Deadliest Catch Captain Sig on Jake Harris: 'I don't understand what's going on with him'

As the season goes forward, the fate of Jake Harris on the Northwestern seems to be growing dim.

Oh, Jake.

On Discovery Channel's hit reality TV show Deadliest Catch, it is hard, after all that has happened over the last couple of seasons, not to draw the same old conclusions about Jake Harris. It’s obvious that the crew and captain of the Northwestern have their suspicions about what is going on with the late Captain Phil Harris’s youngest son, but they really just do not want to go there. But, in the latest episode, it was obvious what was on everyone's minds.

While at St. Paul off-loading, Captain Sig was concerned that his boat could get stranded in the ice building around him. One of his major worries about being unable to leave was what would happen if Jake had some time to roam around in town:

“I’m concerned about Jake Harris. You know, guys get bored, they get restless, and it’s a good place to get in trouble. He’s had some up and downs in the past. I don’t understand what’s going on with him. I think he just misses the Cornelia. That’s my best guess.”

After freeing themselves from the harbor, Jake’s seeming inability to wake up and get out on deck was alarming. He appeared, in fact, as one crew member said, “knocked out,” sprawled out on the floor and appearing barely responsive as the rest of the deck crew tried to get him up and about.

“It’s early for being that tired," Edgar Hansen observed, shaking his head. "Young, too young.”

“In the raingear, knocked out,” Jake Anderson commented.

As the rest of the crew worked out on deck, Jake still languished around inside, rubbing his eyes and lazing about the cabin. Sig and Edgar joked about filing a missing persons report.

“I guess there’s a missing person on board,” Sig said. “I don’t understand what’s going on with him. With Harris, I think the enthusiasm’s just gone. We’ve still got a long way to go here. You know, you’re judged by your actions on a boat. If you’re the new guy on the boat, you gotta be looking for something to do, you gotta be like, ‘What do you want? What can I do for you?’ Put that extra effort in there. If your head’s not in the game, these little trips can turn into a long, long prison sentence.”

“He’s just doing enough to get by,” deckhand Matt said.

Eventually, the “missing person” appeared on deck, but not with a lot of enthusiasm or energy, even after his extended nap.

Time Bandit Captain Johnathan Advice to Josh

And, it doesn’t seem to be just on the Northwestern where suspicions about Jake are rising. At least, on the Time Bandit, Captain Johnathan’s words to Jake’s older brother, Josh, before leaving the boat to let his back heal, implied as much:

“You’re on the right road. Your dad would be real proud of you. I love your brother. I love Jake. I hope he’s doing good, but you can’t let him bring you down, dude. You’ve gotta do whatever you can do to get that boat, and then take care of him later.”

Good advice from a seasoned Alaska crab-fishing captain.

Jake said he likes working with the guys on the Northwestern, but that he just wants to get back to the Cornelia Marie. “I do like working with all of these guys. I miss being with my brother out at sea. I just want to get the season done with and back to what I know.”

Could it be that Jake is just homesick? Or, is he falling back on ways of numbing his pain that cannot be condoned on a fishing boat? And, how long will Captain Sig and Edgar put up with his slacking on deck? They would never put up with such behavior from a “real” greenhorn; will they keep treating Jake with kid gloves? Or will they finally make him step up to the plate and either do his job or get off the boat?

Stay tuned.

UPDATE: Captains Sig and Johnathan finally honest about Jake Harris

Image: Wikimedia Commons


Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
He's on the dope again/still. Not performing, good he is a legacy, or he would be gone. Rehab on the boat is not working.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
We are rooting for you Jake. Be strong, You are so young and so much is just waiting for you. Ask for help when you need it.. Go and find yourself a good sponsor and get your mind straight.. Your Father didn't like watching you suffer when he was alive and he is still watching.. Your brother needs you. Do this for the Harris name, do this for yourself.....

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
meth is a mess

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
I know the sore's on his face/arms look like meth, but his actions just don't show it. The slow thinking/speaking, sleeping all the time... Even on their downtime, with brother/camera crew coming to his house, he sleeps all day. Plus the fact he was stealing pain meds from a cancer riddled father. That is chasing a completely opposite demon of what meth addicts are looking for. heroin or something similar would be my guess. A Meth addict would jump ship and swim the bering sea when they are coming down from it. No way he would have got back on the boat in the middle of a high if he was using meth.

Submitted by muffin (not verified) on
I've been so concerned about Jake Harris even before Capt. Phil passed. His behaviors, his drive...all affected by drugs. Its obvious he is an addict, and I don't believe he ever truly quit. Or, if he did, it was momentarily only to fulfill the promise of rehab to his dad. It is gut wrenching to watch this guy disintegrate while those around him go forth and prosper. He needs help, and I think he knows it. I just think he is much too weak spirited to ask for it and get it. He obviously KNOWS that everyone watching the show, all the other Captains and crew members of the other boats are shaking their heads in disappointment and concern for him, most specifically, his brother Josh. I'm sure Jake feels the pressure of the disappointment and it drives him further into his addiction. Surely the producers of the show and/or perhaps other family members are on top of this situation and are getting this guy some real help - not just pointing him to a fancy rehab for 30 days and then resume filming. He needs some real attention and assistance in dealing with his demons, his depression, and his addiction. His life needs a house-cleaning and a reboot. Gosh, how I wish I could just talk to or visit with him...My heart breaks seeing his downward spiral.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
The producers are throwing their weight around or else he would not even be on the ships. Would you want someone that is addicted to drugs watching your back when you could face death several times a day. That's why the crew is letting him sleep. They have to have him on board, but they don't want him watching their backs. Like most drug addicts, he has to loose it all before he will smarten up and get real help. It's just a matter of how many people he is going to take down and destroy along with him. Usually those bleeding hearts that remember him as a good guy (Reads "before addiction"), those that want to help, that will be lied to, stolen from and used and abused for everything they have. There is no helping an addict. You have to cut them off completely if they refuse to get help. Otherwise you are just enabling them and helping them to stay addicted. Cut them out of every family members/friends life before the cyclone starts destroying lives. Tough love, only way to save everyone they come in contact with from pure hell of just trying to help the poor addict. Hopefully the producers aren't cutting him a paycheck, Paying him to sleep on the show.. It would just help to kill him faster. Drug addict at the helm.. did we learn nothing from the Exon Valdeze

Submitted by pugnax (not verified) on
It seems pretty obvious that you have no experience with drugs at all.Instead you rattle the same doctrine you've seen on the show intervention. I am 5 years sober from a extreme addiction to heroin. I can guarantee I was worst than Jake will ever be. If it wasnt for those people that stuck with me, the ones I screwed over, I would never have come back. So save that generic diatribe you just spout for when you have a little bit more experience in the subject.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
WOW, Just WOW.... An addict destroys everyone around them, the world owes it too them...Intervention? Really?

Submitted by Petlover4 (not verified) on
Watching this season, it is apparent that Jake Harris feels he is entitled to be a captain on the Bearing Sea. Jake, you have to work to be a captain, and you have not put in the work. Certainly during your time on the Cornelia Marie you got away with everything because dear old dad was the captain (I loved Captain Phil, but he let his kids walk all over him and the other crew members). Josh is more mature and is trying to learn all he can on the Time Bandit. Jake, however, is obviously back to using, as he is showing all the signs of a relapse. There is no doubt about it. Jake seems to think that because his dad was a captain, he can be one as well. I have never seen him spend time in the engine room, have never seen him up asking questions, he just thinks it will be given to him. Well I don't see anyone would be willing to go to sea with him as there captain as he is right now. He could not even throw the hook well, and I have not seen him stacking, running hydros, many things that he has not learned. He will be a failure as a captain, and if there are crew members willing to go out with him, well, not a very good decision, as it is the deadliest catch. Jake grow up and take this opportunity to learn like Josh is.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
You took the words right out of my mouth....I agree with you and oddly enough my boyfriend and I have mentioned time and time again just the exact thing you said. Thanks for putting that COMMENT out there and hopefully Jake will take the time and open his eyes to read these comments and wake up!!!

Submitted by Take it from me.. (not verified) on
I don't know if anyone has ever suffered depression but I have and it will cause you to give up.To not want to take your next breath.You do not want to function.And if you watch him he is in pain.His heart is hurting.For al we know he blames himself for his Father's death.That is what I think he is suffering silently

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
I believe you are right. Jake is blaming himself for his father's death, and he is trying to numb the pain. Plus the world is watching every move he makes. DC crew he needs you guys.

Submitted by Dave Harriott III (not verified) on
I am suspicious that something medical is wrong with him, not drugs. He has no energy, and I remember him saying he feels like his body is 100 years old. He doesn't even have his normal good humor anymore. I would hope someone pushes him to get a major checkup at the doctor.

Submitted by rbobopuppy (not verified) on
If you read some research on meth and it's long term effects it would explain a lot of this. It makes you lose the ability to have basic feelings such as joy and compassion. Unfortunatley when you get clean you frequently no longer have the ability to have those feelings either. As for the pain, that could most definatley be from depression. Depression is an ugly thing. If he's not willing to get treated for his addiction he's probably less likely to get treated for depression. I would be very suprised if he wasn't horribly depressed. Between the death of his father and his inability to stay clean, he probably feels pretty helpless. It's a sad situation. I wish him the best in his journey. Hopefully it leads him in the direction of wanting to get the help he needs to lead a clean sober life.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Being a recovering opiate addict,it is easy to see the signs of someone who has re lapsed.Opiates are a bitch to kick. Jake is deff back on the shit.Someone put the excuse of being homesick for his bro and boat as reason for his behavior in his head and like a good junky he is riding it to seasons end. Since the program and crab season wrapped in real time weeks ago,I can only hope the people around him and better,yet,Jake himself realize he has a problem. Only the addict can decide what to do,you cant make an addict quit.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Someone get that kid some suboxone

Submitted by Pandora (not verified) on
This. So much this. Not a cure but it's better than the alternative.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
He's on Oxy's and it's plain to see. He's a deadman walking.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
you can see it in his face how broken out it was at the end.. and that was what he was doing back on the CM pain killers tough to kick who knows maybe he is on H now hope he figures it out soon...

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
I am hoping that the producers of this show, will step in and help this kid. I know you can't help anyone unless they want it, but this hurts my soul to watch him go through this. Please don't tell me people are letting this cont for the sake of ratings

Submitted by X231 (not verified) on
Jake is an addict and a loser and has had way too many chances already. Let him lay in the gutter until he decides he wants to change .. for real.