• Elliott Neese is known for his appearance on Discovery Channel’s “Deadliest Catch”
• He was the show’s main antagonist until he eventually left in 2015
• He has studied under some of the best captains on the Bering Sea
• In 2015, he had become so unpopular with the show’s fans that there was a fan petition to cut him from the show
• As of 2020, Neese has an estimated net worth of over $500,000


King of the sea and controversy, Elliott Neese is known for his appearance on Discovery Channel’s “Deadliest Catch”. While it is widely acknowledged that much of what happens on the show is dramatized and manipulated, Elliott Neese’s behaviour portrays him as the very man the show presents. The show’s main antagonist until he eventually left in 2015, Neese was known for his tumultuous marriage and volatile temperament. Despite expressing dissatisfaction with the portrayal of his character in “Deadliest Catch”, his actions off-screen only cemented the public’s opinion of him. In 2015, he had become so unpopular with the show’s fans, which was only aggravated by his aggressive attitude towards them on Twitter, that there was a fan petition to cut him from the screen.

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Early Life and Family

Elliott Nicodemus Neese was born on 26 January 1982, in Alaska, USA; it’s unknown whether he has any siblings. Neese’s family was deeply entrenched in the fishing industry, and he soon found that he shared this passion. Not being a particularly stellar student, Neese was already fishing and angling at the age of 12.


Neese started his fishing career at a young age and had graduated to pot fishing by the age of 19. Elliott Neese has studied under some of the best captains on the Bering Sea, including some who appear on “Deadliest Catch”. Neese actually proved to be an exceptional fisherman, and is now a licensed fisherman and captain.


Early Fishing Career

Elliott Neese was already manning his own fishing vessel at the age of 19 in 2001, and soon became the captain of the fishing boat, The Ramblin’ Rose. Elliott was highly successful during this era of his career, and became highly skilled. His downfall turned out to be his behavior, a common theme throughout his life. When Neese refused to go out during a storm under the instruction of The Ramblin’ Rose’s owner, he was forced to leave the vessel.

However, by 2013, Neese had located an interested investor, and the two purchased a new fishing boat that they dubbed Saga. Once again, things dd not quite go according to plan, and the investor bought out Elliott’s half in 2015. This coincided with Elliott’s drug problems climaxing, and he was removed as captain and replaced with “Deadliest Catch” co-star Jake Anderson.

When Anderson was asked about Neese in 2016, he was perfectly candid, telling Inqisitr that Neese was manning a new boat, and using radio shows to bad-mouth him.

Neese was not always on the right side of the law when it came to fishing either. After hauling in an impressive catch, 13 undersized crabs were found on his boat. While this might seem to be of negligible import, it is against fishing regulation and law. He was initially fined $6,000, but when he pleaded guilty, the fine was halved to $3,000.

“Deadliest Catch”

“Deadliest Catch” is Discovery Channel’s Emmy award-winning docuseries, which follows crab fishermen off the coast of Alaska in the Bering Sea. The show premiered on 12 April 2005, and as with many Discovery series, the show has had its fair share of controversy. The first is the oft-heard dissension at Discovery dramatizing actual events.

In one case it was revealed that to depict a storm in the fourth season of the show, the footage was mixed with footage from a flood the previous season, making the storm appear much more grievous than it was in reality. The show had also been criticized for the impact it has had on the Alaskan crab fishing industry – over 70 vessels are traversing the Bering Sea, working hard to get the funding they need to accomplish their expeditions. With Discovery Channel funding all the expeditions of the show’s boats, local fishermen are struggling to compete.

Elliott Neese was a relative latecomer to the show, appearing for the first time in 2011. The public first got to know him while he was still captaining The Ramblin’ Rose, and he was immediately painted as the show’s antagonist. While it is a well-known fact the docuseries manipulate footage and situations to create characters who can be perceived as the ‘bad guys’ to increase dramatic tension, Neese’s behaviour didn’t help matters.

He was especially aggressive with the show’s fanbase, defending himself against those who criticized him but also taking a defensive position against those who supported him. His aggressive veneer was shattered in the 10th season when he risked his life at sea; another fishing boat, the Artic Hunter had run ashore on the ice and was sinking. Neese risked his life by approaching the boat and rescuing the crew from drowning or freezing to death.

While this dramatic event changed some minds about Elliott, it did little to win over a majority of the fan base; in 2015, there was a petition to remove him from the show. While Discovery Channel declined to follow through on this, Elliott was forced to leave the show in any case due to his personal issues that had come to the fore.

During his time on “Deadliest Catch,” Neese starred in multiple other spin-offs including “Deadliest Catch: The Bait” (2013 – 2014), “Deadliest Catch: After the Catch” (2011 – 2012) and “Deadliest Catch: Greenhorns” (2011). Since he left the show, he has made no additional TV or film appearances.


Neese has retired from the media for the most part. He still spends his time fishing, but not necessarily crabs. He has traveled to much more tropical climates and seas, and often posts pictures of himself holding enormous fish.

Personal life


Like much of his life, Neese’s romantic associations have been tumultuous even in the best life. Elliot Neese was married to Valerie Gunderson with whom he has two children, a son born in 2006, and his second child is a daughter, Shannon.Elliott is notorious on the show for his volatile temperament and temper, which made its appearance in his marriage.

Elliott Neese

When the couple divorced, Valerie Gunderson applied for a temporary restraining order against Neese, claiming that she feared for her safety. Valerie revealed that Neese has attacked her in 2006, and spoke of another incident that took place in 2010. She claimed that he was thrown into a rage and smashed their TV and tossed some of her clothes into the fireplace. The allegations have since been dropped, and the two have joint custody of their children.


Although fans failed in getting Neese booted off the show in 2015, many more salient issues saw his departure. After fellow crew and family members had been urging him to seek help, he finally decided to address his alcohol and drug abuse issues. Elliott Neese enrolled into Passages Rehab facility in Malibu for a 60-day program.

Once he was discharged, he kept the public informed of his progress, proudly announcing the 90-day mark of staying clean in 2017. Since then he has not shared much of his journey. Notable, however, is that Neese attacked Nick McGlashan on Twitter, accusing him of still using drugs. This is not his only social media faux pas, as he also had a go at Sportsman’s Warehouse on Facebook in 2017.


Since his divorce, Neese has been very restrained about revealing personal details on his relationships; his sense of privacy only increased after he left the “Deadliest Catch” and attended rehab. Nonetheless, it has become common knowledge that he is dating a woman named Erika Friedenberg from Chicago. The two met when they were based in the same rehabilitation facility, and the commonalities in their past allowed them to forge a strong bond.


Elliott Neese is good looking according to general opinion, with an innate charisma that draws people to him. He wears his hair relatively short, and frequently sports stubble. His hair is a reddish-brown and his eyes are blue-green. He has an earring in his right ear. Elliott Neese is 5ft 6ins (1.68m) tall and weighs over 150lbs (70kg).

Net Worth and Salary

Much of Neese’s income is from his fishing enterprises – despite what most people expect, crab fishermen make a sizeable income. While he no longer fishes in the Bering Sea; he has not completely abandoned this passion. The exact amount that he made from his appearance on the “Deadliest Catch” has not been revealed to the public. As of 2020, Neese has an estimated net worth of over $500,000, according to reputable sources.

, Wikipedia

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