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Burn Notice: Season 5
Format: DVD|Change
Price:$10.39+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


It pains me to give Season 5 of Burn Notice only 3 stars but that's how it looks to me. The first three seasons were impressive, original, and entertaining. The show runners took a risk bringing in another character with Jesse Porter in Season 4 and upsetting the dynamic of the team but it worked out OK. This season finds Michael with a foot back in the door of the CIA and with a new female agent handler who is pretty annoying. Jesse is no longer working for the feds and has a gig with a private security company that apparently has pretty liberal policies with how employees spend their time. We are also treated to more of Michael's mother Madeline and her getting improbably involved in more of the capers which was already overdone after season 4. My problem with the show is that it's too much with the uber villain who has the goods on Michael and can manipulate him to do their bidding. Burn Notice is at it's best when it's Michael and the team helping a "client" out of a jam. All of the contrived drama with these super villains becomes fatiguing and become a distraction from what made the show great. This go round yet another guy who was part of the cabal that burned Michael comes out of the woodwork and sets up Fiona for blackmail in order to control our hero. Hopefully things improve in the 6th outing but given we end with Fiona surrendering to the Feds and likely going to prison I'm not optimistic.
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on June 12, 2013
First off, I've completely fell in love with Jeffrey Donovan in Burn Notice-- he's fashionable and awesome. His character of Michael Westen is downright awesome and amazing! Hats still off to Sam as he spends most seasons in the background but he is a funny and loveable character.

This season shows a darker side to Michael, more geared towards his CIA days and reconnecting with "old friends". But with the show's major arc (Who burned Michael and why?) inevitably coming to a close, things do get darkest before the dawn. Fiona's character also grew immensly in this season, she is always kick butt and edgy, she shows female strongness and empowerment- she holds her own and I think it's amazing they finally made a character on TV that isn't ditzy- someone who's intelligent and knows how to get the job done, and handle the big artillery. Jesse grew a lot on me this season- before I didn't care much for him as a "burned agent" or his character, but he really stepped it up this season and I grew as a fan of his. Sam Axe is always a favorite, I wish he was able to step more into the light and have a bigger role like in season 1 and 2. This season was thilling, and action packed, this show never lets me down!
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on May 25, 2014
I like the series and have since the start. However, in this season a couple of themes started to develop which is did not like. In an attempt to stick with the formula of essentially wrapping up each episode, the scripts started to get too fantastical and farfetched. The other thing that was troubling this season was that we start to see a dark side to Michael, nothing wrong with that. However, there didn't seem to be much moral weight to it. He does some pretty awful things and the show glossed over some of this. I think it would have been better of these things created more dialog amongst his friends, I think Sam and Jesse would have called Michael out and pushed back more on some things.

As to my comment about the episode formula, I am happy to say they really changed things up for the next season. There is even some mention about Michael having sort of gone off the rails. I certainly think that Season 5 is worth buying. Yet, if you start to think the series is wearing thin, take heart the following season redeems it all!

My rating of 3 stars is relative to the Burn Notice series as a whole, NOT as a comparison to TV in general,
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Some shows stretch their premise and credibility beyond the point of believability, thereby ruining the fun and driving off the audience. For season 5, Burn Notice tweaked the basic story slightly and managed to be even better as a result.

That also means the review will spoil the end of season 4. There’s no way around that.

Season 5 picks up a few months after Michael Westen (Jeffrey Donovan) has gotten back into the good graces of the CIA. While he’s not fully back on active duty, he’s been involved in missions to help take down the organization that burned him. It looks like they’ve got them all, but something doesn’t feel right to Michael. His friends Sam Axe (Bruce Campbell), Fiona (Gabrielle Anwar), and Jesse (Coby Bell) tell him to let it go. Even his mom Madeline (Sharon Gless) thinks it’s a chapter he can put behind him.

And then his contact at the CIA is murdered and Michael is being framed for it. Obviously, someone isn’t quite done with him.

Meanwhile, Michael still reluctantly takes on cases to help people who are being threatened by dangerous criminals. Over the course of the season, Michael and his friends take on human traffickers, a loan shark, corporate spies turned hostage takers, and a diplomat dealing in illegal blood diamonds.

Okay, so for the most part this season feels like business as usual. Michael and his friends go up against dangerous criminals and use their spy skills to take them down against overwhelming odds. The little tweak is that now Michael is at least working unofficially with the CIA, something he’s been working for since season 1. Frankly, the story of his burn was becoming so convoluted; it needed a reset and somewhere new to go, so I’m glad they took this step. For the first time in a couple seasons, I was able to follow that ongoing part of the story from week to week and get sucked into the show all over again.

Of course, the “case of the week” aspects of the episodes are as strong as ever. If you just watch to see Michael and the gang take down the nasties they go up against week in and week out, you won’t be disappointed at all. There are still plenty of explosions, gun fights, car chases, and impossible odds – everything that keeps my heart pumping for the run of an episode. Basically, you get an action show each week.

By this point in a series, the actors and writers know the characters, and that’s certainly the case here. While the show is definitely more focused on plot than character, we still get some amazing character moments that remind us why we care about the core characters. And the actors do a great job of bringing those moments and all the others to life.

Season 5 actually consisted of 18 episodes, two more than usual, and all of them are present in this four disc set. Of course, you get them with wide screen picture and full surround sound. In the way of extras, there's an extended episode, gag reel, deleted scenes, and a featurette about the villains of the show including interviews with the actors who played them.

So if you are a fan of Burn Notice, you’ll need season 5 to get the next chapter in Michael’s life. And you’ll enjoy every thrilling second of the journey.
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on July 9, 2012
I enjoy action stories if they are clever with a semblance of logic. Stories based upon problems created to generate special effects or which postulate a situation that proceeds in a direction not endemic to the character or based upon a faulty premise I believe are the result of lazy writers. Many of the sub-plots are interesting enough to rate the three stars, but the conclusion spoils the whole show for me. This season of Burn Notice had the potential to end the ongoing soap opera plotting of the mysterious and omnipotent overlords preventing Michael from realizing his true calling and bring a fresh set of circumstances to the story, but the writers decided instead to focus on a single entity as the personal antagonist instead of a nebulous group with ties to everything. Frankly, this ending was needless and poorly plotted and with such a weak premise I expect the next season to be as lame. Given the known and assumed history of Michael, a single opponent in easy grasp could have been handled any number of ways such as drugging, legal entrapment, setting another opponent against Anson, or just getting a video confession with various tools, but instead we are left with a weak and unbelievable "hero".

Fiona as a character becomes more developed, while Sam Axe and Jessie become two-dimensional. Again, the stories are tending towards comic book while Michael loses his integrity and the trust of the viewers. If the writers cannot summon any more creativity, they should end the series and start something new.
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on March 11, 2012
I love the show, just plain and simple fun with a cool topic. I like the fact the creators are mixing things up on you all the time. The relationship between the main players is complicated and stressful in the plot but it adds an element of reality that makes the over all picture more endearing. It makes you feel for the players.

Thankfully the writers make the heavier side of the relationship implied and not forcing us to participate like in other shows on television. My children love the show and watch it with me so the heavier side is well within the bounds and obscured enough to not interfere with the plot.

The writers of this show should teach some things to the rest of Hollywood!
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on October 14, 2014
While I still enjoyed Season 5, I felt like they started to lose some of the elements that made the first four seasons so enjoyable. Michael went from being a man fighting for control of his destiny to being a puppet dancing on the strings pulled by someone else. The show became darker in tone...less humor and more of it was grim, gallows humor. I also felt like Michael's reluctance to open up to some of the 'new players' in his life about the real source of the problems became more and more contrived.
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on January 17, 2012
I don't watch much television, but Burn Notice has captured my attention. Most shows on television seemed to be regurgitated versions of something else that wasn't worth watching, so when I stumbled across Burn Notice I was pleasantly surprised. The main characters have strong moral values, that always look to do what's just and fair by the people they come across. The individual characters work well together and though their interactions are adult, it's not raunchy. I also like the fact that they can ease the tension of the show with comedy relief that's not juvenile humor. Plus it's nice to watch something that's not pushing and agenda. Hollywood should take notice here.
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on January 10, 2017
I was able to do a marathon of this entire series. I never would have thought I would have enjoyed it, but I truly loved.
I wish I had friends like them, just in case I ever had a problem. I really don't like when others are mean to me. :)
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on January 17, 2013
We don't watch much tv, but we loved Burn Notice and watched all of the first 4 seasons on Netflix. We thought that was the end - when Michael was invited back to the CIA - and were thrilled to find out there was a 5th season. The main attraction of this show, in my opinion, is the relationship among the main characters - they remind me of the mod squad. We can put up with Sam's ridiculous beard and Mom's occasional bad hair days, but Michael Weston has to look good, and his hair was just too bad to put up with. A pity. We probably won't even finish the season.
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