Author Existence Failure: Will Shatter, John Dougherty, and Ricky Williams all died of narcotics overdoses. Bruce Lose once commented that the coincidence was "like Spinal Tap, except the bass player keeps dying".
The TV series:
California Doubling: Averted on the original TV show, which was set and filmed in Florida. Mostly played straight in the '90s version, which (apart from the pilot and two early episodes) was shot in Australia.
Society Marches On: One of the main trainers for the show now campaigns heavily against dolphin captivity after one of the dolphin stars died in his arms after the show ended.