Major spoilers ahead, so if you haven’t seen “Shock Wave” (what’s wrong with you?), run away like your hair is on fire.
RIP, Nate Westen (Seth Peterson). Did anyone see that coming? When we accused showrunner Matt Nix of cruelty, he deftly deflected the charges. “When I think about my favorite episodes of shows I love, they tend to be shows that change the game. For me, out of cruelty to characters comes new life.”
There is no question that Nate’s murder invigorates “Burn Notice,” whose central storyline was running out of steam. “We really wanted to put the question of who burned Michael to bed and yet keep the dynamic of show — so it doesn’t become a show about a guy who’s resolved his problems and just hangs out in Miami,” laughs Nix.
Everyone on the team will suffer the repercussions of the tragedy, but it shatters the relationship between Michael and his mom, Madeleine (Sharon Gless), who blames him for his brother’s death. “He wants to do anything he can to make that right,” says Nix. “Well how do you make that right? That’s kind of not make-right-able.”
So while Michael, Fiona (Gabrielle Anwar), Sam (Bruce Campbell) and Jesse (Coby Bell) are on an “action-packed quest” to solve Nate and Anson’s murders, “what’s really driving Michael this season is trying to reconnect with his mom — to somehow earn her love again.”
The gang share a sense of guilt about Nate’s death — and are starting to question the sacrifices they’ve been willing to make to help Michael. “Michael’s quests are getting really expensive,” Nix points out. “Not that they’re costing a lot of money, but going after Anson got Fi sent to jail. Getting Fi out of prison got Nate killed.”
“Without giving too much away,” Nix teases about the rest of Season 6, “finding out what happens to Nate turns out to be really, really, really expensive. Super expensive!”
Wait — they’re not killing off somebody else, are they? “No, Nix assures us. “It’s not the endless scream of death. But expensive in other ways that end up having a big impact on everybody: Michael’s relationship with Madeleine, Madeleine’s relationship with the team, everyone within the team and their relationship with each other.”
Nix offered one last spoiler about the rest of the season. “A lot of what Michael has to do ends up unraveling the fabric of the life he’s made for himself in Miami. So by the end of the season, everything you know about ‘Burn Notice’ is turned on its head, in a really fun way…At the very moment when Michael imagined everything would get better, his entire life falls apart.” Sounds pretty ominous, but Nix insists:
“It’s fun, you’ll like it!” Plus, he adds, “things explode.”