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Great fun, final run, season four
on 11 November 2011
Voyage to the Bottom of the sea is a fabulous bit of escapist fun. This is the final season four and it is definitely the most daft of all the seasons but its also the most fun.
The DVD releases of all four seasons are finally out in the UK and it has been a long time coming.
If you were a fan of the series either during its original transmission or its repeat runs on television then this series has some of the best remembered episodes. They are wacky, far fetched but great fun. They are pure escapism. Many programmes today are too serious and lack the care free creative "what if" imagination that was displayed in programmes from the 50s, 60s, and 70s. This classic series from the 1960s is an extreme example of fun TV.
The star power of Richard Basehart and David Hedison, backed by an able supporting cast that are very experienced after three series do a great job in giving this final series a strong edge. Also there is the miniature sets and special effects that although not as impressive as modern CGI, are in fact very good even today.
To be honest there are also signs that the series really should be the final season because the episodes re visit themes from previous series thus showing it was getting harder to be original in plot line.
On the flip side of that, it also means that the series has familiarity and it is good to re visit some characters again.
For example there is the episode Man Beast, where captain crane transforms into a beast man after an accident with an experiment in diving equipment.. This idea was the third time it had been used. Completely wacky stories but this one is actually the best of the beast man episodes and the acting and effects are very good.
Another episode called "Nightmare" features captain crane again who encounters aliens. And aliens appear again in "Attack".
A stand out episode has to be "The edge of doom" which explores deep emotions within the crew as their friendship is put to the test as they search for an enemy impersonator within Seaview's crew
Each series had been long at twenty six episodes each, so to get to the end of season four there had been a lot of stories and the whole thing comes to an end with two great episodes twenty five and twenty six.
These are also stand out episodes and they make a great final stab at telling the stories of Seaview and its many voyages to the bottom of the sea.
The final disc of the eight DVD disc set contains special features. There is an unaired pilot episode, and a re cut version of the unaired pilot episode. Then there is the actual broadcast version of the pilot episode with original commercials. Finally there is an interview with David Hedison, stills gallery and American broadcast information.
This final season also feature some great music, as it did on previous series. There are great contributions from the likes of Alexander Courage who wrote music for many TV shows from America and Nelson Riddle who was a successful composer of light music
Voyage to the bottom of the sea was the second of the Irwin Allen produced science fiction action series and it was created after the first season of Lost in Space. Series one and two of voyage had been very successful, and like Lost in space it made it to a third season. Other shows by Irwin Allen were the one season of Time Tunnel, and the two seasons of Land of the Giants. This series, Voyage to the bottom of the sea, was so successful it made it to this final fourth series.
The seaview is the worlds most advanced nuclear submarine. It is six hundred feet long. It can dive to and travel faster than any of its rivals and is equipped with all the latest devices including atomic torpedoes. It carries a separate mini sub, a diving bell, a snowcat, and an innovative flying fish, a vessel capable of water and air travel.
Admiral.Nelson and his crew are meant to be doing research but usually end up maintaining peace below the waves by fighting fiendish humans, fish and aliens.
This DVD set has the complete series four, which is very exciting and interesting. The Picture quality is very good. There is good use of colour film.
Unlike the release of the first series on DVD with the plastic DVD container that had rounded spines rather than the more familiar straight edged square type, this release has the standard sort of container with straight edges. Inside there are seven discs containing the 26 episodes and a final disc eight that has special features. . Each disc has the same sort of menu page. And there is no booklet.
There are subtitles for the deaf, but no Audio description for the blind or partially sighted. There is no booklet inside. The outside of the cover sleeve is reasonably well presented. All of this is housed inside a cardboard sleeve. Generally it is a good presentation.
It is an interesting series of action and adventure. It is great fun from a forgotten age. This is highly recommended.