Nuclear submarine captain wannabe Tom Dodge's dream command turns out to be an underseas nightmare when he's handed the reigns of the U.S.S. Stingray, a decrepit rustbucket of a diesel sub. The just-out-of-mothballs, World War II-vintage tub is only the beginning of Tom's problems as he embarks on a secret mission with a motley crew of misfits who make Gilligan look like Captain Blood. The free-thinking Lt. Commander's crew of Navy castoffs includes Lt. Emily Lake, who hopes to become the Navy's first female sub officer; Executive Officer Martin Pascal, an officious martinet who opposes Dodge's easygoing style; and Howard, a veteran diesel sub engineer who comes out of retirement to keep the Stingray afloat.