'After the Catch': Thom Beers Talks the Northwestern's Scrappy Deckhand Jake Anderson

NorthwesternJakeAnderson.jpgTonight's cuppa: Barry's Gold Blend tea

With the unfortunate passing of Capt. Phil Harris of the F/V Cornelia Marie, a lot of attention in the sixth season of Discovery Channel's "Deadliest Catch" has been focused on him and his volatile relationships with his deckhand sons, Josh and Jake Harris.

(Click here for a Zap2it story of mine from last week with "Deadliest" executive producer Thom Beers discussing that very topic. Click here for another that posted on Tuesday, June 22.)

But there's another Jake in the "Deadliest" family, and that's deckhand Jake Anderson (above) of the F/V Northwestern. That crab-fishing boat is the subject of Tuesday's (June 22) episode of "After the Catch," the roundtable companion show to "Deadliest," with host Mike Rowe ("Dirty Jobs"). It airs at 10 p.m. ET, right after "Deadliest" at 9 p.m.

Capt. Sig Hansen and his brother, deck boss Edgar, and the rest of the crew discuss battling the weather, the crab and, occasionally, each other. Also, Anderson recalls a deckhand-swapping incident from earlier this season that saw him to go the Cornelia, and Jake Harris come to the Northwestern.

(Click here for my Zap2it story with Sig Hansen discussing the "Two Jakes" swap.)

Unfortunately, in swapping the deckhands back -- by putting them in survival suits and dropping them in the sea to be picked up like a crab pot -- Anderson was nearly drowned when he was caught in an undertow.

That's only the latest trouble for the beleaguered Anderson. In Feb. 2009, he received word aboard the Northwestern of the death of his beloved sister, Chelsea Dawn Anderson, from complications of pneumonia. This season, along with the usual ribbing from the Northwestern crew, Anderson was injured when a cod knife slipped and cut his wrist.

Last week, Anderson's injury appeared to be about to torpedo his season aboard the SigHansen.jpg Northwestern, but then Hansen (right) answered a call from Anderson's mother and learned about the family tragedy that the deckhand had been keeping from the rest of the crew

Anderson's father, 63-year-old retired school counselor Keith Anderson, was reported missing, with his truck found along a remote logging road in Washington State. As of this writing, the elder Anderson has yet to be found.

(Click here for an extensive AOL News report; click here for a video of Jake getting the news from his mother aboard ship; click here and here for local news reports; click here for a reward flier.).

Yet, all of this doesn't seem to derail Anderson's work ethic or desire to please his bosses aboard the Northwestern, although he gets scant praise in return.

Says Beers, "You know what the fascinating thing is about him, he passed his First Mate's license. He's been quietly going on about his business. Somebody said that the he'd put him in as a captain for a lot of these guys. That kid's worked his butt off.

"He just gets his a-- kicked by the Norwegians. Sig and these guys just beat him up, but you know what, the kid really mans up. To me, he's going to be the surprise hitter on this whole series.

"Do you remember the last season, when his sister passed away? That was just the most amazing thing. He was talking to his mom ...oh, my God, there wasn't a dry eye in the house."


Click here for an earlier blog post I did with Mike Rowe about "After the Catch."

Click here for my Zap2it story in which Rowe discusses the Harris saga on "Deadliest Catch."