Edge of Alaska star Neil Darish reflects on the end of an era, previews final season


Photo Credit: Edge of Alaska/Discovery Channel Image Acquired from Discovery Channel PR

As Edge of Alaska prepares to sign off with its final season, Hidden Remote caught up with star Neil Darish to reflect upon the show’s incredible legacy before diving into what’s to come this season!

More from Hidden Remote

Over the course of the last few years, fans of Discovery Channel’s Edge of Alaska have ventured out to McCarthy where they’ve come to know and the natives at the heart of one of America’s final frontier towns.  It’s been an unforgettable adventure but, as is always the case, all good things must come to an end eventually including our time in the quaint frontier town.

This fall, Edge of Alaska will return for one final journey as the fate of McCarthy hangs in the balance with local businessman Neil Darish ready to sell off the town to the highest bidder. With changing looming on the horizon, Jeremy Geller must kick things into overdrive to establish an entirely self-sufficient homestead in order to forever leave his stamp on the area before before it is forever changed. With two vastly different goals, tensions will rise once again as fans venture towards the explosive final stretch of the show.

As we prepare to say goodbye to one of Discovery’s most iconic series, Hidden Remote caught up with star Neil Darish to take a look back at the show’s legacy, discuss the unwavering support from fans, talk about what’s to come this season and more!

Hidden Remote: After an incredible run, Edge of Alaska is coming to a close with this season set to serve as its last. Before we discuss the show’s final season, it seems fitting to begin by reflecting on the show’s incredible run. When you first signed onto the show, did you ever imagine that the show would take off in the way it has?

Neil Darish: The production folks told us what to expect, but of course we doubted the show would connect with people outside of our little world. We thought perhaps there are too many Alaska stories and folks were bored with Alaska. We also doubted the production crew could handle the winter out here. We were wrong on both counts.

Hidden Remote: Looking back at the past years, is there a particular moment from the show that stands out as a personal favorite or one that you look back on as a moment that left a particular impact on you?

Darish: While I dislike Jeremy’s attitude toward my projects, watching his family is proof that the lifestyle out here has allowed Jeremy and Allie to be great examples of parenting. Perhaps more than any single moment or example, it’s the gentle consistency in the way Bjorn and Liam interact with their world that expresses Keller’s side of our argument. That’s hard to argue against.

Hidden Remote: For every high, there were also a few memorable low moments that played out. Is there anything you look back on when reflecting and think, ‘I wish I had done this instead of that?’ or ‘If only I had handled that situation differently?’

Darish: I regret every time I have any anger in responding to my neighbors. My biggest battle is letting go of the anger.

Hidden Remote: It seems safe to say that the show might not have lasted as long as it has without the support of its incredible and loyal fans who have stuck with it from the beginning. Were you surprised by the fan reception over the years?

Darish: Yes, and more than surprised. It was a shock that people took such interest in the show and our town. There are folks who have written to us to share how the show impacted them in some small way. I think many kids who grew up in America in the ’60s & ’70s, daydreamed of some stronger connection to wilderness in their life. We chose not to live a 9-5 lifestyle. More importantly we chose to live in an extreme wilderness area. Being given a chance to share a bit of our life with the fans was an honor, and I know that each of us thank Discovery for the opportunity.

Hidden Remote: And is there anything that you’d like to say to your fans reading this interview today?

Darish: Thank you to the folks who joined us in McCarthy via Edge Of Alaska. I am thankful for the fans watching who sympathize with my side of the development argument. Perhaps one day we can say hello in person. There have been quite a few fans visiting McCarthy in the summer, and if you are in McCarthy staying with us, I have a Mother Lode sample for you!

Hidden Remote: As we’ve discussed, this season will be the show’s last so as we get into our discussion about the final season let’s first begin by addressing the question on many fan’s mind: Why now? Why is now the right time to bring the show to a conclusion?

Darish: I remember thinking in 2001 that it should take 5 years to make McCarthy financially stable. It took over 15 years. For the first time in decades, McCarthy has a stable enough economy for small growth to continue at a pace that allows a local economy to thrive. Most of the people here derive at least some income from tourism. The town is now stable, in many ways thanks to Discovery (I mean it, thank you Discovery!). The publicity will allow long-term stability for McCarthy. New blood, new ideas and new growth are required for any town to continue forward.

Watch your favorite shows on fuboTVWatch over 67 live sports and entertainment channels with a 7-day FREE trial!

Hidden Remote: Judging by what we do know about the final chapter, fans are in for one crazy final chapter of the show. What can you tease about the farewell season of Edge of Alaska? What do fans have to look forward to?

Darish: An opportunity to see both sides of the town’s future.

Hidden Remote: Is there any particular moment that you’re most-excited for fans to see unfold during the season?

Darish:  Nervous is more like it. Fans might be upset with me for some choices I had to make.

Hidden Remote: Are you pleased with how the show ends the final chapter of its story and was there anything that you didn’t get the chance to achieve during the run that you would have loved for viewers to see?

Darish: I am so pleased with the way the show ends, except for one part of the story that can’t be answered for a while.

Hidden Remote: Because this is the Golden Age of television and no show seems to stay gone forever, would you be up to revisiting the show down the line if the timing was right?

Darish:  As long as we had something impressive to show, like a gondola to the top, a Mine tour all the way into the city in the mountain. A grand hotel that celebrates nature…  Give us enough time and you might see us again.

Next: Alaska: The Last Frontier to go live for the first time this October

Hidden Remote: With Edge of Alaska’s time on Discovery Channel coming to an end, what’s next for you? Where does your next chapter begin?

Darish: The businesses I own are ready to be sold. The sooner the businesses sell (as a town to one buyer or as independent businesses); the sooner I can begin building my next projects in the area.

Hidden Remote: Before we go is there anything else you’d like to add or touch on that I might have missed?

Darish: There were a number of remarkable people who came to our town, and spent four winters with us. They wanted to tell our stories and make the most exciting show they could around our lives in this crazy town of McCarthy. I may be bad, but I am only a badass because of these maniacs. So far three of the crew have moved to McCarthy year round.  With or without their cameras, we welcome them all back as one of our own.

Don’t miss the premiere of Edge of Alaska‘s farewell season Sunday, Oct. 8 at 10/9c on Discovery Channel!