Cobra, take over

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Television series
German title Cobra, take over /
Impossible mission
Original title Mission: Impossible
Cobra Take Over, Title.jpg
Country of production United States
original language English
Year (s) 1966-1973
Desilu Productions (1966–1968)
Paramount Television (1968–1973)
length 48 minutes
Episodes 171 in 7 seasons
genre Drama , crime , action series
idea Bruce Geller
music Lalo Schifrin
First broadcast Sep 17, 1966 (USA) on CBS
first broadcast
December 29, 1967 on German television

Cobra, Take Over (Originally Mission: Impossible ) is an American television series produced by Desilu Productions (later Paramount Television ) for CBS . 171 episodes were created between 1966 and 1973, spread over seven seasons.

Only 22 episodes of the series ran on German television ( ARD ) between 1967 and 1969 . 28 further episodes were broadcast there in 1976/1977 under the deviating title Impossible Order . The remaining 121 episodes were only shown by ProSieben and Kabelkanal (and its successor, kabel eins ) in the early 1990s . The series was later seen daily on pay TV on Sky Nostalgie .

The saying "Kobra, take over!", After which the ARD episodes were named, was never used in the English original.


The focus of the series is the so-called Impossible Missions Force (IMF) , a team of freelance secret agents who receive impossible assignments from the government , which they carry out around the world with the help of sophisticated technical apparatus and deception maneuvers. The agents sometimes slip into the roles of their opponents with the help of face masks. The episodes often take place in fictional states with dictatorial regimes . In the later seasons, the IMF also increasingly carries out assignments against the syndicate within the USA.

The episodes almost always follow a uniform scheme: the team leader receives his assignment at the beginning by tape (but sometimes also by record or cassette ) at different places (cinemas, parks, junkyards, ...). The message always has the same sequence: “Good morning, Mister Phelps (Briggs)…” The job description follows, which ends with the words: “Should you or someone from your special unit be captured or killed, the minister will have all knowledge of this Deny operation. This tape will self-destruct in five seconds. Good luck, Jim (Dan). Kobra, take over! "

Then the head of operations puts together his team, which (from the second season) usually consists of the same members. The procedure is discussed at a meeting in the boss's apartment. In the first three seasons, the team consisted mostly of the leader Jim Phelps (or Dan Briggs), the model Cinnamon Carter, the quick-change artist Rollin Hand, the electronics specialist Barney Collier and the muscle man Willy Armitage.

During the episode, the viewer watches as the team's complex plan unfolds. The end of almost every episode also follows a pattern: the team gathers after successfully completing the assignment and disappears undetected.


As early as 1968/1969, the cinema film Mission: Impossible vs. The mob . The content was ultimately a double episode of the series cut to the theatrical version.

In 1988, Paramount produced a new edition on behalf of ABC , which could no longer build on the success of the original series and was discontinued after a total of 35 episodes during the second season. In this new edition, in addition to Peter Graves, who was already seen as the team boss in the original, Phil Morris, whose father Greg embodied the technology genius Barney Collier in the original, also played. The series ran under the German title In Secret Mission . After the success of the movie (1996) it was also broadcast under the title Mission: Impossible - In a Secret Mission .

Tom Cruise took up this material in the 1990s and finally released the film Mission: Impossible , which was based on the series, in 1996. Cruise also starred as the secret agent Ethan Hunt . This film was followed by Mission: Impossible II (2000), Mission: Impossible III (2006), Mission: Impossible - Phantom Protocol (2011) and Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015). The sixth part of the Mission: Impossible - Fallout series opened in German cinemas on August 2, 2018. The six films in the Mission Impossible film series grossed over $ 3.5 billion and are 13th in the list of the most successful film series (as of October 2018)


The title melody and partly the background music for the series was written by Lalo Schifrin . It developed into a classic of TV melodies and was also taken up again for the later films.

What is unusual about the theme song to the 5 / 4 -Stroke was composed what constituted its special charm. This signature is rarely used because it is extremely difficult for the composer, in 5 / 4 a rounded composition (the sg -Stroke Groove produce). In addition to the theme song for the series Mission: Impossible take is the only song in the 5 / 4 was written -Stroke yet popular, Take Five .

The peculiarity of the 5 / 4 -Takts was then but in composition to the title tune of the movie series not retained. There the melody line was transferred to an ordinary 44 time.

The American nu-metal band Limp Bizkit contributed the track Take a Look Around to the movie Mission: Impossible II , which is a cover version of the original theme. It appeared on the band's third studio album, Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water , in 2000 and was also the first single. The song reached number 4 in the German charts. It was in third position in the UK charts and even second in Spain and Finland.

Awards (selection)

The television series was honored with numerous prizes. Lalo Schifrin, composer of the theme music, was awarded a Grammy in 1968 for his music for the series . In the same year, the series won a Golden Globe in the categories of Best TV Show and Best TV Star - Male . In 1971, actor Peter Graves was awarded the Golden Globe for Best TV Star. From 1967 to 1973, Kobra was able to win five Emmys taking over .


Bruce Geller's idea forms the basis for two television series and six films.

  • Original series:
    • 1966–1973: 7 seasons


  • The actually existing task force Cobra of the Austrian Ministry of the Interior got its name after it had been repeatedly compared by journalists with the fictitious organization Kobra.
  • While the character Jim Phelps is one of the good guys in the two series, he is the antagonist in the 1996 film adaptation , played by Jon Voight .
  • The 300th episode of Alarm für Cobra 11 - The Autobahn Police , which aired on April 7, 2016, is titled "Cobra, Take Over!"


The synchronization of Mission: Impossible is divided into different phases, which were commissioned by different television stations and processed by different dubbing companies over a period of over 20 years. All episodes are now available in a German version.

First synchronous phase - Kobra, take over

  • First broadcast: ARD, December 1967 to May 1968
  • Nine of the total of 28 episodes of the 1st season were cut in random order.
  • The synchronization was created by the Bavaria Atelier Gesellschaft .
actor character speaker
Steven Hill Daniel Briggs Hellmut Lange
Barbara Bain Cinnamon Carter Rose-Marie Kirstein
Greg Morris Barney Collier Manfred Schott
Peter Lupus Willy Armitage Norbert Gastell
Martin Landau Rollin hand Erik Schumann
Bob Johnson Tape voice Hanns Müller-Trenck

Second synchronous phase - Kobra, take over

  • First broadcast: ARD, June 1969 to November 1969
  • From the 49 episodes of the 2nd and 3rd season, 13 episodes were selected, which in turn were broadcast in a disordered and abridged manner.
  • The synchronization was created by the Bavaria Atelier Gesellschaft . The dialogues were written by Alice Franz and directed by Hans Grimm .
actor character speaker
Peter Graves Jim Phelps Joachim Cadenbach
Martin Landau Rollin hand Erik Schumann
Barbara Bain Cinnamon Carter Rose-Marie Kirstein
Greg Morris Barney Collier Manfred Schott
Peter Lupus Willy Armitage Norbert Gastell
Bob Johnson Tape voice Wolf Ackva (2nd season) and Christian Marschall (3rd season)

Third synchronous phase - impossible mission

  • First broadcast: June 1976 to December 1976
  • 23 episodes from seasons 4 to 7 were selected and broadcast in disordered order in 1978 and 1987, respectively. All roles were filled with other speakers.
  • The synchronization was created by the Bavaria Atelier Gesellschaft .
actor character speaker
Peter Graves Jim Phelps Hartmut Reck
Leonard Nimoy Paris - "The Great" Klaus Kindler
Greg Morris Barney Collier Christian Brückner
Peter Lupus Willy Armitage Fred Klaus
Lee Meriwether Tracey Karin Kernke (4th season)
Lesley Warren Dana Lambert Marion Hartmann (5th season)
Lynda Day George Lisa Casey Rose-Marie Kirstein (6th and 7th season)
Sam Elliot Doug Lane Michael Brennicke (5th and 6th season)
Barbara Anderson Mimi Davis Viktoria Brams (7th season)
Bob Johnson Tape voice Wolf Ackva

Fourth synchronous phase - Kobra, take over

actor character speaker
Peter Graves Jim Phelps Rüdiger Joswig
Steven Hill Daniel Briggs Frank-Otto Schenk
Martin Landau Rollin hand Lothar Hinze
Leonard Nimoy Paris - "The Great" Hans-Werner Bussinger
Greg Morris Barney Collier Tom Deininger
Peter Lupus Willy Armitage Uwe Jellinek
Lee Meriwether Tracey Hanna Petkoff (4th season)
Lesley Warren Dana Lambert Hanna Petkoff (5th season)
Lynda Day George Lisa Casey Ute Brankatsch (6th and 7th season)
Sam Elliot Doug Lane Andreas Hosang (5th season)
Barbara Anderson Mimi Davis Cathrin Vaessen (7th season)
Bob Johnson Tape voice Klaus Miedel

Fifth synchronous phase - DVD - dubbing

  • In 2006 the series was released on DVD. Since the ARD episodes were shortened, it was decided in the first two seasons to synchronize the missing sentences with similar sounding speakers. From the 3rd season onwards, the previously shortened sentences were left in the original.
  • The episode "Echo of Yesterday" was dubbed for the first time with the speakers of the fourth synchronous phase. Only the tape now had the voice of Ernst Meincke , since Klaus Miedel had already passed away.
actor character speaker
Peter Graves Jim Phelps Thomas Petruo
Steven Hill Daniel Briggs Thomas Nero Wolff
Martin Landau Rollin hand Klaus Nietz
Barbara Bain Cinnamon Carter Traudel Haas
Greg Morris Barney Collier Charles Rettinghaus
Peter Lupus Willy Armitage Stephan Thomas

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Mission: Impossible take in the Internet Movie Database (English)
  2. On a secret mission on
  3. ^ Box office results for the "Mission: Impossible" films on
  4. Cobra, take over. In: German dubbing file , accessed on March 2, 2017 .
  5. Kobra, take over on