Tonight is the night! I can’t wait. I watched the Season 7 recap special last week, but that was nothing special. Tonight, though, yay!
Down to $29.99…oooh, and if I order it within 48hrs, I get another 15% off since I entered a contest, which brings the total (with shipping!) to less than what I would have paid if bought it without the discount. Nice! I get paid this week from this last job, I think I know someone who could end up with an early holiday gift.
Here’s to getting paid this week, eh? I need a Deadliest Catch fix in the worst way.
Season 6 of Deadliest Catch w/After The Catch bonus is coming out on DVD. They’re taking pre-orders right now. Dare I? I know I want it. I know I’ll get it at some point. But part of me wants it NOW and/or as soon as humanly possible since I missed out on so much this season by not having cable.
Another part of me says getting a bed is a higher priority and blah blah blah.
Not that either will happen in the immediate future.
Something to ponder this week.
Finally found the latest episode of Deadliest Catch online and it was devastating to watch. LD chose not to watch so he quietly sat near me and held my hand whenever I started to cry. And I did cry.
As a parent, as a child, I totally got where both Jake and Phil were coming from, but it didn’t help knowing somehow that Jake had just said goodbye to his father face to face for the last time and that Phil was giving him his blessing to learn how to live life sober and without a father.
While I’m sure that much of the editing this season was done to emphasize Phil’s ultimate fate, the simple fact is that he gave voice to the knowledge that time was running out and somehow he felt it. It weighed on him. And all the pressure on the boys was for their sake as well as his. His desire to see his sons succeed seemed to be at the forefront of his mind.
Then Josh getting the call that he needed to return to the hospital because Phil had an “event”…just as he was returning with his dad’s lucky necklace…too much. But the clincher was Josh calling Jake to tell him their dad was gone.
Every time I think I’m done shedding tears, something strikes me again in a new way and I’m back at it. LD’s never far away and offers me a smile or a hug. He’s decided he’ll watch the whole season at once on DVD. I get that. By then, he hopes Phil’s death will be less shocking.
Don’t even start me on the Johnny Cash. I’ll lose it again.
Seems the theme this week was brother against brother. Jake and Josh Harris are cracking under the strain of watching their father, Captain Phil, fight for his life.
Back out on the vast Bering Sea, Sig and Edgar Hansen are struggling to figure out what their respective futures will be — will Sig keep his deck boss or will Edgar opt out, train someone to take his place, and retire so he can heal and spend time with his family? The jury’s still out.
Normally, it’s about this time in the season when we see Monte and Keith on the Wizard going after each other, isn’t it? But so far the only drama there is Keith’s inability to quit a 20+ year chew tobacco habit. Thank goodness he has his daughter, Sienna, who happens to call right after he grabs a pinch. The calendar Bug made for him (and how cute is that nickname?) shows he’s not been very successful in fighting the urge to kick the habit. Stressful job equals dirty habits-that’s what happens when you play a game of blackjack with your life as collateral. The other problem Keith has faced is the ice pack. Stressful job equals dirty habits. The other problem Keith has faced is the ice pack. This is the first time during opie season we’ve heard about the pack, but we know how fraught with danger it can be from previous years. Thankfully, the Wizard’s gear is out in open water and the hauling of pots begins.
On the Northwestern, Sig and Edgar are still trying to find balance. Edgar’s in pain. Sig’s actually made a concerted effort to ease up on the crew. And Jake Anderson continues to worry about his missing father.
Wild Bill and his crew on the Kodiak are finally on the crab, hauling in pots in the 5-6-700 range. Until, that is, they reach a bunch that haven’t been properly tied shut, leaving the crab an easy exit. Bill radios in and tries to line up a replacement for one of the crew. I think we can all guess that it’s Clinton Bush who’s about to be cut.
On the Time Bandit, Andy does his best to keep his head in the game. He’s worried about Phil. However, he has a more immediate problem: “Strong currents are dragging down the trailer buoy, making what seems like an easy hook toss a whole lot tricker.” Mike Fourtner, captain-in-training, can’t snag the buoy and it’s causing some amount of amusement and frustration with the rest of the crew. If Mike’s going to command the Time Bandit, he’ll have to redeem himself in eyes of the crew.
Back in Anchorage, doctors review the progress Phil Harris is making after the 12-hour surgery needed to help him survive his stroke, which the doctors say most people don’t survive. His scans reveal serious calcium deposits in the brain, indicating that this has been building for a very long time. Part of Phil’s skull is removed to relieve the pressure in his brain. As tubes are gradually removed and support gently decreased, Phil is able to begin interacting and talking with his sons. Demanding ice chips the nurse has said he can’t have for another hour (until the doctor for his throat comes in to see him), Phil continues to hound his boys. Josh tells his dad that he’s not the captain of this boat — he’s just a deckhand. Even with his head shaved, Phil looks pretty good and there’s a twinkle in his eyes.
Sadly, this progress is exactly what causes everyone around him to start losing it, which is often very common with serious illness and unpredictable futures. Loved ones feel a little relief and all the tension, all the worry begin to take them down. John Hillstrand breaks down crying after letting Phil know he’s loved and cared for (and this is what caused me to start crying, too). Josh Harris is feeling even more pressure to keep everything together — the boat, his brother, all the details that need to be overseen. He gets into it with brother Jake, who is, apparently, sitting back at the hotel getting wasted. At one point, John stands on the other side of the door, a sort of witness to the collapse of Phil’s sons.
Next week is the tribute to Captain Phil Harris. Get out your tissues and settle in for an emotional evening.
As I suspected, I cried during this week’s episode of Deadliest Catch. Captain Phil Harris was sent off to Anchorage following his stroke, accompanied by his son Jake while his other son Josh tried to figure the best course of action for himself, for the boat, and for the crew of the Cornelia Marie.
Elsewhere, the Time Bandit got captain-in-training Mike Fourtner’s feet wet as he set his first string of pots. The yield was poor, but the initial test was done.
On the Kodiak, Wild Bill made his deadline for his first offload, but his crew disappointed him by failing to show up in time for curfew.
The Northwestern was on the crab, pleasing Sig. However, Jake Anderson’s mind was on his missing father. When a bridle snapped and a pot went smashing against the side of the boat, Jake was the only one to grab the line and throw it back into the coiler, which upsets Sig. Risky move. Still, Edgar and Sig are keeping an eye on him and it’s apparent that they’re concerned beyond the safety issue.
Josh Harris makes the call to Andy Hillstrand and informs him of Phil’s stroke. Andy calls John and suggests he get to the hospital in Anchorage. The call then goes out to Sig, who is becomes angry and then concerned. Keith on the Wizard is notified and he says a prayer, asking The Big Guy to give Phil a break. Keith then turns out the wheelhouse light for some time to himself. Later, Andy and Sig both call their crews in and give them the news. Jake Anderson understands the fear the Harris boys are experiencing and is visibly upset because he’s always appreciated Phil’s support and encouragement.
Cut to Josh in a plane. After a talk with fellow crewman Freddie Maughtai, who encouraged him to go be with his dad “just in case”, Josh headed to Anchorage, where he’s met by Johnathan Hillstrand. John reminds Josh that millions are praying for Phil and that he’s in good hands. The Harris brothers are reunited and lean on each other for support.
The next couple episodes will focus on Phil and his battle. The Cornelia Marie website will continue to provide information regarding the Harris family and the Cornelia Marie.
The episode ends with the very emotional “Rain” by Jon Heintz, as it did last season when Jake Anderson left upon discovering his sister had died.
Just finished watching episode 11 and it’s…yeah.
On the Time Bandit, John and Andy discussed retirement and who would take over the boat. John’s son Scotty is heir apparent, but hasn’t yet proved to his dad or his uncles that he’s serious about taking over. Deckhand J.J. is too old, according to the elder Hillstrands, and that leaves Mike Fourtner. Fourtner accepts the challenge.
Captain Keith, over on the Wizard, battles his nicotine addiction. Instead of smoking, it’s chew. A call to his daughter puts him back on track and he’s back to chewing gum.
Sig Hansen and Nick Mavar struggle with whether or not to tell Jake Anderson his missing father’s truck was found. In the end, Sig calls Jake to the wheelhouse and has him call his mom. The news is best coming from her.
On the Cornelia Marie, Phil’s realization that his son is an addict hits home. The harsh words uttered at the end of the last episode are followed by Jake’s promise to get treatment and Phil says he’ll go to meetings with him. The crabbing is good, but Phil decides to head back to St. Paul. On the way back, he looks through old photos with his sons. Unfortunately, once back in port, during the offload, Phil collapses. The crew scramble to get him stabilized and help the paramedics get him to the deck and into the ambulance. Once again, I was struck by Josh’s calm, cool demeanor and his ability to stay focused, always thinking of the next step. The episode ends with Josh and Phil in the ambulance, racing toward what we know is inevitable.
Tears flowed freely here as I knew they would. It’s a combination of sadness for the Harris family and friends, for the scared little girl inside of me knowing this day will eventually come for my own parents, and for my dear friend who died four years ago. I honestly don’t know if I can watch the next couple episodes.
Each episode gets us closer to the inevitable: the stroke suffered by Capt. Phil Harris and his eventual death. This week we begin that descent and it’s difficult to watch. The great crab fishing is offset by tension between Phil and his son Jake, which sits heavy on the heart. Last week, we saw Phil explaining fishing the Rock Pile to his other son Josh. To make matters worse, when the Cornelia Marie’s captain’s back pain becomes worse, when he’s feeling as if he’s going to pass out (one of the warning signs of stroke)…Phil discovers one of his sons taking his pain meds and learns the problem runs far deeper than just a few pills. Suddenly, the enormity of what’s about to come down on this family becomes tenfold.
Over on the Northwestern, Jake Anderson is struggling with the news that his father has gone missing and has remained missing. What Sig doesn’t tell him is that his father’s truck was found but there were no signs of Jake’s dad.
The episode started with the rescue of a fisherman who was having a heart attack on another boat. That was the good news. For the rest of the hour, things only got bleaker as I mentioned only a few sentences ago.
Deadliest Catch has never been short on drama. Death has always been a possibility. But it’s heartbreaking to watch the snowball grow and pick up speed.
I was hoping to find After The Catch online somewhere, but I’ve yet to locate the first episode (finding this week’s episode of DC was difficult as well). Apparently the brief mention of Phil and some footage of Johnathan Hillstrand and Phil riding their motorcycles together was all it took to send Johnathan away from the table with tears in his eyes. It’s a brotherhood; one that grows smaller each year with fewer boats fishing, the loss of lives, and to watch as it happens is heart wrenching.
I don’t know if I can watch next week. I just don’t. As a nurse, I dealt with death all the time. I lost patients who meant the world to me. I was with them night after night, watching their recovery and their decline. I sat with families and held hands. I listened to stories. Yes, it got to me. Yes, I often went home and cried because most of my patients had extended hospital stays and we became very close. It was difficult to say goodbye. But I did it. For some reason, right now, watching this happen to someone who has always been so vital and vibrant…it becomes too much. It hits too close to home. Phil always sort of reminded me of my dad. And I just can’t quite go there in my head or heart these days, even though I know that time will come for my family sooner than we’d like. So, yeah…I’m not sure if I can do this and it makes me feel very strange. I know, however, that the discomfort I feel is nothing compared to the grief the Harris family and their friends have experienced.
For my friends who are also fans of the show, are you able to watch? And did you manage to TiVO After The Catch for me?
The hunt for opies is on! Last week, everyone battled ice and dumped their crab pots just to stay afloat. Some boats met with success, others didn’t. But we’ll get to that in a moment.
The Northwestern fell short of their fishing grounds by about 80 miles. The Cornelia Marie had to throw pots 160 miles away from their target. They were “making ice like a son of a bitch”. Self-preservation dictates dropping gear where you can. The problem with this tactic, though, is that the ice adds an unwanted buoyancy that cause the pots to land upside down, which allows the crab easy entry, a chance to eat the bait, and then an easy exit.
Amongst other health concerns, Captain Phil’s been working with three crushed discs in his back. 175 more pots to go. Three days at the wheel, dropping gear and then starting to pull it back in.
On the Kodiak, Wild Bill reached his preferred grounds and he’s pulling crab, but there’s a struggle with the count and with his greenhorn. Listening in from the wheelhouse, it’s apparent that Clinton’s attitude is poisoning the crew. Calling deck boss Adam in for a quick talk, Bill makes it known that he’ll be looking for a replacement in St. Paul.
Capt. Keith over on the Wizard is steaming toward his first opie string of the season. He set prospect pots on choice ground, north of the rest of the fleet. Greenhorn Paul was brought on board by Keith in the hopes that he’ll be the one to stick around. Six greenhorns in six years. The odds aren’t in Paul’s favor. They met when Paul served as a mountain guide for Keith in the off-season. Hopes are high, but only time will tell if the rugged outdoorsman is of the right stock for the vast Bering Sea. Average crab count is in the 200s. Art Peterson manages to avoid disaster on deck while hauling in a pot.
The Time Bandit heads to the reef on St. George, also known as the Washing Machine. North winds, north seas, in the trough, etc. Captain Andy dumped pots without bait just to stabilize the boat. The deckhands are busy while greenhorn Jeremy Shelton struggles to keep anything down. Seasickness has hit hard. Jeremy, Scott Hillstrand’s friend, wants to prove his worth and does his best to help out. He’s not doing all that well at the moment, though. The best advice anyone could give was “eat something, barf it up, eat some more, barf it up…you’re not gonna to puke it all up”. I don’t think the rogue wave helped any.
I find it curious that such a big deal is made of the seasickness when many of the seasoned crews still fight it as they head out to sea. It’s actually been mentioned on After the Catch and on the Discovery website that seasoned veterans often spend the first few days heading out with some serious communing with nature.
Northwestern Capt. Sig approaches his first string that’s been soaking 24 hours. Edgar’s bad back is slowing him down. First pot yields bairdi and small opies. Boats incur huge fines if they catch and keep the wrong species. Heavy crab sort slows everyone down. Edgar’s back isn’t helping… and now Sig feels the crew is taking advantage of the situation, taking too long to sort, bait, and set the pots again. The only thing to do to break the crew of their “habit-forming” pace is to jam gear down their throats. In the rush, Jake Anderson cuts himself with his cod knife. A quick patch job is all that was needed to get him back on deck, but Edgar, well that’s another story. All the delays are leaving Sig pissed, but determined, to get back to the grind.
With the Cornelia Marie, Phil’s back is acting up so Josh takes wheel watch. Phil spent three days at the wheel, and his reward is nada. Time to stack gear and move to the Rock Pile to try their luck there.
For Wild Bill and the Kodiak…13 hours of hauling gear is taking its toll. The last pot of the set has Bill questioning the crew once again since the numbers are not adding up, and there’s just no groove for the crew. Clinton’s days are most definitely numbered.
Wizard, more ice, more work, more searching for crab. Greenhorn is growing weary and Keith mentions that 33 year old greenhorns — anyone over 30 — odds aren’t good. Six greenhorns in six years, and the Wizard’s track record with newbies ain’t too good. Keith takes Paul off the bait and puts him on the rail to give him a break. It almost results in disaster, but he manages to escape being pulled over the rail.
The Time Bandit pulls its first pot and it’s bairdi. Andy needs to find some opilio fast. Jeremy is still ailing. Crew has to dump tote after tote down the chute. Andy gives Jeremy 50-50 odds on making it. “It’s all mental now.” Scott’s trying to cheer him on.
Interesting point to note: opilio and bairdi compete for territory, so if bairdi are plentiful, opies are light. Time to move on.
That’s it for this week. In the meantime, please stop by the Cornelia Marie site and read about a visit some of the captains made to the Naval Medical Center while they were in San Diego filiming After the Catch last year. Thanks, Morgan, for keeping us in the loop!
I just finished watching four episodes and am now caught up. We saw the end of king crab season and jumped into opilio with an ass kicking storm. Major foreshadowing with the intro as the cameras caught some footage in the graveyard.
This season of Deadliest Catch has not been an easy one to watch. Each week that goes by, it’s another episode closer to the final episode with Phil Harris. But it’s not just that. It seems the weather has battered everyone. Tempers flare, fishing hasn’t been consistent, some have had a great deal of turnover in the crew area.
If you haven’t watched any of Season 6 so far, leave me a comment and I’ll catch you up.
In the meantime, for everyone who has been watching, what do you think we’ll see next week? The ice is bad — worse than we’ve seen for the beginning of opie season in a long time. Some of the crews are green. The seas are rough. It seems inevitable that there will be a few close calls. The only question becomes who approaches the danger zone first?
A brief overview of the season premiere. I managed to get hold of a copy of the opening episode of Deadliest Catch season six and the lump in my throat isn’t eased at all when I see the opening graphic: “This season is dedicated to all the souls sacrificed to the sea.”
We know what happens to Captain Phil Harris, but here he is on the screen… “if you want to be stressed out, if you want to be cranky, hungry, and tired, run a crab boat. The funny part about it is I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
And there’s Captain Keith Colburn talking about being attacked. The Hillstrand Brothers are angry. The Harris Boys’ voices fade in with “we’re just give you oxygen here. They gotta check your pulse, Dad. Don’t worry, it’s gonna be okay…” Laughter is mixed in, as are past seasons’ arguments. The Coast Guard is there rescuing people from the water. Sig doesn’t have a good feeling about the King crab season.
That’s just the first few opening moments.
The skirmish between Keith and Johnathan is all about a bar conversation Keith had with one of Johnathan’s deckhands. Keith is pushed down. The other captains intervene and everyone disperses. But that’s not the only kerfuffle amongst fishermen. Seems the Harris Boys are fighting again over who’s the boss and what that means.
Phil approaches Sig and it’s decided that they’ll trade Jakes. Jake Anderson heads over to the Cornelia Marie and Jake Harris heads over to the Northwestern. It’s time. Everyone’s in need of a change.
Cut to the quick and dirty, the new boat, the Kodiak, is helmed by the Hillstrand’s friend Wild Bill. And there’s another boat out there, a cod fisher named the Carly Renee, gets into trouble. It capsizes and crab boat Guardian is on scene for the rescue. Thanks to video on a cell phone, there’s coverage of the event.
The season is off to a rough start and it looks, by all accounts, to be tough all the way around. Forget the initial calm waters (in the ocean…not between friends), it’s not going to be pretty.
Tuesdays are going to back to nailbiting night. I’ll have to start wearing protective gloves. I’ll probably start poppin’ Rolaids, too.
That said, the episode ends with the Cornelia Marie is at the top of the leader board for catch. Small consolation.
Part of me watches — with a heavy heart — because we know that it’s Phil’s last King season. Part of me will watch to see a man do the job he loves as long as he possibly can. And we can’t forget the rest of the fleet. I watch because of them, too. Sadly, no matter what, we know where this will eventually lead. I can only pray that no other lives are lost, but it’s already a done deal.
Will you be watching this season? If so, stop by and share your thoughts.
Mike Rowe, host of Dirty Jobs and narrator for Deadliest Catch, wrote some mighty potent words about Captain Phil Harris. He absolutely nailed the reason DC is one of the world’s most popular shows, why millions of fans have taken Phil’s death so personally:
I guess it comes down to this. The world is desperate for authenticity. In business and in real life. In work and play. We crave it I think, because it’s in such short supply. Consequently, when we see it, we’ll wait for it. We’ll watch it on TV. We’ll stand in line for a chance to be near it. Fans, fishermen, CEOs – we know authenticity when we see it, even if we’re not looking for it. And Phil Harris had it in spades.
I didn’t know Phil well enough to properly eulogize him. However, I knew him enough to like him, and more than enough to miss him. He was the real deal. Flawed, human, decent, kind, and totally authentic.
And one hell of a Captain.
While Little Dude was here, we talked about Phil, DC, and why and how the death hit us like a Chuck Norris roundhouse kick to the gut. Phil was one of the good guys.
We may have only been shown a small part of Phil Harris on TV, but the fact remains that the bit we saw, we liked and we invited him (and everyone else from DC) into our homes each week, hoping some of that authenticity and spiritedness would somehow rub off on us and our children, rough edges and all. Like cowboys in the Old West, the crab fishermen ride wild waves, get thrashed about, endure brutal conditions, showing us and our children that hard work does bring its own rewards and we shouldn’t and can’t run from it, from life, or from death.
We never want to have to say goodbye, do we? Thankfully, Mike Rowe has said it beautifully for us.
In the last ten days, there’s been a song running through my head. Phil, this one’s for you. May your ride be a good one.
Deadliest Catch will never be the same. Special condolences go out to Josh and Jake, the crew, and their friends.
Phil, may God greet you with a hot cuppa Joe, a carton of smokes, and some chocolate.
Statement from Discovery – Discovery mourns the loss of dear friend and colleague Captain Phil Harris. He was more than someone on our television screen. Phil was a devoted father and loyal friend to all who knew him. We will miss his straightforward honesty, wicked sense of humor and enormous heart. We share our tremendous sadness over this loss with the millions of viewers who followed Phil’s every move. We send our thoughts and prayers to Phil’s sons Josh and Jake and the Cornelia Marie crew.
Capt. Phil moments just in case you want to hear that voice again.
We will miss you, Phil.
Just got an email from Discovery Channel:
Health Update: Captain Phil Harris
As many of you may already know, Phil Harris suffered a stroke while in port off-loading from the F/V Cornelia Marie. He has been transported to a medical facility and is receiving the best care possible. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and we will make more information available as we know it.
Josh and Jake Harris thank everyone for their heartfelt thought and prayers. The Deadliest Catch community has always been more like family than just fans, and Discovery Channel joins the Harris boys in thanking everyone for their wishes of support. Captain Phil is resting comfortably and is in the care of excellent doctors and nurses. We will update everyone on his progress as best we can.
For updates and to leave a message for Phil go to:
Get well, Phil! You are a hero to many and your sons need you. If you need a private nurse, I happen to know one. Just sayin’. Seriously though, now’s the time to get stubborn and not take any shit from your blood and blood vessels. Show ‘em who’s boss and get better!
I’ve earned my “day off” today. Yesterday was long and hot and pretty damn wonderful, but it was exhausting. Tomorrow, while another homecoming, won’t be nearly so complicated nor as long. Of course, there’s the added pressure of shooting another photographer’s family during homecoming, but I think I’ll be okay. She’s seen my work. She knows what I’m about.
Got up a little earlier than I normally would have today, but for a good reason. My friend TSgt and his family were in town. We’d missed getting together yesterday since homecoming ran long and they had another engagement last evening. We made up for it this morning with breakfast and a quick shoot in the park. They weren’t expecting that, but there was no way I was going to let them get away with photos. The kids have grown so much and they all look so good, I just had to!
And now it’s time to unwind. I’ll take a little nap. Follow that with a nosh of leftover spaghetti or Top Ramen or something. Then I’ll spend my evening with the Bad Boys of the Bering Sea while I edit photos. After that, I’ll curl up and enjoy a good night’s sleep before I start the insanity all over again.
I’m kinda lovin’ it. I just wish this were the money-making part. That’ll come soon enough though, right?