Critic's Guide to Thursday TV: A Final Burn, a Community Classic, and More!
Jeffrey Donovan, Kristanna Loken
Who's getting burned in the eventful season finale of USA Network's Burn Notice (10/9c)? Arch-villain Anson (Jere Burns), who it's now known is trying to rebuild the organization that burned Michael in the first place? Maybe Agent Pearce (Lauren Stamile), Michael's CIA handler? Anson's latest scheme in keeping Michael (Jeffrey Donovan) under his sadistic thumb is to force our hero to sabotage his boss's career, during a mission in which she puts him in charge of his first team (including cult familiars Dean Cain and Kristanna Loken). Michael's risking it all for the defiant and combative love of his life Fiona (Gabrielle Anwar), to keep her from going to jail as a blackmail pawn. "There is no line [I won't cross] when it comes to you," he declares, but as Michael tries to save the day for everyone, someone's bound to pay the price. Should make for an interesting sixth season next year.
Some intriguing twists on CBS's Thursday crime dramas, as that blasted Machine on Person of Interest (9/8c) spits out four Social Security numbers instead of one. Sounds like Reese and Finch will have their hands full. ... And on The Mentalist (10/9c), we get a glimpse of the bad old Patrick Jane (Simon Baker), when he survives a drowning but loses his memory, reverting to the con-man attitude he exhibited back before joining the CBI. ... From the watch-it-while-you can files, NBC presents one of the last new episodes of the underrated Prime Suspect (10/9c), as Jane Timoney (Maria Bello) and crew look into the death of a Jewish diamond merchant. ... Tonight's Bones repeat (Fox, 9/8c) is actually the backdoor pilot for the upcoming spinoff series The Finder (premiering Jan. 12), starring Geoff Stults as a quirky war vet with a knack for unearthing just about anything.
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So what else is on? ... Top repeat of the night: last season's instant-classic Community Christmas spectacular (NBC, 8/7c), a wild animated trip inside Abed's unpredictable psyche. ... Traditionalists, however, are more likely to tune in for another replay of the eternal classic A Charlie Brown Christmas on ABC (8/7c). Probably just the tonic to wipe from your brain Rory's channeling of Linus' speech about the meaning of Christmas from this week's bizarre Glee. ... Let's go to the tape: ABC's The Year With Katie Couric (9/8c) replays 2011's highs and lows, from the royal wedding of Kate and William to the sad farce of Kim Kardashian's nuptials, reliving the political revolutions abroad and the homegrown protests in our own cities, among other news stories that should continue to resonate for some time.
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