  • Wham Episode: Two major characters are dead and the episode ends with a major change to the status quo.