Since its conception in 2012, Wicked Tuna has easily become one of the most popular and thrilling fishing shows on TV. From the intense fights with bluefins to the camaraderie onboard each of the vessels, the series offers escape into the Atlantic Ocean for land-lovers and seafarers alike.
Captain Dave Carraro of the FV-Tuna.com has seen first-hand the kind of unity that Wicked Tuna provides for actual anglers and dedicated fans. During an interview with Discover Gloucester, the star explained that the most encapsulating part of the show is watching how the angler’s skills match up against the bluefin’s power.
“Most people who watch the show are landlocked and haven’t heard of a bluefin tuna, that a fish of this size and power even existed,” the Wicked Tuna captain expressed. “So to watch us catch these fish on a small rod and reel, people are just so impressed that we catch such big fish on small tackle and the money that can be made and lost over just one fish. You can hit the jackpot on that one great ‘catch.'”
‘Wicked Tuna’ Star Describes the Moment When He Realized the Show’s Popularity
Despite all of its success over the course of its eight seasons, some Wicked Tuna stars didn’t know if the show would make it past the first year. Worried people outside of the bluefin industry would take much interest, the captains and anglers hoped for the best when the show finally aired. Sure enough, the world loved the wild world of Wicked Tuna and all of its cast members. Fanships formed and anticipation spurred as everyone waited for the next season.
For Carraro, it didn’t hit him until the show’s third year that he was now a celebrity. Originally from Tinton, New Jersey, the angler didn’t think Garden State locals would recognize him, much less the show. Just a few years after joining Wicked Tuna, though, the crew had a welcome crowd waiting at the pier.
“It was during the third season, that was when people really started recognizing me and the other captains in public,” the Wicked Tuna star shared. “We weren’t faces in the crowd anymore, we were faces from the TV show. After the first season, we had a few fans here or there, but by season three there was a line of people when we’d come in from fishing, that’s when it really hit me that the show was becoming popular and drawing a big tourist crowd.”
Surely, like all big stars, there are some days when Carraro misses blending in with a crowd. However, the Wicked Tuna captain still seems to enjoy taking photos with fans, especially the little ones.
“Kids love the show, they approach me with a nervous energy,” Carraro said. “I feel like a superhero when I’m around children…and they always ask the coolest questions.”