SSRN Seaview from "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" (1961)
About the Design
Created for Irwin Allen's 1961 feature film "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" and later the centerpiece of his classic 1964-1968 TV series, the "Seaview" is second only to Jules Verne's "Nautilus" when it comes to famous fictional submarines. Its "observation nose," ray-like forward stabilizers and Cadillac-style tail fins have made the "Seaview" a favorite among sci-fi fans and Fantastic Plastic modelers alike for more than 40 years.
The craft itself was a mass of contradictions. Supposedly built and operated by the private Nelson Institute for Marine Research (NIMR), this ostensibly civilian research vessel nonetheless carried nuclear missiles and was manned by a military crew. And while the design seems functional, it is, in fact, extremely top-heavy and could never move with 80 percent of its profile above the surface as shown on the screen. And while the vessel supposedly moves via atomic-powered "water jets" (The craft has no propellers, just exhaust tubes), there are no intakes for water to be drawn into the atomic chamber for super-heating. (Also, how could such a craft ever move in reverse?)
The first season of VTBOS (1964-65) was filmed in black-and-white and featured the movie model with its distinctive two-level forward observation room. During this season, the craft was equipped with a two-man mini-sub and diving bell for extravehicular activities.
About the Kit
Released by Aurora in 1966, the "Seaview" model depicts the movie and TV series' Season One design with its twin-level observation room. Inaccurate in many details, the model is nonetheless a Baby Boomer-era classic. Re-released briefly with new box art in 1975, the model disappeared for two decades until it was resurrected with great fanfare by Polar Lights in 2002.
This kit is an original 1960's era issue. (Poorly built, I might add.)