Voyage To the Bottom of Main Street

I’ve been thinking about getting the DVD set for the complete series of Voyage To the Bottom of the Sea.

It’s a TV show that I used to watch back in the early 60s when we lived on West Main Street in Richland.

Or at least that’s what’s embedded in my memory. I recall the submarine Seaview with its glass windows in the front and the lead actors Richard Basehart and David Hedison, but I don’t recall any of the plots of the stories. Though I do remember one of the supporting cast members, a Seaman named Kowalski. 

It was Kowalski do this, Kowalski do that, hey Kowalski, what’s the trouble?

A glance at the iMDB page reveals he was played by Del Monroe and was in nearly as many episodes as the lead actors.

Anyway my recollection is that I watched that show when we lived on Main Street; I can still see those black and white images in my head as I sat on the couch in that living room.

The only trouble is, gee whiz, according to every source I’ve checked, that series didn’t begin airing until the fall of 1964 by which time we had moved to South Race Street.

So what gives?

I looked up a review of the DVD of the complete series, and that offered a clue. Apparently, the first season of Voyage, which aired on the ABC network, was not filmed in color. In 1964 the networks were still in the process of converting from black and white to color; NBC, the Peacock Network, had pretty much completed the transition but ABC was only about halfway there, and CBS was lagging way behind. 

As it happened, shortly after we moved to Race Street we got a color TV, so to a large extent my memory of TV watching is skewed by that. I tend to think of black and white shows as being on Main Street and those in color as being on Race Street.

Voyage did transition to color for its following three seasons, but I probably only watched it during the first season. The second season was 1965-66 and that was my junior year. I suspect that I was watching a lot less TV by then as I had a driver’s license and that was the year of the Irregulars, so there were plenty of things to keep me otherwise occupied.

Oh, and after reading that review of the complete series of Voyage, I’m a little less inclined to buy the DVD set. It sounds like after the first season it devolved into a monster of the week show. Blechhh!

From that clip it should be clear why Del Monroe (Kowalski) never had much of an acting career after the show ended.

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