Burn Notice: Season 1

DVD Reviews | Jun 13th, 2008

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Starring Jeffrey Donovan, Bruce Campbell, Gabrielle Anwar, Sharon Gless
Written By: Matt Nix
Directed By:
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Buy on Amazon.com

I didn’t catch Burn Notice’s first season when it originally aired on USA Network. But I kind of wished I had. I didn’t know what to expect when I first started to watch Burn Notice, but let’s just say I was hooked in the first 5 minutes.

Who burned Michael Westen? That’s the question throughout the first season of Burn Notice. A “burn notice” is when a spy gets blacklisted and is pretty much fired from his or her job. But it’s even worse then just getting fired from some ordinary job. You’re placed in a city and can’t go anywhere, and all your funds are frozen. Let’s see how far you’d get without a credit card or driver’s license. The start of the season, you see Michael brokering a terrorist deal in Nigeria. He tries to call his company that he works for, and they tell him he’s been burned. Michael barely escapes Nigeria and ends up in his hometown of Miami. Most people would love to be stranded in Miami, not Michael. In Miami, Michael doesn’t trust anyone except 3 people. His fiery ex-girlfriend Fiona (Gabrielle Anwar), who’s an ex-IRA agent, his long-time friend & semi-retired spy Sam (Bruce Campbell), and Michael’s chain-smoking Mother, Madeline (Sharon Gless). Each episode, Michael becomes sort of a Private Investigator and Problem Solver for various people. He usually does these jobs for favors and for some quick cash. The overall goal for Michael is finding out who burned him and the even bigger question, why?

Like I said before, I didn’t know what to expect from this show. But once I started to watch the DVD, I couldn’t stop watching these episodes. The show reminds me of 24, Monk, and Las Vegas all mixed into one show. It reminds me of Las Vegas because of the way it’s shot and all the gratuitous bikini shots. Gotta love the bikini shots! The acting is great and I love the mixture of humor, action and drama. Who would have thought I’d love a show with the guy that was in Blair witch 2! Jeffrey Donovan does a superb job as Michael, and it’s hard not to like the guy. His character offers these helpful, even amusing spy tips on how to do things. Just from watching this show, there are so many bombs and boobie traps I can probably make now. Well that’s if I really needed to, it’s not like I have some Mexican cartel after me. But then again, I do live near a bunch of drug dealers.

The supporting cast is just as good. Bruce Campbell is awesome (as usual), and serves as a great sidekick. Bruce and Jeffrey just seem to click and work well together. Gabrielle Anwar is a skinny, tough-looking chick who’s also really nice to look at. The first episode she had an Irish accent, but then she changed her accent in the show to fit with the scenery. I bet her accent didn’t test well with audiences in the pilot. They should have just made her a British ex-agent instead. Michael’s Mom played by Sharon Gless (Cagney and Lacey) plays a Mom really well. She’s always trying to get favors out of Mike and make him do things.

I like the storylines for the show and each episode seems to offer something slightly different. The major plotline is Michael finding out who burned him, but I also like when he does the small Private Investigator type jobs. This is the type of show where you can pick up where things left off if you missed an episode. There are some continuing storylines like Michael and Fi’s on and off again rocky relationship, the FBI and the government keeping close taps on Mike, and Mike’s troubled Brother. But you can pick up things based on recaps in the beginning of the episodes. This show really works well on DVD and it makes you want to watch all the episodes back to back. This show also makes me want to go to the beach and live in Miami.

This DVD contains all 11 episodes plus a few extras. The extras include scene-specific commentary with creator Matt Nix, and the actors plus there’s a funny gag reel, video montages and audition footage. I’m glad I decided to watch Burn Notice because I needed more TV shows to watch. If you’re looking for show that has action, comedy, romance, drama and Bruce Campbell; then you’ll really enjoy Burn Notice! The 2nd season premieres Thursday July 10th!

– Scene-specific audio commentary for each episode featuring show creator Matt Nix and stars Jeffrey Donovan, Gabrielle Anwar, Bruce Campbell and Sharon Gless
– Gag reel
– Character montage
– Action montage
– Girls Gones Burn Notice montage
– Jeffrey Donovan audition footage
– Gabrielle Anwar audition footage

ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 CC

Widescreen 1.78:1 Color

English, Spanish, French

Favorite Scenes: Pilot, Family Business, Old Friends, Hard Bargain, Loose Ends Pt 1 and 2
Rating: NR
Running Time: 532 minutes
Extras Rating:
Overall Rating: