Michael WestonSo I’m watching the last season of Burn Notice and something struck me: They have scarcely changed the intro to it at all over its seven seasons.

That wouldn’t be a big deal if the intro were a theme song or something. But it’s a narrative. Michael Weston, the protagonist, explaining the predicament he is in at the beginning of the show. That last bit is important because his problems change over the course of the show. At the beginning of the show, he explains that when a spy is burned he is left to his own devices and whatever friends and family are willing to help (with clips of said friend and family). In the later seasons (spoiler alert, I guess) he actually successfully rejoins the CIA. So the explanation becomes quite inaccurate.

They do change a couple of things. The character Fiona starts off as his ex-girlfriend and he initially describes her as “a trigger-happy ex-girlfriend” and later drops the “ex.” Likewise, Sam is initially a “friend who informs on you to the FBI” but becomes “friend who used to inform on you to the FBI.” The big change is that a supporting character – Jesse – was added and he is not in the intro.

Besides that, even the clips are the same. All (except Jesse’s) from the opening season.

It seems to me that the show would be better served if they actually had an accurate intro. They could go even further by reminding us who characters are when they re-appear. The computer guy, the money guy, and so on. I am guessing the reason that they don’t is that for a character to get onto the intro means a change in status of the actor who plays the character. Which is why Jesse went from being a guy who was in every episode to one who became in the intro.

When I was a kid, all of the shows had intros that told you who the actors were. A theme song. Those went away as they sought more commercial time, I guess. It’s weird that when they came back, a lot of them stopped showing the actors names or serving much of any purpose at all. For a little while, Burn Notice had what I thought would be a great use of that time: to give you an idea of the premise without spending too long on “Previously on…”

That is somewhat contingent on the introsplanation being accurate, though.

Category: Theater

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