Below Deck has always had occasional crew clashes, but the most recent season has become known as the one with the most drama in terms of male versus female stars.
In an exclusive interview, fan favorite Rhylee Gerber shared her own feelings about those stormy seas, who provided her with support on board, and a preview of her plans for the future.
Rhylee also offered her insights on how she perceives the world of reality TV, from what it’s like to be edited to what viewers may not see.
Rhylee Gerber credits Kate Chastain for support in Below Deck Season 7 challenges
During season 7 of Below Deck, viewers watched as Gerber faced the challenges of her male crew mates.
For those audience members who wondered how she kept going rather than walk off, Rhylee admitted that she reached a point where she “wanted to give up.”
But Chief Stewardess Kate Chastain helped her roommate persist, says Gerber.
“To be honest, this season was definitely hard for me. At one point, I wanted to give up,” shared Rhylee.
She recalls, “When you’re constantly fighting to be heard, included, or even recognized as not only a third deckhand with more to offer, but a human no less, it weighs heavy on you.
“I was lucky to have Kate as a roommate who supported me in the rough times as she was really the only one I could vent to.”
Rhylee pointed out that she typically loves a good challenge. But throughout her experience on Season 7 of Below Deck, “it was pretty clear from the start, I was not welcomed on the deck crew,” she added.
Would Rhylee Gerber consider an Alaskan fishing spin-off of Below Deck?
The reality TV world is known for spawning spin-off shows. The Real Housewives of Orange County, for example, gave birth to shows about wealthy housewives from one coast to the other via Bravo TV. The same network similarly experimented with Southern Charm, which spawned Southern Charm New Orleans.
Now that Bravo has found success with Below Deck, the network has experimented with various spin-offs, including the most recent, Below Deck Sailing Yacht. And now a Reddit community, which has formed an informal fan club for Rhylee, has united behind one user’s plea for a “spin-off with Rhylee fishing in Alaska.”
Reddit commentators were quick to embrace the idea and expand on it, with the original poster noting that, “Rhylee would shine” and another proposing that the name be “Below Deck Fishing Boat,” with Gerber as the captain.
Asked if she would consider it, Rhylee — a huge fan of fishing and many other adventurous pursuits — was enthusiastic about the concept.
“Of course!!!” Gerber declared. “I absolutely love what I do, whether it’s fishing, exploring, glacial trekking, etc.”
As for filming in Alaska, the Below Deck star described the state as “amazing,” adding, “It will always be my home so I feel confident in being able to express my love and share it with others when they’re experiencing it in all her glory.”
Rhylee Gerber reflects on life beyond reality TV: Below Deck star’s three new business ventures
Although Rhylee enjoyed her experience on Below Deck, she is enthusiastic about three new business ventures which, she says, have the benefit of allowing her to “remain mobile.” She offered a sneak peek into those plans, as well as whether she will follow up with her yachting career.
“I love my experiences on Below Deck,” emphasized Gerber. “It is still the only yachting experience I have as I have not chosen to actively pursue yachting outside of the show.”
Although she plans to keep her captain’s license active, meaning she could potentially return to the show, or yachting in general, Rhylee says she is also thinking “long term,” which she admits is “something I hadn’t really done” before.
Gerber is excited about her three new business ventures launching in 2020:
- First up, fans can look forward to her jewelry line, Untamed by Rhylee
- Next comes Gerber’s Alaskan summer excursions, Uncharted by Rhylee
- And last but not least, Gerber revealed that she has a new line of gin in development with Marlin & Barrel Distillery, Unleashed by Rhylee
Rhylee shares more details about the first two ventures on her website, The Life Of Rhylee. She plans to add the third item to her site after it receives the required FDA approvals.
Below Deck star Rhylee Gerber reveals what she wants viewers to know about Season 7
Looking back on Season 7 of Below Deck, Gerber is honest about what, if anything, she would do differently.
“I was more subdued in my reactions towards Ashton this season, however, I was still aggressive in some retorts,” admitted Rhylee. “That being said, I have always recognized that flaw within myself. I chose to fight fire with fire which never works.”
Ultimately, the reality TV star feels that for her, “it comes down to my level of patience and I am very impatient with a lot of things, especially chauvinism.”
There’s a big difference between scripted TV shows, such as This Is Us, and unscripted reality TV, from Keeping Up With The Kardashians to Below Deck. However, what both forms have in common is that editing can, as Gerber phrases it, “be a magical thing.”
Rhylee takes ownership of her actions, but points out that “what’s easily forgotten among viewers is that we are human and we all make mistakes.” Admitting she is “not always proud” of how she handles herself, the Below Deck star emphasizes that the show is “completely unscripted and is in fact a true reality series.”
However, she adds that Below Deck “is edited, and sometimes editing can be a magical thing. While some personalities may turn it up a bit for the cameras, what happens is of their own accord. Our personalities cannot be ‘misrepresented’ per se, but rather, amplified.”
Always honest, Rhylee admitted that the editing process did not “make me mouthy, I AM mouthy.”
But she added, “As it pertains to respect on deck, that is simple. I’ve heard often times from viewers that I have no respect for rank or for my superiors on the show and while that is untrue regarding some colleagues, it is true regarding others but for a simple reason…I do not respect certain persons (ie: bosuns/deckhands) who show no ounce of respect towards me themselves.
“And by that I mean to say, they chose to not even bother to respect me as a person let alone my credentials that outrank all of the deck crew in the real world!”
Part one of the Below Deck Season 7 Reunion airs tonight at 8/7c on Bravo, with Part 2 at the same time next Monday.