Is Below Deck even a viable show option in a post-coronavirus world? Here are some reasons the series might be delayed longer than other shows.
In case you have been living under a rock, the world has been rocked by a highly contagious virus this year, the coronavirus or Covid-19. It has impacted all facets of life, but the tourism industry will certainly not be back to normal for a long time. With endless travel restrictions in place for domestic travel, it could be months before international travel is back to semi-normal, but it won’t be “normal” normal for a long time. Below Deck is centered on international travel and working in tight quarters with strangers and guests alike, which doesn’t bode well for the new “normal.”
The Below Deck franchise has Below Deck Sailing Yacht, which finished this week, and Below Deck Mediterranean, which is set to premiere the fifth season on June 1. There were rumors about the crew and location for another upcoming season, but that doesn’t look likely at this point. Unless the crew decided to live together prior and travel wearing a bubble, same with the guests and production members, it just doesn’t seem likely that the show will be back anytime soon.
The guests are usually from more than one place with various members of the group getting together only when they arrive at their tropical destination. There are usually four or five groups of guests throughout the season. The crew is usually equally as diverse, coming from all over the world to work on the boat. On top of that, you have the production crew too. They travel from wherever they are located to film the drama and then head back home. Sometimes the production crew stays on board, sometimes there isn’t room. But when you break it down – it seems impossible to get such a group of people safely to their destination.
Is something like that even insurable anymore due to the liability of someone getting sick for filming? If you’ve ever watched one of these hit shows, you know how serious they take illness. Usually, the sick person sees a doctor within hours. If the illness isn’t something easily fixed, they can be sent home due to liability. Because of the tight quarters on the boat, viruses can be easily spread throughout.
Although they can usually find a doctor quickly, that might not be as easy as it used to be, either. There are more restrictions in place and more sick people needed help, not to mention the doctors might be busy caring for other sick people elsewhere. If there was some kind of outbreak, it could be impossible to get a doctor on the boat in a timely fashion.
Bravo has done its best to adapt with safety measures in place, including virtual reunions and filming from home, but how will they overcome this one? It seems that the safest way to do it is just not to do it at all for now.
There will certainly be a lull in new shows in the near future but eventually, things should get back on schedule once filming can resume. Below Deck just might take a bit longer to get back on that normal schedule.
For more information about COVID-19, visit the CDC’s website or the website for your state’s Department of Health.
Below Deck Mediterranean returns for Season 5 on Monday, June 1.