Alias is an American sci-fi television series created by J.J. Abrams and produced by Touchstone Television and Bad Robot Productions which stars Jennifer Garner as Sydney Bristow, a CIA agent, who is usually seen wearing a colourful new disguise while undercover in some part of the world.
The series aired in the USA on ABC from 30 September, 2001 to 22 May, 2006. There are 105 hour-long episodes in five seasons.
Alias originally aired in South Africa on M-Net from Thursday 18 July, 2002 to Sunday 2 July, 2006. It later aired on SABC1 and on TopTV's Fox Entertainment channel.
See "Seasons" below for seasonal broadcast dates and times by channel.
Season 3 premiered on Fox Entertainment on Saturday 1 May 2010, at 18h00. New episodes aired daily at the same time. There are 22 episodes in the third season.
Once Season 3 ended on Fox the channel began broadcasting the series from Season 1, which premiered on Sunday 23 May 2010, at 18h00, taking over the slot vacated by Season 3.
Daily: 09h00, 13h30
Sydney Bristow (Jennifer Garner), a vivacious, athletic grad student, discovers that her not-so-typical after-school job as an agent for SD-6, a top-secret division of the CIA, holds some deadly secrets that not only put her life in danger but also threaten the security of the free world.
Recruited freshman year, the then shy and lonely Sydney jumped at the chance to add some meaning and excitement to her life. Little did she know how great she'd be at espionage or how much she'd love it.
Today Sydney is no longer shy or alone. Boyfriend Danny has just proposed and her best friend Francie (Merrin Dungey) couldn't be happier. Her friend Will, (Bradley Cooper), however, has to feign happiness, keeping his unrequited love for her to himself.
Sydney now finds herself facing a moral dilemma: What does she want from the rest of her life, and what does she tell her friends and would-be fiancé?
Sydney's SD-6 partner, Dixon (Carl Lumbly), a devoted family man, warns her not to reveal her secret to Danny, and Sydney knows that SD-6 leader Sloane (Ron Rifkin) would not look kindly on any breach of security.
Even Marshall (Kevin Weisman), SD-6's highly inventive weapons and gadget maker - a super intelligent man with noticeably lacking social skills - knows that divulging their identities is strictly verboten. This is the one rule you don't break.
The third season takes place two years after the events of season 2, with Sydney having been missing and presumed dead. DNA evidence in a badly burned body confirmed her death to her family and friends.
The truth, however, is that Sydney was kidnapped by a terrorist organisation called The Covenant, who tried to brainwash her into believing she was an assassin named Julia Thorne.
Eventually Sydney voluntarily had her memories of the two years erased in an attempt to forget some of the deeds she was forced to undertake as Julia and to ensure that one of Rambaldi's most dangerous artefacts would never be found.
As Sydney recovers, she begins investigating her absence while reintegrating into the CIA. There she deals with the facts that Arvin Sloane had become a world-renowned humanitarian after being pardoned, and that Michael Vaughn had married NSC agent Lauren Reed.
Reed is later revealed to be a member of the Covenant and a lover of Julian Sark.
The NSC plays a role as a government organisation that holds massive unsupervised power, with a Guantanamo-like detention facility, considerable influence over the CIA, and driven by questionable motives.
Sydney later discovers that her mother and Arvin Sloane had a child together, the result of an affair between the two years earlier. She locates her half-sister, Nadia, and rescues her from being killed by the Covenant.
At the end of the season, Sydney goes on a mission and encounters Lauren. After they battle, Lauren begins to taunt Sydney by saying she has information about her past. When Vaughn shows up, Sydney goes to him, leaving Lauren a chance to attack again.
Vaughn shoots Lauren, and she dies, but before she does she gives Sydney the number of a security deposit box where she can find information about her past.
This season features music by Limp Bizkit, Underworld and The Remnants, among others.
Season 1 (22 episodes)
Channel: M-Net | Premiere: 18 Jul 2002 | Finale: 12 Dec 2002 | Thursdays, 19h00
Channel: SABC1 | Premiere: 3 April 2004 | Finale: 28 Aug 2004 | Saturdays, 20h00
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 23 May 2010 | Finale: 13 Jun 2010 | Daily, 18h00
Season 2 (22 episodes)
Channel: M-Net | Premiere: 30 Jan 2003 | Finale: 26 Jun 2003 | Thursdays, 19h00
Channel: SABC1 | Premiere: 10 April 2007 | Finale: 4 Sep 2007 | Tuesdays, 23h00
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 14 Jun 2010 | Finale: 5 Jul 2010 | Daily, 18h00
Season 3 (22 episodes)
Channel: M-Net | Premiere: 6 Jan 2004 | Finale: 1 Jun 2004 | Tuesdays, 19h30
Channel: SABC1 | Premiere: 24 Sep 2007 | Finale: 18 Feb 2008 | Mondays, 22h00
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 1 May 2010 | Finale: 22 May 2010 | Daily, 18h00
Season 4 (22 episodes)
Channel: M-Net | Premiere: 5 Apr 2005 | Finale: 30 Aug 2005 | Tuesdays, 19h30
Channel: SABC1 | Premiere: 3 Feb 2009 | Finale: 30 Jun 2009 | Tuesdays, 22h00
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 4 Jul 2011 | Finale: 2 Aug 2011 | Weekdays, 12h45
Season 5 (17 episodes)
Channel: M-Net | Premiere: 7 Feb 2006 | Finale: 2 Jul 2006 | Tuesdays/Sundays, 19h30
Channel: SABC1 | Premiere: 15 Feb 2010 | Finale: 7 Jun 2010 | Mondays, 22h00
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 3 Aug 2011 | Finale: 25 Aug 2011 | Weekdays, 12h45