Recap: Burn Notice S 3 E 4 Fearless Leader
The episode opens with Mike and Fi planning on how to recover money for one of Fi's clients. She will go into the thief's house and ask for the money one last time, and Mike is supposed to come in with a shotgun exactly 3 minutes later. However, right after Fi goes in, Detective Paxson shows up, preventing Mike from carrying out the plan and forcing Fi to escape by jumping out of a window. Paxson tells Mike he now has a 24 hour police tail. Once she leaves, Mike and Fi agree that she will continue to make their lives hard unless they find a way to keep her off their backs.Mike and Fi meet Sam at the bar, and Sam tells them Paxson is too clean to blackmail. Mike asks Sam to check on another case that Paxson is working. The detective has spent 8 months trying to bring down a criminal named Matheson, and once she tried to bring him down a few times and failed, he successfully filed a harassment complaint to keep her away from him. Mike decides this is the best way to keep the detective away, making Paxson the client of the week.Mike and Fi go to Matheson's hangout to scout, and see a man named Tommy D'Antonio, who they identify as a frustrated middle manager they could use to get to Matheson. Mike gets Sam to draw on some accurate prison tattoos for Mike's cover story, and he goes to meet Tommy at the dog track. Mike introduces himself as a criminal named Milo that heard of Tommy in prison, and tells him he is trying to earn some money. Tommy takes them out to dinner, and then uses them to rob a dry cleaner. Mike and Tommy almost get trapped inside, but Mike breaks them out of the back of the shop and they escape with an Impala stolen by Fi.The next morning, Paxson is knocking at their door. She casually mentions that they have recovered components and wires from several crime scenes, and mentions the dry cleaning robbery from last night. She offers him a change to come clean before the forensics come back, which he declines. Mike then goes to meet Tommy, using a locker door to bruise his face and saying he has to run, as he is being chased by people to whom he owes money. Tommy then invites Mike to meet Matheson. Matheson first berates Tommy, saying he doesn't know anything about these people, and they might be cops, but Tommy insists they are pros. Matheson then agrees to take them on a job and dismisses them while he gives Tommy the details.Matheson tells Tommy that their job will be guarding the front door of a meth lab while they rob it, but Tommy recognizes it as a suicide mission. Later when Mike asks Tommy what the plan is, Tommy says there is no job as he doesn't want Mike's crew to be killed. He says at first he wanted to move up the ladder, but he decided that isn't what he wants anymore. Mike then drops his cover and says he is trying to take Matheson down, and eventually Tommy agrees to help.Mike has Fi gather the Impala that was stolen during the dry cleaning robbery, and meet Tommy and Matheson outside of the meth lab. Matheson tells Tommy they will go in once the cook leaves for supplies, and to stay with the getaway van while Mike, Sam, and Fi hold off the meth dealers. Once Matheson and his goons go inside, Mike and Fi superglue the front door shut. While they are exchanging fire and setting off explosions to hold off the meth dealers, Tommy intentionally parks the getaway van too close to the door, locking Matheson inside the lab. Tommy, Mike, Fi, and Sam escape just before the cops show up, arresting Matheson.Paxson later meets Mike, telling him about her other case, and how C4 that was linked to 7 explosions in the area wound up in the trunk of a stolen Impala. Mike tells her that they are on the same side, and she dismisses his police tail. Later, while Mike and Fi are having dinner, she wants them to keep working their own jobs, while Mike is still interested in getting back into the CIA, which saddens Fi.
- By-the-Book Cop: Paxson is one. Sam notes that she is too clean to blackmail.
- Karmic Thief: Deconstructed. Matheson is criminal who specializes in stealing from other criminals, which would make him a "good guy" or an Anti-Hero in most shows. However, Matheson does this by being a Manipulative Bastard Chessmaster with Chronic Backstabbing Disorder who is perfectly willing ot throw away the lives of associates or kill his targets as long as it gets him what he wants.
- Pull the Thread: Mike warns Detective Paxson not to do this