The IMF is up against a contract killer who makes decisions at random at the last minute to ensure his moves are unpredictable. As Barney stands in for the intended victim, the IMF must prepare for ...
Jim Phelps is the head of a super-secret government agency ("Impossible Missions"), and is often given secret anonymous covert missions to attempt; quite often they are unmasking of criminals or the rescuing of hostages. He picks his team depending on which tasks need to be done. One thing is vital on an Impossible Mission: the mission must be carried out in entire secrecy, often relying on high-tech equipment and elaborate deceptions. Written by
Murray Chapman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Although the IMF usually received its instructions from a self-destructing reel-to-reel tape, this didn't become the norm until several seasons into the series. In early episodes, Briggs and Phelps got their instructions from other sources such as records and filmstrip projectors. The "tape scenes" for each episode (as they were known) were usually filmed in one block at the start of each season. Peter Graves said he never knew which episode would use which tape scene until it was broadcast. See more »
Multiple episodes set in European countries have Barney working on electrical wiring to achieve the team's aim, yet the switchgear, outlets, and other equipment depicted is North American. See more »
Episode titles were not shown on-screen. Although this became commonplace with dramatic series in the late 1980s, it was unusual in the 1960s for a one-hour action series to not have episode titles. See more »
"Mission : impossible" is the most complex espionage series ever conceived. What makes this show so unique ? It is its storyline, its characters, its visual style and its music : a real trade mark. What I like the most is first the ritual : the tape, the dossier and the apartment briefing, then the fast-paced clips as credits, the character of Martin Landau with his masks and gimmicks, the cinematography (very quick cuts, extreme close ups as inserts, the use of special lenses, pan-and-tilt shots, upside-down camera shots, hand-held camera shots, optical zoom shots as dramatic effects), the skillful montage, and finally, the music and its various themes. The show is an impeccable and Machiavellian play. Every details are planned in advance to fool and get rid of the enemy. Each scheming is tight and shocking. I like the use of the time warp concept in "Operation Rogosh" and the role of Fritz Weaver as the paranoid Soviet Union spy trapped in a fake Russian prison which is in California. I like the tension and the suspense created by silent actions. Anyway, the whole show is about simulacrum. The devious methods of the IMF agents are always delightful and clever. Don't miss the best episodes : "The mind of Stephan Miklos", "Live bait" and "The interrogator". This tape will self-destruct in five seconds, good luck. !
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