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What Deadliest Catch's Wild Bill Wishes Fans Understood About Crab Fishing

Discovery Channel reality show "Deadliest Catch" revolves around crab fishing in Alaska's Bering Sea, following a number of the personalities involved in that particular, idiosyncratic industry. Sometimes, storylines on "Deadliest Catch" solely concern interpersonal issues between cast members, as is typical for the reality TV genre. At its best, of course, "Deadliest Catch" contextualizes real-life crab fishing struggles such that they're relevant to the lives of its featured captains and their crew members.

One recurring source of drama is the treatment of greenhorns on "Deadliest Catch" — "greenhorn" referring to someone entirely new to professional fishing. Frequently, veteran crew members will haze their ship's greenhorns, considering it something of a macho rite of passage. In one particular instance, a crew member even initiates a physical fight with a greenhorn over a comparatively minor mishap. In the wake of that episode airing, many "Deadliest Catch" fans felt angered by the boat brawl.

While the plight of the greenhorn is indeed one realistic element of the fishing industry that serves as a source of drama on "Deadliest Catch," the perils of the crab-catching process itself contribute to on-screen conflict as well. Nevertheless, FV Summer Bay Captain Wild Bill Wichrowski wishes fans understood one particular thing about real-life crab fishing, and how the work involved differs from what's shown in a typical "Deadliest Catch" episode.

Wild Bill wants viewers to know how difficult crab fishing can be

In mid-2022, Captain Wild Bill Wichrowski spoke to Fox News about "Deadliest Catch," his career, and crab fishing. During their conversion, interviewer Stephanie Nolasco asked Wichrowski to share what he believes to be a misconception about crab fishing held by the general public.

"Everybody sits on the couch and thinks, 'Oh, I can do that,' and the reality is it's a small percentage of people that come up and try that even get close to succeeding," Wichrowski said. "But what they don't understand is that there are hours and hours and days and days of just a monotonous grind that'll separate the men from the boys. It's a lot harder than it looks on TV."

Wichrowski highlighted one challenge of crab fishing not necessarily apparent to viewers in a 2021 interview with ComicBook.com. In response to an open-ended question about difficulties he experienced that year, Wichrowski revealed that, due to pandemic restrictions, he and his crew were restricted from leaving their ship while filming "Deadliest Catch" Season 17. "So for three and a half months, we never left the boat. And that translates into three and a half months traveling about 15 steps to my stateroom and maybe 25- 30 down to the galley and the engine room," he said.

So, while crab fishing does indeed appear plenty difficult on a typical episode of "Deadliest Catch," according to Wichrowski, the job may be even harder than it seems.