The Astrology of Burn Notice: Michael Westen’s “Real” Birthday

Burn Notice Poster(Astrology Explored) Burn Notice, Season 6 premiered on Thursday, June 14, 2012, continuing the story arc Michael in his quest to get reinstated into the good graces of “The Company.” What is in store for the burned spy and his crew? Well to answer that we are going to have to clear up the issue of Michael Westen’s birthday.

In my first piece about the fictional “burned” spy Michael Westen, I fiddled around the pieces of trivia dropped through the show and the astrology to see if the birth date of January 7, 1970 as originally posted in Wikipedia was his birth date. I came to the conclusion, that yes it would be and even “rectified” the ascendant to Libra.

Then in an episode called “Past and Future tense”, Michael is seen showing his Florida’s driver license as proof of identity with a Date of Birth shown as January 7, 1967 a full three years earlier. Since then Wikipedia changed its information to reflect this date. To those that don’t “believe” in astrology this isn’t such a big deal, and even eases up the number years of training he took as Special Forces in the Army. But for those of us that look to the stars this is huge deal, especially since it throws off the transits, the positions of the planets, that shows key events in a person’s life.

When an astrologer wants to fix a time of birth that is not documented on a birth certificate they will go through a process called rectification. In rectification key events are matched against the birth date to see where they “fit”. Enough key events, birth of children, marriage, career successes, etc will yield a pattern that ferrets out the birth time.

What we are doing here for the purposes of determining the “birth date” of the fictional character is checking key events against each chart to see how well they fit. We have one fixed event, that of Michael being burned, and one event fixed according to his age at time of graduation from high school. How well do these events fit against the birth charts for 1967 or 1970?

Michael Leaves Home

In going through the transits of of the 1970 chart it was apparent that the degree 24 kept coming up making important transits, such as Uranus at 24 degrees of Sagittarius when Michael graduated high school or Pluto at 24 degrees of Sagittarius when he was burned. I adjusted the birth chart to place 24 degrees of Sagittarius at the 4th house cusp. This gives him a “birth time” of 10:49 PM . This also has Uranus cross the 4th house cusp . Why is this important? Uranus is the planet “that runs away” and this planet crossing the fourth house cusp shows Michael “running away” from home.

In the 1967 chart, I fixed the ascendant so that like the 1970 chart Uranus crosses the fourth house cusp. Having done that we have Uranus conjunct his natal moon, which signifies shake-ups or move from the home, so this tracks. Transiting Venus is in the tenth house of career, usually a good transit for career moves, and Mercury opposes Uranus, good for sending people on short trips. But it is a not a short trip to army training, and these tenth house aspects challenge is Pluto/Uranus combination in the first house. Leaving home under these conditions would be difficult, even traumatic, hardly a good start for a new career.

On the other hand in the 1970 chart Mercury and Venus are in the tenth house, opposing his fourth house collection of planets and in friendly energetic connection with his Pluto/Uranus combo in the first. He left home for a new home, the army.

The Burn Notice

Michael Western Burned Chart 1970 Birthday

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In the 1970 chart, at the time Michael was burned transiting Pluto squared (challenged) his natal Pluto and opposed his Midheaven. Notice that transiting Venus, how he earns his money, is exactly conjunct his natal Pluto. This combination of energetic aspects practically guarantees a nuclear meltdown in a career.

Michael Westen Burned Chart 1967 Birthday

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In the 1967 chart, Pluto also opposes the Midheaven and transiting Pluto squares natal Pluto. However, notice that transiting Venus has passed his Natal Pluto by seven degrees. It seems by this trigger planet his career would have melted down several weeks prior to this date.

A Mother’s Memory

In the first episode, Madeline recounts the story of when Michael broke out of his room at age 6 to see the movie Star Wars.

Star Wars Premiered May 25, 1977. If Michael was born in 1967 he would be 10 instead of six when he hightailed it out of the house. A mother certainly knows the difference between a six and ten year old boy, but the line might blurr between six and seven.

In any case, it is clear that in the first episode the writers were advancing a birth date about 1970 not 1967.

Fake ID’s?

In Season 1, Episode 3 Michael complains to Fiona he can’t get a car because he doesn’t have a drivers’ license, though in the pilot episode Fiona is looking at at Michael’s license remarking that he isn’t an organ donor. Is this license faked then? In the espisode titled “False Flag” Michaels receives a set of false ID papers based on his own birth certificate retrieved from his mother’s house. In episode titled Signals and Codes Michael is seen fabricating a driver’s license with his own photo for a cover ID. Season 4, Episode 7 Past and Future Tense shows a Russian Operative a Driver’s License with the birth date 1/7/67. The question becomes though why would Westen get an official driver’s license, especially when he is supposedly hiding out from fallout of his past? Apparently false ID’s and documents seem to part of a spy’s life, so there is no reason to believe that any ID Michael shows is state issued containing true and accurate information.

Getting Real (Or as Real as You Can Get About a Fictional Character)

What I think happened to this fictional character’s birth date is that when originally, Matt Nix, the creator of Burn Notice put the character to paper it was done around the idea of a 1970 birth date as evidenced by Madeline’s recollection of Michael slipping out to the house to see Star Wars at the age of six. However, once Nix started backtracking all the info dropped about Westen’s life he did some creative re-imagining to give a little more room to a very tight timeline. But once the original idea of Michael Westen was put to paper, the “birth date” was fixed and no amount of creative re-imagining can erase the original idea about the character. In my opinion, astrologically, the 1967 birth date doesn’t work as well the 1970 date does.

Confirmation Through the Story Arc?

I started following the astrology of the story arc a couple seasons ago looking for correlations between the story and the two charts

Most strikingly in the 1970 chart there are four planets that represent most literally Michael’s family that sit in the natal fourth house. Venus is Fiona, the Sun is Sam Axe, his metaphorical older brother, the Moon, literally is mother, and Mercury, Michael’s brother as well as Jesse Porter, the newer member of the team. Mercury is ruled by Gemini, the sign of the twins, so it is natural to assign two characters to one planet.

In the 1967 chart however, there are only two planets, the Sun and Mercury. The moon is in the third house, the apex of T-Square involving Saturn/Chiron and Pluto Uranus. This seems to describe the Madeline portrayed as a whining, manipulative hypochondriac in the first episode. But in subsequent episodes, this characterization was dropped. We see a Madeline, that while manipulative, does in a fiercely protective of family way. In the 1970 chart the Moon is trine Pluto and sextile Mars, the planet of survival instincts supportive of the revised characterization of Madeline’s mother.

At the fifth season start we see some important transits impacting the 1970 chart. Uranus, the planet of upsets and changes moves into the seventh house and Jupiter moves into the house of secrets, the eighth house. This Jupiter conjuncts natal Saturn. This augurs a new element introduced in the series. Sure enough, a critical new character, Anson Fullerton, the creepy black-ops psychiatrist who was instrumental in burning Michael shows up in the 12th episode.

We also notice that Pluto is bearing down on the fourth house stellium leaving any astute astrologer to wonder what will happen to the characters. At the end of Season 5, the first character in the stellium, Fiona as represented by Venus is sent to a high security prison, literally consigned to Pluto ruled Hades.

The sixth season opener chart shows the transiting Moon landing square on Saturn. Indeed the first six episodes are devoted to themes of releasing Fiona from her Pluto ruled prison. It’s a temporary theme though as the next event, the death of Michael’s brother Nate takes over sixth season’s focus. While Pluto still rules the theme, Mercury, is progressed in Aquarius and now ruled by the planet of shocking events, Uranus. Michael and his team are now lead on a search for the person who murdered his brother, and the shadowy people behind it.

We see in the sixth season chart, the Sun, Venus, the South Node and Jupiter in the Ninth house of travel. Indeed in the mid-season cliffhanger, Michael, Fiona (released from prison), Jesse and Sam travel south to Panama under the auspices of Michael’s former CIA boss, Tom Card to hunt the killer. What they found out is the Tom Card is yet another traitor in Michael’s life, hoping to erase Michael and his team in an entirely Plutonic suicide mission.

So here we are at the mid-season start on November 8, 2012. What are we likely to see? We know from the television teasers, Michael is left behind in Panama and Saturn the planet of limitations is sitting on Michaels’ natal Jupiter. Money and resources are a problem. As we’ve seen, transits to the eighth house bring new character elements, but there is nothing there. We see Neptune crossing onto the progressed Sun. The transiting Moon is sitting on the Natal South Node opposite the progressed Venus sitting next to the Progressed Sun. Old, old secrets live here in the twelfth house and it looks like now Madeline is up to revealing some. Does this involve Michael’s father? Hinted at in the last season was a shadowy relationship between Madeline and Tom Card. Are we going to learn anything about that?

In any case, at least to me the 1970 birth chart is more indicative of what is going on in the show than the 1967 chart. I’ll keep watching that as Pluto keeps moves through Michael Westen’s fourth house.

In an interview series star Jeffrey Donovan says:

“You’ll see a more hell-bent Michael,” Donovan previews. “The relationship that Michael has with Gray and Card is going to turn Michael down a path that leads even Sam to question Michael’s integrity. And I think that’s what the fans are going to really be interested in: How dark will Michael go?” . . .

In the [Season 6] finale, which I think the audience is going to be shocked by, Michael makes a decision that affects not only his friends but mostly Fiona,” Donovan teases. “I think the audience is going to be excited to see where Michael will go once he has made probably one of the worst decisions he’s ever made.” On a related note — or not — the actor also promises “a huge betrayal.

Obviously, Pluto is doing his dirty work. We are sure to see more mysteries, more secrets and more of what Fiona likes, things “that go boom.”

Burn Notice Start of 5th Season Horoscope

Burn Notice 6th Season Opener Horoscope Chart

Series Poster published under Fair Use as described by Wikipedia.

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