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The Deadliest Catch Fans Agree This John Moment Is Total Cringe

To say that Johnathan Hillstrand is unlike the majority of captains on​​ Discovery's "Deadliest Catch" is a bit of an understatement. Where other captains might tackle the harsh, unforgiving lifestyle of a crab fisherman with grim determination and a plethora of strict rules, Hillstrand seems to find the entire experience incredibly fun. Indeed, the captain of the F/V Time Bandit is hardly ever seen without a smile on his face, and his laughter comes loud and often despite the inherent risks of his profession.

Hillstrand is also a prolific prankster, constantly pulling jokes on his own crew members as well as the captains of other ships, including one memorable moment where he and his crew attacked the F/V Northwestern with paintballs and fireworks. Although Hillstrand's jubilant attitude has certainly proved effective at injecting life into his crew, some of his other leadership qualities have come under fire from fans of the series — including one specific moment that many fans believe was scripted and unbelievable.

Fans think John's speech at the start of Season 18 is cringeworthy

The cringe-inducing Johnathan Hillstrand moment in question comes from the Season 18 episode "Long Live King Crab!" which focuses on the shocking government closure of the king crab fishery. Because this is such a devastating blow to the commercial fishing industry, Captains Hillstrand and Sig Hansen step up to deliver a speech about what to do moving forward. Unfortunately, this inspiring moment was ripped apart by fans on Reddit, many of whom see it as an indication of the show's declining quality.

"I've known for a long time now that the show has gone downhill and has morphed from a documentary style fly on the wall show to a scripted cringe-athon," wrote u/snotters. "But Hillstrand's speech at the start of the God Bless King Crab episode took the show to new levels of cringe." Meanwhile, u/adamosity1 echoed these sentiments, saying, "I think the whole product -– all of the shows — have become a caricature of themselves and the series should be taken out of its misery and ended already." Of course, "The Deadliest Catch" has faced allegations that parts of the series are staged, scripted, or otherwise inauthentic since the show's earliest days. In 2008, The Hollywood Reporter even noted that producers seemingly spliced together footage of two completely different incidents to make an episode seem more dramatic.

Hillstrand's awkward speech is chock full of hackneyed cliches, including the line "we have not yet begun to fight," and a quote from American folk hero Paul Bunyan. Most fans within the thread agreed with the speculation that Hillstrand's speech was an obviously scripted attempt to fake some drama for television –- and as such, it comes off as absurdly cringeworthy.