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Young Indiana Jones is a television series that explores the life of the legendary hero Indiana Jones before he became famous. The series was created by George Lucas, who also created the Indiana Jones film franchise. The series ran for two seasons from 1992 to 1993 and was later re-edited into 22 television films under the title The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones. The series is a treasure trove of entertainment and education for fans of Indiana Jones and history lovers alike. In this blog post, we will give you an overview of the Young Indiana Jones series, and how it showcases the character’s curiosity, courage, and passion for learning and exploration.
The Series Concept
The series was designed as an educational program for children and teenagers, spotlighting historical figures and important events of the early 20th century. The series follows the adventures of Indiana Jones as a child, a teenager, and a young adult, who travels the world with his parents, his tutor, his friends, and his enemies. The series features a unique format of an elderly Indiana Jones (played by George Hall) in present-day New York City encountering people who spur him to reminisce and tell stories about his past adventures. These stories would either involve him as a young boy (8 to 10, played by Corey Carrier) or as a teenager and young adult (16 to 21, played by Sean Patrick Flanery). The series also features Harrison Ford as a 50-year-old Indy in one episode.
The series aims to inspire and inform viewers about different cultures, historical events, and personalities that shaped the world. The series also explores different themes and issues, such as war, peace, love, friendship, family, identity, morality, and faith. The series also incorporates real historical footage and documents into the fictional narrative, creating a realistic and immersive experience.
The Series Highlights
The series covers a wide range of topics and locations, from archaeology to art, from politics to science, and from Africa to Asia. The series also introduces many famous people from history, such as Winston Churchill, Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway, Albert Einstein, T.E. Lawrence, Mahatma Gandhi, and many more. The series also features many references and connections to the Indiana Jones films, such as the origin of Indy’s fear of snakes, his first encounter with the Nazis, his relationship with his father, and his discovery of various artifacts.
Some of the highlights of the series include:
- Indy runs away from home and joins the Mexican Revolution, where he meets Pancho Villa and learns about the horrors of war.
- Indy enlisting in the Belgian army during World War I, where he fights in the trenches, becomes a spy, and befriends T.E. Lawrence.
- Indy traveling to Africa, where he meets Albert Schweitzer and Frederick Selous, and learns about conservation and humanitarianism.
- Indy pursuing a 140-carat diamond that once belonged to Alexander the Great, which leads him to Egypt, Greece, and Java.
- Indy meeting famous figures from history, art, literature, music, and science.
- Indy participating in various historical events, such as the Russian Revolution, the Irish War of Independence, the Versailles Peace Conference, and the Scopes Trial.
The Series Legacy
The series was praised for its educational value and production quality. The series won 10 Emmy Awards and a Peabody Award for its excellence in broadcasting. The series also influenced many other works of fiction and non-fiction that feature young versions of famous characters or historical figures. The series also inspired many viewers to pursue their own interests and passions in life.
The series is available to stream on Disney+, where it can be enjoyed by new generations of fans. The series is also a great companion to the Indiana Jones films, which are also available on Disney+. The series is a testament to the enduring appeal and legacy of one of the most beloved characters of all time.
Some more facts and trivia that you might find interesting:
- The series was filmed on location in over 30 countries, using authentic sets, costumes, and props. The series had a budget of about $1.5 million per episode, which was considered very high for a television series at the time.
- The series employed various talented directors, such as Bille August, David Hare, Nicolas Roeg, and Terry Jones. Some of the directors also had cameo appearances in the series, such as Terry Jones as Marcello, a French poet in Paris; and Mike Newell as a British officer in India.
- The series also featured many guest stars, such as Elizabeth Hurley as Vicky Prentiss, a British spy and Indy’s love interest in London; Vanessa Redgrave as Mrs. Prentiss, Vicky’s mother and a suffragette; Christopher Lee as Count Ottokar Graf Czernin, an Austrian diplomat and Indy’s enemy in Vienna; and Max von Sydow as Sigmund Freud, the famous psychoanalyst and Indy’s mentor in Vienna.
- The series also had some connections to the Star Wars franchise, another creation of George Lucas. For example, Frank Oz, who voiced Yoda in the Star Wars films, also voiced the narrator of the companion documentary series. Also, Anthony Daniels, who played C-3PO in the Star Wars films, also played Francois, a French intelligence agent and Indy’s ally in Barcelona.
- The series also had some references to other works of fiction and pop culture. For example, in one episode, Indy meets a young Agatha Christie, who is inspired by his adventures to write her first mystery novel. In another episode, Indy meets a young Norman Rockwell, who paints a portrait of him that resembles the cover of the first issue of Boys’ Life magazine. In yet another episode, Indy meets a young Al Capone, who is working as a waiter in Chicago.
The Series Reception and Awards:
This heading would cover how the Young Indiana Jones series was received by critics and audiences, and what awards and recognition it won for its quality and innovation.
The Series Re-Editing and Re-Releasing:
This heading would cover how the Young Indiana Jones series was re-edited into 22 television films, and how they were re-released on DVD and streaming platforms.
The Series Influence and Impact:
This heading would cover how the Young Indiana Jones series influenced other works of fiction and non-fiction that feature young versions of famous characters or historical figures, and how it inspired viewers to pursue their own interests and passions in life.
The Series Availability and Streaming:
This heading would cover where and how viewers can watch the Young Indiana Jones series today, such as on Disney+ or other platforms.
The Series Future and Possibilities:
This heading would cover whether there are any plans or hopes for continuing or reviving the Young Indiana Jones series, such as with new episodes, spin-offs, or adaptations.