There’s no shortage of new stuff to watch nowadays, but it’s always fascinating to see how the likes of Suits hold their own against the streaming originals like One Piece when it comes to popularity on Netflix.
For my money, network-era series don’t get any better than Burn Notice. Set in Miami during the early 2000s, the series is a charming and scrappy take on the procedural drama.
Rather than follow a morally complicated anti-hero working with the gears of an imperfect justice system, Burn Notice centres on a spy with a heart of gold. It’s less case-of-the-week and more of a modern-day MacGyver meets Ocean’s Eleven.
After his cover is blown, Michael Westen (Jeffrey Donavan) is a spy left stranded amid the tropical tourist traps of Florida. To make ends meet and track down those responsible for putting an end to his espionage career, he’s forced to join forces with his former flame (Gabrielle Anwar) and coworker-turned-informant Sam Axe (Bruce Campbell). Each week brings with it new revelations about Michael’s fate, while still managing to satisfy as a more-or-less standalone adventure with its own stakes and subplots.
Even if it tends to err beyond what its thrifty production budget can realistically deliver, you have to respect that Burn Notice is willing to take a stab at any possible caper that its limited setting and cast can allow.