I feel like I had been waiting an eternity for this show to return. It was well worth the wait.
This episode was certainly one of the best of the series. It had so many little moments with these characters that after a five month break, it felt like a friend I hadn't seen in years came over to visit.
Peter, yet again, seeing that going by the FBI playbook isn't always the correct thing to do. Neil accepting his fate a wanting to give a full confession about the treasure because it's the right thing to do. (Speaking of Neil, his character really has progressed greatly over the series.). Mozzie coming back to save Mrs. Suit and admitting that he even likes Peter. Elizabeth conning her captor into leaving so she can plot her escape.
This episode just hit everything right. The ending is interesting and I'm wondering how that will work out for Neil. Will he go back to his criminal roots or will he be like the characters on Leverage who have all gone legit.
Speaking of Leverage, I wish these two shows could have a crossover. That would be pretty cool.
The characters on this show are really well developed. The relationships among Peter, Neil, Mozzie, and Elizabeth feel real; I was legitimately emotional when Peter and El were finally reunited. I had been worried about how they were going to wrap up the treasure story line and plausibly bring Neil and Mozzie back to being "good guys", and they did it about as well as could be expected.
I'm a big fan of Leverage, as well, although this last half-season was mostly disappointing to me. The season finale was good, though. A crossover would certainly be interesting.
I think what I like best about this show is the way it shows that even the secondary characters are smart people. They put them into these dangerous situations, and there's never any real doubt that, say, Neil will get out. But when you put someone like Elizabeth in danger, the normal narrative there is that they have to rescue her. On this show, though, nobody waits to get rescued. They come up with a plan, and they escape. The same thing happened when Peter was abducted a season or two ago. There are no hostages on this show, and I love it for that.
It took me a while to pick up on the fact that they were parodying the MTV Super Sweet 16 shows. I agree with IGN's assessment that for as good as this episode was, this was just BEGGING for a Saddam cameo!