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The Seaview - Atomic-powered submarine on the sci-fi adventure VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA/ABC/1964-68.


The Seaview was one of two experimental submarines designed by retired Admiral Harriman Nelson (Richard Basehart), Director of the Nelson Institute of Marine Research, a top-secret government complex located in Santa Barbara, California in the year 1980.

The crew of the Seaview included:

  • Commander Lee Crane (David Hedison)
  • Lt. Commander Chip Morton (Robert Dowdell)
  • Chief Petty Officer Curley Jones (Henry Kulky)
  • Chief Sharkey (Terry Becker)
  • Ship's Physician "Doc" (Richard Bull)
  • Seaman Sparks (Arch Whiting)
  • Seaman Kowalski (Del Monroe)
  • Seaman Pat Robertson (Paul Trinka)
  • Seaman Stu Riley (Alan Hunt)
  • Seaman Clark (Paul Carr)

Admiral Nelson, Cmd. Lee Crane and Lt. Cmd. Chip Morton

The glass-nosed bow of the Seaview was not rounded like a traditional submarine but flared, resembling a pair of wings. Its hull can withstand depths of 3,600 plus feet [nearly 5000 feet on episode No. 3 "The Fear Makers"]. In case of emergency, a pair of sliding metal collision doors moved across the face of the bow's observation deck to protect the glass surface.

A secondary smaller submarine called The Flying Sub [referred to as "The Flying Fish" in publicity releases] was housed in the underbelly of the Seaview and was launched by dropping it through bomb-bay like doors. Once outside the Seaview, the Flying Sub's engines could increase their thrust, rocket toward the ocean's surface and break through the watery depths to the blue sky above.

"Seaview's job is never finished. As long as there are destructive forces in the world, as long as there are secrets of nature to be probed, believe me, there'll be work for us...on missions just as vital and as dangerous as this one." -- Admiral Nelson to Captain Crane

Special effects workers built three models (4, 8 and 18 foot models) of the Seaview for the series. The 18-foot model (used for surface shots) was fully automated with lights and working torpedoes. There was also a one-foot and a two-foot model of the mini-subs housed in the other ship.

The models for the series were created for a total price of $200,000 by L.B. "Bill" Abbott who won two Emmy's for the submarine and special effects. The submarine,

The Polidor (the sister ship of the Seaview) sank during episode No. 3 "The Fear Makers." It exceeded its crush depth and exploded because a fear/nerve gas was introduced into the sub's air supply, thus affecting the crew's judgment.

TRIVIA NOTE: The Seaview was first seen in the Irwin Allen movie Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea (1961) starring Walter Pidgeon. 

The Seaview's flashing master onboard computer was first seen in the movie Desk Set (1957). Spencer Tracy played Richard Sumner, a methods designer (efficiency expert) who invented the computer. Called "Emerac"- Emmy for short.

The computer later appeared in the movies The Invisible Boy (1957) and The Fly (1958) before finding its way to the Seaview.

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