How well do you remember "The Pacific"?


By: John Miller

6 Min Quiz

Image: tmdb

About This Quiz

"Band of Brothers" followed the story of soldiers serving in the European War. In "The Pacific," we see the lives of men suffering through the bloody quagmire of the South Pacific theater. How much do you know about his acclaimed miniseries?

The miniseries is all about the lives of soldiers participating in which war?

In "The Pacific," audiences witness the lives of American soldiers struggling to survive during World War II. The South Pacific theater was a muddy, bloody, disease-riddled affair that caused countless casualties on both sides.


"The Pacific" is a 2010 miniseries. How many episodes are there?

There are 10 episodes in this miniseries, which details the grueling combat action that American soldiers faced in the South Pacific during World War II.


Actor James Badge Dale plays a private named Robert. But everyone calls Robert what?

Dale is Robert Leckie, a literate, thoughtful man swept into the abyss of the Pacific War. "Leckie" spends much of his time in the war zone completely disillusioned about combat.


The show mostly follows soldiers serving in which branch of the U.S. military?

The Marines shouldered much of the burden of liberating lands invaded by the Japanese during World War II. Their heroics (and suffering) are enshrined in the show's 10 episodes.


War productions take different approaches in sharing combat stories. In "The Pacific," how do audiences witness the storylines?

"The Pacific" picks three primary characters and tells stories. The characters are Leckie, John Basilone and Eugene Sledge.


Eugene Sledge is one of the main characters in the show. What's his nickname?

Sledge is known simply as "Sledgehammer." As men die all around him, Sledgehammer miraculously survives battle after battle.


True or False: The character John Basilone is based on a real-life person.

Basilone was indeed a hero in the Pacific War. He became a media sensation after he almost single-handedly staved off one Japanese assault using a heavy machine gun.


Basilone is badly burned during a battle in the second episode. What happens?

During a heavy Japanese assault, Basilone loses the hand mitt that he uses to tote his heavy (and blistering hot) machine gun. In desperation, he grabs the superheated gun by its barrel and runs, knowing full well that he's badly burned himself.


The development of this series was led by Bruce C. McKenna, who was a co-producer. What other job did he have?

McKenna was both producer and writer. He was also one of the primary writers for "Band of Brothers."


At the beginning of the series, the Marines take part in which battle?

The series opens with the men shipping off to take part in the Battle of Guadalcanal. It shows portions of the Battle of Savo and the Battle of the Tenaru.


In the second episode, John Basilone and fellow Marines are at Guadalcanal. They are defending which area?

Basilone and the other Marines are told to defend a critical airstrip, called Henderson Field. In the face of withering fire, he helps repel one Japanese raid after another and winds up winning the Medal of Honor for his valor.


After he wins the Medal of Honor, Basilone is sent back to the United States. Why?

Military officials decide to parade Basilone, now a Medal of Honor celebrity, around the States in hopes of selling more war bonds. Basilone reluctantly returns home.


In the third episode, Leckie travels to Australia. What happens to him there?

The Marines are sent to Australia, and Leckie takes some time to rest in Melbourne. There, he falls in love with a local girl named Stella, and he practically becomes part of the family.


Leckie is practically a member of Stella's family in Australia. Why does she end their relationship?

Stella's mother has already lost a son to the war. Stella doesn't want her to get too attached to Leckie and then suffer the pain of yet another war death -- so she breaks off the relationship.


Actor Scott Gibson has a significant role in this production. He plays which character?

Gibson plays the part of an officer named Andrew Haldane. Haldane earns the respect of every man around him, but his life comes to an untimely end.


Andrew Haldane was a real-life officer in the Marines. How did he die?

In 1944, Haldane was scouting Japanese positions near Hill 140 on Peleliu when he was shot by a sniper. He was -- and still is -- considered one of the most legendary Marines of all time.


What was Andrew Haldane's nickname?

Haldane had the unforgettable nickname of "Ack Ack," which is slang for anti-aircraft fire. He was just 27 years old when he died in real life.


Rami Malek plays a Marine nicknamed "Snafu." What's he like?

Snafu is more than a little crazy, in large part due to the chaos and ugliness of Pacific battles. At one point, he mutilates a corpse to get gold teeth.


During one show, Leckie suffers from nocturnal enuresis, which is what?

Leckie is traumatized by combat and suffers from nocturnal enuresis, or bedwetting. Like many soldiers on the front lines, he was consumed by terror, which had visible effects on his body's functioning.


True or False: "The Pacific" is the most expensive TV show in history.

The show's budget was projected at around $100 million -- but it wound up costing twice as much. It's the most expensive TV show in history. "Band of Brothers" held the previous record. Its budget was $125 million.


What role did famous actor Tom Hanks have in the making of "The Pacific"?

Hanks was one of several producers who worked on the show. He and famed director Steven Spielberg were two of the driving forces behind "The Pacific" and the earlier "Band of Brothers" miniseries, too.


Once the war ends, Sledgehammer returns home. How does he deal with normal life?

Sledge's mind is damaged by the war. He returns home but has a very difficult time readjusting to normal civilian life.


True or False: In the show, Basilone wins the Medal of Honor, returns home, is married for just a short while, and then returns to combat. This also happened in real life.

Following his war bonds tour, Basilone met and married a woman named Lena. They'd only been married for a few months when Basilone returned to violent combat in the Pacific.


In the show, Basilone dies during combat. In real life, he actually lived.

Basilone died in the show and also in real life. He won the Medal of Honor, went home and then insisted on returning to the Pacific … where he died in combat.


This was the priciest TV show in history. How did critics respond to "The Pacific"?

Almost all professional critics gave high marks to "The Pacific." It was expertly produced and undoubtedly benefited from the fact that many of the creators had previously worked on "Band of Brothers."


"The Pacific" got better TV ratings than "Band of Brothers."

"The Pacific" was nowhere nearly as popular as "Band of Brothers," which is still regarded as one of the best TV shows ever. "The Pacific," on the other hand, struggled to reach even three million viewers per episode.


In Episode 9, called "Okinawa," the men receive what news?

The ninth episode takes place in 1945, as U.S. forces close in on the Japanese homeland. The men on Okinawa learn that America has dropped huge newfangled bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The war is nearly over.


After the war, what happens to Leckie?

Leckie bounces back after the war and his failed relationship with Stella. He finds love with an old neighborhood acquaintance, Vera, and love blossoms anew.


The show highlights the experiences of three Marines. How many of those Marines survived the war in real life?

Of the three Marines featured during the show, two (Leckie and Sledgehammer) managed to survive. Basilone, the Medal of Honor recipient, was the lone fatality.


"The Pacific" was released in 2010. It was created for which cable TV channel?

HBO produced "The Pacific," along with DreamWorks and Playtone. "The Pacific" follows in the footsteps of another audacious war miniseries, "Band of Brothers," which was also created by HBO.


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