I loved episode from the moment Cinnamon greeted Gordon at the door, through Rollin's dinnertime story of he and brother Jim's (Graves playing drunk again) constant encounters with "Bobby" their drowned little brother, to the entire scare fest at Gordon's house, where Barney and Willy have added a few gadgets to make what looks like a really scary haunting. A really fun episode with some fine performances. Loved when Cinnamon panicked and ran screaming from the house. A favorite from season 2.
To catch a mob killer, the IMF plays on his superstitious nature and stages a fright night to scare him out of his mind. Like some other "Mission: Impossible" episodes, "The Killing" feels more like there was a good idea for a mission (use movie special effects to fake a haunted house) but the overall plot had to be tacked on. In this case, it's Gordon, the syndicate killer, who is conveniently a believer in ghosts.
The set-up is 50/50. The scenes of Barney and Willy rigging up Gordon's home are nice and taut as usual. But next door, as Jim and Cinammon entertain Gordon the business plays out like bad dinner theater. One wonders why Gordon would linger at dinner for so long while his hosts play out their own version of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" Martin Landau tries his best, but he suffers at the hands of his character - a seance minded lackey who stares in wide-eyed bewilderment at every creaking door and gust of wind.
Some good stuff, though: the climax, though hokey, is effective at times. Barbara Bain's barely contained hysterics help things move along. And the final reveal, when "Jim's" face melts away from his body after Gordon "kills" him is very effective.
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