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Western Animation / Jonny Quest: The Real Adventures
aka: The Real Adventures Of Jonny Quest

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The Quest team is back! Yep, even Bandit.

Jonny Quest: The Real Adventures is a Sequel Series to the wildly popular 1960s Hanna-Barbera animated show Jonny Quest, which aired simultaneously on TBS, TNT and Cartoon Network when it ran from August 26, 1996, to April 16, 1997. It covers the same basic idea as the previous versions, that of a teenage boy named Jonny Quest, who travels the world with his family, investigating mysterious phenomena they encounter along the way (sometimes said phenomena come find them at home, of course). Adventure plots ensue.

Cartoon Network spearheaded this re-imagining with the purpose of attracting a wider audience by aging the younger characters by a couple of years, making it Darker and Edgier, adding a strong female main character in Jessie Bannon (Race's daughter who was introduced in the Made-for-TV Movie Jonny's Golden Quest, not to be confused with that other Jessie girl from the 1980s The New Adventures of Jonny Quest series of dubious canonicity), and adding a tech element in Quest World, Dr. Benton Quest's fully immersive virtual reality system, which was animated through 3D graphics that wowed the kiddies back in 1996.

The first season of the show focused mainly on these new aspects, and the second "season" was produced by a different team (including a completely different voice cast) with the aim of resembling the classic JQ series a little more closely. note 

The show was generally well received by fans and critics, even gathering a decent-sized Internet fandom within a new generation of teens and young adults who have now grown fully into adulthood and have raised it almost to cult status all on its own. However, the ratings and merchandise revenue were not high enough to warrant a renewal for a third season. Many feel that it was killed before its time.

During its run, it was titled The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest, but that was switched around with the DVD release, likely for cataloguing purposes.

Please note that all trope examples listed in this page should apply specifically to the 1990s series. For tropes that apply to the 60s series try Jonny Quest. For tropes that apply to the 80s series, try The New Adventures of Jonny Quest

The Real Adventures provides examples of:

  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The backgrounds of some of their outdoor adventures (especially cloudy skies or northern lights) tended to stand out from the regular 2D animation, mostly in Season 1.
  • Accidental Kiss: "Ghost Quest" saw Jonny and Jessie kiss under the influence of mutual spectral possession. Jessie did give Jonny a good natured ribbing about it later.
  • Actor Allusion: In his first appearance, Jeremiah Surd laments that news coverage about his nerve gas interrupted Scooby-Doo. Surd's voice actor, Frank Welker, has voiced Freddie since the very first episode in 1969.
  • Against My Religion: Hadji spouts this excuse to the alligators that are attacking him in "Alligators and Okeechobee Vikings":
    Hadji: Get back! It's against my religion to be eaten by reptiles!
  • Age Without Youth: "More Than Zero" featured a man who was cursed with eternal life without eternal youth. And he still looks better than the former friend who cursed him, whose Deal with the Devil caused him to transform into a soulless squid monster. After the team destroys both the monstrous entity and the Artifact of Doom powering him, he crumbles away into dust, happy and at peace.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Race Bannon had a somewhat darker complexion in the first season, bordering on Race Lift (heh). Doesn't help that he also liked using the term "Ponchita" to refer to Jessie.
  • Animal Wrongs Group: Every now and again, the enemies have eco-friendly agendas, but rarely fit the trope. The weirdest and most dangerous example appears in "East of Zanzibar", where a Russian military submarine crew uses a fake giant squid tentacle to sink whaling ships and kill any poachers in the area as a way of paying reverence to whales after a pod of whales saved the crew's submarine from sinking in the past. Notably they are not played sympathetically despite sympathies from Johnny, since Hadji outright calls them insane and murderous.
    • They come to the rescue when Surd uses Quest World and a sonar device to enslave whales in "Besieged in Paradise".
    • The crew falls into this in "Manhattan Maneater". The episode features a white tiger that escaped from some rich guy and took residence in the abandoned subway tunnels. In the end, they release it into the jungle. The problem is triple-fold: white tigers rarely survive in the wild, because their color doesn't hide them effectively, which makes hunting difficult. Furthermore this tiger was likely brought up by humans, which means it's not afraid of them, but it can't take care of itself in the jungle at all. Even worse, while it was in the tunnels, it started killing people. By releasing it to the wild the crew pretty much ensured it's destruction: it either starved to death, or resorted to killing humans again, guaranteeing that someone would hunt it down.
  • Another Dimension: Complete with inhabitants that want to take over our dimension, in "Other Space".
  • Applied Phlebotinum: Dr. Quest and Hadji are fond of this trope perhaps more than anyone else, and that's saying something.
  • Art Shift: The Questworld segments used Medium Blending during the first season. For the second, the was replaced with a simple art shift on a few occasions.
    • Referenced in-show at one point. When Jonny and Dr. Quest log on to the afterlife, they find that while they're wearing the black jumpsuits Questworld normally gives them, they still look the same as they do offline, rather than their usual 3-D models. When Jonny wonders why they're not in the form of their online avatars, Dr. Quest explains that they are using Questworld to exist as minds or souls and are therefore "real", not inside the context of a computer program. Likewise, later on in the episode, Jonny cannot access his regular online weaponry because, where Questworld is sending them, it doesn't exist.
    • Noticeably between the first and second seasons in the non-CG animation, bordering on Off-Model for Race and Dr. Quest. The CGI sequences in Season 2 also went through this, switching between different companies (including Blur Studio and Sony Pictures Imageworks) between episodes.
  • Artistic License History: "In the Wake of the Mary Celeste" has a man claim to be the reincarnation of the ill-fated ship's Captain Briggs. Doctor Quest, using information the man gave him, finds the wreckage of said ship. However, the Mary Celeste did not sink under Briggs' command, but was instead found adrift nine days after the last log entry. The actual Mary Celeste was deliberately destroyed thirteen years after the famous disappearance as part of an insurance fraud scheme, and its wreckage would have been off the coast of Haiti, not the Sargasso Sea as claimed in the episode.
  • The Atoner:
    • Kumar Mukharno was never really on board with his brother Dja'Long Mukharno's plan to use the shadow puppet for his own greed, and in the end helps to stop it. But he still tries to get away and is arrested.
    • The Malenque Mummies in the first episode of Season 2 "Mummies of the Malenque" come to life and stop Salazar from using the virus that wiped them out centuries ago.
      Malenque Mummy: It was our own evil that wiped us out centuries ago. We will not let you do it again!
  • As the Good Book Says...: Ezekiel Rage is fond of quoting The Book of Rage. Though when they get ahold of it, they find nothing actually written in the Book of Rage
  • Badass in Distress: Race Bannon finds himself captured or otherwise in trouble quite a few times. This is because the creative team meant to empower the kids a bit more than they were in classic JQ.
  • Badass Bookworm: Dr. Benton Quest sometimes shows Badass tendencies, particularly during his escape from the villain's headquarters in "General Winter" and his climactic fight with Big Bad Dr. Zin in "The Robot Spies". In one episode, he explains that he picked up some fighting techniques from Race.
  • Benevolent Monsters: In "The Spectre of the Pine Barrens", it's implied the Real After All Jersey Devil is this. It never harms anyone and even passes the Quest Team a priceless artifact. The team wisely agrees to keep the secret to themselves.
  • BFS: "Expedition to Khumbu" both subverts and lampshades this trope. While playing a game in Questworld, Jonny gets attacked by a scorpion-type monster. He immediately asks I.R.I.S. to equip him with a Gatling gun; the computer, however, gives him a shield and a fairly small sword instead, explaining that it's the only type of weapon permitted in that level. Jonny, of course, tells her she'd "better make it a BIG sword!" So I.R.I.S. makes it grow until it's longer than he is tall. Given that this is a computer game, you'd think they'd play the trope straight, but as Questworld was designed to be realistic, the sword is too heavy for him. As he stumbles with it, he goes "give me a break, I.R.I.S.!" and then he falls. The sword breaks in two, Jonny complains, and the computer quips "you requested a break." He still uses the broken sword to fight the scorpion monster, though.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: One-shot villainess Estella Scheele from "In the Realm of the Condor" seems likeable and only concerned with finding her lost grandfather. It turns out she lied about being the Professor's granddaughter, and only wants to loot El Dorado for its gold. We never even learn her true identity before she plummets to her death.
  • Bittersweet Ending: At the end of "Ndovu's Last Journey", they successfully keep the poachers away in order for Ndovu to reach the elephant graveyard... so he can die.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: Mostly evenly shared by Dr. Zin, Jeremiah Surd and Ezekiel Rage. It's interesting to note that Dr. Zin was the Big Bad in classic JQ, while Surd and Rage were created for the re-imagining.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and Yeti: The series had had Yeti who turned out to be Neanderthals in a Monastery (a knowing throwback to the original). It also featured Bigfoot which were revealed to be aliens in disguise (they couldn't survive in Earth's polluted atmosphere otherwise).
  • Bland-Name Product: One episode had Race breaking into a building using a Nisa (Visa) credit card.
  • Blank Book: Ezekiel Rage carries around and frequently quotes from the Book of Rage. However, the book is actually blank except for a picture of Rage's dead family.
  • Bizarro Apocalypse: Used as the framing device for the episode "Other Space": A scientist opens a portal to another universe, but the hostile beings that come through start to transform Earth into a world they can inhabit.
  • Blob Monster: "DNA Doomsday" featured a shapeshifting blob-like bio computer who was given a test mission to launch a group of Nuclear Missiles, and failed to realize it was a simulation. For added horror, it could change parts of its body into people it had come into contact with. Not even whole people either. Whenever it had to mimic human speech it grew a pair of lungs outside its own body.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Jessie in "Thoughtscape". She almost destroyed half the Quest Compound!
  • Broken Pedestal: Race's old mentor (and boss) is revealed to have been working for Dr. Zin.
  • Burn the Witch!: In "Ice Will Burn", the people from the underground caverns threaten to throw Jessie and Kazrina to the smoldering lava as Human Sacrifices, thinking they are witches.
  • Canon Discontinuity: Lance Falk, one of the second season writers, has argued fervently against the canonicity of the 1980s series and 1990s telefilms. It was official policy for the writers of the second season that nothing that came between them and the original series was canon.
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: Would it be Jonny Quest without it? A wonderful example of Type IV appears in "Expedition to Khumbu" as Jessie shimmies down a rope to free Jonny and Hadji from a cage.
    Jonny: Careful, Jess!
    Jessie Bannon: Ugh. I never understand why people say that. It's like, what, am I stupid enough to take an impossible risk?
    Hadji: But indeed, you are taking an impossible risk.
  • Catchphrase: Race's "Fur on a catfish!", Jonny's "Slammin'!"
  • The Cavalry: In "Trouble on the Colorado".
  • Cavalry Refusal: Before he became a disfigured, vengeful doomsday cult leader, Ezekiel Rage was a US government agent with a wife and young daughter. When his cover was blown during an assignment on foreign soil, his handlers refused his request for help getting himself and his family out of the country, which resulted in his family's death and his disfigurement.
  • Chekhov's Skill:
    • In "The Darkest Fathoms", Jonny is seen to be practicing how to escape from being tied up. Later in the episode, he's captured by pirates and uses this skill to get free (and save Jessie and his dad while he's at it).
    • In "Ezekiel Rage" Hadji is shown teaching Jonny breathing techniques. Later these help him survive when he's exposed to nerve gas.
    • In "General Winter", at the beginning of the episode, Hadji is seen reading a book on battle strategy and trying to lecture Jonny on the importance of it. Later on, this saves them after they escape from Vostok and Hadji frees his other prisoners who end up saving the rest of the team.
  • Clear My Name: In "Without a Trace", Dr. Quest and Race have been framed for kidnapping the President of the United States. Jonny, Hadji, and Jessie set out to clear their names, its revealed it was Surd and his Goons who kidnapped the President, Jonny, Hadji, and Jessie managed to save the President and clear Dr. Quest and Race's names.
  • Clueless Aesop: Averted with the ending of "Ndovu's Last Journey," wherein the Quests decide not to reveal the location of the elephant graveyard as it wouldn't make a difference because elephants would continue to be killed for their tusks. That animals and humans continue to struggle for the same living space is another contributor. The fact is it just would not make a difference.
  • Cool Old Guy: "Amok" gives us Historical Domain Character Maj. Gen. Orde Wingate. "What is this, geriatric aikido?" Hellz yeah, it is. And it is awesome.
  • Cool Shades: One of the villains was a government agent who always wore sunglasses. Lampshaded by Race when he said that he "was one of them, until the shades became a part of the uniform".
  • Cyber Green: Questworld is a virtual reality computer system created by Benton Quest, and primarily used by Jonny and Jesse to create and play video games. When logging in, the users would wear headphones that materialized green visors and the effects showed flashes of green light as the wearer's mind was transferred into cyberspace.
  • Cyberspace: Questworld.
  • Dark Lord on Life Support: Jeremiah Surd. A flashback in his introductory episode reveals that it was Race who confined him to the wheelchair and life support.
  • Dead All Along: Paul Morney in "Ghost Quest" turns out to have been just as much a ghost as his ancestors.
  • Death by Materialism: The villain in "The Realm of the Condor".
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: In "The Spectre of the Pine Barrens", Jonny is astonished that a hippie couple in the 1960's had put a peace tattoo on the hand of their daughter. As Hadji points out it was a different time and culture.
  • Descending Ceiling: Played deadly straight with a pair of scientists off-screen in "More Than Zero". Also, Dr. Quest manages to escape from one in "The Robot Spies".
  • Deus ex Machina: "The Secret of the Moai". Aliens arrive in the last moment, destroy all the evidence the Quest team uncovered, erase everyone's memories, undo all damage, and teleport Surd and his mooks into Peru. What.
  • Disney Villain Death: Played straight a few times, though that doesn't make the deaths any less cringe-worthy.
    • In the episode "In the Realm of the Condor", the villain of the episode battles Jonny on a bridge and they both fall off. Jonny grabs onto the ledge and the villain grabs onto Jonny. As you would expect, she loses her hold and falls down into the gorge. However, we actually see her, screaming all the way down, as she is seconds away from being splattered onto the sharp rocks below. (At least they didn't show the actual landing...)
    • Happens twice in the second season episode "Bloodlines". First time is when a henchman ends up sucked out of an open hatch on the Quest Team's plane, and we see him get swept out and up until he disappears from view. The second comes when Hadji's evil cousin falls into a pit of cobras. The view cuts to Hadji before the impact, though we do see him flinch. And the sound of a body landing on hundreds of snakes is not pleasant.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: Jonny says as much in "Assault on Questworld".
  • The Dragon: Dr. Zin's twin daughters follow this trope. The other major villain, Dr. Jeremiah Surd, has Julia, his loyal assistant/lover/bodyguard and also Lorenzo.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Race falls into crazy driver mode when Jessie goes missing. Jonny as well, even without that excuse. But then again, he is only 14.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: The first season introduced several recurring villains. The second season crew, as part of their return to Classic JQ's themes and tropes, decreed that, just as in the original series, There Shall Be No Recurring Villains Besides Dr. Zin; all others must meet their Karmic Death by the end of the season. As a result, Season 2 dispatched the Season 1 Rogues Gallery, one by one.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: A villainous example: Lorenzo is fairly competent and unflinchingly loyal, his only flaw is being Book Dumb. The Big Bad, Jeremiah Surd, and the Dark Action Girl, Julia, never give him the time of day. In "To Bardo and Back", after he saves Surd from cardiac arrest, Julia goes, "Jeremiah! Thank the stars that you're alive!" Lorenzo retorts, "The stars had nothing to do with it", but they ignore him.
  • Dying Curse: In "The Darkest Fathoms", pirate Black Jack Lee hollered as he sank with his ship full of looted treasure that "in life or in death, no man shall have what belongs to Black Jack Lee". His ghost makes sure of it in the last seconds of the episode.
  • Eat Me: In "DNA Doomsday", Jonny lets the Monster of the Week absorb him while he's in Quest World in order to short-circuit it.
  • Everything Is Online: There is literally nothing Quest World VR technology can't access. Even the afterlife.
  • Environment-Specific Action Figure: The figure line didn't even have "regular" versions of the characters. You could get Race as a skydiver, Jonny as an astronaut, or Jessie as a cape-wearing, catsuit-sporting Ninja, but good luck finding them in anything they actually wore on the show. The closest to being vaguely accurate were the Quest World figures, but these featured candy-colored paint jobs that were in stark contrast with the dark-colored suits on the show, and featured a toy of the motorcycle from one sequence with giant yellow training wheels.
  • Evil Cripple: Jeremiah Surd is a quadriplegic super-hacker and Mad Scientist.
  • Evil Poacher: The Main Villain of "N'Dovu's Last Journey". Right after the kids thwart his attempt to kill the titular elephant, he sets a fire to kill them and the border patrol they came across.
  • Evil Redeemed in a Can: "The Mummies of Malenque" has a descendant of the Malenque try and revive a plague that the Malenque had supposedly engineered as part of a plot to rule the world. Unfortunately for him, his deceased ancestors woke up and had a few strong opinions on the subject.
    Malenque Mummy: It was our own evil that wiped us out. We will not let you do it again!
  • The Faceless: The face of the abbot of the monastery in "Expedition to Khumbu" is never shown. Because he's a Yeti.
  • Fakin' MacGuffin: In "Return of the Anasazi", The Men in Black have been attacking Alice Starseer and Team Quest, trying to get an alien artifact in Alice's possession. At one point, to save everyone's lives, Jonny seemingly surrenders and hands them a device, which satisfies them and they leave. Just as Dr. Quest starts lamenting what the Men in Black can do with the artifact, Jonny starts laughing and reveals he had it the whole time. Correctly guessing that the Men in Black didn't know what it looked like, he handed them an airplane's fuel tester.
  • Family-Friendly Firearms: Notably averted. Just as in the Classic series, it is not uncommon to find Race wielding a gun, and in "Assault on Questworld", Jessie not only brandishes, but actually fires a weapon she took off of one of the bad guys.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Even more noticeable than in classic JQ. A particularly nasty one is Victor Von Romme in "Nuclear Netherworld". He falls into a pile of purified uranium-235 slugs in shirtsleeves. Within seconds he has horrific burns but is not quite dead, and one of the heroes - whom he'd been trying to kill for half the episode - remarks that "I wouldn't wish that even on him."
  • Fatal Attractor: Oh, Hadji...
    • To clarify, his two main love interests over the run of the show were: a) a succubus-like bat monster who was using him to get to Jessie so it could consume her life force, and b) the daughter of his adoptive father's terrorist arch-enemy. Jessie herself lampshades it in "The Bangalore Falcon": "Boy, can you pick 'em!"
    • The one girl Jonny actively showed interest in was not evil by herself, but she was being haunted by a vengeful ghost.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Surd. He's trapped in his powerchair, even in Quest World, unable to move on his own.
  • Fiery Redhead: Belle Bonnet had red hair... and her ghost was quite literally on fire.
  • Follow in My Footsteps: Played with. Surd tries to trick Jonny using this argument in "Thoughtscape". He creates an illusion via Quest World where Dr. Quest tells Jonny how disappointed he is in him, and how Jessie is much more attuned to his own interests (namely science) than him. Jonny breaks down accordingly. Fortunately for everybody (except Surd), Dr. Quest really doesn't care what his son does so long as he's happy, and will always be proud of him, so the illusion is eventually broken. It helped that the real Dr. Quest showed up and punched out the illusory one.
  • Glorious Mother Russia: Vostok in general, and also his cronies in "General Winter".
  • Golem: Manipulated by a villain into a weapon utterly impervious to normal human weapons in "Rock of Rages". The episode's writer, Lance Falk, later explained in an interview that the episode was, at least in part, a dig at the 1980s attempt at the series and its addition of a living statue called Hard Rock to the main cast.
  • Gory Discretion Shot:
    • Surprisingly plentiful, but most prominent in "Ndovu's Last Journey". There is a fight in an elephant graveyard. A villain falls and we see (from his point of view, no less) him fall towards the business end of an elephant skeleton's tusk. The view cuts away before impact, but we do hear a rather nasty sound effect and see other characters flinch. The other is killed by the titular elephant stomping on him, implying the man's head was crushed.
    • In "More Than Zero", some scientists in a haunted mansion get squished by a Descending Ceiling. While we don't see it happen, or hear any disturbing noises (other than them screaming and a concrete thud), Race does open the door they went through, likely saw what was left, and quietly closed the door (while maintaining a conversation no less).
  • Grand Theft Me: In "Cyberswitch", Jeremiah Surd, The Lawnmower Man-strength power in cyberspace and mostly immobile in the real world, switches bodies with Race. The switch is quickly discovered and reversed. Then he tries to move to Jonny's body. Fortunately Jonny is better at fighting in Questworld than Race is.
  • Great Escape: Subverted in "Digital Doublecross". Before getting arrested, Surd left a safeguard in case he ever got caught: a sleeper virus in Questworld that would trap Jonny and/or Jessie when they played a game in the system. He's was the only one who knew the abort code, so he would be able to trade that for his freedom. Race takes down the guards and springs him from the high-security prison, but when Surd tells him the abort code, Race simply hands him back to prison with no consequence the prison authorities were in on the "escape attempt" from the beginning. And yet, in the very next episode ("Thoughtscape"), Surd is out of prison and wreaking havoc like always. So much for that "high security" prison.
  • Great White Hunter: Appears in in "Manhattan Maneater".
  • Hate Sink: Some of the antagonist that the Quest Team encounter are this:
    • General Tyler from "Alien in Washington", he refuses to called off the Space Test Defenses when the Vice President ask him to put them on halt. Then, he ignores The Vice President and Dr. Quest's warning about calling them or else the Invason will occurred, he is even rude to Commander Bennett when he tries to say something, he even orders the MP to shoot Race if tries anything to stop him from arresting the Vice President.
    • Agent Hinkle from "Without a Trace", when Dr. Quest and Race are framed for kidnapping the president, he brutally interrogates them, Dr. Quest asks to prove his innocence, Hinkle would not give him anything especially a Bathroom break until they confess. He even tells Race that Commander Bennett has been Antarctica.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The phrase is almost used word for word in "The Darkest Fathoms".
  • Honorable Elephant: Ndovu from "Ndovu's Last Journey." Initially he almost kills Jonney, Dr. Quest and Race after mistakingly believing they killed another elephant, but he stops picks Johnney to accompany him on his journey to the elephant graveyard. After Jonny saves him from the episode's Evil Poacher villains, he returns the favor at the end of the episode and kills the poachers.
  • I Know Mortal Kombat: In the episode "Nemesis", Jonny and Hadji lose their jeep and acquire a tank. Hadji asks Jonny if he knows how to operate one, and Jonny replies, "Tank Leader 2. Highest score ever recorded."
  • I'm Taking Her Home with Me!: A rather odd example, from Lorenzo of all people, in "Without a Trace". Surd and his minions have hijacked Air Force One and they plan to kill everybody in it with a deadly nerve gas. Jonny, Jessie, and Hadji get themselves captured while trying to rescue the President. Bandit is also there. When Lorenzo points Bandit's presence out to Surd, the boss tells him to "throw him in, too." And Lorenzo goes: "But he's so cute! Can I keep him?" Surd, predictably, says no.
  • Implacable Man: Ezekiel Rage, an apocalyptic preacher who's supposedly been killed after each of his attempts to end humanity, only to return good as new. It took sending him back to prehistoric times with a live nuke before he was finally confirmed dead.
  • Inevitable Waterfall: In "Amok", among others. Given the amount of exotic locales these people visit, it's really no wonder this trope gets used a lot.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Although Race and Jonny have more of a father/son dynamic, Race does say in "Race Against Danger" that Jonny is his new best friend.
  • The Jersey Devil: In "The Spectre of the Pine Barrens" it at first appears to be part of a "Scooby-Doo" Hoax, but then turns out to be Real After All.
  • The Juggernaut: The Golem from "Rock of Ages." A helicopter crashing on it doesn't stop it, and Czech tries shooting at with anti-tank weaponry, flamethrows, and tanks, it tore through them with no difficulty after they failed to sratch it. The only thing that can destroy it is the artifact used to bring it to life.
  • Just a Stupid Accent:
    • This sometimes gets to the point where the accented English actually becomes impossible to understand: See "Undersea Urgency".
    • As well as the point where the guest characters have an accent and one forgets they're supposed to be different accents: See Vostok in "Rock of Rages".
      Lance Falk: Actually, "Rock of Rages" with the Golem, was an attempt to sort of tweak the nose of Hard Rock. I wanted to show how downright frightening a 7-foot-tall rock creature is. A terrifying supernatural force, not a puppy dog.
  • Killed Off for Real: While the show's other main villains tended to get the No One Could Survive That! treatment in their last episodes and since the show didn't get a third season, it's probably safe to say that they're gone for real Ezekiel Rage had an established tendency to cheat death. Therefore, just to be sure, he got sent back to prehistoric times and blown up by a nuclear bomb, leaving his mask behind as a fossil for good measure. Deader than Dead? Deader than dead.
  • Kissing Under the Influence: Jonny and Jessie in "Ghost Quest". They get possessed by the ghosts of two lovers who murdered each other over a jealous spat. Hadji and another character convince the spirits to literally kiss and make up... while still in Jonny and Jessie's bodies. There's a brief awkward moment between the two after, but it passes fairly quickly (and neither of them acknowledges that the kiss continued for several seconds after the ghosts left their bodies). Jessie even teases Jonny about it at the end of the episode.
  • Koan: Hadji. All the time.
  • Lame Pun Reaction: Jonny makes a few fish & chips puns in "Village of the Doomed", but one in particular made Benton groan:
    Jonny: We make a pretty good team, dad. Especially when the chips are down.
  • Living Shadow: The Monster of the Week in "Diamonds and Jade".
  • Lost Colony: An interesting variation appears in "Ice Will Burn". The episode deals with a people descended from 17th/18th century Siberian Russians, whose ancestors had to flee their town and got trapped by accident in an inescapable deep gorge/icy cavern. They managed to survive and thrive thanks to the heat produced by a small local volcano (Truth in Television if it's supposed to be set somewhere in the Kamchatka peninsula).
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Or daughters, in the case of Dr. Zin, although only Anaya actually fits the "falls in love with a hero" part of the trope.
  • Magical Native American: The Anasazi, although they're more like Alien Native Americans. The trope is hilariously subverted in "Trouble on the Colorado", though: Jonny and co. meet one old man who turns out to be completely ordinary person, who only knows Jonny's name because it's written on the dog's collar, and he only guessed that the enemy has a helicopter because he saw one recently, as opposed to identifying the trail a helicopter would leave behind after taking off. Of course that didn't stop him (nor his wife) from occasionally talking like stereotypical Indians in western movies, just for the kicks.
  • Magic Skirt: Jeremiah Surd's female Dragon Julia regularly wore an extremely short skirt, and fought with a high-kicking kung-fu style. There was never an upskirt shot, ever.
  • Merchandise-Driven: The second creative team did Quest World episodes against their will because the series' virtual reality aspects were an important part of the merchandising.
    • Which is ironic because the second season features Quest World more frequently than the first.
    • One possible reason for why the merchandise sales were down aside from the above-mentioned issues with the action figures was the general difficulty of buying items hard to locate.
  • Missing Mom: Jonny's and Hadji's. Jessie's mom is recurring.
    • Jonny's mom died the cause is unknown. An episode fully explains Hadji's family. Short answer: He's actually a prince who was smuggled out of his homeland as a young child due to his traitorous uncle and cousin. Said cousin kills the uncle in a flashback, and said cousin gets his, allowing Hadji to take his birthright, which he shares with his mother.
    • The first of the two 1990s TV movies (Jonny's Golden Quest) that preceded TRA revealed that Dr. Zin killed Jonny's mom. However, those telefilms were considered non-canonical by the Season 2 production crew, though.
    • The exact details of what happened to Jonny's mom were supposed to be in the third season.
  • The Missus and the Ex: Race's ex-wife Estella, and his ex-girlfriend Jade, both make an appearance in "The Robot Spies". Save for a few tense moments, it's not as bad as one would expect.
  • Motive Decay: The writers promptly forgot about Ezekiel Rage's original reason for going insane and becoming a villain, in favor of making him the nigh-immortal leader of a bunch of doomsday cultists. Although given all the things the man has gone through, it's possible between episodes he has descended even further into madness.
  • Musical Nod: The main title theme includes brief snippets of the '60s Jonny Quest theme.
  • Mythology Gag: Jonny's grandpa is named and modeled after the late creator of Classic JQ, Doug Wildey.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Hadji's "latent" telekinetic abilities in Season 2.
  • Never Say "Die": Surprisingly averted for a 90's kid's show. Quite a number of people (though rarely major characters and never anyone on the main team) end up getting pretty blatantly killed off.
  • No Eye in Magic: Subverted in "Heroes". Jonny didn't use the Virtual File Finder disk to look at Medusa!Surd via reflection, he made Medusa!Surd see his own reflection in it so he would petrify himself.
  • No One Could Survive That!:
    • Usually given to the Villain of the Week in some variation. However, with Ezekiel Rage, one of his recurring tropes was his subverting it.
    • Race uses the phrase verbatim referring to his inspector friend, the one with 10 children, in "Diamonds and Jade". Predictably, he does survive that — he would never miss Father's day!
  • Not Disabled In VR: They try to get Jeremiah Surd to become a Boxed Crook in exchange for access to Quest World. This backfires, and trying to take it over because of this trope becomes his main motivation for antagonizing them. Eventually inverted when he's trapped in Quest World in his crippled form.
  • One-Steve Limit:
    • An exception with two Estellas: Estella Scheele, a one-off antagonist seen in "In the Realm of the Condor", and Estella Velasquez, Jessie's mother. And they're both redheads, too.
    • Oddly, there are also two "Dr. Smallwoods". The first one is mentioned in "Ezekiel Rage" (a scientist who studies reptiles in the desert), and the second one is a central character in "Village of the Doomed" (the doctor who controls the personality chips that cause the town to go crazy).
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Race. In "Race Against Danger", he tells Jonny his real name, and Jonny's understandably flabbergasted. "Roger?!"
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: In "In the Darkness of the Moon", lycanthropy is an inherited genetic disorder that only affects men.
  • Painful Adhesive Removal: In "The Darkest Fathoms", Jonny finds his father and Jessie Bannon tied up and gagged with duct tape. He rips the tape off of them as he unties them.
    Jessie: YOW! I was going to say I was glad to see you!
  • Panthera Awesome: Jonny, Jessie and Hadji are chased by a jaguar in "The Mummies of Malenque". Hadji tries to "calm its raging spirit"... it doesn't work.
  • Papa Wolf:
    • Race. You do not touch his "Ponchita". Or Jonny and Hadji either.
    • Doctor Quest too. Not even an evil demon can keep him from saving Jonny.
    • Though it's because he's insane and he's responsible for putting her in danger in the first place, Exekiel Rage saves Jessie when he mistakes her for his dead daughter Karla and his entire crusade against the world is to avenge her (and his wife's) death.
  • Phlebotinum Killed the Dinosaurs: Via the nuke Ezekiel Rage took with him to the past in his last episode.
  • Pink Means Feminine: Jessie has a pink shirt, and when the team gets swim gear or parkas that are identical save for their colors, Jessie gets the pink ones.
  • Plagiarism in Fiction: "The Haunted Sonata". For generations, the Duncek family lived the life of Royalties Heir because Franz Duncek stole a sonata from its real author, a woman who, because of her gender, was initially afraid of not being appreciated. Once the truth was revealed, Irina Kafka, as the current heiress of the real author, got the money.
  • Power Trio: Jonny, Jessie, and Hadji, although which kind of power trio they are is hard to pinpoint.
    • One of the producers even described Jonny as "a young Captain Kirk" in a DVD extra feature. He does seem to embody The Kirk some of the time, although he's not as pragmatic and perhaps a little bit more emotion-driven than expected— that's more of a The McCoy trait. In reality him, Jessie and Hadji shift between The Kirk, The Spock, and The McCoy depending on the story. Hadji fits The Spock in that he is from a different culture and the thinker of the group, although he's certainly not emotionless. Jessie tends to be more emotional than Hadji, but she doesn't react as impulsively as Jonny and has shown that she can be cold and logical like The Spock.
    • Another way of seeing them is the Freudian way:
      • Hadji as a rare, not exactly unemotional Super-Ego.
      • Jonny as the impulsive, emotion-driven Id.
      • Jessie as the Ego, who has a lot of the emotions of the Id, balanced with much of the rationality of the Super-Ego.
  • Proverbial Wisdom: Hadji, who is the most spiritual person in the group and a student Yogin, tends to speak in proverbs and aphorisms. Sometimes parodied, as noted in Koan above.
  • Race Against the Clock: In "Escape to Questworld", the kids have to get Surd to deactivate the release of his nerve gas, because their parents' protective suits will lose their effectiveness in exactly 22 hours.
  • Rags to Riches: Irina Kafka, once it was revealed one of her ancestors was the real author of the sonata stolen by Franz Duncek.
  • Really Gets Around: Race has a lot of ex-girlfriends (and implied one-night stands) that he keeps running into, much to his daughter's chagrin. Hey, "(he) was only doing (his) job."
  • Reassigned to Antarctica: In "Without a Trace", a General Ripper type character says that this has happened to ally Colonel Bennett. Ironically, at the end of the episode, he himself meets the same fate after his persecution of the Quests almost allows Jeremiah Surd to assassinate the President.
  • Religion of Evil: "So it is written... IN THE BOOK OF RAGE!"
    • Prophecy Twist: The book from which he keeps quoting? No scripture, just a photo album of his dead wife and daughter.
      • With only one photo. In the middle of the book.
  • Real After All:
    • In the very first episode, "The Darkest Fathoms," the villains are Ruthless Modern Pirates running a "Scooby-Doo" Hoax, pretending to be the ghosts of the legendary pirate Black Jack Lee who'd sworn that no man would ever have what was once his while they hunted around the area for his sunken treasure. But at the end of the episode, when the pirates are defeated, his ghostly specter manifests and sabotages the heroes' attempt at raising his vessel.
    • In "AMOK", the main characters encounter a group of natives living in hiding, who protect their society by sending guy a dressed as legendary local monster Amok (looking like hybrid of gorilla, baboon, and sloth) to scare the curious. Later everybody got caught by a bunch of terrorists (or something like that). Jonny escapes and, together with Amok-guy, manages to free everybody, but the villains' leader runs away. When Jonny thanks the guy in the Amok costume for help, he responds that he was with everybody else the whole time. And then we hear the leader's screams and a monstrous roar coming from the jungle.
    • In "The Spectre of the Pine Barrens", The Jersey Devil appears to be just a descendant of the Minutemen in a costume. In the ending, the real Devil appears and passes Team Quest a container with the original Declaration of Independence.
  • The Remnant: In "The Spectre of the Pine Barrens", it is revealed that during The American Revolution, a Redcoat named Rodney stole the original Declaration of Independence and demanded a ransom of 12,000 pounds from General George Washington. The Founding Fathers didn't tell Washington about this, but sent a Minuteman named Williams to steal the document back (not knowing that he was sent on a suicide mission by his superiors to keep him from revealing the truth while they copied the Declaration). Williams and Rodney began a feud in the Pine Barrens, cut off from civilization and unaware that the war ended. To keep their family lines and feud going, they would dress up as The Jersey Devil and kidnap children once in a while. In the present, Team Quest gets involved and attempts to convince both sides that the war is over and their feud is pointless. In the end, the Minuteman Josiah's wife, Sarah, who was weary of the neverending war, ends up Taking the Bullet for a Redcoat. She survives, and the act causes both groups to reconcile.
  • Reverse the Polarity: Hadji does it to destroy the DNA blob monster in "DNA Doomsday".
  • Riches to Rags: Miles Duntcheck at the end of "The Haunted Sonata" once it was revealed his famous ancestor stole the sonata that gave their family Royalties Heir status. It's mentioned the loss of the fortune drove him insane. Either that, or he lost his mind after being sealed up behind a wall with a corpse by the corpse's vengeful spirit.
  • Rightful Sultan Returns: Hadji, of course. Specifically in "Bloodlines".
  • Romantic Ribbing: In "Ghost Quest", Jonny, Jessie, and Hadji end up on a haunted island, with Jonny and Jessie each possessed by the spirits of a pair of lovers who had turned on each other and killed one another. Hadji convinces the spirits to forgive one another and move on, which they cement with a Big Damn Kiss in Jonny and Jessie's bodies, causing the two to find themselves in a romantic embrace when they came back to themselves. When they leave the island, they note on their ship's clock that no time has passed since their arrival, prompting this response from Jessie:
    Jessie: (flirtatiously) Yeah, time stood still for me, too, Jonny.
  • Roswell That Ends Well: The Roswell UFO crash appears in the prologue of one episode taking place in the Anasazi region of the U.S. Southwest.
  • Royalties Heir: The Duntchecks thanks to a sonata authored by Franz Duntcheck. Once it was revealed the sonata was actually stolen from a woman named Anna Kafka, the wealth went to her surviving family.
  • Rule of Cool: Although it takes itself seriously for the most part, the show was known for using several less than realistic scenarios for a fun story.
  • "Scooby-Doo" Hoax: Played (painfully) straight in "The Darkest Fathoms", featuring a pirate's "ghost" rampaging in the Bermuda area, although the antagonists are a lot more hardcore about it than Scooby's usually are. Subverted in "East of Zanzibar" in the classic form of "real monster destroys the fake monster" and again in "AMOK", "The Spectre of the Pine Barrens" and others.
  • Shipper on Deck: Neela, Hadji's mother, ships her own son with Jessie; or so her comments in "The Bangalore Falcon" seem to imply.
  • Ship Tease: According to the Writer's Bible of The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest, the writers wanted to Ship Tease Jonny/Jessie in the first season. When a new head writer took over in Season 2, Ship Tease was also planned for Hadji/Jessie while continuing the Jonny/Jessie teasing from the previous season, hinting at at possible Two Guys and a Girl Love Triangle. The Jonny/Jessie teasing culminated in the second season episode "Ghost Quest" where Jonny and Jessie kiss while possessed by the ghosts of two former lovers.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Surd (voiced by Fred's voice actor Frank Welker) in his introduction episode, "Escape to Questworld":
      Surd: Do you know how many times they've interrupted Scooby-Doo? And it wasn't even one I'd seen yet. I'm still very upset.
    • Also, the sea monsters in "Undersea Urgency" look quite a bit like the Beast from Bottomless Lake costume from The Scooby-Doo Show. Meanwhile, many of the gadgets and the undersea base itself in that episode were modeled after Sealab 2020.
    • The reporter in "Manhattan Maneater", Vince Vance, looks like he was designed to resemble Captain Planet villain Looten Plunder.
    • Jonny in "Return of the Anasazi": "Hey, Jess? You're not going to like this. They're he-re!"
  • Silicon Snarker: IRIS, the computer that runs the Quest Compound and Quest World, has a bit of a sarcastic streak. For example, when Jonny requests a large sword, IRIS gives him one as large as he is, to which he says, "Give me a break!" He falls over and the sword breaks mid-blade, to which IRIS replies, "You requested a break."
  • Sinister Geometry: In "The Secret of the Moai", the team visits the Easter Islands and uncover a circular pod. They are amazed by how perfect its dimensions are, and speculate that such a perfect sphere can only be created in zero gravity. This leads to them finding the information the pod's former owners had on genetic engineering, which causes Surd to hack in, which leads to stuff going very badly for Dr. Quest and Race. Very badly.
  • Skull for a Head: Ezekiel Rage usually gets the Phantom of the Opera motif, what with his face badly burned and him having to wear a white mask. His Questworld avatar, though (which we see in "The Edge of Yesterday"), actually has a skull for a head.
  • Spider Tank: Doctor Zin shows up, so of course his spidery robots do too.
  • Spot the Imposter: In "Digital Doublecross", while trapped in Questworld by Surd, Jesse has two Jonnies at gunpoint. One starts reeling off the details of their last race in Questworld, at which point the other counters that of course the impostor would know that, it's in the computer's memory banks; then brings up their real-life race immediately thereafter, at which point the double attacks him and gets zapped in about half a second.
  • Succubi and Incubi: In "Eclipse", a succubus-like creature entices Hadji and tries to drain Jessie of her lifeforce.
  • Super-Speed: In "Night of the Zinja". While in Japan, Jonny wears an experimental device on his ankle that grants him super speed. At his fastest, he's able to chase down a jet airplane as it's taking off. The downside is that it hyperaccelerates his metabolism; any scene in which Jonny is not running, he's eating a sizable amount of ramen.
  • Switched at Birth: Jonny and Jessie weren't, but the creative team behind the series intentionally characterized Jessie as a science-oriented person, much like Dr. Quest, while many of Jonny's characteristics, instincts and reactions are similar to Race's. Race even jokes about this trope in "Future Rage" after Jessie accurately describes the cause of the Northern Lights.
  • Take That!: For the first season:
    • The golem was meant as a Take That! to 80's JQ character Hardrock.
    • Heck, the name of the show, the "Real Adventures", is likely a take-that against the "New Adventures" from the 80s.
    • A jab at classic JQ, from "Manhattan Maneater":
      Hadji: Actually, sir, I charmed him [the tiger] with my flute, just like I do with snakes.
  • Taken for Granite: Race and Jessie in "Heroes". Also Jonny's right index finger, then his right fist and left foot. Fortunately it was only their virtual selves that got petrified, so there were no lasting effects once they were out of Questworld.
  • Team Kids: Race Bannon and Dr. Quest are literal Dads, first to Jonny and Hadji, and later in "Real Adventures" to Jessie as well. The duo-turned-trio are the literal Team Kids, who serve as the focal characters of the show(s). Jonny serves as The Heart, Hadji as The Smart Guy, and Jessie as the Action Girl, until Executive Meddling in Season 2 of "Real Adventures" turns her into The Load.
  • Thoroughly Mistaken Identity: Ezekiel Rage sees Jessie as his daughter, Carla.
  • Throw a Barrel at It: In one episode, Race distracts a rampaging bull at a rodeo by throwing a barrel. He even says, "Just let me throw a barrel at it," while he does it!
  • Throw the Book at Them: Ezekiel Rage does this to Race Bannon, beating him unconscious with the Book of Rage.
  • Time Bomb: Used several times, notably in "Escape to Questworld", and "Future Rage", in both of which cases Dr. Quest manages to stop the countdown with one second left.
  • Time Travel: In "The Edge of Yesterday". Going with Set Right What Once Went Wrong variant, Dr. Quest created a time machine program in Questworld after his wife died, which would allow him to travel back in time and see his wife again. When he finished it, he realized he wouldn't only be able to see his wife, he could also change the past to prevent her from dying. His ethics would not let him alter history for personal gain, so he sealed the program so it couldn't be used. Later on, Jonny and Jessie use the program to go back in time and prevent Ezekiel Rage from planting a bomb that could cause the tectonic plates to split, destroying the Earth.
  • Total Eclipse of the Plot: In the aptly-titled episode "Eclipse".
  • Tragic Keepsake: Ezekiel Rage's family photo.
  • Translation Convention: Used often. In "The Mummies of Malenque", for example, the bad guys talk to each other in English despite the fact that they're Colombian and there are no English-speakers around to hear them (that they know of). Well, they interject a few words in Spanish here and there to make it seem "realistic", but the trope stands. Heck, even the Malenque mummies speak in English when they're revived...
  • Too Dumb to Live: Dr. Duval in "Undersea Urgency." She insists on taking back one of the undersea amphibian monsters and studying it For Science! under the belief that one that had received an elecrical shock should be dead, despite the monsters proving to be incredibly tough, and ignores everyone else when they say to leave it alone. The second she picks the seemlingly dead creature up, it turns out to have only been stunned and immediately wakes up, devouring her within seconds.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Jonny himself was more of The Load in the original series, causing more problems than he actually solved, to the point that it was parodied in The Venture Bros.. In the reboot, he matured into a competent hero on his own right, more worthy of being the title character than he ever was in the original series.
  • Translator Microbes: Dr. Quest's "Language Translator" device, which Jessie uses in "Ice Will Burn".
  • Trash Landing: In "Nemesis".
    Hadji: Jonny, this was—
    Jonny: ...A really rotten idea?
  • Trash the Set: Season 2 seemed to be heading this way, blowing up the Dragonfly in Episode 2-23 and the Mansion in 2-25; indeed, the writers planned to bring back the Quest base in Florida if they got a third season.
  • Tuckerization: In Season 2, many bit characters and/or Red Shirts were named after people the writers knew.
  • Uncanny Village: The small town of Wychford, in the aptly-titled episode "Village of the Doomed".
  • Unwitting Pawn: Elise Lenoir's supposed "foster mother" had actually been brainwashed into sheltering Elise against her will. The end of the episode shows the old woman sitting in a police car, freed from Elise's spell but looking traumatized by the thought of what she was a part of.
  • The Villain Must Be Punished: In the episode "Thoughtscape", Dr. Quest has had enough of Dr. Surd's repeated attempts to harm his family and declares his intent to stop it once and for all. Surd cheats, and it looks as though he's going to get away yet again. But he made the mistake of conducting his plot in Jessie Bannon's head, and now that she's free of his control, she finishes him off once and for all by stripping him of the program that allowed him mobility in Quest World, locking him out from returning to his own body. Surd becomes effectively crippled in Cyberspace, in an And I Must Scream punishment.
  • Visual Pun: In one of the Questworld shorts, Johnny runs an untested program, expecting a few bugs. Cut to the visual representation of the program, literally being pulled apart by CGI bugs.
  • We Will Meet Again: One of Zin's twin daughters says this to Hadji in pretty much every episode they're in.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Benton Quest is a good man and a great scientist, but his friends and family are wary of how easily trusting he can be.
  • Wire Dilemma: In "Escape to Questworld", the kids get Surd to tell them which wire to cut in order to deactivate the release of his nerve gas. He tells them it's the orange wire, and Jonny relies this information to his father. Right before he's about to snip the wire, Race interrupts, telling him to cut the blue wire instead. Benton does, and the day is saved. It's the one time Jonny's glad his father didn't listen to him.
  • Wild Wilderness: Many episodes feature remote areas (not counting the VR world) where the wilderness is full of adventure one else notices but the main characters.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Ezekiel Rage, particularly in his first episode, where he is a delusionally tortured man bent on revenge for the loss of his family.
  • The Worf Effect: The sea creatures in "Undersea Urgency" demonstrate how dangerous they are by devouring a sizable hammerhead shark in a few seconds.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Race has no qualms about knocking Julia out.
    Race: Pop always said it's not nice to hit a lady. But then again, Miss Julia, you're no lady.
  • You Could Have Used Your Powers for Good!: In "Escape to Questworld", Race Bannon points out Surd could've used his abilities to help mankind and Surd asks why he should care.
  • You Have Failed Me: The Puppet Master to his brother in "Shadows and Jade".
  • You Never Asked: I.R.I.S., being a computer program. The phrase is used verbatim in "Expedition to Khumbu":
    Jonny: Whoa! I.R.I.S., you never said anything about these things [duplicating]!
    Iris: You never asked.

Alternative Title(s): The Real Adventures Of Jonny Quest