THE MIST OF SILENCE
A man with a gun in a bucket rows alongside a pier where he drops some kind of metal canister. He goes up to the pier and aims at the President of his country, Alejandro Fuentes. The man, Ricardo Galdos, has a girlfriend named Detta Casone who is running along the beach, looking for him. She gets in the way of his gun and he misses killing the Presidente. The police drive their car at and then shoot at Ricardo who dives off the pier...and doesn't surface.
A sea vessel has radioed for help--Fuentes wants Seaview to rendezvous with is vessel to in order for him to defect to the US. The Presidente may have been a prisoner of General Esteban D'Alverez. Nelson smokes (cough, cough). Seaview's status is unofficial but here to help is Senor Galdos--a fisherman who wants to "give the President the welcome he deserves. The President hated tyranny as long as someone else was the tyrant, Galdos tells them. Seaview surfaces. On the conning tower is Chip, Nelson, Lee, and Galdos. Lee and Ricardo board the empty yacht which has all its lifeboats in place. Crane finds the ring of Fuentes--identified by Ricardo. Nelson wonders, back on Seaview, if it were a deliberate plant--how could they know they'd recognize it. Ricardo says they may know he was aboard and could ID it. After discussing the ring, Nelson orders radar (?) to scan the area (was he looking for a plane?). A crew will take the yacht to a port (why?). Lee, since the waters and reefs here are dangerous, commands a small group--Patterson, Kowalski, and Farrel--to take the yacht. The crewmen have on white hats while Crane has his own on. Nelson calls later--sonar has picked up a ship alongside the yacht-the Libertine (or LIBERTAD). Heavy fog knocks the crew of four out. Sparks calls the Libertine but gets no answer. In an elaborately decorated enemy country, an aide, Captain Serra, reports the BARRACUDA has picked up Crane and his men. They have the President and now have Crane and his three men. An Oriental Colonel from an Oriental country (gee, which one?) is there and proud of his country's contribution--the fog gas called lithium (or lethion). Alverez tells the two that having the four man crew-Americans all-can be used to their mutual advantage.
The General took the men for propaganda purposes. Washington DC will give no support--they knew that. Chip gets a coded message from resistance fighters--telling the Seaview men to be at Banyon Cove--a flat beach. At the Presidential Palace, in the compound, Lee and the others awake. Ski moans, "I have the world's worst hangover and I haven't had a drink." Alvarez knocks Lee down and tells a lie: they were arrested trying to kidnap the Presidente. Crane will admit nothing. One "traitor" will die every hour from now until midnight on this, the anniversary of their liberation. Names are being drawn by lot and the foursome have their names included. They see another man shot. The General Alvarez visits the President and taunts him but Fuentes tells the General, "They're using you." A soldier and a doctor drug him. Alvarez snaps, "If only they let Galba shoot you." They have intercepted the message from the resistance fighters--6 o'clock, Banyon Cove. Alverez orders sub chasers alerted. Nelson and crewman Williams prepare to go to the beach. They get a message telling them the message from the resistance fighters was intercepted. New meeting place: Bay of Red Cliffs. Nelson says, "It seems we have a friend close to Alvarez." A man with a hat on and a rifle in his hand sees Nelson who is wearing a black wool hat and black outfit. Nelson and Williams climb up a cliff--in long shot we see this--it is obviously outdoors and looks great. The music is excellent and in fact, is excellent for the entire episode (Hugo Friedhofer). Detta is at the top. He tells her he will finish what he started. She insists he is wrong but he responds with, "We will see."
Night--palm trees--Nelson and the others are in a beach hut of some kind. They have less than two days to get the Presidente--there will be road blocks. Detta tells them they must wait until tomorrow night after the celebrations--she will get them into the city and the palace. Detta tells them Fuentes pretends to side with the General but Ricardo wants to move now. Nelson decides to trust Detta and wait. She tells Ricardo that, "Different men have different ways of fighting." Alverez realizes they were decoyed away from the real hiding place and he eats fruits. Ski insists to Crane that time is running out, adding, "Captain." Ski asks if it would be too bad a thing if they say what he wants--those that hate Americans anyway are going to believe it. Crane tells him it is those that don't hate Americans that they want to believe it. He adds that the Admiral is doing everything to find them. Ski says, "Sure but what can he do against a whole country." Seaview is on the bottom. After popping a paper bag and making everyone jump, Curley tells Chip he hates waiting, "That's the one reason I never got married." Chip (Chip?) smiles (?). Yes, Chip smiles as do others around him. Sparks gets a message--they must meet the others at noon. Chip thinks it is a trap. Curly feels they must show up. Chip agrees with him. The resistance sees the Advanced Institute for Scientific Research-a cover for the "friend and ally" country that built it--a plant to make the lithium the same country brought here. Night--Detta shoots the truck man who was about to shoot Nelson when they stopped the truck with fire. Plan: to steal the lithium truck which goes into the palace. Williams saves Galba who stabs the truck driver dead. The General forces Fuentes to go out on the balcony for the people who await his presence on the anniversary of their "freedom," using the revolution. We see stock crowds. Later, the General comes to Crane's cell, taunting them about whose name has been chosen from among them. Then he mentions Farrel and taunts him. They drag Farrel out and he yells, "Captain Crane! Kowalski!" He also yells something like Bill or Phil (is this Patterson's first name?). Crane pushes the General into the cell door and chokes him from behind. Pat and Ski attack the guards but are driven back. Alverez uses a liquid in his ring to blind Crane and gets him back into the cell. It is only temporary. Serra comes in late. Alverez mocks him over his "concern." Ski and Pat see Farrel shot dead by the firing squad. Alverez promises Crane that he will live to see the other two shot. Sparks gets a warning message and delivers it to Chip and Curley--the meeting rendezvous was a trap. A strange looking plane drops depth charges on Seaview, which is on the bottom but shakes a great deal. The music is fairly good shaking music here. Detta tells Nelson they killed one of his men--Nelson asks which one and she tells him Farrel. They can't wait for the siesta--they must attack. Detta tells them they must wait--3 more hours. Nelson siding with Detta, tells Ricardo they won't gain anything by throwing away our lives won't save them!" Nelson adds that he is not a martyr. Seaview is still being bombarded on the bottom. Chip falls into Curley and vice versa. Chip says, "We just have to lie here and let them pound us to pieces!" Oil (it looks like oil but isn't mentioned as oil) and debris come to the surface.
Morning--Detta tells Ricardo she still dreams for them. Ricardo tells her this in an end not a beginning. The General is told of the stolen truck. Curley tells Chip repairs are going slow--it will be 2 to 3 hours. Chip tells him it would be a lot longer if the didn't fire the decoy debris through the torpedo tubes. Chip tells him in 3 hours they have to be waiting at the right place for the Admiral. Alverez, wearing shades from the sun--or perhaps to taunt the men some more as he cannot read the name on the note with the shades on, comes to the cell again. This time it is Patterson's name that has been drawn (some sources claim it is Crane who will be next--this is untrue). They take him out but Nelson in the truck, sees this. He uses the gas to knock out the guards. A monk gives Patterson last rites. The editing in this part is a bit bad--or maybe just on the copy I saw. The monk is gone and men fall. Pat falls also. The resistance fighters (including Williams and Nelson) get a breathing mask on Pat. Nelson gets into the Palace easily and gives masks to Lee and Ski. They get them out. Detta tells Nelson that Ricardo has gone to kill the President. Nelson races after. The General tells Serra to sound the alarm (almost always good, Mike Kellin is terribly bad in this short scene--and doesn't sound as if he is really believeable as the General in this short part). Taking his mask off, Ricardo has a knife near the Presidente's throat but stops when he realizes the President is drugged and has been for some time before this. The man tells Ricardo it is a dream, seeing him like this. Nelson, outside the room, is surprised by the General and they fight. The General chokes Nelson but Nelson returns the favor until the sneak blinds him with the juice in his ring. Nelson falls and the General goes to retrieve his gun but Crane, arriving, sees his chance to get even. He gets his own back and then some--first by jumping on the General with a yell, saving Nelson. Lee beats the tar out of the General and knocks him down, helping Nelson up. Ricardo arrives, helping the Presidente. As they all make their exit, the General tries to shoot Nelson and Crane from behind but a knife enters his back--thrown by Serra--he was the one helping the resistance. Serra gets on the phone and recalls all roadblocks leading to Red Cliffs. He cancels the alert. The Oriental man, the leader of his country's secret police, shoots a lethon gas gun. The gas overcomes Captain Serra. The Oriental walks out. Ski feels they have trouble---the truck won't start. Ricardo and Detta shoot guards who are running at them. Ricardo won't go with the escapees--he has work here to do. He uses a machine gun turret to fire at the other soldiers who chase them. Detta goes with him. Crane gets the truck to start by doing something under the hood and he ordered Ski to start it. They drive away just as a tank arrives and blows the gun turret away. Fortunately, Ricardo set the gun to fire itself using a wire. He and Detta also get away. At the cliffs, Nelson, Williams, and the President climb down. Before they do, Nelson says, "The firing's stopped." The President says, "But not for long." Seaview sails along the surface soon, with all aboard.
REVIEW: One of the best climaxes--fights of the entire series accompanied by one of the most exciting scores of the series. This episode is often compared with the original 1960s MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE with which it has a lot in common with. While the first season of MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE (1966 by the way--a few years after this episode) had its share of outright attacks on the compounds...for the most part MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE involved doing things more covertly and undercover with phony names and identities, lies, clever schemes which were carefully plotted out, and subterfuge. MIST OF SILENCE has few of those aspects. It does have a Latin American country, a strong villain--actually two, and a daring escape--which feature in a few MISSIONs but not many. Both ways of telling a story are fine and MIST is one of the best episodes, certainly the best foreign intrigue story. Almost all of act four is excitement. I didn't actually get why the Libertad had to be commandeered by Crane and crew. My first sighting of this episode's tag, before having seen any of it, I was not sure this was VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA and wasn't convinced until I saw Nelson in act one (the opening credits weren't shown the first time I saw it)! We also never really find out what the metal can Ricardo dropped was--maybe some kind of scuba gear or radio to send for help or an air mask? A very good and tense episode.
Hugo Friedhoder also scored: AN AFFAIR TO REMEMBER, THE BARBARIAN AND THE GEISHA, BOY ON A DOLPHIN, ONE EYED JACKS, 7 CITIES OF GOLD, ABOVE AND BEYOND, YOUNG LIONS, and THIS EARTH IS MINE. All of these are available on CD as should his marvelous MIST OF SILENCE should be.