Since it’s 2013 premiere, the cast hired to work onboard the Below Deck super yachts have come and gone. Many have even been fired midway throughout their charter seasons.
Sometimes, cast members do not return for a second (or third) season due to their lack of creating television worthy drama. Other times, poor work ethics or behaviors that teeter on becoming a liability for the network are to blame.
However, several yachties have continued on with the Below Deck franchise for years. Each of these cast members consistently held the perfect combination of drama and work ethics to secure their positions onboard.
These are Below Deck’s most valuable players.
Captain Lee Rosbach
Captain Lee Rosbach kicked off Below Deck’s very first season. His humor and one-liners were sometimes a bit salty, but he always ran an incredibly efficient ship. Captain Lee’s career on-air lasted for 10 seasons. Within the entire franchise, he holds the longest reign as a captain. All in all, he’s easily one of Below Deck’s most valuable players.
However, Season 10 saw the first Below Deck captain crossover occurring. Captain Sandy Yawn from Below Deck Mediterranean was brought in for several charters so that Captain Lee could recover from nerve issues in his left leg. Once Captain Lee recovered enough to return, his crew welcomed him back with open (and thankful) arms.
Throughout his Below Deck tenure, Captain Lee officiated weddings, entertained flirtatious charter guests, dressed in varying party themes to heighten guest experiences, and cracked jokes over drunken onboard antics.
In darker seasons, he even shared his grief, opening about his son’s opioid addiction and subsequent passing.
Sadly, when Season 11 begins to air, the wheelhouse will be void of Captain Lee’s presence, as the network has decided to go in another direction to “freshen up” the series.
That said, if the network’s decision “screwed the pooch,” Captain Lee has admitted that he’d happily return, no harm no foul. Insert his one-liner of ”if your tit’s in the wringer it’s because you put it there,” here.
When Chief Stew Kate Chastain joined Captain Lee in Season 2, Below Deck’s viewership skyrocketed. Kate’s ability to do her job well while handing out quick quips in heated situations combined to create television gold. Kate remained onboard Below Deck until her departure following Season 7, making her the longest tenured chief stew in the franchise.
During her 6 seasons on-air, Kate became known for her clap-back styled antics. When a primary charter guest called her “b****y,” she folded the blanket in his cabin to resemble a penis.
Following a stressful Season 7 with Chef Kevin Dobson, Kate got revenge during a final dinner service. The primary requested a penis-shaped cake be served during her all girls trip. Kate encouraged Kevin to create a vertical cake instead of his classier planned horizontal design. Then, when this guest became a bit too drunk and tired, she left the table early, as a serious conversation between her remaining guests and Captain Lee took place.
Kate chose this moment to have an unaware Kevin deliver the cake. Kevin brought out the cake, sparklers lit and all, to a horrified captain and confused guests. “It was like the most inappropriate time,” Kate recalled, smirking.
On liking Kate, many viewers became torn towards the end. Some felt that she was a bully towards other crew members, while other fans found her remarks behind guests’ backs insensitive. Captain Lee’s favoritism towards Kate was also brought up, as the two were (and still remain) close friends.
These heightened reactions and antics, however, brought in the viewers, and Kate’s ability to stir the pot while providing comedic relief put Below Deck on the map.
Chef Ben Robinson‘s cutting English humor and highly skilled culinary skills lands him a spot as one of Below Deck’s most valuable players. Starring on Below Deck during Seasons 1-4, Ben then crossed over to Below Deck Mediterranean for Season 1 and Season 4. These combined years place Ben as the longest running chef in the franchise.
Though prone to stress-filled outbursts during charters, Ben made gorgeously-plated meals, hooked up with the cast, clapped-back perfectly when annoyed, and entered rooms with a loud, iconic laugh.
Aka, Ben was built for reality television.
Also fun to watch was Ben’s bantering with Kate Chastain. These encounters left many with the “will they…won’t they…” feelings for years, and sure enough, the duo confessed much later to an off-air hook-up (one time only) taking place.
Deckhand Eddie Lucas appeared on Below Deck during the very first season. Once on the crew, he quickly rose up in ranks, earning the title of Bosun for Seasons 2 and 3.
During Season 3, Eddie cheated on his girlfriend with Stew Rocky Dakota. He then lied on-air when Rocky outed their trysts, causing Rocky pain, and his girlfriend to end their relationship. After filming, Rocky went on to claim that the pair hooked up twice more. On this, Eddie never spoke, but he went on to take a multi-years pause from the series.
Season 8 saw the return of Eddie in the Bosun position. However, filming was cut short due to the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic. Before departing the yacht, Captain Lee called Eddie into the wheelhouse to present him with new epaulets, signifying a first officer ranking for Season 9.
On this, an emotional Captain Lee expressed that he saw Eddie like a son. Eddie choked up. Their bond remains strong to the present day. Eddie left Below Deck following Season 9. To date, he is the longest running Bosun on the Below Deck franchise.
Despite Eddie’s personal failings, his humor and growth still won over most of the Below Deck fans. While many would like to see Eddie return as a Below Deck Captain, after filming he slammed the network for their poor pay. A return now is unlikely.
TELL US – WHICH BELOW DECK CAST MEMBER IS YOUR MOST VALUABLE PLAYER?