Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Mission: Impossible -- Episode 26: The Fuehrer's Children

To Watch: Click Here

Synopsis in 3 sentences or less:
The team aims to bring down Richard Kester, an American Neo Nazi leader who is in Germany to meet with world Nazi leaders.  Kester reveals his secret weapon to his peers: a group of about 25 kids who have been kidnapped and brainwashed into believing in Nazism and that Hitler is alive. The team gets to the kids and deprograms them just in time for Kester's big reveal.

Memorable Quote:
They know only what I want them to know.  It's living proof of what I can achieve.  Not for the future, Fruger.  Now!  Now!   ~Kester

Great acting from Thaao Penghlis when he discovers the boys on the sub.  Even without saying anything, his face says it all.

I have several questions about the ending:
  • How does Jim get away from the Nazis once Kester's plan goes up in smoke?  He's sitting in the middle of table with about 30 Nazis all around him, and somehow he just walks out.
  • Speaking of walking out, we later see Nicholas (pretending to be Vogel) exiting stage left without any resistance.
  • The team is happy to have brought down Kester, but why settle for one Nazi when they could have taken down all the Nazis that were there?
  • And what about the boys?  Do they just leave them there?
    • Actually I just rewatched the last few minutes and apparently they're sending a plane for the boys and are arranging for doctors to meet them once they arrive in the USA, and Grant's going to ride with them.  But who's taking them to the airport, and once they get to the USA where are they going to live?

Other thoughts, observations, and questions I didn’t ask when I was in fourth grade:
  • Our second Nazi episode in the series.  The first, The Legacy, currently sits at 2nd in my rankings.  In that episode's review (which had what I referred to as a "bonkers plot"), reader Mark wrote in the comments:  "Also, if you think this Nazi plot is bonkers, wait till season 2's infinitely more out there Nazi plot."  He's right -- this one is out there.
  • Max and Grant somehow know to enter Kester's hotel room right when his lady friend is in the shower.  And after Kester catches Grant, why didn't he think to sweep the room for bugs or other devices?
  • Despite the title, the revelation of the brainwashed children was not one that I was expecting.
  • Shannon uses technology that projects what the subject of a photo will look like in the future.  Maybe she left the software in Germany for MacGyver to use a year later in The Wall.
  • The Nazis aren't messing around at the end when they strangle Kester once the boys start singing Abraham, Martin, and John without giving him a chance to explain. 

Final Analysis:
Our second straight completely off-the-wall episode, but once again it was creative and held my attention. And as Joe Passman said on my Indiana Jones podcast, Nazis are hard to beat when it comes to villainry.  Ranking it 5 out of 26.


  1. This episode is definitely memorable and features some images that stick with you. Grant finally got to show some verbal emotion rather than being Mr. Stiff Upper Lip all the time. The child actors playing the Aryan Army were pretty convincing as well. As you said, the events of the story, particularly in the closing scene, make absolutely no sense but I still give them props for a turning a crazy idea into a memorable hour of television. This episode originally aired on November 16, 1989....only four days before "The Ten Percent Solution" episode of "MacGyver". How crazy is it that "The Ten Percent Solution" was only the second craziest Nazi plot to air on an episode of an ABC series in the third week of November 1989?!?!? I'll rank it between "The Princess" and "The Golden Serpent".

    1. And in addition to the "Ten Percent Solution" connection, the idea of the army of brainwashed children reminds me of the K-Force from the "MacGyver" episode "Humanity" that aired the following season. Much more mature execution on "MacGyver" though.

    2. That's amazing -- two far out Nazi episodes on ABC in less than a week!