‘Beyond belief’ Submarine officer blasts BBC’s Vigil ‘inaccurate’ portrayal of Royal Navy

Vigil is 'inaccurate beyond belief' says submarine officer

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To get an insight into what life is really like on a submarine, This Morning’s Alice Beer joined officer Chris at the HMS Ocelot to go onboard. Alice was not impressed with how small and claustrophobic the submarine was with Chris explaining it was very different to the spacious vessel seen on Vigil.

Alice was shown the incredibly small bunks for the HMS Ocelot crew and exclaimed she couldn’t bear to be on board before asking about how accurate the BBC drama was.

In one episode, the Vigil crew go to periscope depth to see if they are being followed.

Commenting on the reality of going to periscope depth, Chris explained: “You’d do what we’d call a snort, which is a bit like snorkelling when you go snorkelling in a swimming pool

“It sucks air into the submarine, runs it through the diesels which you’re not going to see today and out through the exhausts.

“That’s the only real times we go to periscope depth unless for an operational reason.”

“It’s unbelievable, you’ve got to go up to get air, your rubbish gets compacted and weighed down and pushed out,” Alice continued.

“It’s just a completely different world, one that I couldn’t even contemplate.”

She went to get Chris’ opinion on the drama, asking: “I am loving the drama, are you watching it Chris?”

“Of course,” he replied, as Alice pushed: “Are you loving it?”

“It’s a drama isn’t it. It is so inaccurate it’s beyond belief,” Chris slammed.

“The only thing I would say is I don’t like the way they portray the submarine service who are highly professional, highly skilled and that doesn’t come across in the drama.

“That’s my only criticism.”

Alice went on to assure Chris she has “nothing but respect for anyone in our Armed Services” after watching Vigil.

It comes after lead director James Strong spoke about the challenges of filming the BBC drama.

He explained: “Vigil is different in a number of ways: it’s about a real thing, its premise is fascinating and one most people don’t really know anything about.

“Britain’s nuclear deterrent has been operational for over 50 years and yet is shrouded in secrecy, and so it is a mystery to the viewer – therefore it’s the perfect place to set a drama.

“It’s also a truly genuinely gripping mystery, populated by great characters, so in every way it’s simply unlike anything else on our screens right now.”

On the main achievements for the series, James continued: “With Vigil I wanted to create something different. To create a world you’ve never see on screen before and are fascinated to explore.

“I also wanted to deliver scale and spectacle along with authenticity and veracity. So it’s not just a gripping story, but always set in a credible world.”

Vigil airs Sunday on BBC One at 9pm while This Morning airs weekdays on ITV at 10am.

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