‘Big Fish, Texas’ Follows Buddy Guindon And His Commercial Fishing Empire

Buddy Guindon is no stranger to hard work, having built up his company from only one boat to an entire fleet of boats and building Katie’s Seafood Market, which is named after Buddy’s wife. The entire Guindon family works together like a well-oiled machine in order to maintain and build upon what Buddy started. Buddy Guindon and his family are well known in Galveston, Texas, and he is a respected advocate of the Gulf fishery.

Buddy Guindon shared with the Houston Chronicle that the show was a long time coming. Almost five years ago, Buddy was first contacted by a producer who was looking to do a reality show based on a family in Guindon’s business, but was also working to protect the sustainability of the seafood business in the Gulf of Mexico.

“In 2011 the discussion began to put the family on television, but I didn’t want to jump into it lightly,” Buddy Guindon said.

Conservation is important to Buddy Guindon, and he said by doing this series, he wants to show what is takes to fish the Gulf while working on sustainability. Buddy Guindon has even went before Congress as a founding member of the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Shareholders Alliance, which is a conservation and advocacy group that holds members to higher industry standards than those that are required by the government.

Besides conservation, family is also extremely important to Buddy and the Guindon clan. The show will focus mainly on Buddy Guindon and his relationships with his extended family, including his wife and four sons, and his brother and his wife. Buddy Guindon’s 85-year-old father, Greg, oversaw the market’s daily books and although he passed away last year, he will also appear on the show.

According to Twin Cities, Robert Palumbo, who is the executive producer, stated that National Geographic seldom airs character-driven shows. In this case the family dynamics, the nature of the work they do, and their dedication to conservation were the catalysts that drew him in.

“Usually we go for more action-adventure, science and space shows. This is different,” Palumbo said. “It’s about fathers and sons and family.”

National Geographic’s Big Fish, Texas page provides information on other family members that viewers will get to know, including Katie, Buddy Guindon’s wife. She serves as the family’s voice of reason, and makes sure that all decisions are made with the good of the Guindon family in mind. Over the years, she has learned to deal with emergencies and anything else life throws her way when Buddy is away at sea.

Kenny and Buddy Guindon are not just brothers, but best friends as well. Like his brother, Kenny has invested a large part of his life into fishing and building the company. Kenny is the more analytical and practical of the two and with his vision, he often helps Buddy Guindon understand why some things are needed in order to keep Katie’s Seafood Market on track and thriving.

Kenny’s wife, Andrea, is described as a down-to-earth woman with a heart of pure gold. Andrea is insightful and is an important part of the family. At one time she fished alongside her husband, but now does some shift work at Katie’s, helping with everything from working retail to gutting fish.

Nick Gutierrez is the eldest of Buddy Guindon’s children, and oversees daily operations at Katie’s Seafood. He was never interested in becoming a fisherman, but he knows every detail of the family business. Unlike his brother Nick, Hans Guindon loves to fish and is regarded as one of the best captains in the Gulf.

Like his father before him, Ricky Gutierrez joined the Marines and left the family business behind. Now that he’s back, Buddy Guindon would like Ricky to use his computer savvy and create a website for Katie’s Seafood. Ricky would also be responsible for other online issues, such as handling and troubleshooting the shipping orders.

The youngest brother, Christopher Guindon, is just beginning to participate in the family business, but he already has big visions. He feels that the family isn’t thinking big enough when it comes to the future, and his ideas are very different from the family’s old school way of doing business.

Last, but certainly not least, is the hilarious Captain Mac, whom Buddy Guindon sees as both a wise mentor and a father figure. At the age of 82, he’s just about seen and done everything, but that doesn’t stop him. He is always ready to head out on that next big adventure.

The first episode of the show is titled “King of the Gulf” and sneak-peek videos show family members explaining tricks of the trade as they haul in large red snappers. Will you be checking out this new series? Leave your comments, thoughts and opinions below. Big Fish, Texas premieres on Wednesday, February 3 at 9 p.m. ET on the National Geographic channel.

[Image via Asylum Entertainment/Twitter]