Watch Carrier

  • 2008
  • 1 Season
  • 8.4  (629)

Carrier is a documentary television series that premiered on PBS in 2008. Chronicling the daily lives of the crew of the USS Nimitz, the show explores the challenges and triumphs faced by sailors living and working on the largest aircraft carrier in the world. Over the course of ten episodes, viewers are given an inside look at virtually every aspect of life on board, from the daily duties of sailors and officers to the complexities of military operations and the emotional tolls of life at sea.

The show’s main protagonists include Chris Altice, a 19-year-old aviation maintenance technician from West Virginia; Randy Brock, a seasoned veteran with over 20 years of naval service; and Kevin McLaughlin, a chaplain tasked with providing emotional and spiritual support to sailors in need. In addition to these main characters, the series features interviews with a range of other sailors and officers, giving viewers a sense of the diverse personalities and experiences that make up life on board an aircraft carrier.

One of the central themes of the show is the intense workload and constant pressure faced by the ship’s crew as they perform their various duties. From the tension of launch and recovery operations on the ship’s flight deck to the long hours of maintenance and repair work required to keep the ship running smoothly, the sailors’ work is shown to be physically demanding and mentally exhausting. However, the show also highlights the sense of pride and purpose that many sailors feel in their work, as well as the camaraderie that develops between crew members who rely on each other for support and assistance.

Another major focus of the series is the impact that extended time at sea can have on sailors’ personal lives and relationships. The show examines the ways in which sailors try to stay connected with loved ones back home, with some resorting to creative methods such as recording video messages or using satellite phones to call home. The difficulties of maintaining relationships in the face of long deployments and unpredictable schedules are also explored, with some sailors sharing stories of marriages and friendships that have been strained or broken by the demands of naval service.

Beyond these personal struggles, the show also delves into some of the geopolitical issues that can arise during naval deployments. In one episode, for example, the USS Nimitz is deployed to the Persian Gulf just as Iran is conducting a series of military exercises, leading to tense encounters between American and Iranian ships. The show offers a nuanced portrayal of the complex political and military realities faced by the crew, while also highlighting the humanity and personal perspectives of the sailors themselves.

Overall, Carrier offers an immersive and compelling look at life on board an aircraft carrier, covering a wide range of topics from the mundane to the life-changing. Whether viewers are interested in the intricacies of naval operations, the challenges of military life, or the personal stories of the sailors who serve, the show provides a valuable and engaging glimpse into an often-overlooked aspect of American military culture.

Carrier is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (10 episodes). The series first aired on April 27, 2008.

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Full Circle
10. Full Circle
May 1, 2008
The journey home, and the reunions at the pier.
Get Home-itis
9. Get Home-itis
May 1, 2008
A six-month absence places a heavy burden on relationships.
True Believers
8. True Believers
April 30, 2008
This episode explores the many expressions of faith on board the USS Nimitz.
Rites of Passage
7. Rites of Passage
April 30, 2008
The last day in the Gulf before the Nimitz heads home.
Groundhog Day
6. Groundhog Day
April 29, 2008
After two months in the Gulf, one day starts to become indistinguishable from the next.
Show of Force
5. Show of Force
April 29, 2008
The USS Nimitz has neared it's deployment at sea as the Navy holds seminars to help the sailors adjust to civilian life after 6 months of duty. Family members are allowed on board for the final leg of the cruise in what is called "Tiger Cruise." The sailors reflect on their experiences at sea during their tour of duty.
Squared Away
4. Squared Away
April 28, 2008
The pilots have made their return from the last days in the Persian Gulf without dropping their bombs. A formal ceremony takes place aboard the Nimitz as the crew celebrates the crossing of the equator. The ship is rocked by a storm while crossing the South Indian Ocean. Also, a look at the religious practices among the crew while aboard the ship, which ranges from the tradition religions to Wicca.
Super Secrets
3. Super Secrets
April 28, 2008
Many aspects of life on a nuclear aircraft carrier are hush-hush.
2. Controlled.Chaos
April 28, 2008
The exploration of the secret itinerary and location of the USS Nimitz, shows the classified side of the ship. Included is the relationship policy among the male and female crew members who have a relationship aboard the ship known as "don't ask, don't tell." Also, a look at troubles that can arise between officers and subordinates, and the relief of tension from going on port call.
All Hands
1. All Hands
April 27, 2008
The USS Nimitz leaves port tonight headed for the Persian Gulf. The sailors say goodbye to their families and friends and begin their long journey to the War Zone. Also, a look at the communities onboard, including those who give the signals to launch the aircraft, known as "shooters," "ordance personnel known as "ordies," and the pilots of the F/A-18 Hornet, who fly along with the Black Aces, Hoboes and the Marines' Red Devils.
Where to Watch Carrier
Carrier is available for streaming on the PBS website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Carrier on demand at Amazon Prime, Amazon and Apple TV.
  • Premiere Date
    April 27, 2008
  • IMDB Rating
    8.4  (629)