A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Wicked Tuna contains lots of swearing ("dick," "ass"; "s--t," "f--k" are bleeped), as well as images of (blurred) obscene gestures. The series offers a non-judgmental look at the work of specific blue fish tuna fishermen while discussing the negative impact this specific fishing industry is having on the species and the ocean's ecosystem. Captains and deck hands are rough around the edges -- they're sometimes shown yelling and screaming at each other and other fishermen, as well as smoking cigarettes and drinking beer. While they're hard working, they also deceive others in order to get ahead.
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What's the story?
WICKED TUNA looks at how fisherman from Gloucester, Massachusetts navigate the waters of the controversial blue fin tuna industry. It stars Bill Monte, the captain of the Bounty Hunter, Ralph Wilkins, the captain of the Odysea, Dave Marciano, captain of the Hard Merchandise, and Captain Dave Carraro of the Tuna.com sailing out to the Northern Atlantic to catch the endangered blue fin tuna, which can sell for tens of thousands of dollars per head to sushi restaurants around the world. Viewers get to see how the fisherman use individual rods and reels, harpoons, and brute strength to catch one blue fin at time. Catching enough of this fish to support themselves and their families isn't easy, thanks to the dwindling numbers of fish, strict U.S. blue fin fishing regulations, and the sneaky tactics used to keep each other away from lucrative fishing areas. In between show scenes, information about this species of tuna and details about the controversies surrounding the blue fish fishing industry is offered.
Is it any good?
The series offers a non-judgmental and informative look at the blue fish tuna fishing industry by showing it from the point of view of tuna boat captains, who are trying to make an honest living and preserve a way of a life that goes back three centuries. Meanwhile, it offers details about the detrimental impact the industry is having on the blue fin and on the overall ecosystem.
It's a complicated issue, but one that is sometimes overshadowed by the drama brought on by the captains and their crews attempting to bait, hook, reel in, and tie blue fins before wrestling them into their boats. Learning how much they sell each fish for is interesting too. Nonetheless, regardless of whether you are a fishing fan or not, there are some interesting lessons to learn here.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about hunting and fishing. What are the pros and cons? Do you think TV shows like this one help raise awareness about some of the environmental and cultural issues around hunting and fishing? Or are they really designed to entertain people?
Why are there so many reality shows about fishermen? What other reality show trends do you notice? Why do you think there is so little variation in reality show programming?
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