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Before things got heated for the Below Deck Mediterranean crew in the hot tub and later the crew mess, Mathew Shea was at the center of the drama featured in the July 26 episode. After the crew called Mat out for his comments while at dinner during their night off, the chef suddenly exited the restaurant. Once back on the yacht, Mat promptly packed up his belongings and disembarked the boat (clip above).
Of course, this isn't the first time we've seen Mat leave the Lady Michelle. He was briefly off the yacht to get an MRI on his knee as the first charter of the season got underway. "Yeah, I guess I've been a bit of a wild card so far [laughs]," Mat said during an exclusive interview with Bravo Insider in mid-July.
The details of the night Mat decided to quit a second time were a little hazy for the chef, who spoke with Bravo Insider before he had seen the episode. "I mean, to be completely honest, I don't fully remember that night. And I drank, I had too much to drink. I hadn't eaten," he recalled. "I had a rough afternoon. I was angry. I was bust, as I like to say. I don't know. I'll be seeing it with you, to be honest."
But knowing what was to come in the episode, Mat said he could tell that his behavior wasn't the best that night. "I don't fully remember that dinner. But I feel bad if I was inappropriate, which it seems like I will be," he said. "I just saw the preview. From the preview, I look inappropriate, and everyone looks upset."
Mat said that he was actually in a good place with the crew going into that dinner. "I was cool with everyone, but I was still, like, overwhelmed about the whole experience, you know, with the anxiety and new people, and you know, the cameras a bit still at this point," he shared. "It was just all of it. And getting drunk doesn't help."
The next morning, Mat realized he had made a terrible mistake. "Well, I woke up that morning so hungover and feeling awful. Like, I can't believe I did that," he said. "I was just starting to like it and like everyone. And I'd, you know, overcome my anxiety and nerves, and two charters had both gone really well. And it was just a drunk, horrible reaction."
Mat did eventually return to Lady Michelle in the August 2 episode of Below Deck Med. He apologized to his crewmates and Captain Sandy Yawn for his actions the night before and for leaving the yacht. "I know it's on TV, so people will probably think I'm like this all the time, but never have I gotten that upset and overwhelmed, like worked up," he told Bravo Insider. "You only regret the things you don't do. But at this point, I just want to finish the season and prove that I can do better."
However, Captain Sandy had other plans. After learning about Mat's departure and before he returned to Lady Michelle, she made the decision to hire a new chef to replace him for the rest of the charter season. But since the new chef wouldn't be out of quarantine in time for the next group of guests, Captain Sandy asked Mat if he would step in the galley for one last charter, which he agreed to. "I had accepted that it was my fault," Mat said of Captain Sandy's decision to bring in a new chef.
Mat shared that he actually understood where Captain Sandy was coming from this season since she was in a management position. He also admitted that he was "a little difficult to work with."
All in all, Mat said that working with Captain Sandy had "been great" this season. "She's been understanding, she's been helpful, she organized my walk-in," Mat said of Captain Sandy's help in the galley early on. "I couldn't say anything bad about her."
Want more Below Deck Med? Season 6 airs Mondays at 9/8c on Bravo with early access to new episodes on Peacock.
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