A Whiskey Wednesday What’s The Big Deal?

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A lot of people have wondered what in the world is the big deal about The Deadliest Catch. Last night, the lastest episode reminded me why I started watching this show in the first place.
I almost quit watching.
Me. The Deadliest Catch fanatic.
Last season was pretty awful by my standards. There was the Matt/Jake kerfuffle on The Northwestern. Then, the pissy little bitch that tattle taled to his Daddy about how the mean captain was making him work on The Early Dawn.
The Deadliest Catch was degenerating into another episode of “Rock Of Love” or something equally inane.
And then, Season Five kicked off and a little of the old magic caught me again. I watched, but cautiously.
Last night, the film crew put together some of the most powerful footage I’ve ever seen. Not the boats on the water, or the waves, or the pots flying in the air like trapeze artists.
The power footage of men relating an incredible story of survival, and grief, and fear, and all of it that makes fishing truly The Deadliest Catch. Before The Northwestern had its own rain gear and The Time Bandit wrote a book, men died at sea.
They still die at sea.
The cod fishing boat The Katmai went down with eleven hands. Four survived. Their fifteen hour ordeal was incredible and sad. The random hand of God that touched this man to live and that one to die was so sad and yet, so compelling. I had to watch. I cried. Men I didn’t even know made me care.
They don’t ask for pity. Those men were doing what they wanted to do. They were free, on the Ocean, a part of a tradition that has been there for centuries.
I think the most poignant moment was watching their home footage the crew of The Katmai had made. They commented that it was good to have moments like this because with the job they do, they could die. And they could play this video at the funeral. They all laughed, but if you know these men, you know that behind the laughter is the knowledge that their job is a tightwire and there’s no net. Men survive. Men die.
To the families left behind from those who died at sea on The Katmai, my heart aches for you.
To the men who survived, thank you. You shared a piece of something that few see.

UNDER the wide and starry sky
Dig the grave and let me lie:
Glad did I live and gladly die,
And I laid me down with a will.

This be the verse you ‘grave for me:
Here he lies where he long’d to be;
Home is the sailor, home from the sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.

(The Requiem by Robert Louis Stevenson)

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12 Comments

Filed under The Deadliest Catch, Whiskey Wednesday

12 responses to “A Whiskey Wednesday What’s The Big Deal?

  1. Kym

    I don’t have a tv but just your retelling teared me up. I know that if I ever have a chance your passion for the show will make it one of the shows I make time for.

  2. Jen

    It was an awesome episode, Kym.

  3. Shawna

    Your retelling brought tears to my eyes. Maybe I should should see if I have that channel.

  4. Jen

    The Deadliest Catch is one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. The film crew is brilliant and worth taking a look.
    If you want, Shawna, there’s a link in my side bar under FAVORITE SITES that should take you to the Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch site. There’s videos there and such.

  5. Thanks for the post. I too teared up watching last night’s episode. Too often we forget. I also thank the survivors for speaking. It must have been so hard for them, especially the captain. It hasn’t been that long since we lost the katmai, so the wounds must have been especially fresh when they were interviewed.

  6. Jen

    Exactly Lothian. It was amazing.

  7. I don’t get The Deadliest Catch on my TV, but I really want to watch it. My father can’t stop raving about it.

    I know it’s not in the same league, but this is why I love the show Ice Road Truckers.

    I don’t know how these men do it. They have my admiration. 🙂

  8. Jen

    I think Ice Road Truckers is a very similar thing Amy. I love that show too. LOL.

  9. Please don’t throw things at me, but for so many of us that live up here, we don’t watch the show for I guess the same reason so many do watch it – the DC crews sensationalize what to me should be private grief. Fishing is hard, and dangerous, and even with new regulations people still die. I love DC fans, because they share my enthusiasm for where I live – but I don’t watch the show. And I don’t really like that they gain Nielson ratings every time a boat sinks . . . . not sure this comment make sense, it’s past my bedtime! 🙂

  10. Jen

    You know, Steve, I can see your point. Like NASCAR drivers who sometimes comment that fans come only to see them crash, not race.
    The one thing I loved in Tuesday’s episode was Sig’s reaction. He didn’t talk about it. He seemed…angry that he was being asked. I think it IS private grief and I don’t want to see an episode featuring the families of these men who are lost at sea. That would seem invasive.
    But to listen to the survivors, to hear the risk, the decisions they have to make, the very heart of why they are the men they are is one of the most powerful things I’ve ever heard.
    I do think the film crew of The Deadliest Catch has managed a precarious balancing act of being respectful of the loss associated with fishing.

  11. Pingback: Thirteen Memorable T.V. Moments (To Me) « Redneck Romance Writer

  12. …Nice to see you back onboard the ‘catch’ , Jen. I do agree with someone else’s comment that perhaps it’s a rating’s number game with Discovery, but that’s the business they’re in right? As for the fishermen though, it’s all real–almost too real for alot of nonfishing peeps like us to take sometimes, I think. But if we didnt have a show like this to bring these ‘bering sea tragedies’ to us viewers, they would remain largely undocumented like they were for so many years and that too, is a tragedy–just ask any of those fishermen about that.

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