An intelligence organization recruits civilian specialists for individual missions requiring their skills.

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1  
1984   1983  
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
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 Casey Collins (13 episodes, 1983-1984)
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 Mr. Lavender / ... (13 episodes, 1983-1984)
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 Danny Doyle (13 episodes, 1983-1984)
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Storyline

Each week there would be a new top-secret mission. The spy organization would bring in new operatives to accomplish specific tasks during the mission-of-the-week. Instead of highly-trained agents, they would find a civilian who was an expert in a field. For example, if the job involved somehow planting a bug in a persons house, they might employ a plumber who would be able to figure out how to get the bug in via water pipes). The episodes usually started with a briefing of the new spies, which helped the viewer figure out who could do what. Written by Dan Newcombe <abbk@maristb.marist.edu>

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spy | See All (1) »


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15 December 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Operation: Maskerade  »

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1.33 : 1
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Connections

Followed by Masquerade: Pilot (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The spy store is open
4 April 2008 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

This was a mildly interesting variation on "Mission: Impossible." The twist is that the bad guys had found out the identities of all the established agents, so Operation: Masquerade was created. Civilians with the necessary skills were recruited for one-time missions, assigned by Mr. Lavender and backed up by freshly graduated agents Casey and Danny. With no background in spying, the civilians wouldn't be known to the intelligence community at large. As a hook for viewers, it should have worked. Think wish fulfillment. Your country needs you and your inimitable skills, and you don't even have to spend six months at Camp Peary before heading out on your mission.

This appears to have been inspired by the 1966 pilot "Call to Danger." In that, the government had a database of ordinary people with special skills whom they would call upon for important missions. That show was never picked up, but one good thing did come of it, giving that a bona fide "Mission: Impossible" connection. Writer/producer Bruce Geller saw the pilot. When Steven Hill, the lead actor of M:I, became too difficult, Geller replaced him with the lead actor of "Call to Danger" who had impressed him, one Peter Graves. The rest is television history.

It's been almost 25 years? Time flies. Still, the show does date itself. There's that '80s big hair, glitzy wardrobe and lots of makeup. The theme song, sung by Crystal Gayle, has a very '80s instrumental backing. It's nonetheless one of the better theme songs of the decade.


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