27. It's All Done With Mirrors
A Soviet scientist kidnaps Kelly and brainwashes him into believing that Scotty is a traitor and must be killed.
French title: Les miroirs de la haine
Italian title: Il gioco degli specchi
Carroll O'Connor (Karolyi), Fay Spain (Vanessa), Richard Bull (Blaine), James Frawley (Greenburg), Roy Jenson (Tate), Lawrence Montaigne (Smollett), Arnold Lessing (Spanish Guitarist), Gene Twombly (Berger), Bert Elliot (Vlacek), Dina Lerner (Volter), Joe Gold (Skiar), Joe Raciti (Rubez)
13 April 1966
Currently available on DVD
A Soviet brainwashing expert named Karolyi uses a beautiful blonde as bait to lure Kelly into a trap; he's programmed to believe that Scotty is a traitor. It's all done with mirrors, and in a very short period of time. When the agency catches on to what's happened, they opt to eliminate Kelly, but Scotty insists on trying to save his partner, even at the risk of his own life. He's betting that three years of friendship can overcome whatever programming Karolyi has done. But when Kelly takes him away, at gunpoint, to a scenic overlook with a nice view of Acapulco harbor, intent on carrying out an execution, Scotty starts having second thoughts about the wisdom of his plan.
If one can suspend belief sufficiently to accept that an agent as strong-willed as Kelly Robinson can be brainwashed in 24 hours, then this is a gripping episode with plenty going for it. Carroll O'Connor plays the sinister Karolyi with gleeful style, and Culp does an outstanding job as a man torn between what he thinks is the right thing to do and his friendship with Scott. Meanwhile, Cosby refines his character, giving us an Alexander Scott who is unflinching in his loyalty to Kelly, and willing to play a risky game right down to the wire. There's a nice twist at the end, too, as the unscrupulous Karolyi expresses a desire to defect as soon as he is nabbed by Kelly and Scotty.