Below Deck Med Recap: Natalya & Luka Hook Up, Captain Sandy Calls Out Max and Lara Gets to Drive the Boat, Plus a Pirate-Themed Day Leads to a Big Tip

by Julia Comments
Below Deck Med Recap: Natalya & Luka Hook Up, Captain Sandy Calls Out Max and Lara Gets to Drive the Boat, Plus a Pirate-Themed Day Leads to a Big Tip

Credit: Fred Jagueneau/Bravo

Although this crew is *still* not at 100%, they managed to pull off yet another successful charter full of Italian feasts (thanks, Chef Jack) and a detailed-oriented pirate-themed day (kudos to Natalya). But on this episode of Below Deck Med, it’s the sexual tension between Luka and Natalya that really steals the spotlight. Will they give in and smooch, or will Natalya stay true to her (open) relationship with her boyfriend?

As things seem to be getting better between Tumi and Natalya, the deck crew is struggling with Max, the newest member of the crew. As Captain Sandy steps in to check on Max and his lack of communication, she hears Lara losing her patience with him on the radio. Sandy realizes that it’s a language barrier that stands in the way for Max, plus he talks so dang fast that people are having a tough time comprehending what he is saying. It’s a deadly combination and doesn’t mix well with communication on the deck.

It’s Chef Jack’s birthday, but Luka is the one whose dreams are coming true. Captain Sandy allows him to learn and try his hand with captain responsibilities, which is a welcome break from the drama on deck. Lara is grateful that she has Kyle there so she can air her grievances about Max in confidence since he also speaks Afrikaans, and no one else can understand what she is b*tching about.

Speaking of Kyle, he claims he has a brother-sister type of relationship with Natalya, but Natalya is quite competitive with him. It seems like Natalya isn’t the only one in competition on the boat. Max is constantly acting as though he knows more than Lara, and according to Lara, he patronizes her. Lara has no more patience with Max, whereas Luka is calm and willing to work things out.

Natalya is continuing her flirtation with Luka, but she is staying true to her boyfriend, who BTW just booked a flight to Thailand with his buddies… which doesn’t seem like something someone with a girlfriend would do, amiright?!

As per the instruction, Chef Jack is preparing a pizza-making class with the children of the guests and Natalya, their “nanny” on board. Chef explains that when he lived in Vietnam, he was a teacher to three-year-olds, so he is very comfortable and confident in the kitchen with these littles. TBH, Jack and Natalya are a fabulous duo keeping these kids engaged, out of trouble, and entertained.

In the meantime, Tumi is catching onto what kind of person Kyle is. She is noticing that Kyle is constantly talking sh*t about Natalya to Tumi, which makes Tumi realize he is likely talking sh*t about her to… anyone? Max continues to feel disrespected by Lara, especially as she shouts directions his way. Luka admits that looking after Max is like taking care of a toddler. Luka realizes that Max doesn’t like being told off, so handling him is a bit tricky.

A guest excursion ensues, and Natalya is heading to land with the guests so she can stick with the children. It’s a welcome change for Natalya, who is feeling a little more stressed out than usual. Her change in behavior is likely due to the confusion that surrounds her relationship. She desperately yearns for Luka but hasn’t made any moves because she is trying to be respectful to her (not-so-respectful) boyfriend. I use that term loosely because based on the conversations we are hearing, that is not boyfriend behavior if you ask me…

After the excursion, the guests return, and Lara is given the opportunity to be at the helm — a dream she has had for as long as she can remember. She is enjoying every second of calling it with Captain Sandy, and of course, Captain Sandy refers to Lara as “a little Sandy.”

Dinner is pushed to 6:30, which gives everyone a little bit more time to get organized and prepped. It’s an early night for the guests, which gives the crew more time to focus on the upcoming pirate-themed day. Natalya does an incredible job of organizing the treasure hunt and reviews the plan with the crew so everyone is prepped. Tumi is happy to report that Natalya’s attitude has completely changed for the better, and now they seem to be on the same page.

Pirate day has officially arrived on the yacht, and the crew is ready to go. Jessika (remember her???) phones Captain Sandy to say she has fully recovered (from her hangover that brought her to the hospital), and she will be returning to the boat as soon as this charter wraps up.

Natalya’s treasure hunt is underway, and the guests are off following the clues left around the yacht. It is an absolute hit with the guests and with Tumi. Tumi is thrilled with Natalya’s actions and plans, and it seems like everyone truly enjoyed themselves. The guests begin packing, and the deck crew is finally figuring out how to handle Max (with kid gloves). All seems to be going well until they approach the dock and Luka begins sweating.

Depth perception has not always been my forte, but this spot for the yacht looks awfully tight, plus Luka has a few deck crew members shouting they don’t know what they are doing. NO PRESSURE. They slip into the spot, thanks to Luka, and they switch into their whites, ready to bid farewell to the well-behaved guests. A thick envelope gets handed over to Captain Sandy, and the crew heads in for the tip meeting. Despite being down a stew, the crew seems to have crushed the charter, and their $2,300 tip per person reflects their hard work.

Jessika returns to the boat after her hiatus, and it’s amazing that she returns just in time for another night out. The sexual tension between Luke and Natalya is so thick you can cut it, but they’re not the only ones having a time. Chef Jack is sucking face with a random, and good for him!

Everyone notices the tension between Luka and Natalya, but Natalya is sticking to her guns. When her boyfriend calls her, she steps away to talk to him, only to become frustrated during their conversation. Natalya claims that her life is “difficult at the moment” when it comes to her relationships, but she makes an error in judgment when she kisses Luka in the van ride back to the yacht with her crew cheering her on.

Once back on the boat, Natalya pulls Luka into her bathroom, and the comedic award goes to Kyle, who shares the room with Natalya.  He just wants to go into the bathroom, and he breaks up whatever is occurring in there. Things get awkward when Natalya’s boyfriend calls her right after she’s done smooching Luka but still cuddling him on the top bunk. There’s a lot of debating going on whether she should answer the call or not. Luka thinks it would be funny if Natalya answered her boyfriend’s call as Luka lies in Natalya’s bed, but Kyle, who has somehow become the voice of reason, advises Natalya against that. How will this all play out in the morning?