What is Wicked Tuna?
Wicked Tuna started airing in 1 April 2012, on the National Geographic Channel, and is a reality television show focusing on commercial tuna fishermen based in Gloucester, Massachusetts. They are often shown fishing for the highly valued Atlantic Bluefin tuna, located in the North Atlantic Ocean.
Just a few of the Wicked Tuna fans who have shared their own biggest catches from around the world. Share your own photo and story behind 'Your Best Catch' in the comments!
The Wealth of Wicked Tuna
How profitable is Wicked Tuna? As of mid-2018, sources estimate the collective net worth of the cast members of the show at $3.9 million, mostly attributed to the success of the show. This amount does not include the actual earnings by the producers and by National Geographic.
Wicked Tuna Format
Each episode of Wicked Tuna usually shows teams of fishermen battling it out to see who can catch the most tuna within a given timeframe; the show has around six ships, each with their captains and crew members. The show also uses its time to educate the audience about the tuna industry in America which is considered one of the oldest in the country. It also showcases some issues surrounding the fate of the Bluefin tuna, the population of which has dwindled considerably in recent years, so that the US has regulated size of fish and catch quote for each boat.
The show is considered as one of the strongest franchises of the National Geographic Channel, according to Howard T. Owens, the president of the network. The show has run for a total of seven seasons with around 82 episodes, and has proven so popular that it spawned a spin-off show entitled “Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks”, which is set off the coast of the North Carolina Outer Banks, and features a few captains from the original season, going there to fish during the Bluefin tuna offseason.
— Wicked Tuna (@WickedTuna) June 25, 2018
Cast Members and Ships
Only two captains have remained in the show since its first season – the first is Dave Carraro, the captain of FV-Tuna.com. He and his ship is considered the best in the show, having won four seasons out of the seven. He has total earnings of at least $512,696 from his wins and runner-up finishes. The other longtime veteran is Dave Marciano, the captain of Hard Merchandise which is a Novi Boat built in 1984. He won during the fourth season of the show, and has also had two runner-up finishes, amounting to $225,594 in earnings.
The next captain is also a consistent top finisher in the competition – Tyler McLaughlin – who is the captain of the boat PinWheel. He and the commercial fishing vessel has two wins out of the seven seasons with two runner-up finishes amounting to $403,234. Season three veteran TJ Ott and his ship The Hot Tuna has been with the series since the third season, but he has yet to gain a top finish. During the fifth season onwards, Paul Hebert started captaining the ship The Wicked Pissah which is a custom-designed boat with one runner-up finish. One of the latest captains to join the show is Brad Krasowski, who joined the sixth season with his ship The Fish Hawk. He had one runner-up finish during the seventh season of the show.
Nothing like a little family fishin’! Submitted by Michael Long
Death of a Cast Member and Controversies
The second show of the season showcased cast member Adam Moser, who was later reported to have passed away due to an overdose of a powerful synthetic opioid called fentanyl. According to interviews, his parents didn’t know what drove him to the drug, but it was definitely intended as recreational at first, but turned into an addiction. The parents chalk-up the addiction to ignorance, as opiates are well known for being highly addictive.
Paul Hebert was also caught in an issue, and was fined a total of $58,000 after claiming to the government that he was disabled and couldn’t work. He was later discovered on the show “Wicked Tuna”, which led to fines as his disability claims allowed him to receive high amounts in benefits, essentially cheating the system to earn money. Nevertheless, the issue didn’t stop him, and he soon returned to fishing.
Wicked Tuna on Social Media
“Wicked Tuna” is promoted on numerous platforms, both on television and online. The show has its own website which promotes cast members, episodes, and the latest videos, which are also available online through the National Geographic YouTube account, which mainly consists of promotions. The show also has its own Facebook page and Twitter account, which also aim to promote the show through fan engagement. The show re-posts video promotions, and also releases teasers to help promote upcoming episodes. The Twitter account promotes the original “Wicked Tuna” show as well as its spin-off, and also re-posts some fishing-related articles from the main National Geographic social media pages.