Look very closely at the picture!
Bill Jones

The Scuba Guy's SEA HUNT Trivia Guide
SEA HUNT Sparked Interest in Diving

 © Copyright 2003-13    Bill Jones    World Rights Reserved
The most comprehensive SEA HUNT Trivia Guide available anywhere!
Read more about it:   Sea Hunt Sparked Interest in Diving
Sea Hunt Trivia
Sea Hunt Episode Guide
Sea Hunt Principal Cast & Crew
Sea Hunt Guest Stars
Sea Hunt Fact or Myth
Sea Hunt FAQ
Sea Hunt Legacy
Sea Hunt Memorabilia
Sea Hunt Travel Guide
Lloyd Bridges Biography
Lloyd Bridges Trivia
    Enter The Scuba Guy Website

Sony / Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer has made SEA HUNT available at major DVD retailers.  Do not confuse these DVD's with the poor quality pirate DVD's offered on some websites.

SEA HUNT re-runs are currently airing on the "THIS" TV network at odd hours of some mornings.  Check your local listings for broadcasts around 3:30a to 4:30a central time during the week and on week-ends.  The show's "look and sound" is very clean and appears to have been re-mastered on broadcast quality digital media from the original 35mm masters.

The Scuba Guy's SEA HUNT Trivia Guide is the most referenced SEA HUNT trivia source in the world.

Email The Scuba Guy with your question or comment about The Scuba Guy's SEA HUNT Trivia Guide.

Lloyd BridgesMany recreational divers will admit that their first real interest in Scuba diving was because of SEA HUNT.   For those of you too young to remember, SEA HUNT was a first-run syndicated TV series that was originally broadcast for four seasons between 1958 and 1961.   Mike Nelson, played by Lloyd Bridges, is a Scuba Diver fighting crime underwater in the days when recreational Scuba Diving and TV were still in their infancy.   Bridges explained the plot to the TV audience throughout each show with his memorable mumbling during his never-ending voice-over narrations.  People would actually ask Bridges how he could talk like that while he was underwater.

The typical storyline included sending up a marker buoy, running out of air, and cutting the bad guy's air hose. Even with all of those hose-cutting and out-of-air storylines, nobody ever got killed ... at least not from the cut hoses or from running out of air!  Each week, there would be plenty of bad guys that knew how to Scuba dive causing Mike Nelson to proclaim, "My lungs ached for air!"

Viewers never seemed to notice that underwater scenes inexplicably jumped from the salt water off Catalina Island or the Bahamas to the fresh water of Silver Springs Florida.  Nor did viewers notice that fish and flora didn't always match the story locale.  Sometimes, the edits didn't even match from cut to cut.  Shots were done on sound stages, in salt water tanks, in fresh water springs, and some real sea and ocean locations.  If you ever wondered how the Argonaut (Mike's boat) was off the coast of Southern California (Pacific Ocean) one week and then jumped the continent to the waters near Nassau (Caribbean Sea) the next week, you were doing way too much analysis.  Many of the underwater close-ups of Bridges were done at Marineland of the Pacific (Park operated 1954-1987) in Rancho Palos Verdes California.  Dozens of places claim that "SEA HUNT was filmed here" and, in a manner of speaking, it probably was.  The truth is that SEA HUNT was pieced together from dozens of shooting locations.

In the early episodes, most of the diving was done by stunt double Courtney Brown. As Bridges became comfortable diving, he insisted on doing most of the California shots himself while Brown continued doing the Florida and Nassau second-unit shots.  "As time went on, I got envious and wanted to do a lot of stunts myself", said Bridges.  There are a couple of scenes in the series where Mike gets advice on his crime fighting (not his scuba gear) at his local dive center!

Today, even Master Scuba Instructors watching the old shows ignore Mike's total lack of buddy-system diving, needlessly dropping of weight belts, walking around the boat wearing tanks and fins, and constantly wearing his mask on top of his head.  Bridges admitted that the concept of him diving alone was not accepted by the sport diving community as it "violates the principles of buddy diving".  He went on to claim that the shows were not meant to be a documentary and "our excuse for existence is in dramatic entertainment and our purpose is to present an illusion of reality in dangerous situations which the public will enjoy and want to see".  The best thing TV Guide could say was "an epic so watery that Lloyd Bridges’ colleagues tell him they have to drain their TV sets after watching his show".

LLoyd Bridges on Cover of Skin Diving MagazineWhen Bridges died in 1998,  celebrity magazines and Scuba publications came out of the woodwork to praise the star of a show that never received more than mediocre reviews.  It was 1957 when Bridges accepted the role that would change his life and career forever by playing an ex-Navy UDT Frogman turned undersea investigator.  Ivan Tors shopped his creation to all three networks but the idea was turned down as being too limited in scope for a long running TV series.  Convinced of the show's commercial viability, Fred Ziv masterminded a deal with United Artists to syndicate the series to 167 television stations that broadcasted to more than 180 U. S. markets, which translates into more than 40-million viewers.  SEA HUNT was also broadcast in 20 other countries in eight languages other than English.

SEA HUNT drew higher ratings than many network shows of the time and would become the country's most successful first-run syndicated TV show at that time (Baywatch (1989-2001) now holds this title after airing in first-run syndication in 144 countries to more than one-billion viewers in 22 languages.  Baywatch also holds the title of the most watched TV series of all time). While never actually broadcast on the CBS Television Network, WCBS-TV (the CBS flagship station) in New York City aired SEA HUNT at 10:30p on Saturday nights in primetime grabbing a "first week" rating of 25.3 beating out "Wagon Train" (1957-65), "$64,000 Question" (1955-58), "Maverick" (1957-62), and "Lawrence Welk" (1955-82)!  Baltimore pulled a 25.0, San Francisco 28.0, Pittsburg 28.8, and Birmingham 31.3.  Miami took the biggest rating of 33.7 in primetime.  By January 1959, Miami had a 40.1 rating taking 67.8% of the viewing audience share!

During the 155 episodes, guest stars ranged from Leonard Nimoy to Robert Conrad.  Bridges wife Dorothy and sons Jeff and Beau made appearances in some episodes.  Jack Nicholson appeared in the final show that aired in September 1961.

Ivan Tors' SEA HUNT and Lloyd Bridges introduced millions of viewers to Scuba diving and SEA HUNT still inspires new interest in the sport today!

In 1987, the original SEA HUNT's Underwater Special Effects chief, Harry Redmond Jr. became the Associate Producer for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's new version of SEA HUNT (1987-88).  MGM had owned the character and story rights since 1981.  Ron Ely, of Ivan Tors' "Malibu Run" (1961) and the TV "Tarzan" (1966-69), reprised the role of Mike Nelson for the 22 episodes.  Kimber Sissons played the new character of Mike Nelson's daughter Jennifer Nelson.  The boat in this new version of the show is called "Sea Hunt", not the "Argonaut".  The show was shot in and around the areas of Vancouver and Victoria, Canada.

TV audiences and Scuba divers agreed that this new version of SEA HUNT never really re-captured the magic of the original series.

Lloyd Bridges and Ron Ely were good friends dating back to the Ziv Studio days.  Ely ran into Bridges on a tennis court just before the filming began on the new version of SEA HUNT.  Bridges asked Ely "Why don't you call the character something else, instead of ... Mike Nelson?".  Bridges was trying to be constructive and help the new show.  Ely didn't pay much attention to the question and never brought it up with MGM.  Bridges knew, probably more than anyone else, that Mike Nelson was his character and that audiences would never accept anyone else playing his role.  In most fan's minds, Lloyd Bridges will always be Mike Nelson.  Something that MGM would be well-advised to understand if the company ever revives the show for another re-make of SEA HUNT.

Email The Scuba Guy with your question or comment about The Scuba Guy's SEA HUNT Trivia Guide.

Editor Note:  Bill Jones, The Scuba Guy, is a PADI Master Instructor and a Published and Award-Winning Writer

Read more about it:   Sea Hunt Sparked Interest in Diving
Sea Hunt Trivia
Sea Hunt Episode Guide
Sea Hunt Principal Cast & Crew
Sea Hunt Guest Stars
Sea Hunt Fact or Myth
Sea Hunt FAQ
Sea Hunt Legacy
Sea Hunt Memorabilia
Sea Hunt Travel Guide
Lloyd Bridges Biography
Lloyd Bridges Trivia
    Enter The Scuba Guy Website

Email The Scuba Guy with your question or comment about The Scuba Guy's SEA HUNT Trivia Guide.


Editor Note:  Bill Jones, The Scuba Guy, is a PADI Master Instructor and a Published and Award-Winning Writer

Attention Publishers:  An un-shopped, un-published, narrative, 400 page manuscript of The Scuba Guy's SEA HUNT Trivia Guide is available for publication.

More Scuba News

Caution:  This text contains some minor deliberate errors for the purpose of prosecution of copyright infringement.
Questions & Comments: The Scuba Guy