Mission Impossible Primer!

This Friday Mission Impossible: Fallout hits theaters. Fallout is the 6th entry into the long running Mission Impossible franchise, the first having been released in 1996. So, if you haven’t kept up with Ethan Hunt and the IMF during that time, what do you need to know before seeing Fallout?

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Who is Ethan Hunt, and what is IMF?

Ethan Hunt is a member of the Impossible Mission Force, an independent espionage agency based in the United States. IMF agents are specially skilled in espionage, combat, and technology making them perfect for missions that are too risky and politically dangerous for other well-known agencies. Not only does the IMF have uniquely skilled agents, but they have access to highly advanced technology, allowing them to scale buildings, hack into secure databases, and even assume different identities.

Most importantly, IMF works in secret with a contingency plan of plausible deniability, referred to as “Ghost Protocol.” In the event of a failed mission, IMF agents are disavowed by their government,labeled as rogue agents, and forced to forgo their normal resources and support. We see the way that this plays out in the appropriately named fourth film, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol.

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Who is Solomon Lane?

If you’ve seen the trailer for Fallout, then you’ve heard the sinister musings of Solomon Lane, saying to Ethan, “The end you’ve always feared is coming, and the blood will be on your hands.” If you are unfamiliar with the modern Mission Impossible entries, you may not understand who this character is, or what he wants. Lane is the former leader of the shadow terrorist group known as the “Syndicate,” the primary antagonists of the film directly preceding Fallout, titled Rogue Nation. The Syndicate and the IMF share some similarities, both having been created by their governments as secret espionage agencies. However, Lane and the Syndicate went rogue, intent on using the agency and its resources to shape the political world through horrible terrorist attacks. The trailer for Fallout seems to show him in captivity, however it’s likely that he will not stay that way for long.

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Who else is in the mix?

It looks as if Mission Impossible: Fallout will include several familiar faces, including Ving Rames as expert hacker Luther Stickell, who, along with Tom Cruise, is the only actor to be in all 6 Mission Impossible films. Also in Fallout is IMF technician turned field agent Benji Dunn, played by Simon Pegg. Benji and Luther are both extremely good friends of Ethan’s, so it’s no surprise to see them returning for the new installment. Also returning to the fray is Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson), who played a major role in Rogue Nation. Faust was an undercover British operative hoping to infiltrate Solomon Lane’s Syndicate, and helps Hunt and the IMF in capturing him. Trailers are unclear as to what role Ilsa will play, though it looks as if events may place her and Hunt at odds.

Authors: Josh Johnson

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