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Follow the life journey of an 80-year-old 45-ton bull sperm whale and witness the spectacular sights at the bottom of the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans . Viewers travel with the whale and his family as he fends off an attack from a pod of orcas and comes face to face with animals that were once thought to be mythical - mysterious 15-meter oarfish and the enormous giant and colossal squids of legend.
As the whales dive over 2 kilometers below the surface, the landscape of the deep comes vividly to life - impossibly deep canyons, underwater volcanoes and the highest and longest mountain ranges on Earth. The whale takes us on a rollercoaster ride - from the towering ancient spires of the Lost City , to massive undersea canyons and huge fields of black smokers.
Through the epic journey viewers will discover how, across those 80 years, these seas have changed beyond recognition. The deep ocean is more powerful, yet more sensitive to change than we ever imagined and has the power to give life to the whole planet - or take it away.
It is 2004, and an 80-year-old, 45-ton bull sperm whale is found stranded on a beach in New Zealand . As the local people gather round to look at the body of the giant veteran exposed on the beach, it reveals the scars of a life spent in the most extreme environment on Earth, thousands of meters down in the ocean.
His story takes us back to 1929, when the bull is a two-year-old calf with his family, and through the 1940s, taking in spectacular landscapes of the deep ocean. Sperm whales dive over three kilometers down. Below the surface, the landscapes of the deep come vividly into life.
The first part of the whale's life is effectively an apprenticeship, learning the skills needed to survive in the harshest and most unforgiving habitats. He must train his body to cope with increasingly deep dives and with dangers, both natural and man-made.
We follow his family group as the whales fend off an attack from a pod of killer whales and as he comes face to face with animals that are the source of legend: a mysterious oarfish and the enormous Giant Squid.
It is 1959. Whalers have slaughtered his family pod and our bull whale is making a new life for himself. Now fully mature with a jaw full of powerful teeth, he is setting off on a journey that will take him into a whole new ocean, somewhere more fiery and majestic than anything he has encountered before. The Pacific.
Human presence in the ocean is becoming more noticeable every year and the ocean is changing in response. The whale encounters a long liner catching fish from the seabed - it's a free meal he and his new friends can't pass up, but he'll have to fight his old adversaries, the killer whales, to get his belly full. The whales are heading for the warm waters of the Galapagos, where the females live, but to get there they will swim past some of the most violent seabed on Earth, a chain of undersea volcanoes called the East Pacific Rise. Reaching the Galapagos, he battles a rival male to win the chance to sire his first calf in the Pacific.
However, the good times are sadly short-lived. Encountering a nuclear submarine off the coast of Hawaii , the whale gets caught up in a war game which nearly leaves him dead and, after finding a submarine canyon swept clean by a bottom trawler, the whale decides to head for the last sanctuary for his species - the Southern Ocean and Antarctica . There he encounters one of the most awesome, terrifying and mysterious creatures on Earth - the colossal squid. When the two meet in the icy depths of the Southern Ocean, it is the most dramatic confrontation in the whole of the animal kingdom.
2004. The bull is now 80-years-old. His body has given out. The humans that find him try their best to keep him alive, but it is hopeless. The whale has lived an incredible life and has helped ensure his kind will be swimming the world's oceans for many years to come.
Flashing forward into the future, we see the world flooded (global warming has taken its toll), but through the ruins of the human world, a pair of flukes and a stream of clicks reveals that the sperm whale has a whole new domain to rule.
Buy the BBC Ocean Odyssey DVD Now!
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