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Series / Sea Patrol

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Sea Patrol is an Australian television series focusing on the crew of HMAS Hammersley. The first three seasons have their own Jigsaw Puzzle Plot that is slowly revealed over the course of the season, though each episode was more focused on giving one or two crew members their day in the limelight. The fourth season ditched the Jigsaw Puzzle Plot and just focused on the characters. The fifth and final season went back to the Jigsaw Puzzle Plot of the first three seasons. Has been aired in many countries though not in the USA.


Tropes Include:

  • Accidental Kidnapping: Occasional plot; when it involves the crew, it's normally Kate.
  • Action Girl: Kate and Bomber qualify, Nikki rarely sees action but never lets anyone down and Bird can be generously described as too young and inexperienced to be one.
  • All Work vs. All Play: Kate and Mike.
  • Alone with the Psycho: "Red Sky".
  • Amateur Sleuth: The crew when they get involved with crimes and the Jigsaw Puzzle Plot.
  • Arson, Murder, and Lifesaving: The crew, especially Mike, do this on occasion
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: Mike has this problem once in a while. The job gets done but it's clear that the crew rarely agree with him when it happens.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Normally Kate, but when Mike is given the rare chance he proves that his reputation isn't just talk, and Nikki isn't a pushover.
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  • Awesome Aussie: Not quite 'The Series' but given the majority of characters are Australian and a number of them do pretty badass things...
  • Betty and Veronica: Kate and Dr Ursula Morrell/Mike and Rick Gallagher/Jim Roth and Mike/ Mike and Dutchy (own choice for which fit)
  • Big Bad:
    • Season 1: Rick Gallagher
    • Season 2: Ray Walsman
    • Season 3: Campbell Fulton,
  • Big Eater: Charge mostly though he occasionally fights 2Dads for the muffins.
  • The Big Guy: Buffer, Dutchy replaces him in season 4.
  • Bilingual Bonus: In one episode the crew were attending a event at a French embassy and when Spider asked for a beer the French waiter pretended not to know English and said, "I'm proud of my bum when I see your face". Bomber came to his rescue and told the guy "Don't mess with me, w***!", and got his beer and one for herself. She then told Spider that she could just speak high-school French.
  • Boarding Party: Since they enforcing Australian law this happens once an episode. Rarely does it go smoothly....
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Buffer
  • Brains and Brawn: On the outside the officers and NCO but the officers can hold their own in a fight and many of the NCO (particularly ET, Charge, Swaine and 2Dads) clearly could outdo them in their fields.
  • Brainy Brunette: Nikki
  • Camp Cook: RO when Bomber is away. Anything she has done wrong is instantly forgiven.
  • The Chains of Commanding: Mike and Kate suffer from this when something goes wrong and there's time to think about it occasionally.
  • Chickification: Averted. While the women do have moments of weakness, it's justified, and usually they rescue themselves, or hold off till help comes.
  • Command Roster:
  • Cool Boat: HMAS Hammersley. Some occasional boats that are pirated.
  • Curse: The ship suffers one in the first season when Thor, their mascot, is stolen while they're in port. As a result;
    • There are strange knocking noises in the walls.
    • Had to swallow their pride and leave their mascot in the Kingston's arms even though they've put Thor in pink hotpants and waving it right under their noses.
    • The refrigerator stops working.
    • A boarding mission goes badly.
    • Relationships go though a bad patch. (ET, Buffer and Nikki's most notably).
    • The generator room catches fire.
    • Change's bad eye is affected by the fire.
    • ET gets some bad news.
    • Mike and the Hammersley part in understanding the jigsaw plot hits a hard stumbling block.
  • Curse Escape Clause: Which involves getting back their mascot, stealing the other ship's mascot (of the crew that stole their's) and Buffer dressing up as Neptune to give a offering to appease the sea.
  • Damsel in Distress: Bird
  • Deadpan Snarker: Name a character, though RO and Buffer are, arguably, the most prominent examples.
  • Death by Childbirth: A Chinese illegal immigrant dies on Hammersley. However, there were clear reasons for this and the baby survived.
  • Disposable Sex Worker: Poor women looking for a better life are forced to be this and are the centre of an episode in the third season.
  • The Drunken Sailor: Of course there's shore leave, but while Buffer and 2Dads took on two dangerous men and won, poor RO needs to stay away from the booze. The poor golf buggie....
  • Embarrassing Tattoo: Buffer on a night out decides to get another tattoo and forces Spider to come along and get one himself. Buffer (who's definitely drunk) goes to sleep in the chair while his tattoo is being done. The next day Bomber is tending to the slightly infected tattoo and it becomes clear that it isn't the tattoo Buffer wanted. Bomber corners Spider, who admits that he didn't get one then realises that he messed with Buffer's choice. It turns out that he changed it to a heart with XO in it. And the first person Buffer shows it to is the XO. ... Spider is very lucky to not be maimed, let alone alive, when Buffer is finished with him.
  • Everything's Better with Monkeys: 2Dads thinks so...
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Most of the nicknames, Chefo is the chef, though he's also the assistant medic, CO is the Commanding Officer, Swaine is the coxswain, etc.
  • Friendly Rivalry: With anyone not from Hammersley
    • Bomber after two seasons of being the only girl in the ranks finds herself pushed aside when young Bird turns up.
  • Going Down with the Ship: Poor Swaine nearly has this fate after a bad run in with some diamond smugglers.
  • Good with Numbers: Kate and Nikki are qualified navigators. Charge, ET, 2Dads, Swaine and RO would have to be good at maths to do their jobs. Mike is implied to be but there isn't much reason for his to show it.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Interestingly, not much of a problem in ET and Nav's relationship (mostly by Nav accepting that he is an incurable flirt and he makes sure she knows she's number one). However when Mike or Kate show interest in someone else they are clearly upset and snark at each other, though they keep it mostly out of the crew's way ... well, Kate does.
  • Hero-Worshipper: 2Dads has some of this to Dutchy in season 4.
  • Hot Scientist: Dr Ursula Morrell
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: The entire plot of 'The Hunted'.
  • Idiot Ball: Ship could be renamed this especially in the early seasons
  • Informed Flaw: A few crop up now and then.
  • Interservice Rivalry: A few times when an army man appears or once when the crew found weapons stolen from an army base but there is a problem with the FEDs everynow and again, while the crew isn't blameless there are one or two moments when the plot wouldn't have happened if the FEDs had just warned Hammersley something would happening in the area.
  • It Makes Sense in Context: Some of the nicknames such as '2Dads' which is because his surname is a double barrel Kosov-Meyer. 'Bomber' is traditionally given to people with the surname Brown in the navy; sources differ on the origin.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: RO, 2Dads, Mike and Dutchy are the most glaring.
  • Killed Off for Real: ET, Swaine.
  • Known Only by Their Nickname: Besides Mike, and to a lesser extent Kate, the whole cast is almost exclusively referred to by their nicknames.
    • Also Bird which is her surname.
  • Love Martyr: While he does love her, and it's not a one way street, some of the things Mike pulls on Kate feel like this though it's subverted by Kate knowing this and NOT being happy with it and she calls him out when it gets too far.
  • Malicious Slander: 2Dads spreads a rumour about Kate and Buffer being in a secret relationship after a (deservedly) harsh dressing down. Mike nearly physically throws him off the boat and Kate and Buffer make him retrieve pearls that a thief had swallowed.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Ryan
  • Mistaken for Pregnant: Kate. Although to be fair she did have a tummy bug and showed the classical signs of pregnancy so Swaine giving her the pregnancy test (to rule it out) and RO seeing the test and her behaviour makes it understandable that it happened.
  • Never My Fault: RO suffers from this to some extent. Everyone lets him know when he doing though
  • Ensign Newbie: Spider and Bird though Spider found himself coming in for more than Bird because he wasn't a she and pretty. Both are very gullible though, to everyone's delight.
  • Non Sequitur, *Thud*: During the course of her duties, the XO of HMAS Hammersley was surreptitiously dosed with Rohypnol by a fisherman/murderer. After Hammersley saves the day, the Captain came down to her cabin to check on her condition; she didn't wake up when he arrived, and he was greeted with "I don't believe in pre-marital soy sauce!"
  • Not Me This Time: 2Dads increasingly suffers this as the series goes on. He does deserve it sometimes though.
  • Open Secret: ET and Nikki's relationship ends up being this. While everyone is more or less a shipper on deck no one wants them to leave and so they keep quiet about it. Mike and Kate are so good that it comes as a bit of a surprise when they show that they know about it.
  • Put on a Bus: Chefo between seasons 1 and 2; and Nav, Spider, and Buffer between season 3 and 4; and Bomber between seasons 4 and 5, though at least Bomber going away was referenced in the season 4 finale.
    • Justified in that people in the Navy change boats regularly, just in the course of their careers.
  • Quicksand Sucks: 2Dads falls into a pit in Season Four, even briefly falling beneath the surface.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: Characters leaving the show at the end of most seasons unexplainedly, which happens on real boats all the time.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: The characters were only Put on a Bus because the actors didn't want to come back to the show.
  • Real Women Don't Wear Dresses: Averted — the women are as feminine as they would be. They wear dresses off the ship, eye the eye-candy men, and have realistic conversations among themselves.
  • Screaming Birth: This happens in the penultimate episode of the first season. She gives plenty of abuse to the father as well.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Ray Walsman
  • Sea Mine: In the first season a mine washes up on a beach after a cyclone. While it is unstable, the only real danger comes from a pair of Too Dumb to Live preteen boys who find the mine, and don't report it straightaway. One even runs towards it when the bomb disposal unit are about to destroy it to save a tortoise.
  • Sea Stories
  • Secret Relationship: ET and Nikki, Mike and Kate, and Bomber and 2Dads, in season 4.
  • Sergeant Rock: Buffer and Duchy are the navy version.
  • Sex Slave: See above.
  • Sex Tourism: Or sex boat.
  • Taking the Heat: 2Dads in an incident with a baby crocodile.
  • Team Dad: Split between Mike, Charge and Swaine. Mike is the authority figure, Charge the fun/caring one, and Swaine the sort of big brother.
  • Team Mom: Kate and Bomber. Kate as the authority figure, and Bomber as a sister.
  • Terrified of Germs: RO
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Bird to the other ladies of Hammersley.
    • Zig zagged between the other ladies when paired with each other. Bomber, despite being the chef, generally comes off as the Tomboy however.
  • Traumatic C-Section: Though the mother was dead Swaine is haunted by doing this.
  • True Companions: Very strong crew and even when new troublemakers *cough*2Dads*cough* get into trouble they are saved.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Kate and Mike. Bomber and RO. Bomber and 2Dads.
  • Uptight Loves Wild: A mild example with Mike and Kate. He is more laid back, happy to socialise, and inclined to take risks; Kate is more withdrawn, keeps her distance with the crew and by the book.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: RO and 2Dads.
  • Welcome Episode: The Pilot has Kate and Spider's first day on Hammersley, Spider has only been in the navy for four weeks.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Buffer, Spider and Bomber end up stuck on a boat with about 10 deadly snakes at one point.
  • Will They or Won't They??: Mike and Kate. ET and Nikki ET and Nikki do but before it is finalised and fully out in the open, he is murdered. Mike and Kate finally get together at the start of the fourth series when he is promoted off the Hammersley but he is back at the end of the second episode and their relationship is put on hold for the rest of the season — to Kate's increasing frustration. She breaks it off in the fifth season and goes out with old flame Jim but they get together in the final episode.
  • Working with the Ex: Mike and Kate in the first season.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: A woman in series one sent Maydays all episode. She caused a lot of problems before she held ET at gun point.

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