‘White Collar’ Recap: Ice Capades With Jerry Maguire

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The episode opened with Neal Caffrey (Matt Bomer) walking along a boardwalk. There was a bearded guy named Ivan at a public chess table. Caffrey sat across from him and handed him a folded-up newspaper – clearly something was inside. The man studied the contents and then handed his own newspaper. There was a fake passport. Caffrey used some kind of scanner on the barcode and it came up showing one of Caffrey’s known aliases:Nick Halden. Caffrey raised an eyebrow and asked how the guy did that. Shrugging, the man said that he didn’t make them, he only sold them. Seconds later, cops converged on the scene and handcuffed both Caffrey and Ivan. It was a sting. Caffrey was just bait though and he met with Peter Burke (Tim DeKay) right there. Burke was mad that Caffrey went off script when tried to get that information. Burke was still suspicious about the missing $2 million from a previous episode despite Caffrey’s protestations.

In the FBI office, Caffrey sorted out passports from different busts and it turned out the passports are made by same guy. Burke spotted a similarity in the spot where the seller had accumulated a lot of parking tickets – he called it a Doris Day spot, since in the movies she always seemed to find a parking spot, which is a huge statistical anomaly.

The scene shifted to Mozzie (Willie Garson) at Caffrey’s place. He was trying to figure Derek Hagen’s (Mark Sheppard) code. Nothing happening. He concluded they needed help and then posited that Hagen might be using them. (You mean a mastermind who managed to entrap Caffrey wouldn’t think that far ahead? Perish the thought!)

Burke and Caffrey went to Little Odessa to what they thought was an abandoned building. It turned out to house an ice rink, a nice one. There was a woman practicing her figure skating – she was quite good. She spotted them and skated over, telling them in a Russian accent that they shouldn’t be there. Burke showed his badge, and she blanched, telling him to put it away or they would get killed. Burke did, just in time before a big Russian goon skated over with a hockey stick in his hand. He repeated the same message that they shouldn’t be here. Burke said they just had a few questions, and Caffrey smoothly stepped in, pretending to be a sports agent and Burke a figure skating coach. Before the commercial, he had seemingly convinced them that was the case.

After the commercial, the big goon, whose name was Sergei, said that the woman, named Katya, was not interested in competing and that they should vamoose. She desperately whispered in his ear in Russian that she DID need a new coach (she had gleaned that Burke and Caffrey could help her). Caffrey and Burke pretended they have a lot of other girls to see and were aiming to leave. After thinking for a moment, Sergei changed his mind and gave Burke a number.

Now the FBI had to construct a cover story for Burke REALLY fast, since he would be the one in Katya’s presence most often. It had to be able to hold up. They took pictures for a website, though they practically had to use a cattle prod to make Burke smile.

While they were doing that, Caffrey was downstairs at his desk and he looked through the glass doors to see Rebecca from the museum from another episode. She was mad at Caffrey for losing her job and was also suspicious since she remembered she last had her badge in his company. She wanted to talk to Burke, which would have been REALLY bad, since Caffrey had gotten his handler’s mind off the $2 million and now he didn’t need her to make him think about the museum. Deftly, he steered her away by saying that she wanted to talk to an Agent Gruetzner of art crimes, who apparently was off in the field. He sent her off by saying they’d call her when he got back.

Burke went home to get a crash course on figure skating from Elizabeth, his wife (Tiffani Thiessen), since she apparently watched it a lot. She may watch it, but she doesn’t really skate and she made Burke promise to teach her after the case was over.

Of course, Mozzie was selected to play Gruetzner. He was wearing a suit, which the bohemian thief CLEARLY did not like. He wasn’t wearing a wig, which meant the prop department must have gotten tired of making them. Caffrey pointed out the he couldn’t be there, since he had to be in Little Odessa. Mozzie pointed out that he could have Burke take off the tracking device (since why would a sports agent have a tracking device on his ankle?). He could then slip off and meet with Mozzie and Rebecca. They devised a plan to use a chiropractor’s office, where the doctor would be away for lunch for an hour, to fool the former museum curator – they were going to promise to show her some of the pages of the Mosconi Codex to get her off their back.

Before they went to the restaurant where they were going to meet with Sergei, Caffrey showed Burke a glass that would negate alcohol, since there would be a lot of vodka. Burke said he could handle himself and the two entered the restaurant. Just as they came in, a guy saw Caffrey and yelled at him by his real name that he had dumped his ballerina sister. Burke told him to get rid of him before he blew Caffrey’s cover. Caffrey led the guy to the Boardwalk and Burke went to meet Sergei. It turned out the guy was a plant of Caffrey’s – once outside, he called Mozzie.

Burke met with Sergei, making an excuse for Caffrey. The two of them sat down to drink and the guy presented an immediate problem: They did research and Burke’s cover name didn’t show up in any search results. Burke had an alarmed look before the commercial.

After the commercial, it turned out they mispelled Burke’s cover’s last name. He quickly corrected it on the tablet they held and voila, a website appeared with his bio information. Sergei noticeably relaxed and drinking commenced.

Caffrey had run off to takes Rebecca to “Agent Gruetner’s” office. Mozzie met them out in the lobby and sounded sufficiently agent-like to fool her. He said they want to talk to her about something and she sounded ready to listen.

Burke and Sergei continued trading shots. I was starting to feel inebriated, too.

Mozzie and Neal talked to Rebecca about the pages from the book that had been in the museum, but under the cover that it was really the FBI’s and how they had gotten it was strictly classified. She looked ready to help. Both Caffrey and Mozzie glanced at the clock. There was 5 minutes left before the chiropractor returned with his staff and possibly blew their cover. Caffrey then added that a dangerous person was looking into the pages too and that time was of the essence. 

After another shot, Sergei said that Burke drank like a Russian and that he could start tomorrow. Burke left the restaraunt and Caffrey met him with a coffee to help start sobering up. Burke tossed him the keys so that he could drive the car back to work. Caffrey ran off to get the car ready and Burke met with Agent Clinton Jones, who was nearby as backup. Jones confirmed that Caffrey had indeed taken off, but couldn’t follow him and leave Burke alone. Burke got suspicious.

Burke was home talking with Elizabeth, looking for a stack of files, his curiosity about Caffrey stoked. Elizabeth inadvertently sidetracked him, telling him she was a bit jealous of Burke taking long hours and working with this female skater. She also added that she was worried about her husband being back in the field, especially with Siegel’s recent death. Burke assured her that it wouldn’t happen to him and kissed her.

Burke and Caffrey were back at the rink, Burke to teach and Caffrey went to look around the rink for signs of the forgery business. Burke was skating and talking to his student while pretending to train her. She said that Sergei used to be a good man, but now he treated her like a possession. He wanted her to marry him and if she said no, he will kill her. Rock and hard place. Suddenly, Sergei and his friends came to observe. He started talking about technical skating terms like a Salchow Jump. Burke impressed him with his technical answer.

Caffrey snuck into an office and hit paydirt immediately: passport factory of several printers. Outside, Sergei was about to go back to office after telling one of his cronies to watch Burke. Sensing possible disaster, Burke told him he wanted to show some hockey pointers. The arrogant Sergei said no at first, but Burke brought up the Miracle on Ice, a sore point for any Russian. That got Sergei grabbing his hockey equipment

Caffrey found an important file on Sergei’s computer and printing out papers. In the middle of it, a goon walked in and Caffrey grabbed a phone and pretended to be talking to someone about contracts for Katya. He bluffed the guy to leave him alone and after grabbing a gun laying on the desk and shoving it into his waistband, he gave two more minutes and deprted. Phew. Caffrey stuffed printouts in his jacket.

Burke was having a contest with Sergei, shooting pucks at a target in the net.He did quite well, well enough to make Sergei ask for best of three. Then trouble came in in the form of Ivan, the seller from the beginning of the episode; of course, there had to be another monkey wrench. He’d blow Caffrey’s cover if he saw him. Right before the commercial, Caffrey and Burke exchanged a worried look.

After the break, Burke saved the day by distracting the goons with a slap shot against glass, allowing Caffrey to slip away. At the FBI, Burke was informed that the courts had dropped the ball on holding Ivan, not knowing there was an open case. It turned out to be moot. Ivan was killed – they fished his body out of the river. It looked grim – with Ivan dead, a whole new wave of passports could come in and they wouldn’t know who was selling them. They had to figure out how to get them all in a room. Caffrey pointed out that they can’t resist a party. How to get a party? Get Katya to agree to marry Sergei – an odious task that she agreed to do, telling Burke that she had been through far worse.

The party was at a restaurant called Tatiana. Sergei asked Burke where his wife was, and he replied that she had the flu (just a sly little callback to the previous episode). Nikolai, the guy who had seen Caffrey in the office, was leaving. Caffrey had to stall him. He stole off while Burke prepared to give a speech. Downstairs, Caffrey tried to get Nikolai back upstairs to have a drink. Burke capped off the speech by announcing they were all under arrest. Cops burst in. Still downstairs, Nikolai knew the jig was up and started fighting Caffrey, who was losing. Jones wound up saving him. Upstairs, Sergei held Katya at knifepoint with Burke aiming his gun and shouting for him to drop it. Katya wound up stabbing Sergei in the leg, getting her free from him. A handcuffed Sergei told Burke to remember his face, with the FBI man just dismissing him.

After tying up some loose ends at the FBI office, Burke and Caffrey saw Katya off. Burke then met Jones outside and asked about surveillance video. Jones replied that it showed a taxi dropping Caffrey in front of an office. Burke and Jones went into the building. Of course there was a commercial break.

Mozzie came to Caffrey’s place and said that Rebecca called and that she doesn’t want to press charges. Caffrey went to meet Rebecca and Mozzie warned Caffrey to leave his heart off  his sleeve.  A guy who likes to woo the women he’s with having a problem like that? Never.

Meanwhile, Burke was at the Chiropractor’s office. Nothing seemed out of place, then he glanced on the floor near a desk and lo and behold, he found an FBI pen. Sloppy, sloppy, Mozzie. Then Burke and Jones were at the Killed In Action wall at work with Agent Siegel’s picture.

Caffrey met Rebecca at a library. and I guess as sort of an icebreaker, she admitted she had done time – she’d spent a night in jail at a Moroccan prison for accidentlly stealing a precious tile. Caffrey begain laying on the charm. Then he apparently made a mistake – he told her that they have only one chapter of the Mosconi Codex: Chapter 13. She immediately threw up her hands and said that she was tired of playing games. She laid down the hammer: Mosconi was really superstitious and had never wrote a Chapter 13. She proved her point and showed two of his other books. No Chapter 13. Oops. Caffrey had to be wondering what kind of game Hagen was playing.

The episode ended with Burke and Elizabeth skating in a dark rink with only a spotlight. They kissed and then skated off into the darkness holding hands. I have to admit that after seeing Person of Interest on Tuesday, I was expecting a freed Sergei to come bursting out and shoot at the two of them. The episode ended happily, though. Phew.

There’s a two-week wait until the next episode, but from what it showed, Caffrey and Rebecca already start to get hot and heavy. So much for heart being off-sleeve, huh?