The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne

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The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne
Created by Gavin Scott
Starring Michael Praed
Francesca Hunt
Michel Courtemanche
Chris Demetral
Opening theme The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne Theme by Nick Glennie-Smith
Country of origin United Kingdom
Canada
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 22
Production
Executive producer(s) Nicolas Clermont
Pierre de Lespinois
Neil Dunn
Michael Huffington
Richard Jackson
Gavin Scott
Running time 60 min.
Broadcast
Original channel CBC and syndicated
Original run June 18, 2000 – December 16, 2000

The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne is a 22-episode science fiction television series in the steampunk genre that first aired in June 2000 on CBC Television in Canada. The series first ran in the United States on cable on The Sci-Fi Channel (now Syfy).

The plot concept is predicated on a vast fictional conspiracy beginning with the revelation that Jules Verne did not merely write the stories behind his famous science fiction classic books Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Journey to the Center of the Earth or Around the World in Eighty Days — but actually experienced these adventures personally.

A television technological historic footnote, this work was the first hour-long series filmed entirely in HDTV format.

Characters[edit]

Premise[edit]

Jules Verne is a struggling author who joins Phileas, Rebecca, and Passepartout after a chance encounter. Phileas leads the group. Dapper, daring, intelligent, brash, and arrogant, Praed described him as essentially a more flawed version of James Bond. Rebecca Fogg is his second cousin; it is clear that Phileas and Rebecca are attracted to one another, but it remains platonic. Passepartout is Phileas' valet, and an accomplished inventor/mechanician. Although Phileas treats Passepartout very poorly (at least by today's standards), the servant is a valued member of the crew.

The group's only recurring enemy is the League of Darkness, an international terrorist organization aiming to use steampunk technology to rule the world. Its leader: Count Gregory (Rick Overton), a steampunk cyborg who originally died 500 years ago.

Most episodes took advantage of both the Wold Newton family and metafictional possibilities of the premise. Mark Twain, the Holy Grail, and Cardinal Richelieu (played by Michael Praed) all made appearances.

Some parts of the show are truthfully historical, such as the mention of Nicolas Poussin or Verne's friendship with Alexandre Dumas. However, the show cannot be historically placed. For example, at least one episode ("Southern Comfort") takes place during the American Civil War (1861–1865). During the Civil War, the historical Jules Verne was already married; the fictional character remains single throughout the first season. Also, the historical Verne would have been in his mid-thirties at the time of that conflict, whereas Chris Demetral, the actor who portrayed him on television, was in his mid-twenties.

The Aurora[edit]

The Aurora is at the heart of The Secret Adventure of Jules Verne. The world's first dirigible airship, property of Mr. Phileas Fogg of London, it combines unexampled luxury, total mobility and an extraordinary array of weapons and gadgets. It is to this series what the Starship Enterprise is to Star Trek: both as a home base and also as the route to the world of adventure. The Aurora became Phileas' property after he won it in a poker game that was rigged by the British government.

Episodes[edit]

Episode Title Notable guest stars
1. In the Beginning David Warner and Rick Overton
2. Queen Victoria and the Giant Mole Tracy Scoggins
3. Rockets of the Dead Patrick Duffy
4. The Cardinal's Design John Rhys-Davies and Rene Auberjonois
5. The Cardinal's Revenge John Rhys-Davies and Rene Auberjonois
6. The Eyes of Lazarus Michael Moriarty and Margot Kidder
7. Lord of Air and Darkness Sonia Vigneault and Rick Overton
8. Southern Comfort Larissa Laskin, Sonia Vigneault and Rick Overton
9. Let There Be Light Michael Yarmush
10. The Ballad of Steeley Joe
11. The Black Glove of Melchizedek Kim Chan and Nigel Bennett
12. Dust to Dust Pascale Bussieres
13. The Golem Caroline Dhavernas
14. Crusader in the Crypt
15. The Strange Death of Professor Marechal Polly Draper
16. The Rocket's Red Glare Rick Overton
17. Rocket to the Moon R. H. Thomson
18. The Inquisitor Mako
19. Royalty Geordie Johnson
20. Secret of the Realm Rick Overton
21. The Victorian Candidate Bill Paterson and Keir Cutler
22. The Book of Knowledge David Warner and Michael McManus

Soundtrack[edit]

The series' main theme and incidental music was composed by Nick Glennie-Smith. In April 2011, Perseverance Records released a 2-CD soundtrack of the series' music. The soundtrack included the main theme, closing theme, "bumpers" (played at commercial breaks), and suites from every episode of the series apart from "The Book of Knowledge", for which the composer and the recording studio were unable to locate the original tapes.[1]

CD 1
No. Title Length
1 Opening Titles 0:53
2 In the Beginning 2:34
3 Queen Victoria and the Giant Mole 13:25
4 Bumper #1 0:09
5 Rockets of the Dead 11:31
6 The Cardinal's Design 2:04
7 The Cardinal's Revenge 2:33
8 The Eyes of Lazarus 2:00
9 Bumper #2 0:11
10 Lord of Air and Darkness 1:56
11 Southern Comfort 19:05
12 Let There Be Light 7:56
13 The Ballad of Steeley Joe 6:51
14 Bumper #3 0:09
CD 2
No. Title Length
1 Bumper #4 0:09
2 The Black Glove of Melchizedek 9:02
3 Dust to Dust 6:17
4 The Golem 3:51
5 Crusader in the Crypt 1:53
6 The Strange Death of Professor Marechal 4:32
7 The Rocket's Red Glare 5:53
8 Rocket to the Moon 3:55
9 Bumper #5 0:09
10 The Inquisitor 5:25
11 Royalty 12:38
12 Secret of the Realm 6:00
13 The Victorian Candidate 7:27
14 End Credits 0:42

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Interview with album editor Gergely Hubai at hans-zimmer.com". Retrieved 29 March 2011. 

External links[edit]