On last night's episode of “Wicked Tuna” the special breed of fishermen from Gloucester, Mass. It is week 2 and so far, three boats have each caught one fish. Pin Wheel earned $8,845, Hard Merchandise made $7,056 and FV-Tuna.com; last year's leader trailed with $5,814.
Pin Wheel is headed to Georges Bank, further out in the ocean than one mate has ever been, Tyler tells the viewers that it is super expensive to venture to Georges Bank, and to return with nothing is a $25,000 expense he does not want to think about.
On the Hard Merchandise, Dave is ready to catch some early-season fish that could make or break his season. It seems that every yo-yo, and his brother with a tuna rod is out doing the same thing, as Dave says. There are about 30 boats out and even spotter planes that warn the harpoon boats when they see the big ones. The harpoon boats do not have to work as hard as the rod and reel fishermen. However, they prefer to do it the old-fashioned way. They play the game called bait and wait.
Kevin on the Christina has yet to catch a fish. They go rod and reel, but also harpooning; Kevin's passion. Kevin's first mate, Greg is a by-the-book fisherman; he does not drink, smoke or swear. His other mate is Bad Greg, the harpooner or striker who has unbelievable eyes and spots those fish a mile away. They have a spotter plane that can see the fish when they are deep in the water. The first harpoon misses and the fish scatter. Kevin tells viewers that staying focused is important, not to dwell on a miss. The harpooners go far out over the bow of the boat on a special ramp where they have a good view of the fish below.
Comparing the harpooners to the rod and reel fishermen, Dave says that he needs the fish to feed his family, while they want the fish to pin a big hero badge on their chest. Greg, on the other hand, feels that it takes more skill to be a harpooner, and the other way does not even make sense to him.
Bluefin tuna populations have decreased dramatically since the 1950s. As the world struggles to save the species, these fishermen depend on them to make their living one bluefin at a time.
As the pilot flying above directs the boat and the harpooner, he sees exactly where the harpoon should go, right on target, Greg gets an 81 inch-long fish worth about $5,000.
In Georges Bank, the Pin Wheel has found a nice spot, and Tyler has several rods in the water. He knows that he has to catch at least three fish to call it a profitable day.
On the FV-Tuna.com, Greg has been challenged by Tyler, the newcomer to take over his spot that he earned last year. He feels that Tyler has no respect for the guys who have done this their whole lives. Greg wants to teach Tyler respect.
Kevin's pilot spots a group of giants; they are so deep that Greg cannot even see them. The pilot directs where he needs to throw the harpoon and sure enough, he gets another.
Sandro gets a fish on the line and Captain Greg harpoons him, suddenly; the fish is off the hook line and only being held by the harpoon line. This could be dangerous because the fish could pull Greg overboard. As he gets near the surface, the harpoon separates from the fish and they lose him. It is a sad time for the FV-Tuna.com. Without a third guy there, it was a futile fight.
The Cristina is offloading the two fish. The price is not determined until they cut into the fish to check for fat and oiliness. This one is a winner at $25 per pound for $5,000. The second one weighs 177 pounds and also worth $25 for a total of $4,425.
On the Pin Wheel, they continue to fish for bait and continue to chum. The plan to fish through the night and do whatever they have to. Tyler takes the first watch while the other guys sleep. Suddenly, there is a fish on the line as Tyler yells for help. It is dark and foggy, with a lot of boats around; they must be careful. He is 100 feet from the boat, and finally, they harpoon him and bring him aboard. He is 83" long.
On the FV-Tuna.com, Paul has come back to the crew. He is loud and animated and just what they need. When Dave gets a text message from Tyler that they caught a fish, he is disappointed until he realizes that Tyler spent about $2,000 to catch the fish.
Dave on the Hard Merchandise has a fish on the line, a real fighter. The catch clock has him on the hook for over thirty minutes. Finally, Dave harpoons him and over the rail he comes. On the dock, the family is waiting for him. It weighs 220 pounds and $22 a pound for $4,840.
As the Pin Wheel heads to Gloucester with his catch, it is 245.5 pounds and worth only $14 a pound for a total of $3,430 which just about covers the expenses.
Now Dave has inspiration with a full crew and knows that Tyler did not exactly score well on his trip to Georges, but he is still ahead of them. This is the incentive Dave needs.
Tyler knows that Paul is back on the FV-Tuna.com and is sure he will get a run for his money. Just a Dave gets one on the reel. They reel it in as Tyler watches through his binoculars. It measures 81.5 inches. Dave knows that when Dave and Sandro are aboard, they are unbeatable. The fish weighs 290 and worth $17 for a total of $4,930. They were close to home, and he was mostly profit.
At the end of week 2, the Pin Wheel still leads with two fish totaling $12,275. Second is Hard Merchandise with two totaling $11,896. FV-Tuna.com holding third with two fish for $10,744 and in fourth is Christina with 2 for $9,425. Nevertheless, it is only week 2, and the fish are starting to bite with plenty more "Wicked Tuna" to be caught.