Monday, August 26, 2019

RW285 - SeaQuest Rewatch S01E02-03 - Game Sister

In this weeks episode of The SeaQuest Rewatch, Cory and Tom break free and fight for survival as they discuss season 1 episode 2 & 3 (originally aired as episodes 4 & 6) "Games" and "Brothers and Sisters."


The SeaQuest heads to Kersh ice prison to take on its sole prisoner a man named Dr Reuben Zeller, a notorious war criminal, and the prison warden, a man named Riggs, due to a malfunction that is threatening to destroy the prison. On board the Seaquest, Zeller takes an interest in Doctor Westphalen and the two play a game of chess. However, it's soon discovered that the warden is actually Dr Zeller himself, who killed the warden, placing him in his former cryogenic cell. 

Zeller is taken captive but he reveals that he hid a toxin on board the vessel and once it melts, it will kill everyone on board. Captain Bridger makes a deal with Zeller to not put him back in the cryogenic cell as long as he tells him where the toxin is. Zeller agrees but it's a ruse as he traps Bridger and Crocker with some lasers and makes his getaway. 

As Lucas works on hacking into the UEO's files on Zeller, the crew decides that (1) making the ship as cold as possible is the only way to stop the toxin from melting and (2), taking the Seaquest as far away from civilization as possible is the best thing to do in case the toxin does get out. Meanwhile Lucas is able to get access to a few photos of the aftermath of one of Zeller's most notorious misdeeds wherein Doctor Westphalen's brother was killed. 

Zeller eventually contacts Bridger offering him the toxin if he follows Zeller's commands to launch missiles at the UEO base at Pearl Harbor to get his revenge for being locked up. With little choice, Bridger and Ford launch the missiles as all seems lost until Zeller reveals the toxin was not real at all. Bridger then reveals his own deception: anticipating Zeller's plan he disarmed all the missiles on board. 

As an angry Zeller prepares to kill Bridger and Ford Doctor Westphalen shows up, intending to kill Zeller as her own revenge for the death of her brother. As the situation escalates, she comments on her own abilities as a bio-engineer and throws a toxin of her own at Zeller, causing him to experience the great fear that he caused her brother before Westphalen reveals that her toxin is also a fake. Zeller is taken back into custody leaving Bridger and Westphalen to plan a time for him to teach her about poker.

Send out the WSKRS:

Alan Scarfe played Zeller. He was in the QL episode “Dreams” as Dr. Mason Crane. He was also the lead role of Captain Curus Harding in “Mysterious Island,” a retelling of Jules Verne's “20,000 Leagues Under The Sea”  in 1995.

We’ve seen this episodes director, Joe Napolitano, before. He directed 12 episodes of QL, and has also directed episodes of “The X-Files,” “JAG” and “Dawson’s Creek” among many others.

Kersh Ice prison was named after director Irvin Kershner, whose nickname was Kersh.

The episode ends with Bob Ballard from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. He will be a mainstay over the credits for a while throughout the series. In addition to being an Oceanographer, he is also a retired United States Navy Officer and Underwater Archeologist. Most notably he has found the wrecks of RMS Titanic in 1985, the battleship Bismarck in 1989 and USS Yorktown in 1998. Someone has created a free site using a free site generator called Angel Fire, where they have transcribed some of Bob’s end speeches.

Brothers and Sisters:

The Seaquest finds itself en route to the Landau missions depository to try and retrieve the vessel containing the last known inhabitants of the depot, as well as entomb the depot so that the weapons within will be unable to cause any harm to the surrounding area. Unfortunately, the crew discovers that the Seaquest is being targeted by the supposedly abandoned depot. While Commander Hitchcock investigates via the hyper reality probe, they discover that the children of the men and women once stationed at the depot, are still alive.

Ford and Crocker lead a team to the depot and quickly find the children, one of which is suffering from an embolism due to being exposed to the deep sea pressure. Crocker returns with the young boy and four other children, while Ford remains behind to find Zach, the eldest boy who ran away from the crew, refusing to leave the collapsing depot.

While Doctor Westphalen works to nurse the young boy back to health, Krieg, Crocker, and Bridger all take their turns at entertaining the young twin boys Matthew and Brawley with very little success, Commander Hitchcock finds herself exploring the idea of having kids when she connects with the youngest girl of the survivors, and Lucas finds himself falling for the teenaged "mother" of the group, Cleo.

Ford, having found Zachary, tries to get him to leave, noting that the depot is becoming more and more unstable, but Zachary refuses. Even the arrival of Cleo, brought back to the depot by Lucas, circumventing official channels, can't convince him. Chief Crocker makes an offhand remark about these kids needing a good kick in the pants, resulting in Westphalen coming up with an idea for Bridger to attempt to appeal to the side of Zachary that longs for an authority figure to take charge, something that Zachary has had to fulfill for years now on the desolate station. Bridger arrives on the depot in full Navy mode and his authoritative manner affects Zachary, breaking him of his stubbornness. Bridger tells him of his parents deaths and he follows the captains orders to abandon the depot.

Back on the Seaquest, Lucas and Cleo bid each other a fond goodbye before a moment of silence is held for the parents, ending with Captain Bridger giving the order to get the kids back home.

Send out the WSKRS:

The song that Lucas plays for Cleo in his quarters is “Baby I’m Yours” by Shai (1992).

Landau could be a reference to director Les Landau, who directed an episode we haven't seen yet called Devil's Window. He also directed an episode of Sliders called “Luck of the Draw” and the L&C episode “Green Green Glow Of Home.”

Cleo was played by Kellie Martin. More recently, she is the lead in the Hallmark production “The Hailey Dean Mysteries” and “Mystery Woman.” She started in the original Lifetime movie “Death of a Cheerleader” and it's remake (as two different characters). She also played the voice of Lana Lang in one episode of the Ruby-Spears Superman cartoons. 

Christopher Pettiet played Zachary. He was in “Point Break” and “Don't Tell Mom The Babysitter's Dead.” From there he got a role as Young Jesse James in “Young Riders.” After that, his career waned and he got involved with drugs, eventually dying of an overdose at just 24. 

The twins are played by Jonathan & Robert Dohring and they have no other credits. On IMDB the young girl is credited only as Refugee Girl and played by Jennifer Kretchmer. She was in “Naked Gun 2&½” as Barbecue Girl and went on to be an Exec producer on various projects. 

The sick boy was named Tony but there is no mention of him in IMDB.

Whats Next?

SeaQuest, as with many shows of the time, was aired out of order. No official production order has ever been released but with a few continuity clues we've come up with our own order. Next up, we'll be discussing the episodes "Give me Liberte" and "The Devil’s Window" which originally aired as episodes 7 & 2.

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Monday, August 19, 2019

RW284 - SeaQuest Rewatch S01E01 - To Be The Incident

In this weeks episode of The SeaQuest Rewatch, Cory and Tom dive to new depths as they discuss the series pilot "To Be or Not To Be." 

To Be or Not To Be:

After Captain Marilyn Stark incited an incident aboard the deep sea vehicle The SeaQuest that almost led to a war, the nations of the Earth created the United Earth Oceans Organization to prevent such things from occurring again.

Admiral Noyce, in need of someone who can captain the vessel, and who knows the line between exploration and enforcement, tries to enlist his old friend Captain Nathan Bridger, but he has no interest, having lost his wife, and having retired from service. Bridger does decide to come see the vessel that he himself designed, and is awed and taken aback at some of the many changes, most notably the addition of a large number of science stations and scientists. 

After meeting several members of the crew, Bridger realizes the ship is actually leaving drydock and setting out for open waters, and that he had been deceived by his old friend into taking command. Bridger is adamant that he be returned to land as soon as possible but not before the Seaquest receives a distress call from a power station under attack by a pirate submarine. 

After the Seaquest loses control of their systems and the pirate sub attacks, the team is forced to retreat into a trench to plan their next move. Meanwhile, Doctor Westphalen has discovered that the power station's vent has torn and if it ruptures, will send poisonous gasses throughout the sea wreaking ecological havok. Additionally a virus, discovered by young prodigy Lucas Wolenczak, was implanted in the SeaQuest and is the reason for the ship's sudden mechanical problems. To top off their growing list of problems is the fact that the pirate sub has begun attacking a farming colony as well in hopes of drawing the SeaQuest out into battle.

Bridger later deduces that the person who planted the virus was Marilyn Stark, who also happens to be Bridger's former protege. Stark's mission is to destroy the Seaquest, in order that her and her benefactor can benefit from mining the international waters for precious oils and minerals. 

The crew develops a way to regain some control of their ship, bypassing the virus, and heads back out to confront Stark. Using Bridger's faithful dolphin Darwin, a tracker is planted on the pirate sub, allowing The Seaquest to hit it with a torpedo, causing enough damage that the crew abandons the ship, with most being captured, but Stark seemingly getting away safely.

With the danger having passed, Bridger customizes the holographic advice program in his quarters to resemble his late wife, and after talking with Lucas, and despite his initial misgivings, heads off to the bridge to take his place as the Seaquest's new captain.

Send out the WSKRS (Trivia):

As we found out in the pilot, the Seaquest Deep Submergence Vehicle has a series of WSKRS (Whiskers). This stands for Wireless Sea Knowledge Retrieval Satellites. This is what we’ve appropriated for the name of our trivia section of the podcast.

Steven Spielberg heard the pitch for Sequest and likened it to a modern day 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. With his backing, the show was picked up for a full season within 24hrs of the original pitch.

Rockne S. O’Bannon co-wrote this pilot episode. As this initial episode set up the world and characters, O’Bannon is also credited as a creator in every episode. We’ve seen his co-writer, Tommy Thompson, before on The Rewatch Podcast; He was a producer and director on Quantum Leap. The show was mostly ushered by Philip Seagal (executive in charge of production) and Tommy Thomopoulos (President of Amblin). 

When the show was in initial development, it was called Deep Space. When Deep Space Nine hit TV, they were forced to change the title. Why was it called Deep Space? Where is that from. Couldn't find anything online.

It was unsure if a show of this scope could be done cost-effectively. It was the work of Illustrator Richard Lewis and Art Director / Conceptual Designer James Lima that convinced them. They would employ both practical designs with new CGI technology, namely the Video Toaster System on the Commodore Amiga.

To keep the show somewhat grounded in reality, Lewis and Lima also consulted with Dr. Robert Ballard who was an expert on deep sea exploration. He also became the model for the Captain Nathan Bridger character. John C. Lilly was also an inspiration for Bridger. Lilly was a pioneer researcher into the nature of consciousness, notably using dolphin communication, isolation tanks, and psychedelic drugs. Nathan's name comes from Nathan Hale, American soldier/war hero and spy for the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. He volunteered for an intelligence-gathering mission in New York City but was captured by the British and executed.

This episode originally aired as a two hour pilot movie titled “To Be or Not To Be.” It was later split into 2 episodes for syndication and the second hour was titled “The Nathan Bridger Incident.”

“It’s because we all came from the sea, and it is an interesting biological fact that all of us have in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears.  We are tied to the ocean.  And when we go back to the sea — whether it is to sail or watch it — we are going back from whence we came.” -JFK

The director of this pilot episode is Irvin Kirshner. He is best known as the director of “Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back”, “Never Say Never Again” and “RoboCop 2.” This episode of SeaQuest is was his final credit as a director, he passed away in 2010.

Roy Scheider died of cancer in 2008. He is best known as Officer Brody in Jaws, and also appeared in The French Connection, All That Jazz, 2010, voiced himself on Family Guy, and played the Punisher’s father in the 2004 movie.

Roy Sheider’s wife, Brenda King, plays Nathan's wife, Carol.

Dr. Westphalen is played by Stephanie Beacham. She was in a 1999 game show called Cluedo as Mrs. Peacock, where various celebrity guests try to solve the “whodunnit.” Tom Baker guest starred as Professor Plum.

Hitchcock is played by Stacy Haiduk. She has appeared in Superboy as Lana Lang, Young and the Restless as a couple characters over 200+ episodes and is currently on Days of Our Lives.

Ford is played by Don Franklin. He also appeared in The Young Riders (Pony Express show), played Craig Donovan in 7 Days, and a tourist in Somewhere in Time.

Johnathan Brandis played Lucas Wolenczak. He went on to win a Young Artist Award for Best Youth Actor Leading Role in a Television Series. He also appeared with Brian Austin Greene as themselves in a Saved by the Bell: The College Years episode ( and also in the pilot for Miss Bliss), Neverending Story 2 with John Wesley Shipp, Ladybugs with Rodney Dangerfield, Sidekicks with Chuck Norris and the original IT TV movie. We’ve seen him before in The Flash ‘90 episode Child's Play (the episode with Flash on guitar and Adam West as a Hippy). He died in 2003 when he hung himself in the hallway of his Los Angeles apartment building. He was only 27 years old.

Krieg is played by John D’Aquino, who is definitely no stranger to The Rewatch Podcast. He played Frank Lamotta in the Quantum Leap episodes Jimmy and Evil Leaper, as well in Sliders episode Virtual Slide and  Lois and Clark episode Brutal Youth.

Crocker is played by Royce D. Appelgate. He also appeared in 2 episodes of Twin Peaks. We’ve seen him in the QL episodes Color of Truth and Play Ball
Ted Raimi plays Timothy O’Neill. He is the younger brother of director Sam Raimi and has appeared in Spiderman and Evil Dead. He was also Joxer in Hercules and Xena.

Shelley Hack played Stark. She was the mother in Troll, did one season of Charlie's Angels and was also in Time After Time (the H.G. Wells / Jack the Ripper movie)

Maxwell was played by Eric DaRe. He was Leo Johnson in Twin Peaks and Fire Walk With Me. We’ve seen him as Tyrone in Flash ‘90 pilot episode.

The Professor (hologram) is William Morgan Sheppard. He played in Canton Delaware Dr Who and a Klingon Commander in Star Trek 6. We’ve seen him in the QL episode Mirror Image.

Noyce is played by Richard Herd. He played Admiral Paris in Star Trek: Voyager. We’ve seen him in the QL episodes Captain Galaxy and Mirror Image.

Weapons Officer Phillips was Mark Fauser. He was in the QL episode Moments to Live as a policeman.

Dan Hildebrand played a Helmsman here, he was in the Lois and Clark episodes Lord of the Flys and Battleground Earth as Ran.

Darwin’s computerised voice is done by Frank Welker. He is known for Megatron, Galvatron, Shockwave, ScoobyDoo, Fred Jones, Abu, Cave of Wonders, Odin in Marvel cartoons, Astro, Garfield and Santa's Little Helper.

Whats Next?

SeaQuest, as with many shows of the time, was aired out of order. No official production order has ever been released but with a few continuity clues we've come up with our own order. Next up, we'll be discussing the episodes "Games" and "Brothers & Sisters" which originally aired as episodes 4 & 6.

Contact Us:

Send in your feedback to
Follow the show on FacebookTwitter or Instagram and discuss Seaquest with the fans on Reddit