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'Deadliest Catch' sets series ratings records with Phil Harris stroke

By Christopher Rocchio, 06/25/2010 

Deadliest Catch set several rating records with Tuesday night's sixth-season broadcast, which began the show's coverage of the January 29 stroke that led to the death of Cornelia Marie fishing vessel Captain Phil Harris.

Discovery Channel announced the broadcast averaged 5.4 million total viewers -- making it the reality series' most-watched episode ever.

The broadcast also set all-time ratings highs with a 3.55 rating among households, a 2.99 rating among Adults 25-54, and a 2.55 rating among Adults 18-49.

In addition to showing the Cornelia Marie's crew finding the 53-year-old Harris in his cabin after he suffered the stroke while the vessel was docked and off-loading on Alaska's St. Paul Island, the episode also featured footage of sons Josh and Jake and the rest of the ship's crew helping paramedics evacuate Harris.

Deadliest Catch's next several episodes will document the rest of the show's fleet reacting to the stroke and follow Josh and Jake as they watch over their father as he is treated at an Anchorage hospital and begins to recover before suffering fatal complications.

Deadliest Catch's July 13 broadcast will then document Harris' passing and be followed by a July 20 episode that will feature the fleet learning the news.  Discovery will also air Deadliest Catch: Captain Phil Harris Remembered, an additional tribute special, immediately after the show's regular broadcast on July 20.

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