White Collar Series Finale 2014 “Au Revoir” – The Greatest Con of All

White Collar - Season 6

In the White Collar Series Finale, called “Au Revoir,” Neal pulls off his greatest con and manages to fool even those closest to him.

I always feel so much pressure when talking about an episode as momentous as a series finale. Seriously, how can a few measly words do justice to the beauty of what I witnessed from this show as it bowed out and said its finale goodbye?

The Good Old Days

I’ll start with the overall tone and feel of the episode, which was very reminiscent of the pilot. The music, the camera angles, the quick edits – all of it reminded me of the earlier seasons of this series. Of course I have loved where the show has gone over the past five seasons and I wouldn’t have wanted it not to grow, but there was just something about all those reminders of the early days that made me smile.

Neal’s Greatest Con

All season we’ve been wondering what Neal was hiding up his sleeve and we finally found out in this episode that he was setting up the biggest con of his life. Once Neal let Mozzie in on his plan to snag some of the money from the Panthers, I thought maybe that was it. But as it turned out, Neal wasn’t even remotely finished. In fact, that little con was just one piece of a much bigger plan.

I grew suspicious that Neal was planning to fake his death when he was shooting the mannequin. So I have to admit that I wasn’t at all surprised or shocked when Keller shot him. Neal played his hand perfectly and knew that’s what Keller would do. He even made sure he gave him the gun (and the bullets) to do it with. I didn’t even get worried when I saw him in the ambulance, I knew he could easily hire people to play the roles of EMTs.

Letting Go

Where I did start to get worried was when Mozzie and Peter went to see his body in the morgue. That part I knew wouldn’t be as easy to pull off, but I still had faith in Neal. But no matter how much I told myself that Neal was still alive, I couldn’t get through that scene without tears. The performances of Tim DeKay and Willie Garson were the best I’ve seen from them in this whole series, and that’s saying something considering the amazing work they’ve both done on this show.

As I watched Peter and Mozzie moving on with their lives – Peter putting his family life first and Mozzie returning to the life of a simple con man – I understood why Neal did what he did. Even before it was revealed exactly how Neal did it (which was genius, of course), I got what his purpose was. Neal didn’t set up the con just to free himself, he did it to free those he loved most. Neal knew that if he was still around, Peter might not be able to keep away from immersing himself in his job and missing out on some of the best things in life as a dad. Neal also knew that Mozzie would always be tempted to try bigger cons with Neal around.

So Neal stepped back and let them both live the lives he knew they wanted. Could it have happened if they knew Neal was alive? Maybe, but I think Neal got it right by making a clean break and waiting just long enough for them to get settled into their new lives before making his presence known.

I could easily talk about this episode, and the entire series, for days on end, but I will stop here and tip my invisible hat to everyone who made White Collar possible. Thanks for the memories, one and all.

My favorite bits:

The way Peter kept his cool with a gun literally being held against his head. Like, right on his forehead. I would’ve needed another pair of underwear, just saying.

All it takes is an appearance by June and a mention of how she met Neal in the pilot and suddenly I’m getting teary-eyed.

Mozzie: “You took me for five large. That’s when I knew you were the best.”

The way Peter and Elizabeth announced they were having a boy. So cute.

Totally knowing that Neal was BS-ing when he claimed he knew by Peter’s body language they were having a boy.

Neal telling Elle that he’d keep Peter safe because they were all his family. Dang it, more tears.

The music, the sunglasses, Neal in a pilot’s uniform. That scene could not have been more perfect.

Guy: “Are you one of them mole people?”
Mozzie: “I’m their leader.”
Other guy: “Told you. You said Elton John.” – Hahaha!

Neal snagging one of the ladies’ unmentionables so he could get her key card. That was great.

Mozzie’s wild glasses. I have no idea what purpose they served, but they were awesome.

Noticing how much fun Peter seemed to be having being bad.

The music that played when they opened the safe.

The smile on Mozzie’s face when what I’m sure had to be one of his wildest dreams (being buried in money) came true.

Peter finding Neal and Keller missing.

Neal: “We had a deal, Keller.”
Keller: “You’re right, we did. But my knife begs to differ.”
Neal: “So does my gun.”

Keller bringing up Kate? Oh no he didn’t!

Peter’s face when Keller said it was too late for Neal.

Holy mother of… WOW! Peter shooting Keller in the head.

Neal: “You’re the only one who saw good in me.” – That line killed me, even if I did know it was all an act.

Peter’s face when Neal called him his best friend.

Poor Mozzie not being able to accept that it was Neal in the body bag.

Peter telling Mozzie that he had to look at Neal, even though I noticed that Peter couldn’t look too much himself.

Peter: “You’re free.” – Tim DeKay is going to end me, I swear it.

Peter seeing Neal everywhere he looked.

Mozzie asking how Peter was doing. That made me cry all over again. I always loved the little moments when they would bond.

Mozzie and Peter talking about how they saw and heard Neal every day.

Finding out that Mozzie was calling himself Teddy Winters.

Crying when I finally saw the baby. Not just because he was beautiful, but because I knew for a fact his name would be Neal. And I was right.

Peter finding all of the evidence that Neal left for him. I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT!

What did you think of this episode of White Collar? Got any favorite bits or least favorite bits of your own? Sound off in the comments below, I love hearing from you guys!

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