Comic-Con 2010: BURN NOTICE Panel

TVComic-Conby Mily Dunbar

The Burn Notice panel this year was mercifully less chaotic than last year's. I'm not sure if they got a talking to, or if they were behaving in hopes of getting the greenlight for the spinoff project announced at the panel, but this year Bruce Campbell did not list which girls walking around the Con he would like to do. Bummer. Campbell was still hammy, but much more subdued. (He still paid people who asked flattering questions.) Unfortunately, this year's panel was also less juicy than last year. Not much dishy scoop about filming or once and future plotlines.

We didn't hear about any of the times they accidentally blew up a house, but we did learn that the production office is right across the street from an ATF office, and the ATF is apparently very much aware of the show. The bomb squad also keeps up with Burn Notice, and they have cut a voiceover at their request. Apparently telling everyone how the bomb squad detects bombs would help bombers hide them better. Matt Nix says Burn Notice writers now read warning labels on common household items as instructions. Poisonous. "How poisonous? If I mixed it with something else would it get more poisonous?"

Tim Matheson  was on the panel, and when moderator Chris Vance asked him what it's like to direct, he gave such a bullshit asskissy answer that Nix interrupted to explain that Matheson directs by never listening to the producers and essentially steamrolling them when they bring up budgetary or logistical concerns. Matheson also plays Dead Larry, a villain and Michael Weston's former mentor. Someone asked Bruce Campbell why Sam dislikes Larry so much. "Because Larry's a buttface. But it's alright because he's gonna get it someday. He's gonna get it. He's gonna get it right in the face by me." Nix talked about Sam and Larry as the angel  and devil on Michael's shoulder, respectively. Larry encourages Michael to embrace his killer instincts and Sam guides him towards the opposite route.

Since Burn Notice is currently in the middle of its summer season, there wasn't much in the way of casting news or spoilers for next season. Or even this season. Campbell let slip that Fiona will be kidnapped in an upcoming episode, but that was in the middle of a screed about how screwed up all the characters are. "Never kidnap Fiona! She's such a little shit." Nix revealed that the show was originally set in Newark, but the network wanted it somewhere sunny. He was pissed off a bit, until he realized that they were right. The show worked better in Miami. They also addressed the issue disappearance of Fiona's accent. Nix swears it had nothing to do with the deficiency of Gabrielle Anwar's accent. He said that when he was writing the pilot he didn't think about all the different personas the characters would have to put on. If a character already had an accent it limited the narrative choices.

About three quarters of the way through the panel, they announced special guest USA Network executive Jeff Wachtel (sp?), who came out and announced a Burn Notice prequel movie starring Bruce Campbell. Campbell got up and gave him twenty bucks. It will follow Sam Ashe on his last military mission and show how he ended up retired in Miami. When Vance asked how he felt about the news, Campbell said, "How do I feel about it? I feel like USA finally got their shit together!" Matt Nix said it'll be very action packed and told Campbell, "I'm thinking about putting a chainsaw in your hand." Campbell handed him twenty bucks.

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