NAVY LOG (1955-1958) – Here’s an unusual segment of Balladeer’s Blog’s recurring Forgotten Television feature. Rather than review the entire series I will take a look at this program’s episodes regarding the often-overlooked Korean War. Most episodes of Navy Log featured half-hour dramatizations of real-life incidents from World War Two, so in keeping with my overall theme of things that slip through the cultural cracks, my focus here will be the few Korean War incidents dramatized on the show.
THE FROGMEN – Two U.S. ships are sunk in mined North Korean waters. To prevent the possibility of North Korea or China recovering classified information from those ships a pair of Navy Frogmen are let loose from a submarine to blow up the sunken vessels before that can happen.
OPERATION THREE-IN-ONE – When a Marine Corps unit is cut off by North Korean forces and is being whittled down, Army and Navy officers quickly improvise a rescue plan in hopes of saving the Marines.
THE POLLYWOG OF YOSU – Six Navy frogmen are sent in to surface behind North Korean lines and blow up a tunnel being used by the North to transport supplies to their troops. When a member of the unit is wounded by the explosion, he is not left behind, but is evacuated with the others at great risk to themselves.
LUNGER AT KUNSAN – The spectacular exploits of the commander and crew of a Navy Mine Sweeper near Kunsan, Korea.
LITTLE MORE THAN A BROTHER – During a strike over Korea, a Navy pilot is blinded and is unable to eject from his plane. Other pilots do everything they can to keep him conscious and guide him back to friendly territory despite being unable to see.
ROCK BREAKS SCISSORS – A Destroyer crew risk going into mined waters in order to rescue a downed pilot.
LST-799 – Landing Ship (Tanks) 799 transports the tank unit of the U.S. 5th Marines to the Battle of Inchon, where they prove crucial to the victory of America and its allies.
INCIDENT AT FORMOSA – An air patrol must carefully investigate extraordinary radar readings near Formosa without provoking a much wider war.
OPERATION HIDEOUT – A group of volunteers participate in a top-secret program involving nuclear submarines.
WAR OF THE WHALEBOATS – The crew of a Mine Sweeper wage a harassment campaign against the enemy. The title is a reference to the “Whaleboat War” during the Revolutionary War.
THE COMMANDER AND THE KID – The Navy tries to learn the location of underwater mines before they can pull off a landing. Help is covertly sought among the local population.
THE BUTCHERS OF KAPSAN – Navy warplanes pull off a pinpoint bombing of North Korean and Chinese brass on October 29th, 1951.
THE BLOOD LINE – Lieutenant Commander Mary Sproul of the Naval medical corps must get her shipment of whole blood to Korea before the vital perishable becomes useless.
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