The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones (1992) – Oganga, The Giver and Taker of Life

Indiana Jones (Sean Patrick Flanery) continues his service in the Belgian army during his time in Africa in this television movie that aired on 14 November, 1999. This epic tale aired as two episodes 1 April, and 8 April, 1992.

Series creator George Lucas provides the story, but Frank Darabont pens the script that delves into an incredibly emotional story that pushes Indy and Remy (Ronny Coutteure) to their limits.

German East Africa, December 1917

Indy travels across a war torn Africa on an important mission for the Allies, his men relying on him, and serving with incredible loyalty, but things begin to go awry when they discover a small village that has almost been completely wiped out by disease.

Amongst the sick and dying a young boy is discovered, and Indiana has to make a decision that will haunt him.

But things become even worse when one of his men, Barthelemy (Isaach de Bankole) bring the child with them.

Indy comes into conflict over the matter with his commanding officer, Major Boucher (Michael Duchaussoy) who seems to have less than a high opinion of the young, and newly promoted captain.

In fact his problems with Boucher is present from the beginning, which involves a huge attack sequence, but things between the two come to a head with the child, and Boucher’s increasing unpredictability due to illness.

The illness spreads through the entire squad, and many of the men desert.

Indy deals with the true meaning of the war in Africa, and his increasing disillusionment of the conflict.


Congo, January 1917

At the height of his depression, and his struggle across the continent Indy falls sick, but he and the surviving members of his squad who are still with him, including Remy, are taken in and tended to by Albert Schweitzer (Friedrich von Thun).

Initially, Indy is so delusional with illness that he attempts to blow up the boat he and his men have hired, to keep it from falling into German (read as Schweitzer’s) hands, but as he recovers he sees his folly, and his time with the renowned doctor restores his hope and humanity.

The episode also features one of my favourite pieces by Bach canata – Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring.

These two episodes, pairing nicely into one feature are great for Indiy’s character, he puts him a dark place, layers his character nicely, and gives him a nice through line for the story.

He also gets some nice moments with Remy, as these episodes push their friendship to the breaking point. It’s wonderfully and believably done, and once again adds some real weight to the story and the characters.

As the story comes to its end, the mission, and its cost is laid out plainly for Indy and Remy as they are given orders to return to France, which leads them to next week’s adventure… the Attack of the Hawkmen!




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s