I Spy (1965–1968)
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It's All Done with Mirrors 

Sinister Soviet scientist Dr. Karolyi kidnaps Kelly and brainwashes him into believing Scott is a traitor who must be killed.




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Episode cast overview:
Alexander Scott
James Frawley ...
Arnold Lessing ...
Spanish Guitarist
Gene Twombly ...
Bert Elliott ...
Diki Lerner ...
Joe Gold ...
Joe Raciti ...


Robinson is kidnapped by enemy agents and taken to a psychiatrist, Dr. Karolyi. The doctor specializes in behavior modification, and begins a process intended to brainwash Robinson. Using pain, Dr. Karolyi breaks down Robinson to the point of dependency and control. Dr. Karolyi then brainwashes Robinson into believing Scott is a traitor, a double agent. Robinson is ordered to return to Scott, ready to terminate his partner when given the order. The time comes in a certain upscale restaurant where the death of Scott by Robinson would most hurt the image of the United States. But Robinson fails in his attempt to kill Scott. Alerted that Robinson is a rogue agent, the department decides to terminate Robinson if he cannot be stopped. Scott protests, and is given forty-eight hours to bring in Robinson. After that, Robinson is to be killed on sight. Written by Christopher D. <imdbreviews@gmail.com>

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Release Date:

13 April 1966 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


It is revealed that a "Code 10" means to kill on sight. See more »


Kelly Robinson: I'll have myself a shower and a shave and I'll be once again your alert, clean-cut, clear-eyed, government-issue Captain Marvel.
See more »

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User Reviews

"Make sure you own the laundry!"
15 March 2017 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Brainwashing featured in several spy films and television series of the 1960's; 'The Ipcress File' is a good example. Richard Bradford's 'Man In A Suitcase' got the treatment in the aptly-titled 'Brainwash', while in 'The Avengers' the normally unflappable 'John Steed' ( Patrick Macnee ) faced the same predicament in 'The Wringer'.

Stephen Kandel's 'It Was All Done With Mirrors' opens with 'Kelly Robinson' ( the late Robert Culp ) and 'Alexander Scott' ( Bill Cosby ) on a fishing trip in Mexico. Of course, they're really on an assignment. A warehouse is full of crates containing anti-Amercan propaganda. Kelly gets friendly with the pretty 'Vanessa' ( Fay Spain ) and gets into a taxi with her, only to be coshed by the driver. When he awakens, he is a prisoner of 'Dr.Zoltan Karolyi' ( Carroll O'Connor ) who proceeds to brainwash Kelly into thinking Scott is a traitor. Kelly's conditioning is activated whenever Vanessa shows him her handbag mirror. The question is - can Kelly resist the treatment, or will Scotty be killed by him?

A very good episode; by this point in the series, Culp and Cosby had got their characters firmly established, and there's a fair amount of suspense as well as impressive overseas location filming ( a major strength of the series ). O'Connor is best remembered as the bigoted 'Archie Bunker' from 'All In The Family', but he cropped up in several adventure shows, such as 'The Time Tunnel' and 'Mission Impossible'. He makes Karolyi interesting without going over the top. Robert Butler's other credits include the opening episodes of Adam West's 'Batman'.

Anyone whose only knowledge of 'I Spy' is the horrendous Eddie Murphy/Owen Wilson movie owe it to themselves to check out the original series. It is vastly superior.

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