Season 1 Episode 1

Episode 101

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Sep 19, 2005 on NBC



  • Trivia

    • 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

    • Barry: Let me just say this out loud and just...just see how it plays. This morning you saw a sea monster.
      Laura: (pause) Yeah.

    • Laura: I worked my ass off to get here and I deserve to be part of this.
      Cirko: Endangered species don't deserve to be on the brink of extinction. But they are. You are a marine biologist. You of all people must know that life is not fair.

    • Laura: (while in a submarine) Something's coming up.

    • Miles: There's something in the water.

    • Laura: I was the one that saw it. Alone, at 5,000 feet! I was the one that saw it in a disabled submersible. A new vertebrate!

  • Notes

    • 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.

  • Allusions

    • 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.

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