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Matthew J. Webster – Writer

Wicked Tuna Breakdown – S1/E6

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The reel-fishing New Englanders of reality TV are affronted by some “snotty” (foul) weather in Episode Six, which makes it the first time viewers see the truly punishing conditions North Atlantic fishermen work under.

Captain Dave Marciano of the Hard Merchandise balances the prospect of rain, twenty-foot-high seas and winds of thirty miles an hour with the upcoming end of the commercial tuna season, and decides to fish while he can. He and first mate Jason Muenzner proceed to Stellwagen Bank, north of Cape Cod, where they hook a five-hundred-pound fighter that drags the boat two miles from its anchor and takes them an hour to get onboard, Hemingway style.

Triumph flirts with tragedy when the boat’s engine dies and Marciano can’t raise help on the radio, but finally he gets it to turn over and steams his slob home safely.

“When that wind comes up and that ocean gets big, it’s a violent place to be,” says Capt. Dave Carraro of the, while his first mate, Paul Hebert, heaves modestly in a corner. Carraro does come home with a fish for his trouble, as does F/V Odysea skipper Ralph Wilkins. Each skipper points out at the beginning of the episode that tuna feed more aggressively in rough weather. Every storm at sea requires a cost-benefit analysis where the benefit is a paycheck and the cost of foolishness could be life-threatening.


“If you brave the elements long enough and you fish hard enough, it pays off in the end.” – Pirate, first mate of the F/V Odysea

Written by webster71

May 7, 2012 at 18:15

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