Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea

Season 2 Episode 16

Deadly Creature Below!

Aired Monday 7:30 PM Jan 09, 1966 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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  • It's the return of the bobble-eyed monster!

    This is a pretty decent action episode--if you overlook the ludicrousness of two ignorant thugs running rampant on the Seaview and staying ahead of the (ahem) highly-trained crew.

    The mission, once again, has to do with weaponry. This time it is a "miniaturized guidance or destruct mechanism that will allow us to fire retaliatory rockets without a programmed target." Chief Sharkey looked as though he understood that about as well as I did.

    Meanwhile, two thugs have escaped from a penal colony in the Grand Bahamas, killing a guard in the process. Conveniently, they find a rowboat just lying out in the open, and take to the water. Hawkins will turn out to be a rather dim-witted follower, but Dobbs is a real nasty--totally self-centered, and contemptuous of everyone around him, including his partner. One wonders why he bothered bringing Hawkins along at all.

    The first stage of the test having gone well, Nelson and Sharkey go down in Apple One to scout locations to plant the guidance system. Somehow, they manage to miss seeing the gigantic, bobble-eyed, purpled furred whatever that's already planted down there. (And they'll miss it the second time, too, but at least then they had a good excuse.)

    Riley spots the wrecked rowboat with two men clinging to it. Apple One is hauled back aboard so that they can divert course to pick up the survivors. We don't get a clear idea of just how long they were at sea--there is a comment about being one hundred miles from the nearest island. Heaven only knows just where they were trying to go with no navigation equipment, food or water. Nelson kindly offers to take them with him in the Flying Sub--back to the Grand Bahamas.

    Everyone but Kowalski is willing to take the two men at their word. Kowalski spots the discrepancy--a rented boat would have numbers on it, and this one did not. He wants Sharkey to report his suspicions to the Captain, but Sharkey makes light of the matter. Apparently ship's protocol does not allow Kowalski to report directly, although it sounded as though he was threatening to do so before they were called back down for the second launch of Apple One.

    Dobbs and Hawkins turn up to watch the proceedings. Crane points out that they are not supposed to be there, but rather than using his own authority to chase them out, he looks to Nelson, who shrugs the matter off. In spite of their later displays of dimness, Dobbs and Hawkins both apparently have very good memories--they get a very clear idea of the workings of the sub by a quick glance at the plans posted on the wall. They create a diversion by sabotaging the winch for the diving bell, and make their way to the armory. The weapons--especially the long guns--are supposed to be securely locked, so I trust that either Dobbs or Hawkins was skilled at picking locks. I'd hate to think that they just casually walked in and picked up a couple guns.

    Dobbs and Hawkins fail their attempt to take the Flying Sub, and Hawkins gets himself shot in the leg, but they cause a lot of damage before running off to play hide and seek in the depths of the sub. It's 125 to 2, but they play it very well. Seaview's crew has other things to worry about as well--the ballast controls have been damaged, and the sub is going down. Sharkey takes the responsibility of entering one of the ballast tanks to free up whatever had gotten jammed, and almost doesn't make it back because of the increasing pressure.

    Washington calls, wanting to know when they will finish up their tests. Nelson thinks that once they've got the ballast back under control, they can resume their work. Either Nelson has totally forgotten the little matter of two fugitives loose on board, or he's just choosing to ignore them. He quickly realizes his mistake--Dobbs and Hawkins have managed to sneak back to the nose, and into the Flying Sub. Dobbs thinks that it will be just like flying any other plane, and his confidence grows when he sees how easy it is to get things turned on.

    Once out in the water, however, Dobbs cannot grasp that things are not going as he expected, and he refuses to listen to Nelson's frantic instructions. They essentially stall out, and drift right into the reach of 'ol bobble-eyes. Dobbs naturally starts screaming for help.

    Help's on its way--Nelson doesn't want to lose that expensive guidance device. They manage to retrieve the Flying Sub, but sustain still more damage in doing so, and are left hovering in the vicinity of the monster. Dobbs shows his gratitude for the rescue by shooting Kowalski in the head, and he and Hawkins head down to the Missile Room. Dobbs displays his essential idiocy by planning to simply swim out of the submarine, wearing emergency diving hoods. He refuses to believe it when Nelson tells them they are down too far and the pressure will kill them. Even setting the matter of pressure aside, Dobbs seems to have forgotten that they are some one hundred miles out in the ocean. Not to mention the little matter of 'ol bobble-eyes being right outside the ship. Nelson makes a grab for Hawkins and his gun, and Dobbs ends up shooting Hawkins. It's quite possible that he shot him deliberately, not accidently--he was furious with Hawkins for trying to listen to Nelson. Exit more ways than one.

    Bobble-eyes gets hold of the Seaview, and the crew gets an incredible workout with the rock-and-roll. I kept expecting Crane to say, "Oh, not again" as he repeatedly went staggering back into the wall, then swinging forward to the other side, all while trying to keep in touch with Nelson on the microphone. Nelson, for his part, almost got pitched headfirst into the controls he was trying to reach. Unlike the first season monster, who was left howling for his escaped toy at the bottom of the sea, this monster gets shot with a missile. (Apparently they've figured out a way to fire missiles from right angles to the ship, as well as straight out the front or back.) Seaview barely has time to get clear before the delayed explosive goes off, giving the crew yet another workout, and leaving a few shreds of fur lying forlornly on the sea bed.

    Nelson orders the Seaview to circle around in a seach pattern, on the highly remote possibility that Dobbs survived the pressure, the monster, and the explosion. Crane compares Dobbs with the monster, for whom he has some sympathy, as it really couldn't help what it was doing. Nelson speculates that perhaps Dobbs couldn't, either. (No doubt a comforting thought to his victims, including Kowalski.)