Mission: Impossible

Season 1 Episode 2

The System

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Oct 30, 1988 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
15 votes

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Episode Summary

The System

The team must force a mobster to turn evidence against his partner and mentor.

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  • nice

    Not my favorite because of the fact that so many things could go wrong. But it's another ingenious episode where the team have to make a loyal second in command of a drug/ casino operations on a island in the Caribbean, believe that his boss who's in custody ( and not telling a thing because the evidence isn't that good) betrayed him. They forge the boss voice and bring in the team they set up a fake attack on the second in command making him believe that his boss want's to take him out. All to get them both in prison.moreless
  • It's easy to see why this script was chosen as one of the rewrites for the new show--it translates very well. Casinos are always an exciting background.

    This was a good ensemble piece--everyone had a pretty good role to play.

    With advances in technology, Grant had an easier time getting into the vault than his father did--those scenes with Barney were very tense. To make up for it, they added the complication of having Grant's laser mirror slip, so that he almost got tagged. I found it interesting that when he called for help, Jim and Nicholas leaped up and rushed out of the room--without knowing what the problem was. Presumably Grant told them during the commercial, but all we heard him say was that he was in trouble. For all they knew at that point, he might have fallen and injured himself badly enough that he couldn't get out of the vault unaided.

    I liked Jim's comment to Casey that she "didn't look like a loser." She did a fine job portraying an elegant, high-stakes gambler who always has a new system to try--and only remembers what she's won, rather than the thousands she has lost. Marley finds her attractive--and finds her compulsiveness even more so. "I love system players." His attitude make it plain that he intended to take advantage of her when she ran through her credit.

    This was one of the first times--if not the first--that Nicholas made use of a mask. Showing him nervously checking to see that it fit properly was a nice touch.

    One thing that did not carry over from the original to the remake: they had originally had Rollin--voicing the crime boss--make a recording of several different responses to choose from while dealing with one of the henchmen. The new show would, in fact, use a high-tech variation of this later on, in the episode where they were rescuing a priest. Here, they cut it out entirely and left it to Jim "the accountant" to quietly advise one of Marley's men to be ready to take over if necessary.

    Max radiated confidence, ruthlessness--and greed; very appropriate for a hired killer. Another change: they originally had the "assassination attempt" take place while the man was confronting Cinnamon about the trick she pulled with the check. Not sure why they didn't do it here; it would have added danger to the scene.

    All in all, an interesting, if somewhat standard, episode; the team is shaking down well.moreless
Peter Graves

Peter Graves

Jim Phelps

Thaao Penghlis

Thaao Penghlis

Nicholas Black

Antony Hamilton

Antony Hamilton

Max Harte

Phil Morris

Phil Morris

Grant Collier

Terry Markwell

Terry Markwell

Casey Randall (1988-89)

Bob Johnson

Bob Johnson

IMF Voice on Disc (uncredited)

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • When Nicholas unveils his full-head mask of Marley sitting on a table, it's clear from the movements of the "head" that it is actually actor James Sloyan sticking his head up through a hole in the table.

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Jim: How about Casey's gambling habits?
      Grant: Well, according to the information I've put into the computer at Connors' stateside casino, she's lost over $50,000 there in the last three months.
      Casey: Well, I guess I just have no self-control.

    • Marley: The last guy that tried to switch on us is tying his shoelaces with his elbows.
      Max: Well, I never wear lace-up shoes.

    • Marley: I understand that you are a friend of Mr. Connors. I thought I knew all of the attractive friends of Mr. Connors.
      Casey: Well, maybe I'm a secret friend, at least at his casino.
      Marley: Does the secret friend have a name?
      Casey: Jackie.
      Marley: That's all of it, just Jackie?
      Casey: Well, it's more mysterious that way.

    • Casey: Just okay some credit for me tonight and you'll see how well it works.
      Marley: How much?
      Casey: $5,000.
      Marley: All right, you're certainly worth $5,000.
      Casey: Oh, I'm worth a lot more than that.
      Marley: Maybe.

    • Marley: I've been making this count for seven years. Up until now...
      Jim: Up until now, nobody's checked it.
      Marley: Nobody's had to.
      Jim: Maybe that was their first mistake.

  • NOTES (1)


  • 9:00 pm
    Dateline NBC
  • 10:00 pm