"Fish is good brain food. You should eat a whale!" shouts Wicked Tuna's Dave Marciano across the table to rival Dave Carraro when I join the stars of one of NatGeo's highest-rated series for dinner in Gloucester, Massachusetts, where they're shooting Season 3. Why the advice? Captain Carraro doesn't eat seafood.
Even more bizarre than a fisherman refusing to eat fish is witnessing the cutthroat captains laughing amicably over clam chowder, sushi (veggie for Carraro) and steak. "You have five teams all wanting the same goal," says Carraro, Season 1's champ. "We can joke around and have a beer, but when you get on the water, things change." They'd better have an appetite for competition, since this season will see two new crews (in addition to the five returning teams) competing for what they call "monstahs," which can reel in $20,000 each.
Throughout our meal, Carraro repeatedly checks on marine conditions; choppy waters will put our planned deep-sea expedition in jeopardy. But to my nerves' dismay, the Atlantic Ocean smooths out. Here's how the next day went on Carraro's boat as — my Dramamine in tow — we searched for bluefin tuna.