We Sharks are Officially Opting Out of Shark Week 2020

Citing concerns due to the coronavirus and the lack of a concrete and safe plan from The Discovery Channel, we, the members of the Shark Week Sharks’ Union, have decided to officially opt out of Shark Week this year.

The Great White, Bull, and Hammerhead Sharks were among the first to opt out of this year’s Shark Week. The Megaladon has insisted that they’re still comfortable in their 3.6 million year retirement and will not return to help out The Discovery Channel and we support their decision. Minor League Shark Week, which consists solely of Whale Shark programming, has been outright cancelled as The Discovery Channel has informed us that they will not “mount a week’s worth of programming on something that’s “big and slow and just eats plankton.”It was made clear to us that the proper precautions would not be taken to keep us sharks healthy and safe. As The Discovery Channel utilizes a predominantly American crew, we, the dominant predators of the sea, did not wish to be subjected to their possible virus-carrying bodies. The separate union comprised of Canadian sharks have already told The Discovery Channel that there will be no filming in their waters this year, and we stand with our Canadian brethren.

Since The Discovery Channel would not issue a mask mandate for their crew we did not feel safe eating the fish guts and other chum ingredients that they would be handling in an unsafe manner. The Discovery Channel’s view that we didn’t have to eat the chum was insulting. They know once the blood hits the water we have to eat it.

We do not accept the underwater crew’s scuba gear to be considered PPE since it allows the escape of numerous and possibly infectious air-bubbles. As fun as they may be to swim through (they tickle) they’re not worth the risk.

Speaking of bubbles, our suggestion that their crew complete all filming while sequestered in a “bubble” was met with immediate dismissal. Without assurance that their crew wasn’t going to quarantine themselves from their land world before filming with us, we don’t feel comfortable working with them in our sea world. Look no further than the temporary shutdown of Nat Geo’s show on the Marlins of Florida. Due to their negligence, many Marlins were infected and their show was almost cancelled.

After listing our myriad health concerns, The Discovery Channel’s “health expert” guaranteed us that the “natural and healing” microbes in the ocean water and sand would protect us from anything the American crew may be carrying. We sharks could not believe that a channel with programming that’s reportedly based in science would believe something so outrageous, even if it is endorsed by your Grand Shark or what you call “president.”

Many will call us selfish, but we sharks also have families. It’s currently mating season and many of our kind are pregnant. We do not want to bring the virus home. How can we feel good about jeopardizing our unborn children, many of whom are already in an eat-or-be-eaten fight with their siblings in the womb? Why make it more dangerous?

In the interest of being upfront, we must tell you that these negotiations also failed due to our salary requirements. The Discovery Channel made it clear that we sharks shouldn’t be paid our full week’s salary since their ad revenue was hurt by the abundance of new streaming services like CBS All Access, Peacock, and, especially, Quibi.

We will miss our aquatic colleagues and will be cheering for them throughout the replacement week’s programming, assuming they survive our first few bites where we figure out who and what exactly they are.