Just forget the words and sing along

Saturday, June 26, 2004

Just got a Gmail account. I don't know why. All my friends were getting one, so I thought I'd get one, too. Let's hope for my sake that they all don't go and jump off a bridge.

And I just finished one of my guilty pleasures. For those who don't know, Space: The Imagination Station now shows seaQuest DSV in reruns. I loved that show! I think we're now far enough removed from the 1990s where we can look at something and say, "That is sooo 1990s." seaQuest DSV is soooo 1990s.

For those who don't remember, seaQuest was a highly-hyped return to television for Steven Spielberg. (Highly hyped mainly because it premiered in the fall of 1993, fresh off the success of Jurassic Park.) It was set in the not-too-distant future, the year 2018. The human race had set up vast undersea colonies. These colonies were controlled by a UN-style organization called the UEO, the United Earth's Oceans Organization. The seaQuest DSV was the UEO's flagship: a massive submarine designed to stay underwater longer and dive deeper than any submarine before it. The show followed the adventures of the crew of the seaQuest as they kept peace in the UEO and explored the ocean's depths, under the command of Captain Nathan Bridger. It never really found an audience and struggled to make it through 2.5 years.

As I look back on it now, probably the only thing that made it ludicrous was Darwin the talking dolphin.

For those 2.5 years it was on, it clearly went through 2.5 different incarnations. It was best in its first year, when it tried to be a very realistic portrayal of life in this kind of world; what discoveries may really lie under the ocean and what the daily grind in an undersea colony may be like. They even had Dr. Bob Ballard, the man who found the wreck of the Titanic, as a scientific advisor. Then, in their second year, it all started to fall apart. They added psychics and genetically engineered soldiers and undersea alien bases, and it started to turn into the low-grade "Star Trek underwater" that many feared it would become. For that final 0.5 of a year, they tried to get back to its roots. Thanks to a timewarp, the ship was flung to the year 2032, and the show was renamed seaQuest 2032. This now offered a more contemporary view of the future, with corporations being the new planetary superpowers and seaQuest and the UEO trying to keep corporations from taking over the world. Gone was the quiet, reserved Captain Nathan Bridger. We got a new commander in the hard-ass, militaristic Captain Oliver Hudson, played by veteran Canadian character actor Michael Ironside!

So, yeah. I watch these reruns and I still love the show. It never really took off. One of the first action figures in my collection was a seaQuest figure: Lucas Wolenzeck, who was the ship's boy genius/Wesly Crusher, as played by Jonathon Brandis. He's dead now, committed suicide about a year ago.

I do wish I got the action figure of that talking dolphin, though. That's the one that's most valuable now.

Plus, I'm certain that seaQuest DSV has the most elegant theme song I've ever heard.

Next Issue...Beneath the Surface Lies the Future

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