Relic Hunter

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Relic Hunter
RelicHunterTitle.JPG
Main Screen-ing Title
GenreMystery
Fantasy
Action
Adventure
Created byGil Grant
StarringTia Carrere
Christien Anholt
Lindy Booth
Tanja Reichert
Composer(s)Donald Quan
Country of originCanada/France Co-Production 1-2 series
Canada/United Kingdom Co-Production 3rd series
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes66 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)Jay Firestone[1]
Adam Haight
Simon MacCorkindale
Producer(s)Papa Kahungi
Ken Gord
Running time43 minutes
Production company(s)Digital Bongo Drums
Halloween Filmworks
No Equal Entertainment
Ellipse Film + Television Productions
CHUM Television
Tayel Limited
SND
DistributorParamount Domestic Television
Release
Original networkfirst-run syndication (1999-2002)
Original releaseSeptember 20, 1999 – May 20, 2002

Relic Hunter is a Canadian television series, starring Tia Carrere and Christien Anholt.[1][2]

It centers on Sydney Fox, a professor who is also a globe-trotting "relic hunter" who looks for ancient artifacts to return to museums and/or the descendants of the original owner. She is aided by her linguistic assistant Nigel and occasionally by her somewhat air-headed secretary Claudia. She often ends up battling rival hunters seeking out artifacts for monetary gain. The series includes fantasy and science fiction elements, with many of the relics featured having supposed supernatural powers or being pieces of unusually advanced technology.

It ran for three seasons in the U.S. between 1999 and 2002 after fulfilling its initial three-season, 66-episode contract, which was not renewed. In both Ireland and the United Kingdom, it aired on Sky1 and subsidiary channels, while in Canada, it aired on CityTV and Space, CTV's sister network A-Channel and Showcase. The series was shot in the Toronto area, and includes many familiar local landmarks among its locations. As of June 2018, the series airs on the Heroes and Icons cable network.

Overview[edit]

Relic Hunter follows the globe-trotting adventures of unorthodox American archaeologist Sydney Fox (Tia Carrere), and her more reserved British assistant Nigel Bailey (Christien Anholt). They are assisted at their "home base", a generic American university identified only as Trinity College, by ditzy student secretary Claudia (Lindy Booth), the spoiled and fashion-conscious daughter of one of the college's major donors. The character of Claudia was replaced in the third season by Karen Petrushky (Tanja Reichert), who is more talented than Claudia at dealing with predicaments of a bureaucratic nature.

At the beginning of each episode, there is a short flashback in which a relic or artifact is used or abused in its original time before being lost, stolen or hidden. The show cuts to Trinity College in the present day, where Sydney and Nigel are asked to find the relic by some person or agency such as a museum, private collector (in disguise) or government. Most episodes feature the duo traveling around the globe, hunting for clues in order to find the artifact. Complications abound, often with rival relic hunters getting involved, generally giving Sydney a chance to show off her martial arts prowess. It is then up to Sydney and Nigel to seize the relic and ensure it ends up in the proper hands (such as the rightful owners or a suitable museum). Each episode ends with a scene at Trinity College explaining what has happened to the relic.

Nigel shows an artifact to Sydney.

Cast and characters[edit]

Relic Hunter featured four starring roles throughout its run. The two protagonists of the series, Sydney Fox and Nigel Bailey are the only characters to appear in all 66 episodes of the series.

  • Tia Carrere as Sydney Fox (Seasons 1–3): The main protagonist and titular relic hunter of the series, Sydney works closely with Nigel Bailey whom she meets in the first episode and is proficient in both hand-to-hand (seen in most episodes) and weapons (seen in particular in episode thirty, "Roman Holiday") combat. She has many contacts all over the world, in the archaeological fields and otherwise and is very protective of both her assistants as well as her students and colleagues. She is willing to fly to any country without notice to fetch back, "save" or avenge them. She is officially Professor of Ancient Studies, and on the rare occasions she actually teaches, has been seen lecturing on anthropology, archaeology, and history.
  • Christien Anholt as Nigel Bailey (Seasons 1–3): Sydney's more reserved British teaching assistant and companion who accompanies her on her travels whilst searching for the relics. Nigel often finds himself in situations that are uncomfortable and needs Sydney's help to get out of them. This evens out as the series progresses though. He is secretly in love with Sydney.
  • Lindy Booth as Claudia (Seasons 1–2): Sydney's office assistant who often helps out Sydney and Nigel from the campus back home whilst they are abroad. She sometimes plays a vital role in finding the relic and shares witty banter with Nigel. In spite of her general incompetence, she possesses a savant-like ability for organizing unorthodox and creative solutions to travel difficulties that Sydney and Nigel face, in one case arranging for them to sneak over the Angolan border disguised as Catholic missionaries. Claudia occasionally joined Sydney and Nigel in the field, most notably during their quests for Ariadne's ball of twine and Cleopatra's necklace.
  • Tanja Reichert as Karen Petrushky (Season 3): Claudia's replacement for the final season. She was portrayed as far more competent than Claudia at her actual job, though she had more of a habit of getting kidnapped.

There were also a number of recurring characters in the series:

  • Tony Rosato as Stewie Harper (Episodes 1, 8, 21): Relic hunter who has a love-hate relationship with Sydney.
  • Thomas Kretschmann as Kurt Reiner (Episodes 6, 12): An ex-partner of Sydney turned rival.
  • Louis Mandylor as Derek Lloyd (Episodes 7, 26, 46): A CIA agent who requires Sydney's help on several occasions.
  • Lori Gordon as Lynette (Episodes 8, 10): Claudia's replacement while she's away.
  • Nancy Anne Sakovich as Cate Hemphill (Episodes 25, 34, 53; mentioned in 47, 54, 59, 66): An Interpol agent and occasional romantic interest of Nigel.
  • Crispin Bonham-Carter as Preston Bailey (Episodes 42, 65): Nigel's brother and worst enemy.
  • Simon MacCorkindale as Fabrice De Viega (Episodes 47, 58, 66): Sydney's sworn enemy who killed her mentor Alistair Newel when she was ten.

List of episodes[edit]

Title Relic Flashback Flashback location Other locations
1 “Buddha’s Bowl” Buddha’s alms bowl 523 BC Nepal Hong Kong
2 “Smoking Gun” Al Capone’s diamond-encrusted gun 1930 Chicago United States
3 “The Headless Nun” Remains of Sister Evangeline 17th C. Nova Scotia Canada
4 “Flag Day” Pioneer’s Bear Flag of California 1846 California United States
5 “Thank You Very Much” Lost guitar of Elvis Presley 1960 Germany Germany
6 “Diamond in the Rough” Magical Glove of former baseball great Jimmy Jonesboro 1946 Fenway Park, Boston United States
7 “Transformation” Paracelsus scrolls 1946 Salzburg, Austria Peru
8 “Etched in Stone” Treasure of legendary Viking Jann the Bold 935 Northumbrian Coast Sweden
9 “The Book of Love” Casanova’s Book of Love 1749 Casanova’s Hideaway, Italy Italy
10 “The Myth of the Maze” Minotaur’s Maze 3000 BC Athens Greece
11 “Irish Crown Affair” Lost crown of the last King of Ireland 1000 Ireland Dublin
12 “The Emperor’s Bride” Coffin of the bride of a Chinese Emperor 1000 BC Huang River, China Alaska
13 “Afterlife and Death” Diamond of Thutmose III 1425 BC Egypt Amsterdam
14 “Nine Lives” Statue of the cat goddess Mafdet 1895 Egypt New York
15 “Affaire de Coeur” Rings that belonged to lovers, Callum and Elena 1430 Scotland Scotland
16 “A Vanishing Art” Scepter of the Kingdom of Hungary 1897 Budapest Atlantic City
17 “A Good Year” Crown jewels of France 1792 Paris France
18 “The Last Knight” Templar Grand Master’s sword 1300 Paris, circa France
19 “Love Letter” Records proving a secret marriage on the eve of the French Revolution 1789 Village South of Paris France
20 “Possessed” Zeus’ sacred sundial 14th C. Libya Brussels
21 “Nothing but the Truth” Ruby Chalice of Truth 1534 The Barbary Coast Paris
22 “Memories of Montmartre” A tiara known as the Heart of Europe 1930s Moulin Rouge France
23 “The Put Back” Idol from the Temple of Woot 100 Kuba, Africa Democratic Republic of the Congo
24 “Dagger of Death” Dagger of Kali 500 Temple of Kali, India Calcutta and Kashmir
25 “Last of the Mochicas” Vessel believed to contain the Great Warrior Spirit of the Mochicas 662 South America Peruvian jungle
26 “The Legend of the Lost” The Kai Nomata (lost tribe) 4800 BC Vanuatu Islands New Guinea
27 “Fertile Ground” Idol of Lono 1779 Hawaii Madagascar
28 “Gypsy Jigsaw” Crown of the Romani people 1830 Romania Bucharest, Romania
29 “Three Rivers to Cross” Jade Empress 1245 Three Rivers, China Hong Kong and Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan, China
30 “Roman Holiday” Caesar’s breastplate 44 BC Rome Italy
31 “Cross of Voodoo” Haitian Cross of Utu late 18th C. Haiti New Orleans
32 “Lost Contact” Sacrificial bowl 1824 Burma Myanmar
33 “The Reel Thing” Relics of Egyptian Pharaoh Amun II 1516 BC Egypt England
34 “M.I.A.” Faberge egg 1886 St. Petersburg, Russia New York City, several clips from other episodes
35 “Out of the Past” Cleopatra’s necklace 30 BC Egypt Alexandria, Egypt
36 “Eyes of Toklamanee” Eyes of Toklamanee 1605 Mississippi Valley St Louis
37 “Run Sydney Run” Sword of Ateas 339 BC Ural Steppes Russia
38 “French Connection” Prophecy of Nostradamus 1600 Church Of Cordiers Salon France
39 “Don’t Go Into the Woods” Golden Falcon of Maribor 1711 Carpathian Mountains Ljubljana, Slovenia
40 “Midnight Flight” Ruby-encrusted scepter of Gunther the Brave 400 Germania Circa Luxembourg and Paris
41 “The Executioner’s Mask” Executioner’s Mask 1789 Bourg, France Paris
42 “The Royal Ring” Ring of Anne Boleyn 1536 Tower of London London, Leeds Castle in Kent, England
43 “Set in Stone” Magical sword of St. Gabriel 1595 Balaton, Hungary
44 “Deadline” First Christian Tau cross 1099 Jerusalem Paris
45 “Wages of Sydney” Chinese dragon’s egg 1359 Quan Shu Fortress, Manchuria New York, USA and Quan Shu, China
46 “Mr. Right” Bowl of Parvati 1459 Bali, Indonesia Singapore
47 “Sydney at Ten” Egyptian necklace 20 years ago St. Beatrice’s School Turkey
48 “The Light of Truth” Light of Truth 843 Arabia Morocco
49 “Treasure Island” The treasure of Treasure Island 1790 The Spanish Main South Seas
50 “Star of Nadir” Star of Nadir 1423 Palace of the Talibs, Endostan
51 “Vampire’s Kiss” Vampire Chalice 1720 Czechoslovakia Prague, Czech Republic and Târgovişte, Romania
52 “Devil Doll” Cursed Aztec Devil Doll 1488 Meso-America Central America
53 “Incognito” Lancet which causes anyone cut with it to gain incredible strength 1522 New Guinea Papua New Guinea, Lisbon, Portugal and Valletta, Malta
54 “All Choked Up” Statue of Athena 800 BC Greece Skyros Island, Greece
55 “Warlock of Nu Theta Phi” Wicca amulet 1692 New England Colonies
56 “Women Want to Know” Statue of Ganesha 1075 Southeast Asia
57 “Fire in the Sky” Extraterrestrial artifact 1398 Pacific Northwest
58 “Hunting with the Enemy” Ashes of Confucius 1952 Cambodia Rayong Province, Thailand
59 “Antianeirai” Belt of Hippolyte 1200 BC Asia Minor Istanbul, Turkey
60 “Under the Ice” Anasazi mummy 1355 Arctic Circle
61 “Arthur’s Cross” Cross of King Arthur 455 England Chepstow, Wales
62 “Faux Fox” Crown jewels of Charles IV of Spain 1808 Royal Palace, Madrid Seville, Spain
63 “Pandora’s Box” Pandora’s Box 422 An-Najaf, Persia
64 “The Warlord” Kahina’s Saddle 1401 Bekkastan
65 “Fountain of Youth” Water from the Fountain of Youth 1521 Pascus Florida, West Indies Seville, Spain and Cotswolds, England
66 “So Shall it Be” Keys to Stonehenge 121 Stonehenge, England Bristol, England

Production[edit]

The "Trinity College" campus scenes were filmed at the St. George campus at the University of Toronto in Canada. Campus landmarks prominently featured throughout the series include Victoria College and the Soldier's Tower (directly adjacent to Hart House).

The "Antianeirai" episode ship scenes were filmed aboard HMCS Haida, the last Tribal Class destroyer in the world, when she was berthed at Ontario Place, in Toronto, Canada. For instance, the scene where Sydney finds the belt was filmed in the forward mess deck. All onboard signage was covered with Russian words. Haida has a red maple leaf on one of her funnels and this was covered with a "bird" design. Anything that would show the ship to be of Canadian, or "western" origin, was removed for the film shoot.

All seasons were filmed in widescreen 16:9 but mainly shown in pan and scan 4/3 as are most of Fireworks Entertainment productions from 2000. The widescreen versions of all seasons are available for viewing at Netflix in Nordics as of 2012.

International distribution[edit]

Relic Hunter was broadcast in many countries around the world including:

Home media[edit]

Alliance Home Entertainment has released all three seasons of Relic Hunter on DVD in Region 1 (Canada only).

In Region 4, Warner Home Video released season 1 on DVD in Australia in two volume sets in 2005. Madman Entertainment subsequently acquired the rights and released the second season on DVD in 2006 and the third season in 2010. A complete Season 1 box set was released by Madman on February 2, 2011.

DVD Name Ep# Release Dates
Region 1 (CAN) Region 4
Season 1 22 April 20, 2010 February 2, 2011
Season 2 22 May 18, 2010 June 21, 2006
Season 3 22 June 8, 2010 June 2, 2010

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Relic Hunter". The New York Times.
  2. ^ Linan, Steven (September 25, 1999). "Indiana Jones Meets 'V.I.P.' in Adventure-Seeking 'Relic Hunter'". The Los Angeles Times.

External links[edit]