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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr


Indiana Jones: The Interior World Indiana Jones
The Interior World
Written by Rob MacGregor
Cover by Drew Struzan

(Page numbers come from the mass market paperback edition, 1st printing, December 1992)

Indy has a strange adventure in a hidden land below the earth.


Read the "Late May 1929", "June–August, 1929", "September 3, 1929", "Early September, 1929", "September 18, 1929", and "Late September, 1929" entries of the It’s Not the Years, It’s the Mileage Indiana Jones chronology for a summary of this novel


Notes from the Indiana Jones chronology


This novel takes place in May-September 1929.


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 TV series 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 security agency. The KGB 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 journal as published skips over this adventure, going from a reference to 1926 events in The Seven Veils to 1933 and the repercussions of events in The Philosopher's Stone. Quite a large gap and a number of un-journaled adventures.


Characters appearing or mentioned in this story



Maleiwa's lieutenants

Princess Salandra

King Vicard

Indiana Jones



Dr. Marcus Brody

Rapa Nui souvenir boy

Howard Maxwell

Rapa Nui waitress


Easter Island mayor


Calvin (mayor's Model T)

Hans Beitelheimer (alias Juan Barrios, dies in this novel)


Loraine Beitelheimer (mentioned only, deceased)

Ancud fishermen

Jorge Fernandez

Marcelino (mentioned only)

Teotoro (mentioned only, deceased)



bartender's girlfriend

Antonio (dies in this novel)

Antonio's granddaughter (mentioned only)

Antonio's granddaughter's husband (mentioned only)

Chiloe taxicab driver


Henry Jones, Sr. (mentioned only)

Colonel Percy Fawcett (mentioned only)

Pincoyan guards

United Council (mentioned only)

loyal guard

guard dogs

Jack Shannon (in illusion only)

mind of the maze


Mariano's wife

Deirdre Campbell-Jones (mentioned only, deceased)


train conductor

double-chinned woman


Santa Marta taxicab driver

freighter captain


Father James

Ricardo's mother (mentioned only)



Mama Juan

Vicard's guards




Didja Notice?


The book is dedicated "To the folks on GEnie, who followed the adventure in the making." GEnie (General Electric Network for Information Exchange) was an online service founded by GEIS (General Electric Information Services) which lasted from 1985-1999. GEnie was known at the time for its popular message boards dedicated to such subjects as movies, television, gaming, sports, and more.


The book opens with quotes from Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Black Elk. These are actual quotes from these two philosophers. De Chardin (1881-1955) was a French Jesuit priest of Darwinian outlook, as well as a paleontologist, philosopher, teacher, and author. Black Elk (Heháka Sápa, 1863-1950) was an Oglala Lakota medicine man and heyoka who became known worldwide for his performances while touring with Buffalo Bill's Wild West show, his musings in his 1932 book Black Elk Speaks, and his lengthy published interviews with John G. Neihardt and Joseph Epes Brown.




The prologue takes place on September 21, 1928 in the interior world's Channels of Paradise, involving the characters Salandra and Maleiwa, inhabitants of the interior world. This is the same date that Indiana Jones and Aguila are sealing away the alicorn among the boulders of ancient Anasazi land in southwest Utah at the end of the previous novel in the series, The Unicorn's Legacy.


Chapter 1: Rongo-Rongo Tablets


Chapter 1 opens on Easter Island. Easter Island (aka Rapa Nui) is a Chilean island in the Pacific Ocean, known for its monolithic statues called moai. The Rongo-Rongo tablets are wooden tablets that have been found on the island on which are etched what appears to be script of the ancient Polynesian inhabitants, but which has never been deciphered in modern times.


Indy is excavating homes at the Orongo ceremonial village on Easter Island. This is an actual site on the island where it was the center of a birdman cult among the Polynesian inhabitants. The village is on the rim of Rano Kau, a dormant volcano on the island, as described here.


The page 5 narration remarks that Indy will rebury the home he is currently excavating exactly as he found it if he does not find anything of note there. This is a common practice of archeologists even today, to preserve the site as close as possible to its originally found condition in order to allow future archeologists to dig later with updated methods, knowledge, or questions.


On page 6, Makemake and Haua were gods of the Rapa Nui people.


On page 7, when Indy realizes the object he has struck in his digging is made of metal, he wonders if it could be a spear from the days of Captain Cook. James Cook (1728-1779) was a British naval officer and early visitor to the island.


As stated on page 8, many of the islands inhabitants were abducted to become slaves in Peru in 1862.


As stated on page 8, the largest of the smaller islands around Rapa Nui is Motu Nui, important to the birdman cult.


Chapter 2: Fallen Moai


The description of the moai kavaka the boy tries to sell Indy on page 11 is accurate of these small wooden figures carved by crafters in the Rapa Nui culture.


The archeological expedition to Easter Island has based itself out of Hanga Roa. This is the main town of Easter Island.


Page 13 has the expedition members discussing whether the Easter Island natives originated from the Polynesian islands or from South America. This was an ongoing argument among researchers at the time of the story, but modern researchers largely agree that the Rapa Nui people originated from Polynesia.


Indy's mention of the Long Ears and Short Ears ethnic groups in Rapa Nui mythology on pages 13-14 is accurate, as far as it goes.


Ahus are the stone platforms upon which the moai stand, just as Marcus muses on page 14.


The list of alternate names for the island which Davina states on page 15 is correct.


Davina is said to have attended the University of Santiago and is the curator of Easter Island's local museum. From what I can find, the island did not have an official museum until 1973, the Father Sebastian Englert Anthropological Museum.


Davina tells the expedition that the moai originally had eyes. This is true, the eyes were largely made of coral and inlaid into the eye sockets of the statues. The eyes fell out onto the ground and broke into pieces over time. It wasn't until around 1978 that researchers realized the coral pieces found near the ahu sites were pieces of the eyes, some of which have now been reconstructed. (Photo by Bjarte Sorensen on Wikipedia, Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.)


The mayor has a Model T automobile he's named Calvin, after prior U.S. President Calvin Coolidge. The Model T was a Ford automobile, manufactured from 1908–1927. Calvin Coolidge was the president of the United States from 1923-1929.


On page 18, Brody mentions the island legends that say the moai walked to their locations from the quarry, guided by powerful priests. This is an actual legend of the Rapa Nui. Modern researchers believe this may have been true, with the statues "walked" using ropes from two sides and tilting and swiveling them in a back-and-forth motion across the ground.


On page 20, Indy and Brody discuss their plans to visit Chiloe to look for Brody's friend Hans Beitelheimer. Chiloe is the largest island of the Chiloe Archipelago off the coast of Chile and is part of that country.


On page 21, Davina asks Indy if he will meet her at Anakena Beach to talk with the Matuans, a secret society which carries on the old ways of the Rapa Nui. Anakena is a white sand beach on the northern shore of Easter Island. The Matuans appear to be a fictitious secret society, named for the first settler of the island, Hotu Matuꞌa, in the native mythology.


Chapter 3: The Matuans


Brody reveals that Hans Beitelheimer's wife, Loraine, was his goddaughter, the child of one of Brody's close college friends. The World of Indiana Jones and Indiana Jones: The Ultimate Guide both state that Loraine's husband was Brody's brother-in-law. This may indicate that Loraine married the brother of Brody's wife, Elizabeth. If so, it seems that Elizabeth's maiden name would have been Beitelheimer. Elizabeth is indicated to have died some years before in The Seven Veils.


Chapter 4: Trapped in a Legend


This chapter opens on Chiloe, in the town of Ancud.


Page 33 describes that Indy and Brody had traveled by train from Santiago to Puerto Montt and then taken a ferry to Chiloe.


Also on page 33, another town on Chiloe is Castro.


Jorge owns a restaurant called Caleuche. Caleuche is also the name of a ghost ship in Chilean mythology.


On page 39, liquido de oro is Spanish for "liquid gold".


Also on page 39, the San Fernandez Islands (also called Juan Fernandez Islands) are an archipelago about 400 miles off the coast of Chile.


Chapter 5: Two Beitelheimers


On page 49, Indy remarks to the man seated at the bar, "Hace frio esta noche." This is Spanish for "It's cold tonight."


On page 54, the bartender says to Indy, "Ahora, que quiere?" This is Spanish for "Now, what do you want?"


Chapter 6: Mariners


Indy and Marcus meet Antonio in the town of Chonchi on Chiloe.


On page 62, Antonio tells Indy and Marcus that the ghost ship was trapped in a salt marsh as a giant tree trunk near the village of Huidad. There is no village of Huidad on Chiloe as far as I can tell, but it may be a misspelling of Huildad, a wetlands on the southeastern coast of the island.


Chapter 7: Aboard the Caleuche


Salandra tells Indy her father is from Pincoya and her mother from Wayua. These turn out to be lands of the interior world of Earth. "Wayua" appears to be a fictitious term, but "Pincoya" is a local legend of Chiloe, not as a land, but as a female water spirit of the sea. Marcus points out the association of the name "Pincoya" to the water spirit at the end of the book, and also that nalca is the name of a prickly plant that grows in southern Chile (which is also true).


Chapter 8: The Alicorn


In the flashback on page 82, Salandra is told to go to the Tepui of Learning in Roraima. In the novel, Roraima is another one of the lands of the interior world, but in the real world it is also the name of one of the states of Brazil and of a huge plateau in Venezuela (with portions in neighboring Brazil and Guyana). Tepui is a word in the language of the native inhabitants of southeastern Venezuela called the Pemon and it means "house of the gods", typically a mesa.


In the flashback on page 83, Salandra has a waking dream of the Great Mother Rhea. Rhea is a mother goddess in Ancient Greek mythology.


Chapter 9: Into Pincoya


On page 88, Indy dreams he is a kid visiting the pyramids of Egypt with his father, imagining it was another world he'd traveled to in a rocket, as in Jules Verne's "trip to the Moon." Jules Verne (1828-1905) was the author of the 1865 adventure novel From the Earth to the Moon. It was revealed in The Bermuda Triangle that Indy had read the book as a youth.


On page 92, Salandra tells Indy she knows about his trip to a lost city in the jungle. This refers to the events of The Seven Veils.


The examples of hollow Earth stories recalled by Indy on pages 93-94 are all parts of various world mythologies, though Gilgamesh's ancestor Utnapishtim lived on an island called Dihnun, not the Underworld. Indy found himself reliving the Greek legend of Orpheus and his trip to the underworld (mentioned here) in Journey to the Underworld.


Chapter 10: Maleiwa's Message


The events described on page 102 are from The Unicorn's Legacy.


On page 103, Salandra reveals that Maleiwa plans to make a pact with Adolf Hitler. Adolf Hitler, of course, was the evil Chancellor of Germany 1934-1945, during WWII. At the time of this novel, 1929, Hitler was the head of the Nazi party in Germany, but the party did not yet hold any significant power.


Indy's mental review of the end of the Inca Empire and its emperor, Atahualpa (1502-1533), at the hands of the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro (1478-1541) is true.


On page 105, Salandra tells Indy that without ingesting nalca every few days, his body here in the interior world will dry up to nothing and will reassemble itself in a place they call the Land of the Lost, exiting in a space between the interior and exterior worlds.


On page 108, Indy tries to convince Maleiwa to take him back to the exterior world with him, where he can act as a guide and show him New York and Washington, D.C., introduce him to the U.S. president (who, at the time, was Herbert Hoover) also trying to entice him with Grant's Tomb and the Washington Monument.


On page 109, Maleiwa hands Indy a letter written to the Second Order of the Golden Dawn by Samuel Mathers after meeting Maleiwa's father and others of the interior world, whom he calls the Secret Chiefs in 1896. Golden Dawn was a secret society and magical order devoted to metaphysics and occult Hermeticism from 1887-1903. Mathers (1854-1918) was one of the three Freemason founders of the order. The letter Indy reads is part of an actual "manifesto" written by Mathers to the Second Order.


Chapter 11: Out of Pincoya


On pages 115-116, Indy and Salandra face a giant octopus in the waters through which they've escaped from the Pincoyan prison cells. Indy also faced a giant octopus in Journey to the Underworld and will again in "Shrine of the Sea Devil".


Salandra tells Indy the waters have landed them in Minhocoa, the between-world, referred to metaphorically as a giant snake, in whose stomach is the previously mentioned Land of the Lost. Possibly, the name "Minhocoa" was inspired by Minhocão, a gigantic worm in Brazilian folklore said to be 65-260 feet long.


Chapter 12: Cave Within a Cave


On page 124, Indy fantasizes about escaping the interior world and heading immediately back to New York, imagining Manhattan never looking so good. Manhattan is a borough of New York City.


Chapter 13: Land of the Lost


On page 134, Indy sees an illusion of his '24 Ford with Jack Shannon in the driver's seat. Indy bought a 1924 Ford Model T truck in The Unicorn's Legacy.


On page 137, the demon Indy sees growls, "Fee, fie, fo, fum." This is the first line of quatrain spoken by the giant in the English fairy tale "Jack and the Beanstalk", originating in 1734. The full quatrain is:

I smell the blood of an Englishman.
Be he alive, or be he dead,
I'll grind his bones to make my bread."


Chapter 14: Promises to a Maze


No notes.


Chapter 15: Back in the Real World


On page 155, Indy says, "Buenos dias," to the native he and Salandra meet. This is Spanish for "Good day."


On page 156, the old man (Mariano) tells Indy they are near the village of San Andrés de Pisimbala. This is an actual (tiny) village in Colombia.


On page 156, the old woman and Salandra say, "Tiene hambre?" and "Si, claro." These are Spanish for "Are you hungry?" and "Yes, of course."


When Indy learns the closest city is Popayan, he figures if they can make their way there, then he can catch a train to Cartagena and then a boat back to the U.S.


Realizing he's been gone in the interior world for a few months, Indy thinks his disappearance might soon rival that of Colonel Fawcett whom Indy had searched for in the Amazon. This refers to events in The Seven Veils.


Easter Island is known by some as the Navel of the World, but Indy points out to Salandra that many places have been called that by ancients, and he lists off Delphi, Stonehenge, and Chaco Canyon. Indy himself had adventures involving the first two sites (in The Peril at Delphi [Delphi] and Circle of Death and Dance of the Giants [Stonehenge]) and was in the Chaco Canyon area in The Unicorn's Legacy.


Mariano tells Indy there are many more statues like the ones they were admiring in the village in San Augustin. San Augustin is an actual town in Colombia.


When Indy and Salandra get to Popayan, he finds the train station only goes to Santa Marta, not to Cartagena.


Chapter 16: Breakdown


On page 169, Ricardo tells Indy and Salandra he can take them to see the hacienda of San Pedro Alejandrino, where Simon Bolivar died. The Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino is a hacienda in Santa Marta where Bolivar (1783-1830), a military and political leader who led Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela to independence from the Spanish Empire.


On page 173, Indy tells Ricardo that Salandra will be staying behind in Santa Marta to hike in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. This is an actual mountain range in the region.


On page 174, Ricardo tells Indy about a native tribe in the Sierra Nevadas called the Kogi. This is an actual native tribe of the mountain range. They are descended from the Tairona culture of pre-Spanish times, just as Indy guesses here. "Kogi", in the tribe's native language, means "jaguar".


On page 174, Ricardo says, "Muy bien. Muy bien." This is Spanish for "Very good. Very good."


Chapter 17: The Sierra Nevada


On page 184, Indy finds evidence that huaqueros are looting old Tairona graves. Huaqueros is Spanish for "looters".


On page 185, Shotgun shouts, "La mujer! Donde esta la mujer?" This is Spanish for "The woman! Where is the woman?"


On page 186, the huaqueros use the words padre, señor, and campesinos. These are Spanish for "father", "sir", and "farmers".


Chapter 18: The Gatekeepers


The information about the Kogis that Salandra gives to Indy is largely accurate. The priests are called mamas (or mamos) and the culture worships a mother goddess (Aluna).


The terms Mama Juan uses to explain the planes of existence to Indy are actual ones used in Kogi culture (see Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The Astronomy of Lost Civilizations by E. C. Krupp, published in 1983).


The Kogi do consider themselves the Elder Brothers to the outside civilization (Younger Brothers), just a Mama Juan discusses with Indy here.


Salandra's description of the duties of men and women among the Kogi on page 198 is accurate.


Chapter 19: Into the Interior


No notes.


Chapter 20: On the Tepui


At the end of the chapter, Indy encounters what seems to be a dragon in the interior world swamp. He will come across dragons in a couple later adventures as well, in The Emperor's Tomb and "Dragon By the Tail".


Chapter 21: Things in the Swamp


No notes.


Chapter 22: Journey to Wayua


No notes.


Chapter 23: The Unicorn's Gate


On page 247, Indy sees an eagle, his guardian totem, who points the way to the Unicorn's Gate. The eagle as Indy's spirit guardian was established in flashback in The Peril at Delphi.


The Unicorn's Gate deposits Indy from the interior world to the top of the crown of the Statue of Liberty!




Page 257 describes Marcus' scrutinization of Indy as he tells his story of being in the interior world "as if he were scrutinizing a terra-cotta from the T'ang Dynasty" to see if it was a forgery. This is a reference to the famed terracotta horse statues (most 15" or less in size) made during the T'ang Dynasty of China, from 618-907 AD (with gaps in the dynasty).


Getting tired of Marcus' skepticism of his tale of the interior world, Indy remarks he's going to tell his story to a reporter at the Post. He is referring to the New York Post tabloid newspaper.


Marcus thinks Indy was probably drugged and taken to the Gran Sabana of Venezuela, a region of plateaus, or tepuis. This is an actual region of southeastern Venezuela, where Arthur Conan Doyle set his story of The Lost World, a 1912 novel of the discovery of a huge plateau populated by prehistoric creatures such as dinosaurs and cavemen, just as Indy remarks upon here.


On page 260, Marcus explains to Indy the similarity between the Guajira Peninsula and the Guajira Indians to the supposed interior world's Wayua and its native inhabitants. He also points out that "Maleiwa" is the name of a figure from Guajira mythology. This is all true.


On page 261, Indy looks out the window of Marcus' office over Central Park. Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan and one of the largest urban parks in the world.


Though the end of this novel presents the very real possibility that the interior world Indy experienced was not real, he has an adventure involving another underground civilization in a later novel of this series (this time by author Max McCoy) The Hollow Earth.


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