‘Wicked Tuna’: How Dave Carraro Became a Star on Show

by Madison Miller

When the cast of “Wicked Tuna” started the popular National Geographic show, they likely didn’t expect it to be a hit on TV for quite so long.

The show has been on for 10 years and has over 100 episodes.

“Wicked Tuna” follows a group of commercial fishermen in Gloucester, Massachusetts. They have one goal — fish for the Atlantic bluefin tuna in the North Atlantic Ocean. Somehow, that goal led to fame and success for the stars of the show. Right now, the main stars include Dave Carraro, Dave Marciano, Tyler McLaughlin, TJ Ott, Paul Hebert, Bob Cook, and Spurge Krasowski.

However, Dave Carraro is the only fisherman, manning his FV-Tuna.com boat, who has been around since season one of the show all the way up until “Wicked Tuna” season nine on currently.

So, how did Carraro become involved in the successful show in 2012?

Dave Carraro Involvement with ‘Wicked Tuna’

Similar to other reality shows, “Wicked Tuna” started out as an idea at a network or production company. Carraro shared with Discover Gloucester that it all started when he got a phone call from the production company looking to create “Wicked Tuna.” They shared that they were interested in creating a show about tuna fishing.

“They were interested in interviewing me and came out on the boat to shoot some footage. With what they captured from us, along with a few other boats, they produced a pilot episode for networks to review,” Carraro said.

From the pilot came even more success for Carraro and some other lucky tuna fishers. National Geographic then reached out to the captains that would be best for the future of the show.

“And here we are, 10 seasons later, still going strong. Most reality shows fail early on, so for us to be here 10 years, 100+ episodes later, it’s very exciting to have been a part of it since the beginning,” Gloucester said.

From a simple tuna fisherman to a reality star, “Wicked Tuna” was an interesting opportunity for the Massachusetts area.

Fame from ‘Wicked Tuna’

Dave Carraro has been a TV figure since 2010, which means that certain people will recognize him out and about. “Wicked Tuna” isn’t necessarily the most popular show or recognizable, but Carraro certainly has the attention of a very specific group of viewers.

Suddenly, the area where the fisherman do their work had become a tourist location. They would come face-to-face with fans while doing their day job or filming for “Wicked Tuna.”

“It was during the third season, that was when people really started recognizing me and the other captains in public. 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,” Carraro also said.

In addition to being entertaining and drama-filled, “Wicked Tuna” offers an educational opportunity of sorts. It allows people an inside look into what commercial fishing looks like in the U.S. You can better understand where the fish you consume is coming from. Also, it sheds a light on the fate of the bluefin tuna as well.