SPOILER ALERT! This recap of The Curse of Oak Island Season 6 premiere contains BIG spoilers. Don’t read on if you don’t want to know what happened!
Season 6 of History Channel’s number one documentary reality show, The Curse of Oak Island, got off with a bang last night as the Lagina brothers and their team returned to the legendary island in search of treasure.
If you’re new to the party, The Curse of Oak Island follows the Michigan-based brothers Rick and Marty Lagina and their crack crew of experts, friends, and family members as they work to uncover fabled treasures rumored to be buried there.
What happens in the Season 6 debut episode? In the words of Drilling Down host, Matty Blake, “get ready to be amazed!” The premiere, Rick’s Big Bang Theory, opens with Rick and Marty Lagina cruising down a rainy road on their way to the misty island. Both are in good spirits as they contemplate another season searching for untold treasures. “Every year I say this is the year,” says Marty, “it’s made me feisty … once more into the breach!”
In response Rick later tells an off camera producer that Marty’s enthusiasm bodes well for the team, “I’m gratified to hear him say that, so I’m good.”
The affable brothers pull up to a new and improved war room, a second building on another part of the island that affords the team more privacy as workers and tourists now walk the grounds in ever-increasing numbers.
The spartan building looks the same inside and out, and Rick lays out his ideas to commence the year’s first meeting. What does he think are the main exploration goals this year? “Still the big three, the Money Pit, the Swamp, and Smith’s Cove.” The men agree, perform their customary, “once in, all in,” motto and hand grab, and quickly get to work.
Alex Gauthier arrives from Eagle Canada
The first major action occurs when Alex Gauthier from Eagle Canada arrives to perform a sample seismic test line operation where an underground anomaly exists: the Halifax tunnel in the Money Pit area. If the testing reveals a promising lead, the team is prepared to sink one million dollars into further exploration.
Several holes are filled with dynamite which, when detonated, emit sound waves allowing for image production, and hopefully evidence of a vault.
Next up members of the team including Gary Drayton and Laird Niven head to Smith’s Cove to discover the state of terrain after months of harsh winter storms. Has Mother Nature brought valuable objects to the surface? A quick find, an iron spike, is declared by Laird to be late 19th century. No bueno.
But Laird concludes that a triangular piece of lead dredged up was likely used as “duct tape” to seal ships. Brimming with vigor, Gary declares it is the first significant find of the first day.
At the local pub later that day the triangular lead piece is passed around so the other team members can see and handle the find.
Rick informs the team that last year’s great discovery, the lead cross, will be tested to determine its origin and age. Sentimental Rick spills that he wants to call it Drayton’s Cross, in honor of the man who found it.
The next day team members head to Lot 2, a wooded area where they hope Gary’s metal detector pings a chunk of gold. Could it be? “Look at the patina on that, that’s a coin! That’s King George the III.”
He calls it a cartwheel penny, made in 1797, which alludes to British presence on the island. What does it mean? Rick declares it a small informational win.
Halifax tunnel: The ‘best Christmas gift ever’
Deeper into the day the team gathers in the war room and emotions run high as they invite geophysicist Jeremy Church to interpret the seismic results. Does the made image indicate an underground vault? Church points out an area where he believes a shaft exists, some 90-120 feet down. Jack Begley says, “that’s the Halifax tunnel!”
Rick is teary-eyed as he tells the Eagle Canada team guys that the results are “the best Christmas gift ever, you should be proud of yourselves! You hit the bullseye no question about it.”
And so the next day Eagle Canada returns to set 1,300 charges and 1,500 geophone receivers in a grid pattern that will lead to creation of a 3D map of the ground beneath Oak Island.
Super cautious scientist Marty says he is “realistically optimistic” while Rick dares to hope that this represents nothing less than, “one step forward in the search for the truth.”
Origins of the cross
The following day, team members travel north to the University of New Brunswick where Dr. Chris McFarlane uses laser ablation to test the infamous lead cross found last year at Smith’s Cove.
Test results shows some silver content and he declares that the cross “is not obviously related to North America,” causing relieved smiles to bust out as the realization sinks in: the cross came from Europe or the Middle East, is possibly centuries old, and maybe of Templar origin. Score another victory for Gary and his magic metal detector!
Meanwhile, back on the island Jack and Gary again head out to Lot 2 to discover what hidden treasures the damp earth holds.
Within minutes the duo discover something hidden within the moss that makes them shout with excitement. “What has someone been doing here?!” declares Gary.
A large spike embedded in a large stone with holes drilled into it make him believe it is an apparatus used to haul treasure. Rick hurries over to see with his own eyes just what they’ve uncovered.
But first the team decide that archaeologist Laird needs to appraise it as it could be a cultural find, necessitating his evaluation before they can proceed. Quickly he snaps some pics before Rick is allowed to peel back the pesky moss hiding the mysterious rock.
Stunned, Rick finds a triangle left on the surface of the rock. Could it be a Freemason sign?
Cofferdam at Smith’s Cove
The action is coming fast and furious this season and before you know it, it’s another day and another new major exploration is under way. Marty leaves geophysicist Mike West to conduct a deep scan for metal artifacts at Smith’s Cove.
In a related move other team members trek to Irving Equipment Limited to discuss the possibility of building a cofferdam at Smith’s Cove. It’s a complicated, ambitious process, and Rick calls the immense structure “intimidating”.
Rick and Marty tell the off camera producer that the upcoming exploration at Smith’s Cove will be the biggest thing ever done on the island. Rick replies, “finally, we’re getting our hands dirty. It is a treasure hunt after all.”
How dirty will the hunt for treasure on Oak Island get? Very dirty! In the biggest, and last find of the episode, Gary declares, “You never know what’s gonna come out of a hole,” before shrieking, “oh my gosh, it’s another bobby dazzler, look!”
Rick can’t believe what Gary has snatched from the earth: a very dirty, very beautiful brooch.
What does this astonishing and potentially historic find on the western end of the island, almost a mile from the Money Pit, mean? Be sure to tune in next week and find out!
The Curse of Oak Island airs Tuesday nights at 9/8c on History.
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