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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr


Indiana Jones: Attack of the Hawkmen Indiana Jones
"Attack of the Hawkmen"
(0:00-49:52 on the Attack of the Hawkmen DVD)
Written by Matthew Jacobs and Rosemary Anne Sisson and Ben Burtt
Directed by Ben Burtt
Original air date: October 6, 1995

As a reconnaissance photographer with the Lafayette Escadrille, Indy's plane is shot down and he is captured by the Red Baron.


Read the "Late January, 1917", "March 22, 1917", "Late March, 1917", and "April 6, 1917" entries of the It’s Not the Years, It’s the Mileage Indiana Jones chronology for a summary of this episode


Notes from the Indiana Jones chronology


This episode takes place on the eastern front of France, late January to mid-April 1917.


Didja Know?


The title I've used for this episode ("Attack of the Hawkmen") is taken from the title of the DVD movie, The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Attack of the Hawkmen. This episode originally aired as part of the Young Indiana Jones and the Attack of the Hawkmen TV movie that aired on the Family Channel in October 1995.


Notes from the Old Indy bookends of The Young Indiana Chronicles


There were no Old Indy bookends for this episode.


Notes from The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones


The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones is a 2008 publication that purports to be Indy's journal as seen throughout The Young Indiana Chronicles and the big screen Indiana Jones movies. The publication is also annotated with notes from a functionary of the Federal Security Service (FSB) of the Russian Federation, the successor agency of the Soviet Union's KGB. The FSB relieved Indy of his journal in 1957 during the events of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The notations imply the journal was released to other governments by the FSB in the early 21st Century. However, some bookend segments of The Young Indiana Chronicles depict Old Indy still in possession of the journal in 1992. The discrepancy has never been resolved. 


The boxed set of DVDs of the complete The Advetures of Young Indiana Jones TV movies has notations and drawings in the storage slot for each disk that suggest they are meant to be excerpts from Indy's journal. Most of these notes and drawings do not appear in the The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones book. Here is the slot image for this episode:


The events of this episode are not covered in the journal as published. The pages jump from August 1916 ("Trenches of Hell") to November 1918 and the end of the war (The Treasure of the Peacock’s Eye).


Characters appearing or mentioned in this episode


Zeppelin spotter

Zeppelin captain

Remy Baudouin

Indiana Jones

Lawrence of Arabia (mentioned only)

Dr. Albert Schweitzer (mentioned only)

Major Bragas (French Intelligence officer)

French officer

French soldiers


Major Raoul Lufbery

Lt. Harold Green

Len Hall

Henry Jones, Sr. (mentioned only)

Charles Nungesser

Lothar von Richthofen

Baron Manfred von Richthofen

Carl Wellman

German fighter pilots

German soldiers

German officer

Kunigunde von Schickfuss und Neudorff (Von Richthofen's mother, mentioned only)

Oberlt. Hermann Goering

German sergeant

Anthony Fokker

German driver

German guards 




Didja Notice?


The episode opens with an air raid over Paris, France, as evidenced by the Eiffel Tower.


The Belgian intelligence building where Indy and Remy are working at the beginning of the episode is the Invalidovna in Prague. It was built in the 1700s as a home for injured soldiers.


Indy writes a letter to Ned Lawrence (of Arabia) on February 2, 1917.


Trying to convince Remy of the wisdom of the forged papers to transfer the pair of them out of Belgian Intelligence and into French Intelligence, Indy reminds him of the words of Dr. Schweitzer, "Good is that which promotes life. Evil is that which destroys it." It's not much of an argument for Indy's forgery plan! Indy and Remy met Dr. Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965) in "Oganga, The Giver and Taker of Life".


The car that drives by the French intelligence building at 4:29 on the DVD is a 1929 Praga Piccolo Normandie.


Indy's ploy works (sort of) and he and Remy are transferred to the French Secret Service (Deuxième Bureau de l'État-major général), which existed from 1871-1940.


Remy gets the assignment of proprietor, under the name "Albert", of Café Noir in Brussels, Belgium where he will be the main contact for the White Lady, the Belgian underground. Café Noir appears to be a fictitious establishment. "White Lady" (La Dame Blanche) was the actual codename for the Belgian underground intelligence network during the German occupation of WWI; the name was chosen for the German legend of a woman wearing white who would lead to the fall of the Hohenzollern dynasty, the royal ruling family of Germany from 1871-1918. Essentially, the White Lady did presage the fall of that dynasty at the end of the war!


The truck seen at 7:15 on the DVD that picks up Indy is a 1927 Delage. Amusingly, what appears to be the same Delage truck is used by the Germans to transport Indy to Baron Von Richthofen's estate as his prisoner/guest.


Indy finds that the 124th Squadron he's been assigned to as a photographer is the Lafayette Escadrille. It comes as news to him here that there are American pilots flying for France, yet he knew it already according to the novelization of "Demons of Deception". The Lafayette Escadrille was a French Air Force unit during WWI led by French commander, Captain Georges Thénault, made up of largely American volunteer pilots, hoping to raise the interest of the American public into advocating against neutrality in the war and join the Allies. It had previously been known as the Escadrille Américaine (as it was in "Demons of Deception"), but a German objection to the impression that the neutral United States was aiding in the war against them brought the French to change the name to Lafayette Escadrille in December 1916.


At 9:36 on the DVD, the Indian head insignia of the Lafayette Escadrille is seen at the entrance gate of the squadron building. The head was a bust of Chief Sitting Bull (1831-1890) of the Hunkpapa Lakota. There were several variations of the bust insignia with minor differences.


Notice that both the French and U.S. flags are flown at the squadron building.


Indy meets the squadron's mascot, Whiskey, a lion cub. In reality, the squadron had two lion cub mascots, Whiskey and Soda.


Indy meets several real world pilots as members of the escadrille such as Major Raoul Lufbery (1885-1918), Hobey Baker (1892-1918), and Charles Nungesser (1892-1927). Names of many of these pilots, plus more, can be seen on the flight roster chalk board at 10:38 on the DVD. Fictitious names (as far as I can tell) on the roster are: Blade Hollister, Ted Adams, Ricky Eyres (a production designer and director on the series), Nick Laws (an assistant director), David Balfour, Peter Walpole (set director), Steve Nash, and Tom Fallon.


Lufbery had dual U.S.-French citizenship, having been born in France of a French mother and American father. Although he is here depicted with an American accent, he was raised in France and reportedly had a thick French accent that his fellow American flyers initially had difficulty understanding.


For his photographic assignments, Indy is assigned to fly with Lt. Green in a new Sopwith. Sopwith was a British aircraft manufacturer from 1913-1920. As far as I can tell, Lt. Harold Green is a fictitious character.


When Indy is introduced to Hobey Baker, he realizes he knows him already, from having run errands for him when the man was in college at Princeton University. However, for us, this is his first (and only) appearance. While Baker was a real world figure and pilot during the war, he did not actually serve in the Lafayette Escadrille.


    French ace pilot Charles Nungesser is depicted in this and the following episode ("The Fokker Agenda") as being constantly injured, yet still in action. This is a reference to the historical figure's many injuries throughout the war, as written in his medical record: "Skull fracture, brain concussion, internal injuries (multiple), five fractures of the upper jaw, two fractures of lower jaw, piece of anti-aircraft shrapnel imbedded [sic] in right arm, dislocation of knees (left and right), re-dislocation of left knee, bullet wound in mouth, bullet wound in ear, atrophy of tendons in left leg, atrophy of muscles in calf, dislocated clavicle, dislocated wrist, dislocated right ankle, loss of teeth, contusions too numerous to mention." Nungesser had a number of gold teeth, as depicted in this episode.

    Just as seen at 14:03 on the DVD, Nungesser's personal insignia was a skull and crossbones and a coffin with two candles.


Nungesser returns to the squadron saying he thinks he just shot down Richthofen's brother. He is referring to the German pilots Lothar von Richthofen (1894-1922), the brother of Baron Manfred von Richthofen (the Red Baron, 1892-1918). As we see later in the episode, Lothar survived the encounter. 


At 18:08 and 19:35 on the DVD, model explosives hanging on strings can be seen for a split second before they blow to simulate bursting shells in the sky.


At 22:47 on the DVD, Baron von Richthofen is seen to be wearing his Pour le Mérite necklet. This was an actual order of merit issued by the Kingdom of Prussia from 1740-1918. Von Richthofen earned one in January 1917.


The German officer who at first disputes Von Richthofen's claim to the prize of the downed aircraft of Lt. Green, refers to the baron as "Rittmeister". This is a German rank (usually used for cavalry) roughly equivalent to "captain". Von Richtofen was a cavalryman before transferring to the German Air Force.


Upon meeting the baron, Lt. Green remarks he should have known him from his tactics, "Out of the sun, swift and sudden from behind." Von Richthofen was especially known for this tactic.


The exterior of the von Richthofen estate is actually Chateau Veltrusy in the Czech Republic. It also appeared in "The Mata Hari Affair". The interior room where Indy has lunch with the baron and his guests was shot at the Archbishop's Palace in Kromeriz, Czech Republic.


Oberlt. Hermann Goering is one of the baron's guests at lunch. He previously appeared in the comic book adaptation of "Demons of Deception". Goering (1893-1946) was an actual German fighter pilot in WWI and he would go on to become president of the Reichstag (German legislature), including under Adolf Hitler from 1934-1945.


As the German pilots at the lunch brag about their hunting prowess and about how the newspapers talk about them "medieval knights, plunging into battle with these flying machines as our handsome steeds, adorned with colorful scarves like feathered plumes," Indy laconically remarks, "I'm surprised you don't paint your planes bright red." This is meant to suggest that Indy is the one who gave Baron Von Richthofen the idea to have his plane painted red to identify himself in the sky and earning himself the sobriquet "Red Baron". However, the baron first had his plane painted red in January 1917 and Indy doesn't meet him here until March.


Here, Baron Von Richthofen challenges Nungesser to a duel in the air. This did not take place historically as far as is known. Here, the duel takes place over "the castle at St. Quentin"; presumably this refers to the city of Saint-Quentin, France, not far from the Belgian border, although I don't know what castle is referred to. The castle seen during the dogfight is Krivoklat Castle in the Czech Republic.


Anthony Fokker pays a visit to the German aerodrome. Fokker (1890-1939) was a Dutch aviation design pioneer and the founder of the aircraft manufacturer Fokker which existed from 1912-1996. Indy will meet Fokker in the following episode.


The vehicle that follows the truck taking Indy to a German POW site is a Praga Alfa.


As the German troop-carrier truck crashes into a haystack off the side of the road at 29:51 on the DVD, one of the soldiers is thrown out of the back, making the Wilhelm scream.


As the American pilots drive to Paris to retrieve Nungesser from his partying to answer the challenge of the Red Baron, they sing a variation of the lyrics of the Irish jig song "Garryowen". The song has been used as a marching song for many English-speaking militaries and has been in existence since at least the early 1800s.


The exterior of the Paris restaurant where Nungesser is found having dinner with some lovely ladies was actually shot in the Old Town of Prague, Czech Republic.


At 38:31 on the DVD, the car in which Nungesser arrives back from the hospital is a 1929 Corre La Licorne. Corre La Licorne was a French automobile manufacturer from 1901-1947.  Nungesser drives Indy back to Paris in the same vehicle at the end of the episode.


At 39:43 on the DVD, the flag seen flying over the German fighter pilots' camp appears to be that of Der Stahlhelm, Bund der Frontsoldaten (The Steel Helmet, League of Front-Line Soldiers), a German organization of WWI veterans from 1918-1935. We shouldn't be seeing the flag here since it's supposed to be early 1917. (Flag reproduction on the right by EtheyB, from Wikipedia under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.)


Anthony Fokker is on site at the German camp to deliver his new Fokker DR-1 Triplane (painted red, of course). The baron actually did fly it for his last 19 victories and he was killed in it on April 21, 1918. In the real world, he did not fly it until September 1917.


The song the escadrille sings near the end of the episode is "The Bold Aviator Lay Dying". Thing is, this was a WWII song, not WWI (though there was a WWI version with different lyrics called "A Poor Aviator Lay Dying").


At 42:32 on the DVD, notice that what should be Indy's last day of his two-week assignment as reconnaissance photographer with the escadrille is Friday the 13th, so he is likely worried this will be the day he dies since the previous survival record for photographers with the squadron was only 8 days. This date would put it as April 13, since that is the only Friday the 13th in the right neighborhood of the calendar.


The ambulance vehicle seen at 46:58 on the DVD appears to be a custom job made for the production. The truck that trundles out next to the ambulance is also custom. Both vehicles appear to be based on Pragas.


Notice at 47:22 on the DVD that Indy appears to chuck the camera out of the burning plane as it taxis to a stop. The move is just barely visible before he hops out of the back seat of the plane. I guess the idea was to try to save the camera without having to carry it as he and the pilot race away before the burning plane explodes.


The day after Indy's narrow escape from death in the air, Indy learns that Wilson has declared war on Germany, putting the United States in the war. This refers to Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924), the U.S. President at the time. But the U.S. entered the war on Friday, April 6th, not Saturday the 14th.


As Indy leaves the escadrille at the end of his two-week assignment, he remarks that he hopes he never has to fly again. In his adult life as a globe-trotting archaeologist, we will see him quite comfortable with flying (as long as he's not the pilot anyway!). In The Seven Veils, he even looks forward to flying over the Amazon jungle.


Memorable Dialog


welcome to the French Secret Service.mp3

rowdy American cowboys.mp3

these Americans are a crazy bunch.mp3

we fly, you snap.mp3

I'm surprised you don't paint your planes bright red.mp3

I just hope Richthofen doesn't find out who took this picture.mp3

I just hope I never have to fly again.mp3 


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