Mission: Impossible (1972) – Trapped, and Break!

Season six of Mission: Impossible comes to a close with Trapped. Written by Samuel Roeca and James L. Henderson from a story by Rick Husky, it first debuted on 26 Februay, 1972.

Phelps (Peter Graves) and his IMF team are going after a family of international smugglers, and are planning to turn the rival brothers against one another in an attempt to bring the whole operation tumbling down.

Casey (Lynda Day George) goes undercover as a lounge singer to catch the eye of one of the brothers, while Barney (Greg Morris) and Willy (Peter Lupus) work behind the scenes to take things apart. Phelps poses as a man offering to take over protection services for the smugglers but when things go wrong, and he’s involved in a shootout, he suffers amnesia and the rest of the team has to carry on with the mission and find a way to save Phelps before he ends up dead.

It’s a fairly basic story, one we’ve seen riffs on before, but it lets Graves have a moment to play a character who has no idea what is going on. In complete contrast to his usual role as Phelps who is constantly in control.

Sadly, with so much focus on Phelps, Barney and Willy suffer and aren’t given a lot to do except hang near a phone hoping to hear from Phelps. Which, in retrospect, seems silly. They’re top-notch spies. They should be able to pull off the mission and find Phelps. Instead, they are forced to sit and wait and do very little in the interim.

Break! opened the final season on 16 September, 1972. It was written by Roeca and Henderson and introduces us to a new (temporary) member of the team, Mimi (Barbara Anderson) while Casey is on assignment in Europe (George needed some time off for maternity leave).

Mimi is a criminal, out on parole, who Phelps has recruited to help on the mission (and lays the seeds for future ones). This time they are going after, wait for it, a criminal gambling ring, and Phelps with the tech help of Barney, poses as a pool shark to find his way into the circle. But that’s only the beginning of the con.

Everyone has their part, and as usual, things get pretty tense right up until the last moment, when you realize that, once again, everything has gone to plan.

I imagine that after taking on international governments and spies that handling organized crime has got to be a little easier for them. Anderson makes a fun change to the cast line-up.

And so the final season begins, so let’s dive into these final assignments from Paramount Canada as I explore their Blu-ray release of Mission: Impossible – The Complete Series.

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