Season 1 Episode 1

Episode 101

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Sep 19, 2005 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
476 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

People all over the world experience bizarre encounters involving strange new creatures in the oceans. Among those people are Laura Daughtery, a marine biologist and single mother working in California, Rich Connelly, a Louisiana family man fishing in the Gulf of Mexico, and Miles Barnett, a North Carolina teen who finds one of the creatures' eggs.moreless

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  • Way too slow

    Wow. Really bad writing.

    I see why the show got canceled after only one season. You can only milk a mystery so long before people become frustrated because NOTHING is happening.

    The premise of the show was fine. But the writers were way too self indulgent. They took way too long to pay off on their set ups. They stretched the viewers' patience way beyond the limit. The three main characters' set ups should have begun paying off in about 1/3 the time.

    The insurance adjuster's watery visions were even lamer than the Richard Dreyfuss character's mashed potato visions in "Close Encounters."moreless
  • nous avons vu cet épisode en avant première et attendons que la france diffuse cette série.le suspense était intense et nous souhaitons connaitre la suite peut être que nous permettra de découvrir ces épisodes en avant première en france et la remrmoreless

    nous avons vu cet épisode en avant première et attendons que la france diffuse cette série.. le suspense étair intense et nous souhaitons connaitre la suite.. nous avons aimé les 4400, lost etc;;; ne trouvant pas que la france est pressée de de diffuser cette serie nous essayons de trouver cela par nous meme;; etant parfaitement bilingue nous n avons pas de problème pour suivre ces episodes en version originale... l\\\'intrigue est superbe et nous avons envie d\\\'aller plus loin dans l\\\'histoire;;; peut être que nous permettra de découvrir ces épisodes en avant première en france et répondra à notre attente.. Mercimoreless
  • The pilot episode kicks off, but I had some problems with it.

    I'll start at the very beginning of the episode, when the kids are on the boat. I know for a fact that the dialogue between them is nothing like what teenagers actually sound like, and the acting in the beginning, or lack there of, didn't help the matter. I probably would have enjoyed it more had I not already watched the entire Invasion series, which I much prefer at this point. So far, the plot could be referring to an undiscovered sea species, not necessarily a "monster" or alien. Anyway, the good thing about the show is that Lake Bell's child is really cute, and it was interesting enough to make me watch the second episode.moreless
  • A really great show!

    This pilot episode introduces us to the show. The characters are all presented and their respective roles are familiarized to us. We learn about the lives of the characters. When the creatures start appearing all over the place, their lives turn upside down. The writers start this show really well, the way they write the characters are done in a way that's entertaining to watch. This show seems serialized, although the story is presented bit by bit, you don't mind since you expect the narrative to unfold as the show goes on. This is a really good show. I'm having a blast watching it.moreless
  • Intriguing premise. Not just the finding of a new lifeform under the sea, but the fight between scientists and the military of intellectual property.

    a Marine Biologist in a submersible is investigating the deepest trench under the ocean when suddenly said submersible loses power and drifts over the trench, suddenly she sees something swim past the porthole. When the power returns she sees what she thinks can only be a new lifeform.

    I was totally intrigued and look forward to the story unfolding. But the kids annoy me. And the main kids parents need a good slap too!

    The military angle is a little too stereotypical though.

Connor Ross

Connor Ross


Guest Star

Michael Charles Roman

Michael Charles Roman

Greg Butler

Guest Star

Court Young

Court Young

Barry Cobb

Guest Star

Shishir Kurup

Shishir Kurup

Dr. Krishna Singh

Recurring Role

Ric Reitz

Ric Reitz

Ron Barnett

Recurring Role

Rade Serbedzija

Rade Serbedzija

Dr. Aleksander Cirko

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (5)

    • Miles' middle name is James you hear his mother calling him just after the tank explodes "Miles James" and his last name is Barnett so you know it has to be his middle name.

    • When Rich and his brother are diving and the creature pulls Rich's brother down to the depths. Rich looks at his depth gauge and it reads 218/219 ft. First off that depth is insane recreational dive limits you to less than 135 ft and second he goes down and at no point did Rich equalize the pressure in his ears which would cause his ears to rupture. Not to mention that he just drifted up to the surface unconscious at least the show did say that he was put in a decompression chamber (even though when you see him he is in a plastic quarantine tent where a decompression chamber is a metal chamber that looks like a sub)

    • Not exactly a goof but... the egg that Miles rescues from the sea is floating on the surface. When he puts it in his home fish tank it sinks to the bottom of the tank. More dramatic that way but otherwise unexplained.

    • The scene between the young kid and his grandfather was shot in a studio and was one of the few "outdoor" scenes not actually shot on location.

    • Most of the series will be filmed in and around Wrightsville Beach and Wilmington, NC, even for scenes that are not supposed to take place in North Carolina.

  • QUOTES (5)

  • NOTES (15)

    • Music:

      Fall Out Boy - Sugar, We're Goin Down

    • Original International Airdates:
      Denmark: April 2, 2008 on TV3+
      The Netherlands: June 2, 2008 on Veronica
      Czech Republic: January 20, 2013 on Prima COOL

    • During the final preview test screenings of the pilot episode held at Universal Studios, the audiences got very emotional during the scenes featuring locations set in Lousianna as Hurricane Katrina had just hit the area days before.

    • Shows that NBC put on Monday nights at 8:00pm have historically plummeted in the ratings because of powerhouse competitors like Monday Night Football and 7th Heaven but Surface managed to become a surprise hit with ratings steadily climbing each week.

    • Surface was the most over-saturated new series premiere of the fall 2005 season, due to mass re-airing of the pilot during the first week on the Sci Fi Channel.

    • Miles and his family were originally going to be from San Diego.

    • Lake Bell's character was originally going to be called Daughtery Carstarphen. Also, Jay R. Ferguson's character was originally going to be called Richard Beck, then it changed to Richard Owen, and then was finally settled as Richard Connelly.

    • When searching for information on "sea monsters", Miles uses an internet search engine called "JointAxis". This is not an actual search engine and was just made up for the show.

    • In the first re-airing of Surface on the Sci-Fi Channel, the promos for the show that aired during commercial breaks still stated, "Series Premiere: Monday at 8/7 Central on NBC", even though the series premiere had already aired.

    • The series has no theme song or intro. The word "Surface" simply appears on the screen after the first scene, in the fashion of a movie or mini-series. It wasn't until the 13th episode that the show began using fancier, new animated opening titles instead.

    • Locations in this episode:
      Wilmington, North Carolina;
      U.S.S. Ronald Reagan (Weddell Sea, Antarctica);
      Sausalito, California;
      The Louisiana Coast (Near the Gulf of Mexico);
      Oceanographic Institute (Monterey, California);
      M.V. Kellie Chouest (Northern Pacific Ocean);
      Port Arthur, U.S. Navy Base (Bangor, Maine);
      Gulf of Mexico (50 Miles S. of New Orleans);
      Sullivan's Island, South Carolina;
      National Security Agency (Fort Meade, Maryland);
      Caribbean Sea (off the Coast of Belize).

    • The show was originally titled Fathom before NBC changed it to Surface. Reportedly the name change came after 20th Century Fox showed interest in making a film based on a comic book called "Fathom."

    • Reruns of the first few episodes of Surface were shown on NBC's cable partner Sci-Fi Channel starting with the pilot on September 20. This is the first time that an NBC show has had reruns run on the Sci-Fi Channel while the show was still first-run on NBC.

    • The premise is simular to that of the 1998 film The Faculty from director Robert Rodriguez (Sin City, Once Upon a Time in Mexico) and writer Kevin Williamson (Scream, "Dawson's Creek").

    • The character of Dr. Aleksander Cirko was originally going to be called Dr. Clay Ling back when the producers wanted the character to be of Asian, East Indians or Pakistanis origin.


    • The character of Richard Connelly is based on Roy Neary, the main character of the 1977 film Close Encounters of the Third Kind, played by Richard Dreyfuss. Roy Neary is one of several people who experience a close encounter of the first kind, witnessing UFOs flying through the night sky. He is subsequently haunted by a mountainlike image in his head and becomes obsessed with discovering what it represents, putting severe strain on his marriage.

    • The computer program Miles uses to wake himself up features The Incredible Hulk, a popular comic book character from Marvel Comics created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. The Hulk's story is about a man named Bruce Banner who, due to radiation, would turn into a large green monster whenever he got angry. The comic book was turned into a popular show in the 1970s starring Bill Bixby (as Banner) and Lou Ferrigno (as the Hulk) and later adapted into a film by Ang Lee in 2003.

    • Miles reads a book that contains a passage about a "six-headed sea serpent". This is probably Charybdis, in Greek mythology the child of the sea god Poseidon and earth mother Gaia. Charybdis guarded a narrow sea passage, and reached down from its lair when ships passed to devour six crewmen, one for each mouth. The penalty for failing to make a swift passage was repeated loss of crew members in multiples of six.