Friends and Heroes
|Friends and Heroes|
|Genre||Children's television series|
|Created by||Brian D. Brown
Eric J. Danenberg
|Starring||Austin Di lulio
|Theme music composer||Mark Topham|
|Ending theme||"Looking for a Hero"
by Lauren Waterworth
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of seasons||3|
|No. of episodes||39|
|Executive producer(s)||Alison Dorricott
|Producer(s)||Gary Kurtz (series 1)
Naomi Jones (series 2 & 3)
|Location(s)||Ancient Alexandria, Jerusalem and Rome|
|Running time||25 minutes (per episode)|
|Original network||CBBC & TBN|
|Original release||March 12, 2007|
Friends and Heroes is a Christian children's program that airs on TBN, Smile of a Child TV, and was also shown on BBC TV. The show is both traditionally animated (for the adventure story) and computer animated (for the Bible stories). It takes place from 69 - 71 AD. There are three series each of 13 Episodes: Series 1 is set in Alexandria, Egypt; Series 2 in Jerusalem and Series 3 in Rome. The series was created by Brian D. Brown and Eric J. Danenberg, who also worked on The Storykeepers.
The show starts with a recap of last week's episode, relevant or not. Then the theme song plays. Act 1 begins with the name of the episode. There's usually about ten minutes of story and then a Bible story, followed by Act 2. There's more story and then another Bible story. Unless it is a two-part episode, the problem is resolved after the second Bible story. There are, however, three bible stories in one episode.
List of Friends and Heroes episodes
The time is 69 AD. The place is Alexandria. There is a rebellion going in nearby Judea by the Jews and Christians. In response, the Governor, Tiberius, orders his men, led by Brutacus and Tobias, to crack down on the Jews and Christians.
In the first episode, we are introduced to the family of Samuel, Diana, their son Macky, and their rarely seen parrot, Pontius, who live in Delta Quarter on the port of Alexandria. They are rebels who hide other rebels in their house. Samuel's friend, a commander for the rebels in Judea, sends his daughters, Leah and Rebecca, to live with Samuel's family.
In episode two, Macky and Rebecca have an encounter with a girl named Portia while riding horses. after talking, they find out that she is the Governor's niece. She becomes fast friends with Samuel's family, but they never tell her that they are rebels.
In episode three, we are introduced to Miriam and Nathan, Samuel and Diana's friends, as well as fellow rebels. We are also introduced to their adopted African son, Sollie.
The entire first season is one journey after another of trying to protect rebels without the Governor or his cronies find out. In the third-to-last episode, however, Tobias finds out the truth and they are all forced to flee Alexandria.
Macky and Portia arrive in Jerusalem during the Roman siege. The people inside are starving, whilst the Romans grow desperate to break through the city walls.
Outside the city, Macky makes several key acquaintances. One is Isaac, who pretends to be senile most of the time, but he’s actually an active member of the rebel underground. His house, filled with hidden rooms and secret passages, is a safe house for the oppressed. Here Macky links up with the rebels (zealots) who live inside Jerusalem and soon becomes a courier between Jerusalem and the outside world.
Inside Jerusalem, Macky meets a girl, Sarah. Macky is drawn to Sarah’s idealism, and this puts a strain on his relationship with Portia. He also meets a Roman officer named Lucius, widowed father of two young children and secretly a Friend of Jesus – he was one of Paul’s guards, many years earlier in Rome.
Macky learns to trust Lucius and he becomes a valued secret ally as Macky faces his two old adversaries from Alexandria: Tobias and Brutacus. Towards the end of the siege, Macky takes greater and greater risks and is finally captured by the Romans.
Portia tries to intervene, but can’t get him released. Instead she ensures that Macky is sent to Rome, her next destination, and his only hope.
Arriving in Rome, the centre of power, culture, civilization and also a snake pit of intrigue and treachery, Macky finds himself in gladiator school for Circus Maximus, where the only rule is kill or be killed. Macky wants to do neither, so Portia intervenes with a Senator, Antonius, who takes Macky as a slave.
Macky discovers that Antonius is a secret Friend of Jesus and that at night, he dons a mask and goes out and rescues fellow Friends of Jesus from jail or helps them escape from slave-masters. Soon Macky in a disguise of his own starts helping the Senator.
Antonius has an enemy in the Senate - Marcus, who blames all the Empire’s woes on the Friends of Jesus. Marcus would like to prove the notorious masked rebel is actually his enemy, Antonius. But Antonius is too clever for him. Marcus enlists the help of Tiberius, Brutacus, Tobias and Tobias’ mother Luciana, an expert manipulator and political in-fighter with friends in high places.
Marcus’s noose begins to tighten around Macky and Antonius and Macky’s and Portia’s relationship deepens and matures through the difficult choices they have to make. Portia will be forced to make the most difficult decision of all: wealth, power and comfort or love and faith?
- Len Carlson - Narrator
- Austin Di Iulio - Macky
- Sarah Gadon - Portia
- Cedric Smith - Tiberius
- Tony Daniels - Tobias
- Howard Jerome - Brutacus
- Jamie Watson - Pontius
- Benedict Campbell - Samuel
- Alyson Court - Diana
- Bailey Stocker - Rebecca
- Emma Pustil - Leah
- A.J. Saudin - Sollie
- Diane Fabian - Miriam
- John Stocker - Nathan
- Aaryn Doyle - Flore
- Scott Beaudin - Anthony
- John Ralston - Lucius/Elijah/Jonah
- Philip Akin - Isaac/ John Ralston
- Martha MacIsaac - Sarah
- Alison Sealy-Smith - Devorah
- Tim Hamaguchi - Abe
- Vanessa Thompson - Rachel
- Robert Bockstael - Senator Antonius/Masked Rebel
- Elizabeth Hanna - Luciana
- Scott McCord - Dudemus
- Paul O'Sullivan - Marcus
- Lyon Smith - Absolom
- Jordan Todosey - Sophia
- David Keeley - Amikam
- Juan Chioran - Peter/Pompano/2nd Judean Rebel/Fisherman #2
- Martin Roach - Jesus/God/1st Judean Rebel
- Robert Norman Smith - Aischros/2nd Guard/Judah/Pharaoh/King Xerxes
- Shauna MacDonald - Jezebel/Lydia/Naomi
- Lawrence Bayne - Caleb
- Stephen Bogaert - Aaron
- Tony Fleury - Courtier/Thomas
- Adrian Truss - Courtier 1+2/Joseph/Supervisor
- John Neville - Claxus
- Ruth Marshall - Delilah/Eza
- Mitchell Eisner - Caius
- Kristina Nicoll - Esther/Ruth
- Marty Moreau - Spy 2
- Ron Rubin - Soldier
- Olive French - King David
- Peter Oldring - Young David
- Larry Byrne - Ahab
- Starting with the second season, the show is produced in HD.
- All three series have now been translated and dubbed into
- Chinese (Mandarin, Taiwan Mandarin)
- Portuguese (Brazil)
- Spanish (American)
- There is currently a Manx Gaelic translation of Friends and Heroes in production by P. E. Rogers and R. C. Carswell funded by the Manx Heritage Foundation.
- Naomi Jones, producer for Series 2 & 3, also produced The Miracle Maker and Testament.
- Brian D. Brown and Eric J. Danenberg, creators of the show, were both writers for another animated series that takes place in Biblical times, The Storykeepers.
- Gary Kurtz, the producer for season one, has produced many hit films such as American Graffiti, Star Wars, and The Empire Strikes Back.