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TV Review: White Collar – “Company Man”

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Decisions. Even the best ones do not always leave one with a certainty that what the final outcome becomes makes the most sense. For FBI Agent Peter Burke (Tim DeKay), joining the Bureau offers him a chance to meet his wife Elizabeth (Tiffani Thiessen), while investigating an art gallery theft. It later gives him a chance to meet Neal Caffrey (Matt Bomer), con man extraordinaire. Technically, re-meet as Neal escapes and Peter has enough common sense to find him before anyone else does (“Pilot”).

Between the two of them, a decision is made about the music box – the one that got Kate Moreau, Neal’s longtime love, killed in a plane explosion (“Out of the Box”). More about this development later.

The current case has Peter and his crew dealing with a homicide. Under ordinary circumstances, the crime would be someone else’s issue. Underlying circumstances suggest otherwise, since the victim is potentially involved in corporate espionage. Since Peter has the accounting degree, he goes in as the audit guy. Neal is later brought in as the marketing guru.

Griffin Dunne is Wesley Kent, whose company is under suspicion. DeKay and Dunne have some nice scenes together as Peter is offered a job with more perks than anyone can imagine. The coffee alone is tempting enough, since European Roast outdoes Bureau brew by a long shot. Whoever shot the scenes in Kent’s apartment must have a high appreciation for sea sickness. However, the point is made of a potentially serious situation.

Marsha Thomason, aka Diana, and Willie Garson, aka Mozzie, have nice chemistry as they clash over whether to work together or not. Each actor can bicker without flinching, which is delightful to watch. Bomer has to referee the two, and his facial expressions provide a commentary all their own.

Tiffani Thiessen gets her scenes with DeKay using Skype technology. Couldn’t someone have thought of this when trying to film around her pregnancy? Green screening, or filling in background, is easy to spot. What helps is seeing the strong chemistry these two have together.

Diahann Carroll returns! June, Neal’s landlady, makes a cameo appearance. Nice to see her back. She has not been around much during the first half of this season, but she makes an impact when she is. To continue staying at June’s, there is paperwork involving Neal. Changes may be afoot….

Oh yes, the music box. The one thing Agent Fowler (Noah Emmerich) wants more than anything, but the contents aren’t known. This box is supposed to have been part of a historical ‘gold room’, and yet there is a secret hiding inside. I have to wonder how in the world Neal can be shocked at Diana and Pete ending up with it (“Withdrawal”). Shouldn’t this be blatantly obvious? Bomer must have been rolling with laughter after reading the script.

At any rate, the fade to black final scene shows Bomer and DeKay finally opening the music box. Although the contents are never shown, the midseason finale is next week. Things may take quite a different twist once the intrepid pair uncover more to the music box mystery.

Tune in Sept 8th for the midseason finale of White Collar. Then, come back in January for the rest.

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