Good morning, agent. Your mission, if you choose to accept is to learn where the Syndicate got it's start and why fans of the franchise are loving the movie. NO self destructs here, just some scrolling to find out more.
With the debut of Mission:Impossible-Rogue Nation the concept of a world wide criminal/terrorist organization might seem like a new idea to fans of the film franchise, but to long time fans and viewers of the classic TV series The Syndicate is a well known adversary of the IMF, the following is a few of the episodes that are highlights of the Syndicates infamous career.
While earlier seasons had a more international/Cold War flair, the later season became more and more involved with organized crime the Syndicate being the main villains, The final season had the most episodes of this kind.
The Frame/Season 1/Episode 17
The first appearance of the Syndicate in the series, the team led by Dan Briggs, played by Steven Hill in his only season with the team, stops a gangster who is killing off politicians. Their goal is to replace the dead politicians with those more sympathetic to the Syndicate. The teams con gives our bad guy the appearance of idle hands in the mobs money bags,
The Council Parts 1&2/Season 2/Episodes 11&12
The first episode of the series to introduce the Syndicate. Disguise and mimic expert Rollin Hand, played by the great Martin Landau, infiltrates the group as one of their own. By maneuvering funds into a Swiss bank account, the bad guys plan to shake up the U.S. Gold reserve. The IMF not only gets the records they need to stop them, but sets up the bad guys to take out one of their own.
The Killing/Season 2/Episode 22
A powerful crime lord sets the foundation of a new Murder, Inc. for the Syndicate. However some tech magic from team tough guy and genius Barney Collier, played by Greg Morris, and playing on the superstitions of the bad guy enable the team to take down the plans even before they start.
The Fountain/Season 7/Episode 17
The IMF has to retrieve stolen records from the Syndicate, before another Syndicate leader can grab them. Their solution, convince the guy with the records he has found a secret society who holds the Fountain of Youth.
Speed/Season 7/Episode 19
The IMF must stop a powerful Syndicate drug dealer who has stolen three tons of methamphetamines from a factory to sell. The IMF replaces the dealers addicted daughter with one of their own to take down the bad guy before he can make the ultimate deal for the Syndicate.
Imitation/Season 7/Episode 22
In the final episode of the original TV series the IMF must recover the crown jewels from a thief, place them secretly into a vault in the embassy of a country hostile to the US. All while being undetected, with no outside help, and before the thief can sell the jewels to the Syndicate.
With such a sordid past from the original series, it's easy to see how these villains were the perfect adversaries for Ethan Hunt's team to face and reestablish the IMF team.