Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Mission Impossible - The Fifth TV Season|
Actors: Peter Graves, Greg Morris, Peter Lupus, Bob Johnson, Martin Landau
The hit series Mission: Impossible? returns to DVD, featuring all 23 Season Five episodes! By the fifth season, the show's changing times meant changing crimes, as the emerging drug culture forced the IMF to spend more tim... more »
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MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE #5: The Hip Revolution!
Thomas Rucki | Paris, France | 06/30/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Good evening. This is the fifth season (1970-1971) of "Mission: Impossible" which is fully produced by Bruce Lansbury from season 4 and supervised by top writer Laurence Heath who, nevertheless, produces six episodes. Here is a complete revision of the series because of its ideological shift through a leaning towards the thematics of the youth movement (for instance: students' agitators and radicals in "Takeover", NLF guerrillas in "The Rebel", far left terrorists in "The Hostage" and subversive revolutionaries in "Blast").
You will find some deep changes: a new-hip-younger "regular" leading lady named Dana Lambert (played by Lesley Ann Warren) introduced in "Flip Side" (in which she performs two folk songs), a replacement of Willy in twelve episodes out of twenty three via a young physician named Doug Robert and also named Doug Lang (played by Sam Elliott), a faster-harder-urgent urban main theme music (moreover, four episodes contain the original main theme music), no more multi-part episodes, a recursive portable gadget used to stun that can be described as a "golden needle ring" (created by writer Ken Pettus in a season 4 episode of "The Wild Wild West" and introduced in a late MISSION season 4 entitled "The Crane", and over-used by producer Bruce Lansbury), no dossier scenes, a dramatic prologue-teaser followed directly by the tape scene before the opening credits, downbeat and realistic kind of narratives with accidents and failures, assignments in progress, improvisations, and caught up agents. The fashion design of the team is also renewed and reflects the trend (casual or outrageous) of the 1970's: pay attention to Jim's outfits (suits and sunglasses) during the tape scenes which will blossom from season 6.
Anyway, two of the series' main ingredients remain: a master of disguises (Paris) and foreign intrigues (around sixteen). Actor Leonard Nimoy shines again in these offerings: brainwashed Fred Stark in "My Friend, My Enemy", Kabuki performer Nakamura Taizo in "Butterfly", abducted business man Walter A. Phelan in "The Hostage", criminal Alfredo Sanchez/old convict Martin Sanchez in "The Catafalque", professional gambler Harry Kroll in "The Merchant". You'll still discover top episodes: the masterpiece "The Killer" (guest starring Robert Conrad), "The Innocent" (a controversial plot re-written by Laurence Heath that calls into question the methods of the IMFers who blackmail a young "hippie" scientist so that he works with them), "Flight" (guest starring John Colicos), "The Catafalque" (written by scripts genius Paul Playdon and guest starring John Vernon) and good ones: "My Friend, My Enemy" (guest starring Peter Mark Richman), "The Merchant" (guest starring George Sanders), "The Hostage" (guest starring Lou Antonio), "The Amateur" (guest starring Anthony Zerbe), "The Missile" (guest starring David Sheiner), "The Party", "The Field". As in season 4, intimistic stories centered around IMFers return: Paris ("My Friend, My Enemy" in which we learn his past as a magician), Jim ("Homecoming" in which we get a glimpse of his hometown and his family background), Barney ("Cat's Paw" in which we meet his brother). The music scores are powerful: "The Killer and "Takeover" by Lalo Schifrin and "The Rebel" by Hugo Montenegro."
This set is OKAY - it has NOT been CBS/Paramount-ized !
beatnik | Splitsville | 10/28/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Mission: Impossible 5th season set
Well, to my fellow CBS/Paramount skeptics, I'm glad to report that this 5th season of Mission: Impossible is okay, and has not been bastardized by any tampering from the CBS/Paramount music-changing service labs.
I waited until I had heard from another reviewer before even ordering this set, and still kept my fingers crossed. I've watched a few episodes, and I'm happy with the set. No music has been removed, and, more importantly, none has been injected in.
The video and audio quality is fine, the same as the earlier Mission sets -- but, of course, this is the set where the 1970s "hipness" begins. Dated, yeah, but, at least it's the way it was originally aired.
After the awful and unforgiveable debacle with what CBS/Paramount did to The Fugitive Season 2 Vol. 1, we're all scrutinously skeptical of anything they put to DVD. Let's hope they decide to make good for how they've disappointed us all with The Fugitive. Maybe they'll re-do that set right. Or maybe they'll drop the whole rest of that excellent series. If so, it's their loss as well as ours."
Worst year for the series
Kent Stallard | Gilbert, AZ USA | 06/18/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Mission:Impossible is my favorite TV show ever, and I own all of the first five seasons on DVD. In my view Season 5 represents the nadir of the original Mission:Impossible series.
In my opinion the mistake that the producers made at this juncture of the series (which coincided with the dismissal of the show's creator Bruce Geller) was to make the episodes character-driven instead of plot-driven. Mission:Impossible was conceived as a show based on a complex, intricate and perfectly executed plan. While the characters were important in terms of the various skills they possessed in order to carry out the plan, the story was never about the characters. This changed in Season 5, as is evidenced by the episode "Homecoming" which features a very weak plot and a lot of rather sappy references to Jim Phelp's personal history. Gone is the meticulously constructed plot; in its place is a very pedestrian crime drama. (One exception to this trend in Season 5 is the episode "The Killer," probably the best show in an otherwise poor collection.)
Thankfully the producers came to their senses and in Season 6 restored many of the elements which made the series great.
To sum up, Season 5 is only for die-hard fans of Mission:Impossible. Casual fans and/or those who want to see only the best episodes would be better off acquiring seaons 2-4.
Mixed Bag-Some Very Good, Some Poor
givbatam3 | REHOVOT Israel | 11/21/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I will always give a five-star rating to each of the 5 seasons of the original MI series, but, unfortunately, it was in season 5 that the show lost much of the luster it had in its first four seasons. (Please note-even a "poor" MI episode is heads and shoulder above almost everything else on television). Creator Bruce Geller was forced out of having anything to do with making the show, which led to changes the irrevocably changed the nature of the series. One was to make the show more attractive to a younger audience. This involved bringing Leslie Warren in as the regular female member of the team. Most of her performances were lackluster, with one notable exception. In addition, the theme song was made more "modern" and less gripping, in my opinion. Secondly, a number of experiments were made with the basic premise of the show, most of which were not successful. Among them was a scene in the episode "Blast" which is played for pure comedy (a house belonging to a well-to-do couple is taken over by terrorists, including IMF people pretending to go along with them, and the IMF people are forced to promise not to damage the furniture and to take good care of their dog!), another is an especially uninteresting episode where Jim goes back to his home town and gets involved in solving a murder which is a total waste of the IMF's talents and in which Paris quotes the the stupidest line ever from the series: "I dig old home towns!". On the positive side, there is a very good episode ("The Innocent") where Barney is injured and the IMF is forced to bring in a reluctant outsider to help them and in which the morality of what the team does is questioned.
It must be said there are numerous fine episodes that dealt with what were then current events such as nuclear weapons proliferation ("The Field"), apartheid in South Africa ("Kitara"), another episode in which Barney is injured in a white-ruled country in Africa which was a thinly disguised version of Rhodesia, and the famous hotel-switch episode with Robert Conrad ("The Killer").
As I noted above, Leslie Warren was just not the best person to take Barbara Bain's place on the team, being too young and not "serious" enough, however, she did put in a fine performance in "Flight" in which she is captured and at first seems to break down and cry claiming she was a fringe person innocently recruited into an intelligence operation without really knowing what is going on, then, she quickly changes persona, becomes cool as a cucumber and tells her interrogators that yes, she is working for American intelligence. However, this brief moment of glory for her and her character didn't last.
I happen to think Sam Elliott was a fine addition to the series, but I guess they didn't figure there was room for both him and Peter Lupus in the show. His best performance was in "Kitara" where he plays an Afrikaner army officer (he had the accent down pretty well) who is an expert in rooting out blacks pretending to be whites. Again, like Leslie Warren, he wasn't really given any other challenging roles.
This season was Leonard Nimoy's second as Paris, and he was very disappointed in the show and decided to leave it. He was not given that much to do, but he also put in some fine performances (although, on the whole, he is not the actor Martin Landau is), among them, "The Field" where he plays an American traitor who is arrested and accused of murder, which was not part of the original mission.
Finally, it was in this season that the decision was made to de-emphasize the episodes about international intrigue due to the unpopularity of the War in Vietnam, however there are still some good ones, particularly, "The Amateur" with Anthony Zerbe, one of MI best villains. After this season, these type of episodes were completely phased out with the Missions changed to battling organized crime, which quickly lead to the writers running out of ideas.
Having said all this, any fan of series will still enjoy these season 5 episodes."