For the first time, to me, I feel like Mission: Impossible takes me on a joyful romp, as I accept another pair of assignments from Paramount Pictures as I explore The Complete Series on blu-ray. The Diamond, written by William Read Woodfield, and Allen Balter and first aired on 4 February, 1967.
There are familiar elements finally settling into place with this episode, the phrase ‘your mission should you choose to accept it’ makes an appearance, and in the next episode, The Legend, messages begin to self-destruct.
Dan (Steven Hill) and his usual IMF team, Rollin (Martin Landau), Cinnamon (Barbara Bain), Barney (Greg Morris) and Willy (Peter Lupus) work to put one over on a vicious dictator, Henrik Duvard (John Van Dreelen) by conning him into believing that they can create flawless diamonds that will pass as such on the world market.
This will allow them to get close and steal a perfect gem that he has in his possession, and plans to use to finance his political aspirations, and secure his position of power.
Barney gets a few moments, is thrown some difficulty by a cat, Rollin and Dan front the con, while Cinnamon drifts in and out of the story, swathed in diamonds, and Willy, well, Willy hangs around as support.
This one is fun, and has some great moments, and the series is starting to feel like its really hitting its stride with its style, characters and storytelling.
Keep those assignments coming, especially if they are as fun as this one!
The Legend sees masks being brought into it again, and the Nazis!
Written by Mann Rubin this episode first debuted on 11 February, 1967. Deep in the jungle, there is a last holdout of Nazi leaders, planning their return to power and the birth of the Fourth Reich. Dan and his IMF team plan to infiltrate it and disrupt the Nazis, breaking them once and for all.
Dan gets to mask him with Cinnamon playing his daughter, as he assumes the role of a Nazi leader just released from prison, and while Barney works some electronic magic, Rollin assumes the role of the proposed head of this new Reich, Martin Boorman (who was an actual Nazi, and was still missing at the time the episode was made).
Frederick Rudd (Gunnar Hellstrom) has plans on the leadership and is putting one over on the other Nazis there, which leads to the revelation of how the IMF can take him and the Nazis down. Both Landau and Hill seem to settle into their characters, and their disguises.
This is a fun episode, and the Nazis, of course, get their just desserts, and seem a little dumber than they probably had to be for the story, but I’m okay with it, because well, Nazis are bad.
I’ll accept a couple more assignments next week as I join the IMF for Mission: Impossible – The Complete Series on blu-ray, now available from Paramount Canada!