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If adventure has a name... It must be Indiana Jones.

"You call this 'archaeology'?"
Henry Jones Sr.

Indiana Jones is a multimedia franchise in the adventure genre that started with the team of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, which were inspired by 1930s cliffhanger serials, and which (re)popularized the concept of the Adventurer Archaeologist and the Two-Fisted Tales.

Armed with little more than a bullwhip and attitude ("little more" in this case meaning a .455 Webley), archaeologist Dr. Henry "Indiana" Jones, Jr. (Harrison Ford) discovers long-lost MacGuffins, fights Those Wacky Nazis and Dirty Communists over them and makes love to the Girl of the Week. The films are produced by Lucasfilm and distributed by Paramount (for the first four movies) and Disney (for the fifth). The soundtrack was composed by John Williams, including the famous theme song.

There are five films in the series, the first three of which are set before World War II, while the fourth and fifth films are set during the Cold War. The first four were directed by Spielberg and produced by Lucas, while James Mangold took over for directing the fifth, and Spielberg and Lucas remained onboard as executive producers.

The films are:

  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) — Set in 1936, Dr. Jones is enlisted by the United States Army to find the Ark of the Covenant in Egypt before the Nazis can, who plan to weaponize its power to conquer the world. Along the way, he meets Marion Ravenwood (Karen Allen), an old flame and the daughter of his late mentor, and Sallah el-Kahir (John Rhys-Davies), a dear friend versed in knowledge of the Middle-East.
  • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) — Set in 1935, this prequel starts with a misadventure in China that leaves Dr. Jones, singer Willie Scott (Kate Capshaw), and sidekick Short Round (Ke Huy Quan) marooned in India. They are then tasked with recovering the Sankara Stones and uncovering the whereabouts of hundreds of missing children to a nearby village. Along the way, the group finds themselves at odds with a group of Thugee cultists who worship the goddess Kali.
  • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) — Set in 1938, Dr. Jones once again finds himself facing off against the Nazis as he learns that they're now searching for the Holy Grail, which is believed to be able to indefinitely extend the lives of those who drink from it. He learns that his father, Dr. Henry Jones, Sr. (Sean Connery), was also researching the Holy Grail as they cross paths, reconcile their differences, and go on a great adventure together while accompanied by Sallah and Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott).
  • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008) — Set in 1957, Dr. Jones finds himself at odds with a group of Communists who are after the Crystal Skull of an alien entity hidden in ancient ruins in Peru, seeking to use it to uncover lost knowledge from an ancient space-faring civilization. Along the way, he's reunited with Marion, and meets their estranged son, "Mutt" Williams (Shia Labeouf).
  • Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023) — Set in 1969 (shortly after the Apollo 11 Moon landing), the film tells the story of the last big adventure of Dr. Jones, with the adventurer working alongside his old friend Sallah and his goddaughter Helena (Phoebe Waller-Bridge). They come into conflict with Jürgen Voller (Mads Mikkelsen), a Nazi scientist who the American government hired for NASA's space program — who now sets his sight on Archimedes' Antikythera, an artifact that he believes will allow him to correct some of history's mistakes.

The Indiana Jones Expanded Universe consists of the normally expected items: television series, novels, comic books, pinball machines, and video games, plus the most definitely unusual ride at Disneyland and the stage show at Walt Disney World.

The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles was a TV series produced by George Lucas in the early 1990s. Initially taking the form of hour-long episodes, the show chronicled the adventures of Indy as a young man, principally at the ages of 10 (as played by Corey Carrier) and 16-up (as played by Sean Patrick Flanery). The Carrier episodes focus on Indy touring the globe alongside his parents as part of a world lecture tour given by his father, while the Flanery episodes primarily deal with Indy's service in World War I (in just about every theater!). In each episode, Indy would meet some famous person from the early 20th century, and learn some sort of moral lesson (yes, Lucas very openly intended the series as edutainment). Notably, the show aired in a very Anachronic Order, with Carrier's and Flanery's episodes often alternating. Each episode was also initially introduced by a 93-year old Indy with an eyepatch. One episode however, had a bearded Harrison Ford introduce the adventure.

George Lucas prided Young Indy on managing a film-level quality production on a television budget, helped by revolutions in digital technology, and he has said that the show was partly a test to see how far he could take the later Star Wars prequels. Also like Star Wars, the series was subject to subsequent furious re-editing by Lucas, the new cuts first showing up during re-airings in the late '90s. This re-cut version, which is the only one currently available on DVD, is known as The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones. The Adventures combines the Chronicles episodes into two-hour tele-movies, two shows per film (often in a quite different, and much more strictly chronological, order than in the original airings). Notably, none of the Old Indy bookends are featured in the Adventures (though Harrison Ford's cameo survived the cuts).

The first three films were adapted into video games of their time mostly with mixed results, but one adaptation of the third film from LucasArts was a fondly remembered point-and-click Adventure Game, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, which proved so popular that a follow up with an original story, Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis came out in 1992. The latter had the Fan Nickname of Indy 4 for many years, creating speculation that it would be made into a film.

This was followed by Indiana Jones' Greatest Adventures in 1994, a Super Nintendo platformer retelling the stories of the first three films in compressed form. It was developed by the same studio that did the Super Star Wars trilogy (and even used a recolored version of that series' Han Solo character sprite with an added hat for Indy, appropriately enough.)

A trilogy of 3D action/adventure games (which owed heavily to Tomb Raider I, the developers of which cited Indy as a major influence) came out starting with Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine in 1999, Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb in 2003, and Indiana Jones and the Staff of Kings in 2009. In 2008, LEGO Indiana Jones was released, covering the events of the entire film series, but using characters and settings made entirely of virtual LEGO blocks, of course.

There have also been two Indy pinball machines. The first, Indiana Jones: The Pinball Adventure, was released by Williams Electronics in 1993, and features twelve scenes from the original trilogy. The second one was released by Stern Pinball in 2008. Named simply Indiana Jones, it focuses on collecting the various artifacts of the films.

Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye, a dark ride at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, has you boarding Jeeps. You get, depending on which path isn't occupied, tons of gold/a drink from the Fountain of Youth/sight into the future, so long as you don't look into the eyes of a giant gold head of a god. Someone, of course, looks, the god pulls off his Nightmare Face and you're on your way through a cave full of lava, snakes, and traps. The ride could fit anywhere into the continuity, really-it's in India and has a dangerous god, like the second movie, but the boulder from the first movie shows up and some of the rooms are very similar to the catacombs and desert temple of the third movie. A similar ride is at Tokyo DisneySea, Temple of the Crystal Skull, changing to a South American setting with a sinister Crystal Skull and wind effects replacing the fire and lava. Finally, there's Disneyland Paris' Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril roller coaster, which was notably once set to send the cars going backwards for several years.

While Walt Disney World didn't get their own Indiana Jones ride, Hollywood Studios DID get the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!, a live action stunt show with massive sets that shows their own take on famous scenes from Raiders: the temple adventure from the intro, the Cairo marketplace and kidnapping of Marion (complete with an exploding truck), and the fight scene on, in, and around a Nazi airplane. This show is completely non-canon as it's dressed up as a "film shoot" of Raiders with the stunt performers claiming to be the actual stunt doubles for the actors. The show includes audience participation (including audience members being taken as "extras" for the Cairo scene), pyrotechnics, various physical stunts, and demonstrations of how different stunts are performed. In addition to the show, The Great Movie Ride, a now-defunct attraction, featured a sequence for Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Between the games, the TV shows on network television and streaming, the ride and the movies, Indiana Jones has become one of the most popular and recognizable characters in a hundred years. Indeed, if adventure has a name...

Media in the franchise includes:

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    Film and television 

    Books and comics 
Comic books
  • Marvel Comics
  • Dark Horse Comics
    • Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis (1991) - Series based on Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
    • Young Indiana Jones Chronicles (1992-1993) - Reprinted by Ballantine Books as:
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Curse of the Jackal (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Search for the Oryx (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Peril of the Fort (1992)
    • Indiana Jones and the Shrine of the Sea Devil (1992-1993) - Published in issues three to six of the Dark Horse Comics series, reprinted as a one-shot in September 1994.
    • Indiana Jones: Thunder in the Orient (1993)
    • Indiana Jones and the Arms of Gold (1994)
    • Indiana Jones and the Golden Fleece (1994)
    • Indiana Jones and the Iron Phoenix (1995)
    • Indiana Jones and the Spear of Destiny (1995)
    • Indiana Jones and the Sargasso Pirates (1995-1996)
    • Star Wars Tales #19 (2003): The "Into the Great Unknown" story features Indy finding the Millennium Falcon.
    • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008)
    • Indiana Jones and the Tomb of the Gods (2008-2009)
    • Indiana Jones Adventures (2008-2009)
    • Dark Horse Comics' Free Comic Book Day 2009 (2009) - Contains the story "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Yearning"
  • Titan Magazines
    • Indiana Jones Comic (2008)

  • Find Your Fate
    • Indiana Jones and the Curse of Horror Island (1984)
    • Indiana Jones and the Lost Treasure of Sheba (1984)
    • Indiana Jones and the Giants of the Silver Tower (1984)
    • Indiana Jones and the Eye of the Fates (1984)
    • Indiana Jones and the Cup of the Vampire (1984)
    • Indiana Jones and the Legion of Death (1984)
    • Indiana Jones and the Cult of the Mummy's Crypt (1985)
    • Indiana Jones and the Dragon of Vengeance (1985)
    • Indiana Jones and the Gold of Genghis Khan (1985)
    • Indiana Jones and the Ape Slaves of Howling Island (1986)
    • Indiana Jones and the Mask of the Elephant (1987)
  • Choose Your Own Adventure
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Valley of the Kings (1992)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: South of the Border (1992)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Revolution in Russia (1992)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Masters of the Louvre (1992)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: African Safari (1993)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Behind the Great Wall (1993)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Roaring Twenties (1993)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Irish Rebellion (1993)

  • Ballantine Books
    • Novelizations of the movies
      • Raiders of the Lost Ark by Campbell Black (1981)
      • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom by James Kahn (1984)
      • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade by Rob MacGregor (1989)
    • Novelizations of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles episodes note 
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Mata Hari Affair by James Luceno (1992)
  • Bantam Books
    • Indiana Jones and the Peril at Delphi by Rob MacGregor (1991)
    • Indiana Jones and the Dance of the Giants by Rob MacGregor (1991)
    • Indiana Jones and the Seven Veils by Rob MacGregor (1991)
    • Indiana Jones and the Genesis Deluge by MacGregor (1992)
    • Indiana Jones and the Unicorn's Legacy by Rob MacGregor (1992)
    • Indiana Jones and the Interior World by Rob MacGregor (1992)
    • Indiana Jones and the Sky Pirates by Martin Caidin (1993)
    • Indiana Jones and the White Witch by Martin Caidin (1994)
    • Indiana Jones and the Philosopher's Stone by Max McCoy (1995)
    • Indiana Jones and the Dinosaur Eggs by Max McCoy (1996)
    • Indiana Jones and the Hollow Earth by Max McCoy (1997)
    • Indiana Jones and the Secret of the Sphinx by Max McCoy (1999)
    • The Adventures of Indiana Jones (2008) - omnibus edition containing the novelizations of the first three movies (see above)
  • Del Rey
    • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull by James Rollins (2008) - novelization of the movie
    • Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead by Steve Perry (2009)
  • Fantail Books - novelizations of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles episodes, published in the United Kingdom
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The River of Death by Nigel Robinson (1993)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Day of Destiny by Nigel Robinson (1993)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Secret Treaty by Nigel Robinson (1993)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Rule of Russia by Nigel Robinson (1993)
  • Golden Books - novelizations of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles episodes
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Mummy's Curse by Parker Smith (1992)
    • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Safari in Africa by Sally Bell (1993)
  • Random House
    • Original 'Young Indy' novels
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Plantation Treasure by William McCay (1990)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Tomb of Terror by Les Martin (1990)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Circle of Death by William McCay (1990)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Secret City by Les Martin (1990)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Princess of Peril by Les Martin (1991)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Gypsy Revenge by Les Martin (1991)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Ghostly Riders by William McCay (1991)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Curse of Ruby Cross by William McCay (1991)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Titanic Adventure by Les Martin (1993) — yup, Indy (and his tutor, Miss Seymour) survived the sinking of the Titantic
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Lost Gold of Durango by Megan Stine & H. William Stine (1993)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Face of the Dragon by William McCay (1994)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Journey to the Underworld by Megan Stine & H. William Stine (1994)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Mountain of Fire by William McCay (1994)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Pirates' Loot by J.N. Fox (1994)
      • Young Indiana Jones and the Eye of the Tiger by William McCay (1995)
    • Novelizations of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles episodes
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Mummy's Curse by Megan Stine & H. William Stine (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Field of Death by Les Martin (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Safari Sleuth by A. L. Singer (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Secret Peace by William McCay (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Trek of Doom by Les Martin (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Revolution! by Gavin Scott (1992)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Race to Danger by Stephanie Calmenson (1993)
      • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: Prisoner of War by Les Martin (1993)
  • Scholastic
    • Novelizations of the movies aimed at younger readers
      • Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark by Ryder Windham (2008)
      • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom by Suzanne Weyn (2008)
      • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade by Ryder Windham (2008)
      • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull by James Luceno (2008)
    • The 'Untold Adventures' series (young adult novels)
      • Indiana Jones and the Pyramid of the Sorcerer by Ryder Windham (2009)
      • Indiana Jones and the Mystery of Mount Sinai by J.W. Rinzler (2009)
  • Goldmann Verlag - German series of original novels that hasn't officially been translated into English
    • Indiana Jones und das Schiff der Götter by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1990) – (Indiana Jones and the Longship of the Gods)
    • Indiana Jones und die Gefiederte Schlange by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1990) – (Indiana Jones and the Feathered Snake)
    • Indiana Jones und das Gold von El Dorado by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1991) – (Indiana Jones and the Gold of El Dorado)
    • Indiana Jones und das verschwundene Volk by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1991) – (Indiana Jones and the Lost People)
    • Indiana Jones und das Schwert des Dschingis Khan by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1991) – (Indiana Jones and the Sword of Genghis Khan)
    • Indiana Jones und das Geheimnis der Osterinseln by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1992) – (Indiana Jones and the Secret of Easter Island)
    • Indiana Jones und das Labyrinth des Horus by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1993) – (Indiana Jones and the Labyrinth of Horus)
    • Indiana Jones und das Erbe von Avalon by Wolfgang Hohlbein (1994) – (Indiana Jones and the Legacy of Avalon)
  • Hachette Livre - French series of original novels that hasn't officially been translated into English
    • Indiana Jones Jr et le Fantome du Klondike by Jerome Jacobs (1997) - (Young Indiana Jones and the Phantom of the Klondike)
    • Indiana Jones Jr et l'Ampoule Radioactive by Richard Beugne (1997) - (Young Indiana Jones and the Radioactive Flask)
    • Indiana Jones Jr et le Violon du Metropolitan by Jerome Jacobs (1997) - (''Young Indiana Jones and the Violin of the Metropolitan)
    • Indiana Jones Jr et la Meteorite Sacree by Richard Beugne (1997) - (Young Indiana Jones and the Holy Meteorite)
    • Indiana Jones Jr et le Triangle des Bermudes by Jerome Jacobs (1997) - (Young Indiana Jones and the Bermuda Triangle)
    • Indiana Jones Jr et l'Enfant Lama by Richard Beugne (1998) - (Young Indiana Jones and the Child Lama)
    • Indiana Jones Jr et le Spectre de Venise by Jerome Jacobs (1998) - (Young Indiana Jones and the Spectre of Venice)

  • Evans Brothers - series of educational books published in the United Kingdom, designed to introduce historical cultures to younger readers
    • Indiana Jones Explores Ancient Egypt by John Malam (1991)
    • Indiana Jones Explores The Incas by John Malam (1992)
    • Indiana Jones Explores Ancient Greece by John Malam (1993)
    • Indiana Jones Explores Ancient Rome by John Malam (1993)
    • Indiana Jones Explores The Vikings by John Malam (1994)
    • Indiana Jones Explores The Aztecs by John Malam (1994)
  • Dorling Kindersley
    • Indiana Jones: The Ultimate Guide (2008) - illustrated reference book published to tie in with the cinematic release of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Pinball machines
Tabletop games
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark Game (1981)
  • Indiana Jones from Raiders of the Lost Ark (1982)
  • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
  • The Adventures of Indiana Jones Role-Playing Game (1984) - The Role-Playing Game published by TSR.
  • The World of Indiana Jones (1994) - Role-playing game published by West End Games using the Masterbook system
    • Indiana Jones Adventures - Role-playing game published by West End Games using the D6 system with later supplements having stats for use with both games.
  • Monopoly: Indiana Jones (2008)
  • Indiana Jones DVD Adventure Game (2008)
  • Akator Temple Race Game (2008)
  • The Game of Life: Indiana Jones (2008)

Video games

Theme park attractions

General tropes across the franchise:

  • Absent-Minded Professor: Indy, between adventures. He's eventually mobbed by students for not grading papers. Dr. Marcus Brody in The Last Crusade as well, who once got lost in his own museum.
  • Action Girl: Marion Ravenwood in Raiders and in Crystal Skull.
  • Action Survivor: Indy's father Henry doesn't have the Action Hero cred that Indy does but he still manages to make it through several action set pieces in Last Crusade.
  • Adventure Duo: Indy and Marion in Raiders and Crystal Skull.
  • Adventurer Archaeologist:
    • Probably the Trope Codifier and an oddly downplayed and realistic version of it. While the antics Indy gets up to in the movies are incredible, even these tend to be somewhat based on how archeology got tangled up with military and political problems in the era and the expanded universe gives a far more balanced and down to earth view of an archeological career.
    • It is implied in Raiders that Marcus Brody was one of these when he was younger, although he's seriously out of his depth when he accompanies Indy in Last Crusade. That said, he only does so because he wants to help find Henry who is an old friend of his, his capture is not entirely his own fault (Sallah told him to hide in the house that turns out to be a Nazi van), and he does manage to knock one of the Nazis out during the tank chase.
  • Adventurer Outfit: Indy's fedora, leather jacket and bullwhip modernized the iconic Adventurer Archaeologist look.
  • Agent Scully: In Crystal Skull, Indy is a big skeptic about the existence of alien races, and in Raiders, considers The Ark of the Covenant nothing but a fancy gold box, until the end when he insists that he and Marion avert their eyes.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Dr. Elsa Schneider. Both Indy and his father in-movie are sorry about her fate.
  • All Myths Are True: The basic premise of every installment. The comics especially play this up, with Indy's encounters including Hecate and the Golden Fleece, mad druids in Ireland practicing real magic, a veritable city of ships dating back to centuries trapped in the Sargasso, pearl-encrusted giant statues guarded by a ship-sinking giant octopus...
  • Almost Dead Guy: The novels and comics seem to really love starting stories off with someone coming to Indy with information and either succumbing to wounds or being assassinated before they can reveal everything, launching him into the adventure as he starts to investigate.
  • Ancient Tradition: This is especially prevalent with the cultists in Temple of Doom.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Practically a Running Gag in the series. Even after his encounter with the Sankara stones, he still dismisses the Ark of the Covenant, the Holy Grail, the Crystal Skull and the Antikythera Mechanism as mere stories.
  • Arch-Enemy: Although he only appears in the first movie (he crops up more in the expanded universe), Belloq is widely acknowledged as Indy's. Movie dialogue reveals that the rivalry between the two goes back for "many, stimulating years" and that Belloq is almost sorry to see it end. It also implies this isn't the first time that Belloq's stolen one of Indy's finds.
  • Artifact Collection Agency: Implied by the size of the Secret Government Warehouse in both Raiders and Skull.
  • Artifact of Death: The main MacGuffins in three of the five films: The Ark of the Covenant, the Holy Grail if you take it from its resting place, the false Grails, and the Crystal Skull. However, it's worth noting that having pure motives, or at the very least, respect for the artifacts and the rules governing their use, appears to get you out of being harmed by any of them: Indy uses the Grail to cure his father, and suffers no ill effects, while Elsa tries to leave with the Grail and dies for it. With the Ark, Indy knows what not to do, and his deference is what protects him and Marion. Belloq and the Nazis gaze upon the power of God within and are incinerated for their hubris. The Shankara stones are similar: they only actually do harm to Mola Ram, while they bring the Indian village to its former life.
  • Audible Sharpness: Indy's bullwhip. Technically, whips in real life have been described to sound like a gunshot when they are cracked, but not to the absurd loudness that the original trilogy, specifically Raiders, makes them out to be.
  • Badass Bookworm: Indy and his father are professional academics and are very capable in action sequences.
  • Badass Family: The Joneses are all able to use various weapons and guile to get through tough situations.
  • Bald of Evil:
    • Mola Ram rips hearts out of helpless victims while Laughing Mad and has a bald, tattooed head.
    • Also Pat Roach, who had the Bald of Evil as the implacable Nazi mechanic in Raiders.
  • The Baroness: Elsa Schneider from The Last Crusade and Irina Spalko from Crystal Skull.
  • Batman Cold Open: Every film starts with an action set piece to start things off with a bang.
  • Battle Couple: When Indy and Marion get together something ignites or explodes due to their actions.
  • Beast in the Building:
    • Raiders of the Lost Ark: When Indy and Sallah open the Well of Souls, they discover it's infested with snakes, to Indy's frustration since it's his one fear. Later, the Nazis seal Marion and Indy in this snake-infested pit where the two have to fend off the snakes and find a way out.
      Indiana: Snakes. Why did it have to be snakes?
    • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: In the opening flashback, young Indy tries to escape the thieves on top of a circus train. Within the train cars, he encounters alligators, a rhino, a lion, and, of course, snakes. Falling into a pit of snakes turns out to be the origin of his phobia.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For:
    • Almost once a movie. Because Belloq, Elsa, Walter Donovan,Irina Spalko and Jürgen Voller got exactly what they wanted, hysterical screams of terror notwithstanding. Mola Ram is the only one who seemed to be messing with powers that he actually did understand, and even he ended up guffing it up in the end. Lampshaded by Indy in Crystal Skull when he tells Irina "Careful, you may get exactly what you wish for."
    • Played for laughs in Temple of Doom, where Indy, after having stopped a mining cart with his foot and resulting in his boot smoking and hops on his good foot.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Do NOT call Indy "Junior".
    • Don't take the Lord's name in vain around Henry Jones, Senior.
  • Big Bad:
    • Belloq is Indy's archaeological rival in Raiders but is in league with the Nazis for financial backing.
    • Mola Ram enslaves children as miners and keeps a band of cultists under mind control and is the final enemy Indy encounters in Temple of Doom.
    • Walter Donovan is Indy's main rival for the Holy Grail in Last Crusade, also is in league with the Nazis due to the power the Grail can provide and even goes as far as shooting Indy's father to force him to retrieve the Grail for him.
    • Irina Spalko is a Russian officer who is after the Crystal Skull for infinite knowledge and is willing to massacre entire native populations to get what she wants.
    • Jürgen Voller is a former Nazi scientist recruited into NASA, seeking the Antikythera Mechanism to plot a course back to 1939, where he will assassinate Hitler and seize control of the Third Reich for himself.
  • Big Bad Friend: Donovan appears to be a benefactor for Indy and enlists him when his father disappears only for Indy to find out that he arranged for Henry to be kidnapped so Indy does the dirty work to get the Grail.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The standard formula is that Indy discovers something of revolutionary historical, cultural and even religious and scientific importance, only to have it snatched away from him in the end and the circumstances prevent him from publicizing any of it. The Ark is technically the only thing in the movies he was able to bring back home with him, but it was too dangerous to put in a museum so the government just tosses it into a warehouse to forget about. Subverted with Dial of Destiny, which features a Surprisingly Happy Ending where, among other things, Indy does successfully recover the Dial and reunite with Marion, ending with him retrieving his hat once more.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Indy's love interests are either brunette (Marion Ravenwood), blonde (Willie Scott and Elsa Schneider) or red-headed (Sophia Hapgood).
  • Blow Gun:
    • Used in the opening sequence of Raiders of the Lost Ark by an angry group of pursuing natives.
    • Then again in the tomb sequence of Crystal Skull. Indy manages to kill one native by blowing through the exit hole to poison its user.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Sallah is both large and speaks and laughs loudly. He is also a staunch and tough ally of Indy.
  • Booby Trap: Indy encounters them all the time. Most famously in the trap-laden hallway in the opening of Raiders.
  • Bound and Gagged:
    • Marion in the tent in Raiders is so spunky that Indy has to replace her gag to keep her from giving away their position.
    • Marion gets this treatment again in Crystal Skull while in the captivity of the Soviets.
  • Canon Foreigner: The comics, novels and games introduce several characters who are not acknowledged in the films; Sophia Hapgood, the sidekick in the Fate of Atlantis video game and several comics, is probably the best-known example. Rob MacGregor, who wrote six of the novels (having previously written the novelisation of Last Crusade) even went so far as to give Indy a wife, Deirdre Campbell, who was killed off in Indiana Jones and the Seven Veils which is set in 1926, just over three decades before Indy marries Marion in Crystal Skull. MacGregor, who is on record as stating that he was told that he could only include certain characters from the movies in the novels (which is why his novels, which are set in the 1920s, do not mention the Ravenwoods), later expressed surprise at the fact that he received no pushback from Lucasfilm about Deirdre, evidence (he felt) that they didn't take the content of the novels all that seriously.
  • Cataclysm Climax:
    • In The Last Crusade the temple holding the Holy Grail collapses when Elsa attempts to steal it.
    • The spaceship chamber crumbles in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull when it takes off.
  • Character Development: Indy is noticeably more mature and less greedy by the time of the The Last Crusade, especially when compared with his shady treasure hunter in the chronologically earliest Temple of Doom. It goes even further when you watch the Young Indy series.
  • Character in the Logo: When Kenner had the toy license for the franchise, they created a logo featuring Indy's silhouette, which was framed by the shape of his iconic bullwhip.
  • Character Name and the Noun Phrase: In play from the second film onwards, with the first film later being retconned in order to fit this trope (and also Prepositional Phrase Equals Coolness) as well. Also applies to all of the Indy novels, comics, etc.
  • Chased by Angry Natives: Famously Indy is chased by a horde of natives in the opening of Raiders.
  • Chase Scene: Indy is often pursued on foot or in vehicle, from military convoys, motorcycle chases and mine cart pursuits.
  • Chick Magnet: Indy has lots of female students fawning over him and has a new girl almost every movie.
  • Clothes Make the Legend: Indy's fedora never comes off, except at dramatic moments, and you can bet he'll be back to get it if it does. This was even made part of the movie pitch.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Indy is not afraid of ending a fight easily, even if it's to shoot a posturing swordsman.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • The Ark of the Covenant can be seen from inside a broken crate during the warehouse fight in the 4th movie. In fact, the Ark's Letimotif plays throughout that scene.
    • The third movie has Indy and Elsa Schneider seeing a painting of the Ark, which Indy identifies (complete with a few notes from the Leitmotif of the Ark added to the soundtrack).
      Elsa: What's that?
      Indy: Ark of the Covenant.
      Elsa: Are you sure?
      Indy: Pretty sure.
    • An almost identical exchange as the above takes place between Indy and Sophia in the Fate of Atlantis game.
    • Crystal Skull makes one to the TV series The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles where young Indy is kidnapped by Pancho Villa.
    • In Raiders, Indiana Jones escapes pursuit from the Nazis by hiding the truck he was driving, along with the Ark in it, in an alcove of a crowded market place, which is immediately hidden by his friends to blend into the rest of the surroundings. Later in the third film, undoubtedly having learned from Indy, the Nazis play this trick in reverse to capture Marcus Brody.
  • Cool Horse: Ridden by Indy. The white one from Raiders, the black one from The Last Crusade and another black one from Dial of Destiny.
  • Cool Old Guy:
    • Henry Jones Sr. is clearly a source of a lot of Indy's guild in Last Crusade.
    • Indy himself in Crystal Skull and Dial of Destiny almost to the point where he would pass the torch.
    • The Grail Knight stayed in a small cavern with only one book for centuries to guard a magic cup.
  • Crossover Cosmology:
    • In the films alone, Indy has personal experience with an active Judeo-Christian God, active Hindu gods, extraterrestrials, psychic phenomena and time travel.
    • If you add the Expanded Universe, you can add pretty much everything else. Even Dracula. As expected of Two-Fisted Tales.
    • Plot complexities aside, even Indy's parting words to the second film's villain — "Prepare to meet Kali, in Hell!" — are a fairly concise example of this trope.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Many of the movie's villains get a memorable and unique death, and it's usually very painful:
    • Raiders
      • Satipo is speared in the head when he leaves Indy to die and fails to navigate the traps properly during his escape.
      • The Nazi mechanic gets ground into mincemeat by airplane propellers.
      • The Nazi Soldiers who are present at the Ark of the Covenant's opening get blasted through by burning, golden lightning from the Ark, frying them from the inside out.
      • Colonel Dietrich suffers this after he and the Nazis open the Ark; his head ends up shriveling and collapsing in on itself.
      • Major Toht has his face melted down to the bone by the Ark, leaving only his skeleton covered in blood.
      • René Belloq is wreathed in the Ark's flames, and is left burning and screaming in place before his head literally explodes into a gory mess.
    • Temple of Doom
      • A henchman for Lao Che gets impaled with a flaming kebab.
      • A captive is used to demonstrate the effects of the lava pit, but not before his heart is ripped from his chest.
      • A huge Thuggee bruiser is pulled through a rock crusher, reducing him to a bloody paste.
      • Many Thuggee mooks are ripped apart by crocodiles.
      • Mola Ram himself is thrown from a bridge, bounces off of a cliff on the fall to the river below and is then devoured by crocodiles.
    • Last Crusade
      • A Nazi pilot has his engine jammed by a flock of seagulls and crashes into a mountainside.
      • General Vogel is launched off of a cliff clinging to a tank, which later rolls over him.
      • Walter Donovan is rapidly aged after drinking from a false Grail and is turned into a skeleton, which quickly crumbles to dust.
    • Crystal Skull
      • A pair of Soviet mooks are immolated in the exhaust fire of a test jet.
      • Dovchenko is overrun and devoured by gigantic ants.
      • Spalko's head explodes when her mind absorbs too much information from the alien, and the rest of her is vaporized.
    • Dial of Destiny
      • Hauke is handcuffed to an underwater grate and drowns underneath a flowing river.
      • Voler and the remaining Nazi soldiers are killed in a destructive plane crash in 213BC.
  • David Versus Goliath: Every time Indy fights the Giant Mook of the situation.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Most characters who appear in the series, especially Indy and Henry.
    Henry: Those people are trying to kill us!
    Indy: I KNOW, DAD!
    Henry: Well... it's a new experience for me.
    Indy: Happens to me all the time!
  • Death by Materialism:
    • Belloq and company are gruesomely killed when viewing the Ark in Raiders.
    • Mola Ram has the fight turn against him when he tries to catch the scalding hot Shankra Stone in Temple of Doom.
    • Donovan meets a grisly fate when he drinks from the false Grail in Last Crusade.
    • Spalko's mind explodes when she tries to gain the knowledge of the aliens in Crystal Skull. Mac also gets too weighed down from pocketing loot to escape the pull of the alien spaceship.
  • Death Course: Indy often has to navigate a hallway or mine track full of traps and deadly obstacles.
  • Deconstructive Parody: Temple of Doom showed accompanying Indy on his adventures can be fatal to normal folks.
  • Disappearing Box: Young Indy escapes from his pursuers during the opening scene of Last Crusade by using one of these to escape a train.
  • Disney Villain Death: Several Indy villains go out this way such as Mola Ram falling to his death in Temple of Doom.
  • Distinctive Appearances: That's exactly why he has his fedora. During the creation of the character, the concept artists found that the fedora added a highly distinct look, silhouette, and appearance to the character. Indy could be in a crowded room with his back towards the audience, as he usually is when he's introduced in some of the movies, and he'd still stand out heroically. In addition, the fedora allowed the character to be visible from further away such as during the bridge scene in Temple of Doom. On a more critical analysis, the fedora also marks the transition from Henry Jones Jr to Indiana Jones, and it's also a great way to hide the transition from Harrison Ford to Harrison Ford's Stunt Double. This is also why most scenes have him wearing the hat except when he's being just a teacher — him taking it off would be like going back to his secret identity.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Indy often disguises himself to get around enemy bases. His first attempt in Raiders doesn't work since he mugs someone who has a uniform too small for him. He then punches out an officer who calls him a disgrace in German and steals his uniform. Later, in the Dial of Destiny prologue, he gets found out thanks to the obvious bullet hole and bloodstain on the Nazi uniform he's stolen.
  • Durable Deathtrap: Very complex mechanisms are still intact after centuries of disuse.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Indiana Jones starts Dial of Destiny as a depressed, bitter retired adventurer and soon-to-be-retired academic, and with a dead son and a fallen-apart-marriage with his One True Love, one gets the sense that at this point, Indy is just waiting to die. But, after being thrust into one more adventure with his god-daughter, Indy rekindles his love for archeology and adventure, puts the Nazis down one last time and ultimately finds a reason to keep living in being a surrogate father to Helena (and Teddy) and in his love with Marion. Indiana Jones may never have found that "fortune and glory" he's been seeking all these years, but ultimately he finds that he has all the treasures he could ever need.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Tends to happen to the Nazis, none of whose civilian allies and consultants think very highly of them. Belloq considers them "necessary evils" and their grasp of archaeology "primitive," Elsa finds their anti-intellectualism repulsive and is furious that Indy considers her one of them, and Donovan thinks they're silly for caring about the mythical aspects of the Grail as opposed to the simple practical aspects of a cup that grants immortality. Also subverted, however, in that none of them care about those disagreements enough to actually turn on the Nazis (except Elsa at the end of The Last Crusade, and that was simply about wanting the Grail for herself).
    • From their own twisted point of view, the Nazis themselves are this, as Colonel Dietrich refuses to leave Marion in the hands of smugglers who imply they're trying to sell her into sex slavery. Instantly subverted in that they're perfectly happy to turn her immediately over the Belloq, whose intentions are little different but who, unlike the smugglers and their implied clientele, is a white man. Katanga and his smugglers may also qualify: it's clear that their work isn't strictly legitimate, but they keep their word to Sallah by doing their best to hide Indy and Marion from the Nazis, and all of them break out in cheers when they see Indy going after Marion.
  • Everybody Smokes: As was popular in its day, many people are seen smoking in Raiders including Marion while she is in her bar.
  • Evil Overlooker: Nigh-ubiquitous on the covers of the Marvel-produced comics. The Dark Horse line managed to avert this.
  • Expanded Universe: And how! As well as the movies, there's a prequel TV series, comics, pinballs, video games, board games, novels, young adult novels, choose-your-own-adventure novels and even theme park rides. According to Lucas Licensing, everything is Canon. Even that time Indy was on the Titanic, and the Young Indiana Jones Vampire Episode.
  • Expy: Avoided in the films. As one of Indy's characteristics was to be a Chick Magnet and as a result to have a new love interest in each movie, Spielberg and Lucas made their best effort to make any new girl as different as possible from the previous one. Kate Capshaw even had to dye her natural brown hair blonde to play Damsel in Distress Willie Scott in Temple of Doom, as the also brown-haired Karen Allen had played Action Girl Marion Ravenwood in Raiders.
    • Willie and Elsa are actually Expies of Lucas's original concept for the love interest of Raiders as a "Marlene Dietrich-type German lady singer/double agent". Willie is a singer and dancer; Elsa is German [Austrian] and a double agent, though she is loyal to the wrong side, unlike the girl Lucas first envisioned.
    • Played straight in the expanded universe however, where Sophia Hapgood has evolved gradually into a fake Marion Ravenwood with psychic powers. In the Dark Horse comic Indiana Jones: Thunder in the Orient, which is basically a retelling of Temple of Doom with elements of Raiders in it, she doesn't even have psychic powers anymore. There is also an Expy of Short Round in this comic, Khamal, which is different only in that he is Lebanese instead of Chinese and a knife-user rather than a Kung Fu fighter.
    • Janice Le Roi from the "Tomb of the Gods" comics ends up being an Expy of all three love interests from the films: she's streetwise and tough as nails (Marion), she's VERY fond of the high life (Willie), and at one point she works with the Nazi Ahnenerbe agents to meet her own ends (Ilsa).
    • In the TV series episode Palestine, October 1917, that takes place in the Middle East during World War I, Indiana is helped on a mission by a young local agent that is very much like Sallah. He is not, however, as revealed by being named Kazim in the credits.
    • Probably a big reason why Darabont's script for a fourth movie, Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods, was rejected. In addition to bringing back the real Marion, the script also featured a former mentor that Indy had to rescue, a bumbling Marcus-like American secret agent, a rival European archaeologist in league with the bad guys that vies for Marion's love, a creepy Toht-like Nazi escaped to South America, a tag-along Japanese cartographer and an evil local strongman that wants to use the McGuffin to secure his tyrannical rule. Reading it feels like Darabont ,who also wrote Palestine, incidentally, was trying to cram the three previous films into one rather than writing a new story.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: At least one in every film. Usually the Giant Mook, and the Big Bads.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: The first two films would be rated PG-13 nowadays, and even then would still skirt the R rating. Raiders had to make a few cuts to avoid that, and Temple of Doom was one of the driving factors for the MPAA to create PG-13 in the first place.
  • Fanfare: The main theme is actually a mix of two fanfares the John Williams wrote. It was suggested he just combine them.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Explicitly, common to Two-Fisted Tales.
  • Fedora of Asskicking: Indy's fedora is one of his Iconic Items, and he fights with the hat more often than not.
  • Franchise-Driven Retitling: You may have noticed above a shift in the names. Once the franchise's popularity was secured, a franchise wide titling pattern of "Indiana Jones and the..." was introduced. "Raiders of the Lost Ark" was later renamed to "Indiana Jones and the Raiders Of The Lost Ark".*
  • Friend-or-Idol Decision:
    • This trope is basically named after the example in Raiders of the Lost Ark when Satipo betrays Indy to get the fertility idol. Naturally, he's punished with a Karmic Death.
    • Also occurs at the end of The Last Crusade. Elsa finds herself having to choose between reaching for the grail or letting Indiana pull her up. She decides to reach and falls to her death when her hand slips from its glove. Indy then faces the exact same situation, but is ultimately convinced by his father to "let it go."
  • Generation Xerox:
    • Indy receives his scar on the chin through his trademark weapon The Whip, and Mutt receives his scar on his right cheek through his trademark weapon The Sword.
    • This is the entire reason that Mutt's character was a greaser. He was originally supposed to be a geek, but it was decided that it would be better if he was a rebel without a cause, so Indiana would have an idea of what his father had to put up with when raising him.
  • Giant Mook: Several. In the first three movies, all were played by the same actor, Pat "Bomber" Roach.
  • Girl of the Week: Played straight in the original films, but averted by Crystal Skull and Dial of Destiny, both of which bring back Marion.
  • Glove Slap: In Last Crusade, the Nazi colonel corners Henry Sr and Marcus inside the tank and proceeds to slap Henry while questioning him why he and Indy went to Berlin to get the grail diary back, asking what does the diary tell them.After a few slaps Henry catches the colonel's hand and tells him off with the brief but badass "Reason You Suck" Speech "It tells me goosestepping morons such as yourself should try reading books instead of burning them!"
  • Grave Robbing: Hey, it's part of the job.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Adolf Hitler and the Nazi leadership are the overarching villains of the franchise, seeing as Dietrich, Belloq, and Toht in Raiders, Donovan in Last Crusade, and Colonel Weber in Dial of Destiny all follow their orders to search for the Ark of the Covenant, the Holy Grail and the Spear of Destiny (the latter of which ends up being a fake) respectively. Even in the main part of Dial of Destiny where Hitler is long dead, his actions continue to reverberate and drive Voller's quest to find the Antikythera to assassinate Hitler himself and replace him with a more competent Führer. Hitler only directly appears for a single scene halfway through Last Crusade. By extension, any expanded universe materials where Indy faces the Nazis (ex. Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb) have Hitler as the unseen evil driving a major part of the plot.
  • The Great Depression: The first three films are set during this period.
  • Historical Villain Upgrade:
    • Not in terms of their evilness so much, but both the Nazis and the Soviets get this in terms of seeking out powerful religious / alien artefacts that would enable them to Take Over the World, as well as greatly expanding their scope and influence (such as the Nazis in the mid-1930s having secret submarine bases in Greece or being able to carry out archeological expeditions in then-British Egypt).
    • The Thuggee cult from Temple of Doom are loosely based on a real sect, but they were more like murderous bandits than a powerful cult utilising dark magic, and by extension the goddess they worshipped- Kali- is actually a popular mainstream Hindu goddess and while she is depicted as frightening, she is not demonic and is more a case of Dark Is Not Evil. The film accurately states that the real Thuggee were wiped out years prior to the story, but naturally this version comes back with a vengeance and ramps the stakes by subverting a local government, enslaving children and getting their hands on mystical stone belonging to Shiva with the long-term goal of achieving world domination.
  • Hollywood Torches: Indy carries large flaming torches on sticks in tombs in both Raiders and The Last Crusade.
  • Hot for Teacher: One of his female students flirts with him during a lecture, much to his discomfort. This is expanded on in the Raiders novelization, in which he appears to be having a sexual relationship with a student; Marcus picks up on this and notes that it's not the first time this has happened. Elsewhere in the spin-off novels, he actually marries one of his students, although she gets killed off shortly afterwards.
  • Iconic Outfit: The fedora, leather jacket and whip are all very much part of Indy's look.
  • I Know Karate: The kick-focused Northern-Style Kung-Fu to be exact, practiced by Short Round in Temple of Doom. The same style was also used by Indy himself briefly on the South-China seas in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Uniform across the franchise; whether it's natives, Thuggees, Nazis or Russians, they can't hit the broad side of a barn if Indy is standing in front of it.
  • Indy Ploy: Indy's tendency to make it up as he goes along makes him the Trope Namer.
  • In Medias Res: Done Once per Episode, usually during some unrelated archaeological dig or espionage mission that serves as Indy's Establishing Character Moment.
  • Interesting Situation Duel: At least one per film: the flying wing fight in Raiders, the rock crusher fight in Temple, the tank fight in Crusade, and the sword fight on top of moving jeeps in Crystal Skull.
  • Intimidation Demonstration: Pops up in several of the films.
    • The famous scene in Raiders where Indiana faces the Master Swordsman has the swordsman demonstrating just how skilled he is by throwing his scimitar from one hand to the other, and then spinning it in his hands.
    • There was a similar scene in Temple of Doom where Indy faced off against two swordsmen. They did some brief sword spinning as well.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: The coarse and cynical Indy is nevertheless kind and honorable.
  • Jungle Opera: Most of the films have elements of this.
  • Just a Flesh Wound: Indy survives falls, burns and gunshot wounds with at most a quick scene of him patching up before he's at full strength.
  • Large Ham:
    • John Rhys-Davies is not afraid of using his deep voice to good effect.
    • Cate Blanchett clearly has fun playing the dark and sinister villainess Spalko.
  • Leitmotif:
    • The Ark of the Covenant's ominous leitmotif gets a cameo in The Last Crusade when we see a carving of the Ark on a crypt wall, and again in Crystal Skull, when we glimpse the actual Ark in the warehouse.
    • In Crystal Skull when Indy looks at a picture of his dead father and mentions him again at the end, the "Keeper of the Grail" theme from Last Crusade that represents Henry Sr., plays.
    • The Nazis, incidentally, have a different leitmotif in Last Crusade than they had in Raiders.
  • Literal Cliffhanger: At the end of Last Crusade, Indy catches Elsa as she's about to fall into a chasm. However, she insists on using a free hand to reach for the grail instead of saving herself. She falls to her death when her hand slips away from Indy's hold.
  • Logo Joke: Each film begins with a Match Cut from the Paramount logo to a mountain.
    • Except for Crystal Skull, which cuts instead to a molehill.
    • This was done deliberately by Steven Spielberg; after the backlash against the Star Wars prequels, Spielberg knew the same would be coming with this film, and used this as a "making a molehill out of a mountain" metaphor.
    • Dial of Destiny has the Lucasfilm logo last of the production companies, instead of the Paramount mountain. It instead cuts from the rectangular logo to a rectangular barrel lock in a crate for the opening cut.
  • Made of Iron:
    • Indy throughout the series, especially in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, when he survives a nuclear test detonation by hiding in a lead-lined refrigerator.
    • The mechanic in Raiders shrugs off a direct punch to the face and a Groin Attack from Indy.
  • Malevolent Architecture: Indy is often trapped in a tomb or facility where all the rocks and walls are out to get him.
  • Meaningless Villain Victory: Every film with the exception of Temple of Doom used this trope to dispatch the antagonists. Indy will fail to stop them from obtaining the legendary artifact, but the bad guys attempting to use the artifact does them in regardless.
    • In Raiders of the Lost Ark, the Nazis attempting to use the Covenant of the Ark ends up killing them all in one fell swoop, as opening it unleashes a holy light that instantly obliterates them in a literal Deus ex Machina.
    • In The Last Crusade, the search for the Holy Grail is rendered moot when it turns out the Grail cannot be removed from its temple. Elsa tries so anyway despite the warning and ends up falling to her doom as the temple collapses in response.
    • In Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Spalko's search for knowledge using the titular object ends up being what kills her, as the alien at the end gives her all the knowledge at once, to dramatic and fatal results.
    • In The Dial of Destiny, Voller is able to complete the Antikythera and use it to travel back in time, but Archimedes rigged it to only return to 214 BC, during the Siege of Syracuse, meaning Voller could never have used it to go back to 1939 and replace Hitler.
  • Melee Disarming: Indy will frequently use his whip to deprive an enemy of their weapon. Sometimes he'll even disarm someone while holding his gun on them in his off hand.
    • In Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, there's an unusual variation. Mutt uses a rapier to disarm Irina Spalko of not her sword, but the titular Crystal Skull MacGuffin. The move he uses to do so is a classic Flynning disarm that sends the Skull arcing through the air to land in his vehicle (naturally, they were fighting while driving at high speed through the Amazonian jungle on two separate cars).
  • Mood Whiplash: Most of the scenes that aren't horrifying are amusing.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Harrison Ford. Oh so very much.
  • Mugged for Disguise: Indy tends to use this tactic to sneak around enemy bases.
  • Near-Villain Victory: The baddies get what they wanted before the climax in Raiders and Kingdom, in Last Crusade they have the final goal within reach and in Temple they have the upper hand.
  • Nerds Are Sexy: When he is not killing Nazis or searching for magnificent items that always end up killing someone, he's an archaeology professor who encourages people not to follow the same "field work." If you get right down to it Indy is one of the world's first heroic action nerds.
  • Never Bring a Knife to a Gun Fight:
    • Not even a big one you can swing around really well.
    • Indy also gives Mutt this advice in Crystal Skull.
  • Not My Driver: Indy has backup during the cold open of Temple of Doom in the form of a friend posing as a waiter.
  • Omniglot: It isn't prominent in the films, but in the expanded universe, Indy has supposedly picked up twenty-seven languages while wandering around the world. Belloq appears to speak even more, and mocks Indy because he doesn't speak the obscure tribal language of the Hovitos.
  • Piggybacking on Hitler: Indy villains just love to do this.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything:
    • For a professor, Indy seems to do far more adventuring than actual teaching. This is lampshaded in Crystal Skull:
      Mutt: You're a teacher?
      Indy: Part time.
    • The comics include an entire city of pirates who don't do anything really "piratey"... because they're all stranded in a huge seaweed bed in the Sargasso, so they can't leave to do any raiding.
  • Pregnant Badass: The comics character Omphale, a Greek woman who is eight months pregnant and has been abandoned by her former lover when Indy crosses her path at the start of his quest for the Golden Fleece. She scares off mad Hecate cultists by charging them whilst firing a rifle, hijacks and flies a Nazi plane, and treks from Istanbul to Colchis to retrieve the fleece. Only going into labor at the critical moment prevents her from helping Indy retrieve the fleece before the cultists can summon Hecate, and even then she helps out; by presenting her newly born son to Hecate, Indy is able to persuade the goddess to turn upon her cultists instead of doing their will.
  • Reduced to Dust: A common form of death is seen in the movies, in which the villains (Nazi leaders) finally take the treasures they're looking for and end up dead, usually being converted into dust.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: In Raiders, Indy suffers serious ophidiophobia and must face thousands of venomous snakes who inhabited the Well of Souls. Played for laughs in Crystal Skull, where Indy is forced to hang on to a "rope" (snake) to get out of a quicksand pit.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: Indy carries a .45 ACP Smith and Wesson M1917 (which he surrenders to Belloq) and a .455 Webley Smith and Wesson Mk II Hand Ejector in Raiders of the Lost Ark, a .38 Spl Colt Official Police in The Temple of Doom (which Willie drops because the barrel was hot), and a .455 Webley WG Army in both The Last Crusade and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. He does, however, carry a Browning Hi-Power, made by John Inglis Co. of Toronto, for when his revolver runs out of ammo or gets lost.
  • Running Gag:
    • Late actor/stuntman Pat Roach appeared in all three of the original films, sometimes in multiple roles, where his characters usually meet an untimely demise. While Dovchenko in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is played by a different actor, he too plays the role of a brute who dies a gruesome death.
    • Indy's snake phobia.
      • Each movie features what is called a "phobia scene" (snakes, bugs, rats, killer ants and eels).
    • The Love Interest in each movie asks Indy "Are you crazy?!".
  • Say My Name:
    • Count the number of times that the bad guys scream "JOOOOOONES!" And all the times Indy's friends and allies yell "Indy!", or in Henry Sr.'s case, "Junior!".
    • And it's Henry Sr.'s gentle, insistent "Indiana" that saves Indy from Death by Materialism.
  • Scenery Porn: The Young Indiana Jones TV series loves to linger nostalgically on famous landmarks as establishing shots for the country of the week Indy is adventuring in. The series was intended to be semi-educational. The films also do this to present the glamorous, exotic locales frequented by a globe-trotting adventurer.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • The MacGuffin artifact usually turns out to be long-lost for a reason. You know the bit about All Myths Are True? It also applies to curses, supernatural monsters, and divine wrath. Marcus lampshades the Ark's dubious rapport, for instance, about 10 minutes into Raiders.
    • Sallah also lampshades this in Raiders:
      Sallah: Indy, there's something that troubles me... The Ark. If it is there in Tanis, then it is something that man was not meant to disturb. Death has always surrounded it. It is not of this Earth.
  • Secret Government Warehouse: The ending of Raiders has one of the most famous examples. Revisited in Crystal skull, where it's revealed to be Area 51.
  • Self-Disposing Villain: With some help from the MacGuffin, Mola Ram is the only Big Bad who gets beaten by Indiana directly; the other three get hoisted by their own petards without Indy's intervention.
  • Sesquipedalian Smith: Indiana Jones.
  • Shirtless Scene: Indy gets one per movie.
  • Signature Headgear:
    • Indy's trademark Fedora. The fact that Indy miraculously keeps the same hat throughout all his adventures is ultimately lampshaded in the third film.
      • It's in the Smithsonian.
    • Mola Ram has a huge skull headdress that he uses during his ceremonies.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: All the films are surprisingly on the idealistic end of the scale.
  • Stock Scream: The Wilhelm scream, Once per Episode.
  • Stock Unsolved Mysteries: All over the place. Usually just lost treasures, cities, and civilizations, but in the tie-in novels, Indy also discovered the truth about some lost explorers like Percy Fawcett and Roald Amundsen.
  • Surprisingly Creepy Moment: These are fun action-adventure movies for the most part, but it seems like a nightmarish moment out of nowhere is required at least Once per Episode:
  • Temple of Doom: Once per Episode. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is the Trope Namer.
  • Those Wacky Nazis: The villains of the Raiders and The Last Crusade. Incidentally, this almost partly killed the franchise. After the harrowing and humbling experience of filming Schindler's List, Steven Spielberg decided he could no longer in good conscience use Nazis as stock pulp villains as in Raiders and The Last Crusade. It is also the reason he decided not to make a prequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit. The Nazis did return as the main villains of Dial of Destiny, however, as James Mangold is helming that one instead.
  • Timeshifted Actor: Teenaged Indy is played by River Phoenix in The Last Crusade. The TV series had several actors play Indy at various ages.
  • Time Skip: After never going more than a year without an adventure from 1908 to 1947note , the franchise makes multiple major time jumps. Three years pass between Infernal Machine (1947) and the bookend segments of "Young Indiana Jones and the Mystery of the Blues" (1950), then seven years pass between that and Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (1957), then twelve years pass between that and Dial of Destiny (1969), and finally twenty-three years pass between that and the Old Indy bookend segments of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles (1992-1993).
  • Took a Level in Badass: Marcus Brody. In Raiders, he lamented that if he was as young as Indy he would have gone looking for the Ark of the Covenant himself. By the time of Last Crusade, he puts this concern aside because he wants to help Indy rescue Henry. Although he is rather out of his depth in the adventure that follows, he does nevertheless have enough cojones to knock a Nazi out with an Artillery shell.
  • Travel Montage: The famous map scenes that appear in all of the films.
  • Treasure Map: Indy pieces together the path to the Hovitos temple by using three different pieces of a map.
  • Tribute to Fido: Indiana Jones is named after George Lucas's dog Indiana. There is also an in-universe example that reflects the Real Life situation: in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, it is shown that the character chose the nickname "Indiana" after his family's dog.
  • Trilogy Creep: The Riding into the Sunset was meant to close the trilogy as well. But fans insisted on a fourth — which only started production after Lucas, Spielberg and Ford agreed to. Then a fifth film ended up being produced fifteen years after the fourth film came out.
  • Truth in Television: In the first, third, fourth and fifth films, the Nazis (and in the case of the Fourth film, the Soviets) attempted to harness various mythological artifacts to take over the world. Records have shown that the Nazis and the Soviets were both fascinated with the supernatural/the occult, although the latter was more focused on trying to harness psychic abilities than magic.
  • Tsundere:
    • Marion Ravenwood all the way. She goes from yelling at Indy, to dreamily sighing when he leaves to blow up a Soviet transport.
    • Willie also goes from belligerent to wanting to put out for Indy in neighboring scenes.
  • Two-Fisted Tales: Indy stories have all the trappings of globe trotting action adventure heroic tales.
  • Wallpaper Camouflage: Used by the Thugee who sneaks up on Indy in his room at Pankot Palace. It's so well done that even the viewer can't see him until he moves.
  • We Have Ways of Making You Talk: Spalko uses the Crystal Skull to break minds of torture victims.
  • Weapon Specialization: Indy's iconic weapon/general utility tool is the bullwhip.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Indy is afraid of snakes, Indy's dad is afraid of rats and Mutt of scorpions. Of course, this means they all encounter the subject of their debilitating phobias again and again in a series of contrived coincidences. Mind you, is Mutt's reaction to the scorpion a genuine fear of scorpions, or the normal person's reaction to seeing a massive scorpion?
  • Womanliness as Pathos: Dr. Jones's experiences with women are fraught with emotional baggage. He is constantly tempted and solicited by his female students and endures heavy Belligerent Sexual Tension with the women he works with like Marion, Willie, and Elsa. In particular, Willie is portrayed as a constant obstacle — she is consistently a Damsel in Distress and has such a shallow reaction to bugs and creepy-crawlies that she hesitates to save him and Short Round from a death trap (and then accidentally reactivates said trap while frantically trying to get them off her). Elsa, meanwhile, is a Honey Trap that seduces and betrays Indy, and he later learns she did the same thing to his father. She winds up tricking her boss into killing himself with a false Grail and then dies trying to take the real Grail out of the temple so that she can be with Indy. Indy winds up almost getting himself killed trying to save her, and still mourns her (unlike any other villain in the series).
  • World Tour: A hallmark of all the films is their exotic locales, along with the map shown during the Travel Montage.
  • Worthless Treasure Twist: Played with in three of the films:
    • In Raiders of the Lost Ark, once opened, the Ark of the Covenant seems empty and therefore is thought to be worthless to the Nazis seeking its supposedly divine powers... until the wrath of God comes pouring out of it and utterly destroys the Nazis present.
    • In The Last Crusade, the Holy Grail is real enough treasure, but it can't be brought out of its resting place without bringing the whole place down around it. Indy's father realizes, at the end, that the real treasure he gained out of the whole mess was, in his words "Illumination" (and, unspoken, the reconciliation of his relationship with Indy).
    • Used straight in Crystal Skull - while there is plenty of gold (among other valuables) in El Dorado, the real treasure turns out to be knowledge that makes your head explode - literally!.
    • In Dial of Destiny, the Antikythera works exactly as its creator intended. Too bad for the villain, as the dial only finds time fissures leading to the Siege of Syracuse in 213 BC, making it worthless for Voller's plot to assassinate and replace Hitler in 1939.

"Trust me."


Video Example(s):


Don't Call Me Junior!

During an encounter with Nazis, Henry Jones Sr. calls his son, Indiana, "Junior", a nickname which he hates. Indiana reflexively kills the Nazis in anger at being called that.

How well does it match the trope?

4.89 (18 votes)

Example of:

Main / BerserkButton

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