Jericho Information

Jericho is an American action/drama series that centers on the residents of the fictional town of Jericho, Kansas, in the aftermath of nuclear attacks on 23 major cities in the contiguous United States. Produced by CBS Paramount Network Television and Junction Entertainment, with executive producers Jon Turteltaub, Stephen Chbosky, and Carol Barbee, the show was broadcast in more than 30 countries.

The show ran on CBS from September 20, 2006, through March 25, 2008. It was initially canceled after its first full season because of poor ratings. While a fan campaign was able to convince the network to bring the show back for a seven-episode second season, it was canceled for a second time after that run. On November 20, 2008, TV Guide reported that the CW television network would air repeats of Jericho to replace the canceled series Valentine. In 2007, Jericho was ranked #11 on TV Guide's Top Cult Shows Ever. In 2009, plans were announced for a possible feature film version of the series and a continuation of the Jericho storylines in a comic book series. A new comic book series for Season 4 was released on August 15, 2012 by IDW Publishing.


First season

The storyline centers on the residents of Jericho, a small, rural northwest Kansas town, in the aftermath of nuclear attacks on 23 major cities in the United States. The series begins with a visible nuclear detonation of unknown origin in nearby Denver, Colorado. Problems are compounded by a loss of power and modern communications, effectively isolating Jericho. Later, power is restored to Jericho by what is alluded to as the efforts of the U.S. government. However, an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) from an unknown source disables all electronics.

While the first few episodes are centered around restoring life after the attacks, about halfway through the season some of the citizens meet with citizens of a nearby town, New Bern. At first, relations are established, resulting in a trade of windmills (for power) built in New Bern's factory for supplies: food from Jericho's farms and salt from its mine (neither of which New Bern could supply on its own). However, relations sour as New Bern scapegoats Jericho for its problems and the mayor eventually declares war, leading to the season's climactic end.

Several themes regularly addressed in the show included the gathering of information, community identity, public order, limited resources, the value of family, hardships of fatherhood, and internal and external threats. The show also features several mysteries involving the backgrounds of major characters, the perpetrators of the attack, and the extent of damage to the United States and its government.

The pivotal character in this story is Jake Green, the 32-year-old son of Mayor Johnston Green. Jake Green fled the town of Jericho five years earlier when he became mixed up with the wrong people and was involved in questionable activity. Jake briefly returns home to claim his inheritance before being stranded by the catastrophe. After a somewhat awkward return home and a tense reunion with his father, Jake steps up to become a leader in Jericho, fighting to protect the town and its citizens. As the people of Jericho struggle to survive in a changed world, most remain unaware that one of the newest residents, Robert Hawkins, knows a lot more about the attacks than he is letting on. It will be revealed that he is in possession of an unexploded nuclear bomb that was supposed to be used in the attack, but how he came to this and exactly what side he is on remains anything but clear.

Second season

The military forces of the new Allied States of America (ASA), which now govern most of what was formerly the Western United States, have restored order to Jericho and its surrounding region, putting an abrupt end to the conflict between Jericho and its rival town, New Bern. As a sense of normality returns to town, the plot shifts away from the day-to-day survival to life and political intrigue under the ASA government.

Known only to Hawkins and a select few, the September attacks were neither a foreign nor domestic terrorist act, but a conspiracy of unknown perpetrators within the highest level of the former U.S. government. Hawkins must calculate his every move to avoid capture, to piece together the trail of evidence, and, ultimately, to bring the truth to light before the conspiracy's mastermind buries it forever.

Meanwhile, Jericho's residents deal with the reality of the new ASA government based in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Initially welcomed as saviors, the government's military and mercenary agents transform life in Jericho into a repressive police state, under the leadership of a private security contracting firm, Ravenwood - Owned by the company Jennings & Rall, which has major ties to, and sponsors the leaders of the ASA government. When a Ravenwood contractor kills Bonnie, a deaf farm girl from the outskirts of Jericho, to conceal his embezzlement, the town is put on the edge of open revolt as Jake and the deputies protect Mimi, the only witness to Bonnie's murder, and the embezzlement.

Hawkins unsuccessfully attempts to transport the bomb to his contacts in the reborn Republic of Texas. The ASA military is tipped off and, after a brief chase, seize the weapon. Hawkins narrowly escapes. The ASA military then transport the weapon to Cheyenne for safe keeping.

Hawkins makes contact with Jake; and the two travel to Cheyenne, where they retake the bomb from J&R contractors. Hawkins is wounded in a brief gun battle. The two make it to the Republic of Texas embassy in Cheyenne with the only undetonated bomb (in ASA territory) from the September attacks. The ASA's military is right behind them. The Republic is considered the swing state in the struggle for power between the Eastern United States, now governed from Columbus, Ohio, and the Allied States; the ambassador manages to secure a small jet to carry Jake, Hawkins, and the device there. While en route, two ASA F-15 fighter jets intercept Jake and Hawkins and order them to turn around or be shot down. When Jake refuses to be escorted back to Cheyenne, the two jets drop back to open fire. Suddenly, two Texas Air National Guard F-16 fighters appear, and shoot down the ASA planes. Jake and Hawkins make it to Texas with the evidence, and Hawkins ominously intones that a Second American Civil War was always coming, and that the two of them have made history by giving the United States a fighting chance in the war to come.

Third season

Season 3 is not a live-action show, but a six-part comic book series "from the minds" of the original Jericho production team and written by the Jericho writing team. There have also been rumors of a motion picture version, beginning where Season 2 left off. During the 2011 Comic-Con, it was stated that the Graphic Novel buys are being watched, and could lead to the motion picture being made.

Fourth season

Season 4 is a continuation of the comic book series being released by IDW Publishing on August 15, 2012. The five issue story will be picking up after the events of Jericho: Season Three. The comic is written by Kalinda Vazquez with the process being overseen by the original television series' writers.


Main article: List of Jericho characters
Jericho features an ensemble cast of characters, along with a number of minor and recurring roles. The series website listed eleven main cast members. Alicia Coppola moved from a recurring role to a regular character in February 2008. Gerald McRaney did not have a regular role in Season 2. Esai Morales was only present in Season 2.


Early development

The series originated as a feature film idea of co-creators Jonathan Steinberg and Josh Schaer: a post-apocalyptic plot set amidst the trappings of "a little character drama" movie, in the vein of The Day After, Threads, and Testament. However, they soon realized that a two- or two-and-a-half-hour-long film would still not carry the necessary length they felt such a concept required to properly explore the setting and the characters "? thus, Schaer and Steinberg decided instead to re-conceive the entire project as a television series, producing a treatment out of the original feature screenplay. Director Jon Turteltaub and producer Carol Barbee then entered the picture, the pair having pitched the project to them. Turteltaub soon commissioned writer Stephen Chbosky to pen the pilot teleplay based upon Schaer and Steinberg's series treatment.

One of Chbosky's major contributions to the structure of the series was the introduction of a greater feminine element to the storyline, opining that, "[We] could use some girls, a little kissing, and some laughs." Another significant developmental influence were the four impacts of the September 11 attacks and Hurricane Katrina, and the sense of "[being] a spectator to a disaster, while not quite being part of it." Co-creator Steinberg in particular felt that after 9/11, the United States saw some of the "best of people," and after Hurricane Katrina, some of the "worst of people," and sought to include both in the fabric of Jericho, with Katrina providing "lots of inspiration" for the show's overall premise.

Filming locations

Jericho is set in northwestern Kansas, but the series was filmed in Van Nuys, California. The pilot and all episodes involving New Bern, Kansas, were filmed in Fillmore, California. Filming also occurred in Pasadena, California, including in front of the city hall. The final episode to air included portions filmed at the Santa Anita race track. Some filming also took place in Canada and in Long Beach, California (specifically along Alamitos Bay). The commentary for some episodes on the Jericho Season 1 DVD includes the location of their filming.

First season

The first season of the show premiered Wednesday, September 20, 2006 and concluded with a cliffhanger episode on May 9, 2007. Lackluster ratings prompted concern, as the show hit a ratings low in early April. The ratings were down 25% when the series returned following the nearly three-month hiatus. During its first season, it ranked 48th, with an average of 9.5 million viewers in the United States. Other Wednesday night programs it competed with were Bones, Deal or No Deal, and ABC's comedy block.

Though the producers seemed confident that the program would be picked up for a second season, CBS officially announced Jericho's cancellation on May 16, 2007.

Several online communities, including the official Jericho forums, launched campaigns in an effort to revive the show. Fans also sent just over 20 tons of nuts to CBS headquarters; this referred to a scene from the season one finale "Why We Fight" where Jake Green repeats General Anthony McAuliffe's historic phrase "Nuts!" from the Battle of the Bulge. The peanuts and other proceeds from the donations have been donated to charities, including the rebuilding effort in Greensburg, Kansas, a town that was largely destroyed by a tornado in 2007.

Second season

In a response posted on the Jericho forum, CBS president Nina Tassler acknowledged the fan response, stating, "We hope to develop a way to provide closure to? the Jericho story." CBS officials acknowledge the campaign was the largest the network had seen using digital means to protest a show cancellation. President and CEO Leslie Moonves acknowledged that he was filtering emails from Jericho fans, while senior vice president of communications Chris Ender said, "You have to tip your hat to their ability to get attention and make some noise."

On June 5, 2007, Jericho executive producer Carol Barbee announced that CBS was discussing the possibility of the show's return for an eight-episode mid-season run. A day later, Tassler posted an announcement on the forum stating that seven new episodes of Jericho had been commissioned as a midseason replacement for the 2007-2008 television season, with the possibility of an extension based on viewership. The last of these seven episodes was broadcast on March 25, 2008, and was not affected directly by the 2007 Writers Guild of America strike.

On August 2, 2007, a video was released on YouTube showing clips from the first day back at work for the Jericho cast and crew. It included a "thank you" from the cast and crew to the fans for their efforts to revive the show. Several months later, CBS released trailers announcing the second season premiere, including Morse code spelling "SPREAD THE WORD".

Jericho returned for its second season on February 12, 2008 to mostly favorable reviews but with the lowest numbers the ratings had seen yet. In the early days of January 2008, the first three episodes of the second season leaked on the internet via a DVD screener source. The show's second season has also premiered in Canada on CTV, mirroring the US broadcast.

The first two episodes of the 2008 season received the lowest ratings to date for the series. Jericho's ratings did increase somewhat for its third episode, but dropped back down to fairly consistent but still low ratings. The second season averaged 6.2 million viewers.

On March 21, 2008, CBS announced that the network would not be renewing Jericho for a third season. CBS entertainment boss Nina Tassler stated that "The March 25 episode... will be the series finale. Without question, there are passionate viewers watching this program; we simply wish there were more. We thank an engaged and spirited fan base for keeping the show alive this long, and an outstanding team of producers, cast and crew that went through creative hoops to deliver a compelling, high-quality second season.... We're proud of everyone's efforts." According to SyFy's source, two endings were shot for the March 25 episode. One involved a cliffhanger leading in to a third season, while the other would wrap up the series and provide closure for fans who had worked to secure the series' return. "There are a lot of people here who really care about what happens to Jericho, and I think we all wanted to see it succeed," the source, who asked not to be identified, said. "Numbers are numbers, and [CBS] had to do what [CBS] had to do."

Post second season

In early 2008, executive producer Carol Barbee said talks were ongoing to find another home for Jericho, perhaps on a cable network, and raised the possibility of the Sci Fi Channel and broadcast networks such as The CW (co-owned by CBS). Other possibilities may include a television or theatrical movie.

On April 7, 2008, The New York Times website reported that CBS Paramount Network Television held talks with Comcast about finding a new home for Jericho. Possibilities included an arrangement whereby Comcast would pay part of the series' production expenses and then offer episodes in High-Definition before they air on CBS.

Jericho fans continued efforts to resurrect the series, including a one-page advertisement in the April 25, 2008 edition of Variety magazine. A second advertisement appeared in The Hollywood Reporter, as well as banner ads on the Variety and Hollywood Reporter websites.

On January 15, 2009, reported that a Jericho feature film is in development.

No further TV or movie episodes have been produced.

Jericho comic

On March 12, 2009, Devil's Due Publishing announced that all storylines from the TV series will be continued in a comic book series. On November 25, 2009, Devil's Due Publishing released the first issue of the six-issue continuation of the Jericho saga. As of May 29, 2011, IDW Publishing has re-released the first 3 comics as Jericho: Redux, as well as issues 4, 5 and 6, thus completing its publication.

In August 2011 IDW collected all 6 comics into a 144-page graphic novel entitled Jericho Season 3: Civil War.

In April 2012 IDW announced a new series entitled Jericho Season 4.


Main article: List of Jericho episodes
Clips from the pilot episode became free to watch on Yahoo! TV several weeks before the episode actually aired on television. CBS is still showing most, but not all, of the Jericho episodes on their Innertube website as of January 2009, although they cannot be accessed from outside the U.S. CBS repeated the first three episodes on the Saturday nights following their original airings, as did Australia's Network Ten.

Each episode's opening title sequence is accompanied by an audio message in Morse code. The messages vary from generic references to cryptic clues, and are always related to the current episode in some way. The messages were broadcast at 15 words per minute at a frequency of 1000 Hz. In addition to these messages, there is Morse code over the DVD menus. These messages say "Jericho Fans Made TV History." (Season 1) and "Thank You Fans For Making TV History" (Season 2). Also, in the second episode, Robert Hawkins received several additional Morse code messages through a Ham Radio that he was fixing.


Season Episodes Season premiere Season finale TV season Viewers
1 22 September 20, 2006 May 9, 2007 2006"07 9.24
2 8 (Including 1 recap) February 12, 2008 March 25, 2008 2008 6.16

DVD releases

DVD name Release date (Region 1) Release date (Region 2) Ep # Additional information
The First Season October 2, 2007March 10, 200823Featurette: Building Jericho
Featurette: What If?
Commentary and Deleted scenes on select episodes.
The Second Season June 17, 2008September 29, 20087Featurette: Rebuilding Jericho
Featurette: Nut Job
Commentary and Deleted scenes on select episodes.
Unaired Season finale alternate ending
The Complete Series June 17, 200815 October 2009 [Germany]30Featurette: Tick Tick Boom
Featurette: Behind the Scenes "Thank You"
100 Reasons to Watch Jericho
Table Read
Napalm Action Sequence (from Season 2)
Train Action Sequence (from Season 2)
Cast Members' Memorable Moments.

Web-based tie-ins

An online companion to Jericho is called Beyond Jericho. The television program gave the web address for the online companion. Beyond Jericho was to feature the "other survivors" of the nuclear attacks. According to Barbee, the story was intended to be unique to the site, but as the season of Jericho progressed, the online story would dovetail into the episodes themselves. However, the site and "webisode" are now unavailable, having been removed from the CBS website before the second episode of the TV show was broadcast.

CBS since decided to scrap the current webisode storyline, and instead released a new series of "prequel" webisodes named Countdown that take place before the first explosion. Each of these new webisodes appeared concurrently with the broadcast of new episodes during season 1, and showed Robert Hawkins gathering information before the attack.

Beyond Jericho

Main article: Beyond Jericho
The first installment of Beyond Jericho began with an unknown man calling someone on a cell phone, requesting a ransom of $1.2 million for a woman he kidnapped. He then disappears underground through a metal trap door. While climbing down, he hears and feels a bang, but thinks nothing of it. After conversing with an associate about their next plans, he picks the woman up and climbs back up to the roof. When he opens the door, it's surrounded by rubble. The entire city around them has been destroyed. Shortly after, rubble falls through the trap door. With the cell phone (apparently actually the victim's cell phone) dead, and assuming that the man's associate is dead as well in the collapse, they start to climb through the rubble to find out what happened. Nearby, a hand with a surgical glove on emerges from the rubble, as the vignette ends.


Starting on October 26, Beyond Jericho was replaced by Countdown, which documents Robert Hawkins' efforts to learn as much as possible about the effects of nuclear bombs before he moved to Jericho. The webisodes do not feature any of the regular characters, consisting primarily of Hawkins, draped in shadows, watching mini-documentaries.

The mini-documentaries feature expert interviews about the effects of a nuclear attack. They are only minimally connected to each episode's plot. For instance, CBS's episode 8 plot summary reads: "A shadowy military unit bursts into the chamber Hawkins has just vacated. On his computer, they find a video." The video was a short documentary about FEMA's response to Hurricane Katrina and their use of paramilitaries. The "shadowy military unit" then patiently waits until the documentary ends to resume its search for Hawkins.

Countdown's sponsor, AT&T, is very heavily promoted in the series using product placement. Nearly all dialog takes place as SMS messages on an AT&T cellular phone, and a full-screen AT&T logo appears in every episode when Hawkins views the expert interviews. This web-based programming is not accessible from outside of the United States.

Created for the Tom Tooman game, is the purported website of Jennings & Rall, the corporate giant which plays an increasingly prominent role in the second season of the series. The site contains a wealth of information about the company's post-holocaust global operations, with significant hints regarding events in the show.

On November 1, 2008, the domain name expired. The site can still be viewed, however, at

Tom Tooman

Tom Tooman is an alternate reality game that CBS ran in conjunction with Jericho beginning in August 2007. The game began with a cryptic letter posted on a web site, supposedly from a Tom Tooman of Lame Deer, Montana. This letter was accompanied by a series of bar codes, some with decimal numbers and others with Mayan numbers. These numbers were used to create an IP address for a second website. More clues were released, as well as a blog on the CBS web site connecting the game with Jericho. The game abruptly ended with the cancellation of the series, with no closure offered. A synopsis of the game and the puzzles appear at

See also

  • Locations in Jericho (TV series)
  • Continuity of Operations Plan " the Continuity of Government plan for the U.S. government
  • List of nuclear holocaust fiction
  • Nuclear War Survival Skills " the official nuclear Civil Defense manual from United States Department of Defense
  • Nuclear weapons in popular culture
  • Survivalism

This webpage uses material from the Wikipedia article "Jericho_%28TV_series%29" and is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. Reality TV World is not responsible for any errors or omissions the Wikipedia article may contain.



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