Gilligan’s Island – Why Did They Stay So Long?

Gilligan’s Island premiered on September 26, 1964, lasting three seasons through September 4, 1967. Basically, it started with our seven castaways on a three hour boat tour around Hawaii. A freak storm shipwrecked them on a deserted island. In 98 episodes, they all got along pretty well, a shining example of how we could all live harmoniously together, if we really gave the effort.

Some say that these seven people represented the seven deadly sins. Others say that they represent the seven continents. Others think that these seven were chosen purely for the (pre-PC) demographics.

A typical episode consisted of:
1. A chance to get off the island.
2. Gilligan inadvertently ruins that chance.
3. They forgive Gilligan.
4. 50/50 chance they were better off staying on the island.

There are several theories as to why the castaways were on the island for such a long time. The Pop Culture Madness Staff has painstakingly researched the many theories, and have come up with the following possible most likely scenarios.

Gilligan – Although it seemed that a storm genuinely knocked the boat uncontrollably off course, some investigators aren’t so sure that Gilligan didn’t want to just stay on the island. He was often seen lounging around, often leisurely fishing or just listening to rock music on the radio. He had two beautiful girls doing his cooking and cleaning, and had no real responsibility to speak of. Living that life of luxury, is it any wonder that he often “goofed up” any attempt at rescue?

Mister Howell (Thurston Howell III) – This millionaire Harvard graduate brought enough in money and changes of clothes for far longer than a “three hour tour.” Some have theorized that this wily man was actually dating a certain famous actress, and it was more than coincidence that movie star Ginger Grant, along with his trusting, loving wife, went along on his little “escape”. The Howells and Ginger “happened” to bring much more with them than any of the other passengers. Had he somehow arranged for an “experienced” crew, two beautiful women, and with one of the world’s smartest men to end up on this “deserted” isle, well prepared for a long stay?

The Professor (Roy Hinkley) – One of the world’s most educated men, some point to the fact that he had may have had a wife, and three “very lovely girls” at home. Without even getting into why he went on this cruise without his family, there are many unanswered questions. His claim that he was doing research for his upcoming book “Fun With Ferns” doesn’t make any sense at all, if he was truly expecting a three hour boat tour.

How did he keep his shirt so white on that island? It just doesn’t seem right.

We suppose it was just a happy coincidence that he brought so many books with him, but did he really need them? His known education included a B.A. from USC, a B.S. from UCLA, an M.A. from SM, and his Ph. D. from TCU. Professor Hinkley was clearly capable of building a boat to bring the castaways home. Some have suggested that he had a somewhat reasonable chance to “score” with Mary Ann or Ginger, but his actions never indicated any such interest. Something kept him on the island, afraid or unable to get back to civilization.

Mary Ann Summers – This young lady from Kansas was seemingly the most down-to-earth and likable person on the island. Poll after poll of male viewers preferred the company of Mary Ann over Ginger by a 4 to 1 margin. Along with the professor, she was an solo unlikely tourist. More than one investigator has indicated a belief that she was having an affair with the (married?) professor.

Ginger Grant – Ginger was seemingly starved for constant attention, like most actors. Our investigations indicated that there are only two undeniable facts about this movie star: 1. She was doing research for an upcoming Broadway show, as Cleopatra in “Pyramid for Two”. 2. She played her “sex kitten” role to get whatever she wanted while on the island. Rumors persist about a long term, pre-shipwreck affair with Thurston Howell.

Lovey Howell – The aristocratic Lovey Wentworth Howell was naive enough to believe that nothing was going between her husband and Ginger Grant, yet was generally aware of what was going on in her surroundings, especially what one should wear for the surprisingly many events that went on in the deserted island. She was often the liaison between the castaways and island intruders, and saved the seven on more than one occasion. Out of everyone, she had the least reason to go ‘isle.’

The Skipper (Captain Jonas Grumby) – Many believe he knew more than he let on. I and others have noted that he often would look right in our direction, straight through the fourth wall, right before hitting his “little buddy” Gilligan in the head with his cap. You would almost think that he knew we were there, watching him.

Every indication is that his intentions were never less than honorable on the island. Easily the most powerful of the bunch, he seemed to have a deep-rooted guilt over the group being shipwrecked, although it clearly was the fault of the weather reporting station, which had played the previous day’s forecast, calling for clear, calm seas.

Most of the evidence seems to point to Mr. Howell for getting them all stuck on the island, and at Gilligan for keeping them there.
What do you think?