As a youngster, Mission Impossible was one of the few shows I liked that was made for adults. I always hoped for an episode with the retired magician from Cleveland (why Cleveland?) known only as The Great Paris, Master of Disguise. What was his real name? You don’t know? Of course not—nobody knew!
No doubt, Martin Landau was fantastic as Rollin Hand—one of my other favorite characters—before Leonard Nimoy replaced him in season 4 as The Great Paris. But there was something more about Paris and his well-timed sarcasm that really struck a chord with me.
As an aside, it’s interesting that Landau was Gene Roddenberry’s first choice to play Spock on Star Trek. (Or was he?) At the time of this writing, Martin Landau is still alive at 86! Those tall, serious Vulcan-looking guys really do live long.
Mission Impossible is still on Netflix, so… you and I should both binge it. But let’s start with season 4.
RIP, Leonard Nimoy.