The first season of the Australian drama series Sea Patrol premiered on the Nine Network on 05 July 2007. The 13-episode season concluded 04 October 2007. Set aboard HMAS Hammersley, an old Royal Australian Navy (RAN) patrol boat, the series follows the ship’s company as they investigate the deaths of several people, who are linked by a web of intrigue.
Filming commenced in October 2006 and concluded in February 2007. Most of the material was shot aboard the patrol boat HMAS Ipswich, with up to 60 cast, film crew, and ship’s company crammed aboard a ship designed for 24, in tropical Queensland conditions. Other filming occurred on Dunk Island, in Sydney, and at the Movie World Studios in Queensland.
The show was one of the most eagerly awaited of 2007, with the project marking Lisa McCune’s return to television acting. Ratings for the first episode were the second-highest for a drama premiere in Australian history, and surpassed the NRL State of Origin match earlier in the week. Initial reviews were mixed, with concern that the series would be restricted by the early timeslot, poor scripts, and clichéd characters and storylines. Critical reception improved as the series progressed, but ratings fell.
The first season story arc involves the Australian Federal Police’s investigation into the death of marine biologist Dr. Lisa Holmes, Kate’s relationship with freighter Captain Rick Gallagher, Mike’s relationship with Lisa’s partner, Dr. Ursula Morrell, and the deaths of two fishermen, Carl Davies and Sam Murray. These threads increasingly intertwine throughout the season, culminating in the final two episodes, in which it is revealed that Gallagher hired Ursula and Lisa to manufacture a deadly toxin from an unusual venomous crab that he planned to sell on the black market. The plot is thwarted, the boat carrying the poison is sunk, Gallagher is killed and Ursula’s death is staged as she enters a witness protection program.
During the season, Nav and ET develop a relationship despite adversities: Chefo becomes engaged to his girlfriend; Swain’s wife, Sally, gives birth; Charge reluctantly gets help for, and recovers from, an eye injury; Spider loses friend and shipmate Jaffah to a jellyfish sting; Robert comes to terms with his father’s death and Lt. Daryl Smith has a mostly off-screen and implied relationship with AFP Agent Alicia Turnball.
Filming for this season started on 09 October 2006 and concluded on 20 February 2007. The Pacific Film and Television Corporation offered the producers $750,000 as an incentive to film the series in Queensland.
Much of the filming was carried out off tropical Queensland on a RAN patrol boat. This boat was built to accommodate 24 people, but up to 60 members of cast and crew were aboard the small boat, and a vast catamaran was used by the wardrobe department.
HMAS Ipswich was used to film Sea Patrol.
- Dunk Island (tropical island, Queensland) for eight weeks.
- Sydney for six weeks.
- Gold Coast Movie World Studios for six weeks.
Sea Patrol Series
You can find a full index and overview of Sea Patrol here.
- Episode 01: Welcome Aboard.
- Episode 02: What Lies Beneath.
- Episode 03: Ghost of Things Past.
- Episode 04: Irukandji.
- Episode 05: Under the Radar.
- Episode 06: Precious Cargo.
- Episode 07: Rescue Me.
- Episode 08: Through the Storm.
- Episode 09: Under the Hammer.
- Episode 10: Damage Control.
- Episode 11: Chinese Whispers.
- Episode 12: Deep Water.
- Episode 13: Cometh the Hour.
Production & Filming Details
- Director(s): Chris Martin-Jones and Geoff Bennett.
- Writer(s): Tony Morphett, Michaeley O’Brien, Dave Warner, Kristen Dunphy, Sarah Smith, Jeff Truman, Chris Hawkshaw, John Ridley, and Marcia Gardner.
- Release Date: 05 July 2007 to 04 October 2007.
- Running Time: 42 minutes.
- Rating: 12+.
- Country: US.
- Language: English.