Peter Graves had the square jaw and deep voice of a leading man. His gray hair gave him an aura of, well, gravitas that made him the perfect choice for the head of the Mission: Impossible team in one of the biggest hits of 1960’s television. And it made him the perfect choice to spoof that image of power and authority in Airplane!. The younger brother of “Gunsmoke’s” James Arness, Graves appeared in shlock horror films like “Killers from Space” and “It Conquered the World” and in a memorable role as prisoner of war with something to hide in the Oscar-winning “Stalag 17.” But like his brother, he found his place in a popular television series. And he had a sense of humor about himself, as shown in this charming GEICO commercial. He will be missed.
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