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"So Sorry, My Island Now"
Season 1, Episode 15
Gilligan is certain he sees a sea monster in the lagoon who turns out to be a Japanese soldier in a submarine who doesn't know that World War II is over!
Basic Info
Air Date: January 09, 1965
Written By: David P. Harmon
Directed By: Alan Crosland, Jr.
Guest Cast: Vito Scotti
Episode guide
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So Sorry, My Island Now is the fifteenth episode of the first season. It first aired January 9, 1965.


While hunting for lobsters in the lagoon, Gilligan is surprised by the periscope of a small submarine and thinks he seen a sea monster. He rushes to tell everyone, but the Professor and Skipper don't believe him. In his absence, the sub rises, and a Japanese Sailor in thick glasses emerges from it. Meanwhile, Gilligan heads back to the lagoon to look for it, running into Mr. Howell en route and tells him about it, but Mr. Howell humors him and doesn't believe him either. When Gilligan leaves, the sailor captures Mr. Howell thinking he's an officer and takes him hostage. Convinced a sea monster has eaten Mr. Howell, Gilligan finds Ginger who screams before being taken hostage herself. Her scream rouses the Skipper, Professor and Mary Ann to the lagoon, where they find Gilligan sloshing about in the water trying to save her. When Mary Ann vanishes, they finally realize something is going on that bears examination. The Professor and Mrs. Howell end up captured by the Japanese Sailor, keeping the women and men in different bamboo cages booby-tapped with hand grenades. The Professor tries to explain to the sailor that World War II is over, but the sailor doesn't believe them since his radio and transmitter have been broken since the war. Meanwhile, the Skipper and Gilligan have found the submarine, but the Skipper can't fit into it and nearly gets stuck in it, and Gilligan can't read Japanese to operate himself. They go looking for the sailor on the island, who has been on-duty so long that he gets tired and props himself up in a tree to get some sleep. As the Skipper tries digging the Castaways out of the cages, Gilligan carefully takes the key and rifle off the sailor to free everyone; they're standing over the Skipper as he continues digging. Eventually, they notice the sailor has woken and fled the island; everyone rushes to the lagoon to see his periscope erratically trying to escape in circles through the lagoon. At that moment, Gilligan reveals he also stole his glasses.


Main Cast

Guest Cast


  • Vito Scotti later played the Japanese Sailor in Diogenes, Won't You Please Go Home? when the Castaways gave their various versions of how they dealt with the crazy sailor. Scotti later guest-starred again twice as mad scientist Dr. Boris Balinkoff, making a total of four guest star appearances, more than any other guest star!
  • This episode is considered one of the more controversial Gilligan's Island episodes, sometimes being left out of syndication for its racial stereotyping of Japanese people, a predicament in many Sixties and Seventies Movies and TV Shows.
  • This episode starts with the many long shots of the Minnow wrecked on the beach which shouldn't be if it had fallen apart in Goodbye Island.
  • The Japanese didn't have any small one-man subs, and if they had, the Japanese Sailor would have run out of fuel a long time ago. There were small midget subs for crews of two and three, which were launched from larger subs and ran on rechargeable batteries, but they were not meant for long-range missions.
  • When the Skipper talks to Gilligan about the one-man sub, there's a strange mist near the waterfall caused by a leak in one of the hoses piping the water.
  • Traces of a stuntman and his scuba tank can be seen underwater with the submarine periscope.
  • When Gilligan starts diving with the sub's hatch open and floods it, there's already water in the tub before he floods it.
  • It's never explained how the Japanese Sailor builds two large cages big enough and fast enough to hold the castaways.
  • The Japanese Sailor is obviously inspired by reported cases of real-life "jungle holdouts," such as Hiroo Onoda, a Japanese soldier who never surrendered and remained in the Philippines for more than twenty years after the end of World War Two. Onada did not give up until 1974, some nine years after the episode was filmed, but he had been encountered several times in the 1950s and was considered a legend at the time of filming.


  • Mrs. Howell - "It sounded like Ginger."
    Professor - "But she's with Gilligan."
    Mrs. Howell - "Oh Professor, I refuse to listen to anything more. Gilligan's a very nice little boy."

  • (Gilligan and the Skipper discover a one-man submarine.)
    Gilligan - "Somebody sure has terrible handwriting. I can't make out U-S-S anything."
    Skipper - "Gilligan, it's Japanese."

  • Skipper - "Now, if you were a Japanese sailor, where would you be?"
    Gilligan - "In Tokyo..."
    Skipper - "I mean here on this island, Gilligan."