Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea is a 1960s television series based on a 1961 movie of the same name, both created by Irwin Allen. Broadcast on ABC, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea aired September 1964 to March 1968, with a total of 110 episodes. Twp seasons were produced in black and white (1964-1965) before going to the color format in 1965. The entire series takes place in the near future (1970s and 1980s).
Voyage is set on a futuristic nuclear submarine called the Seaview based in California, but often anchored 500 feet beneath the ocean in a secret underground rock cavern. Its secret mission is to protect the earth from extraterrestrial threats and attacks, but it’s also used for undersea marine research.
The crew of the Seaview is led by the sub’s designer and builder Admiral Harriman Nelson (Richard Basehart) and Commander Lee Crane (David Hedison). Crane becomes the Seaview’s Captain after the murder of her original commanding officer.
Season four was originally shown September of 1967 through March of 1968. Released in January, the DVD set includes 13 episodes airing between December 31, 1967 and March 31, 1968. Special features include original unaired pilot and broadcast pilot with vintage television commercials. There are 663 minutes worth of programming in this DVD set.
The included episodes have been digitally remastered, and they have a great vintage feel, reminding me of the Planet of the Apes or the original Star Trek television series. This is science fiction the way it should be, with the story carried by the plot and the acting, and not by amazing special effects.
My favorite episode is “The Return of Blackbeard” when Edward Teach himself appears on board the Seaview, where he kidnaps crew members trying to commandeer the sub for use as a pirate ship. From there he intends to capture King Solomon’s Golden Throne! In his wake, as he takes each member, he leaves a glowing red Jolly Roger burned into the floor.
This is great old fashioned fun for the family with no worries about content or inappropriate language. There’s enough action to keep even the most jaded teen interested in the movie and it’s family friendly enough to be suitable for younger children. As an adult, I enjoyed the trip back down memory lane to when I saw these episodes originally.