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The first charter of the season featured returning primary Charley, who previously appeared in Seasons 5 and 6 of Below Deck. While Captain Lee told Eddie, chief stew Francesca Rubi, and chef Rachel Hargrove during the first preference sheet meeting of the season that Charley would be a "fun guy," he also knew that he would have high standards for his third Below Deck charter. "I've had Charley on board before. He is a handful. He demands a lot," Captain Lee said in an interview during the episode. "He doesn't mind paying for it, but in order to get to that pot at the end of the rainbow, you've got to create the rainbow first."
Charley definitely lived up to Captain Lee's expectations in the Below Deck Season 8 premiere. As the charter got underway and it seemed to be taking a while for the guests to get their drinks, Charley decided to take matters into his own hands. "Until the crew figures out what's going on, I'm filling in," Charley told his fellow charter guests.
So, Charley relieved stew Isabelle "Izzy" Wouters of her duties behind the bar and started making drinks himself (clip above). "Everyone seems a little overwhelmed, so I'm just going to help out a little bit," Charley told Izzy.
When Francesca got wind of this, she assured Charley that the crew has everything under control. "Let's call today learning curve," Charley told Francesca. "Let's call tomorrow get it right."
Captain Lee shared his reaction to seeing Charley step behind the bar on Twitter as the episode aired. "Charley is a repeat client, and we just got caught with some unforeseen circumstances and so you do the very best you can," he tweeted to a fan. "The fact that we kept it from them knowing what we had to deal with was paramount. Goal achieved. Wait for it."
Charley also tweeted to Captain Lee that he "had no idea" he was in the hospital just before their charter began and called the Below Deck boss a "true professional." "Charley, you guys are the best. Always great to have you aboard," Captain Lee tweeted in response. "You set the tone for the rest of the season."
After Charley called Captain Lee "the best," the Below Deck boss thanked him for his accolades. "[That's] pretty high praise Charley, and I know I speak for the rest of the crew when I say thanks so very much. Always a pleasure," Captain Lee tweeted. "But we will do better next time."
Want more Below Deck? New episodes air every Monday at 9/8c or catch up on this season through the Bravo app.
Charley's charter will continue to be a challenge for the My Seanna crew in the next episode of Below Deck. Check out a sneak peek, below.
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