Extreme Fishing with Robson Green

Monday 6 December, 9:00pm on Five

The fishing adventure show with Robson Green continues. This week, the actor heads to India, but fails to catch any of the huge fish reported to occupy the surrounding waters. Following a few days without any success, Robson attempts to reverse his fortunes with a trip to the Maldives, only to encounter some rare bad weather. Eventually, the Geordie hits some fishing form and lands a variety of reef predators. As he arrives in the city of Kochi on the south-west coast of India, Robson has high hopes for this leg of his journey. “I can’t wait to discover what treats lie in store for me,” he enthuses. The fishing starts immediately in the medieval port town of Old Kochi, where local fishermen continue to use a technique introduced in the early 15th century. Known as Cheena vala, the system involves giant cantilevered wooden structures attached to large nets. Working from the shore, the fishermen lower the nets into the water with the aid of ropes and stone counterweights, then bring the nets back up after just a few minutes in the water. Robson’s first attempt at Cheena vala fishing lands him a few tiddlers, including tiny catfish, sardines, baby tigerfish and an unusual-looking frogfish. After a few more tries, Robson accompanies his guides to market to sell the day’s catch. “It’s a great team effort,” he says. However, while the Geordie seems competent at landing the fish, he is less experienced when it comes to trading. In the end, he sells the entire catch for a measly 20 rupees, but promises to make up the difference from his own wallet. “I’ve clearly got a lot to learn about selling fish in this country!” he reflects. That evening, Robson gets the opportunity to brush up on his acting skills when he takes part in a kathakali performance – a mix of dance, drama and music. Once suitably kitted out in colourful costume and makeup, Robson takes on the role of a small female fish and performs a bizarre dance in front of a bemused audience.

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