'Below Deck Down Under' Chef Ryan McKeown Has No Regrets About His Time on Board (Exclusive)

Below Deck Down Under star Ryan McKeown has no regrets about his time on Thalassa. While the chef has been branded a "villain" by many viewers during his time on the Peacock series in part due to his clashes with Chief Stew Aesha Scott, McKeown told PopCulture.com that he's not taking the criticism of people with "biased opinions" to heart. 

"I don't know that they're watching the same show," McKeown continued of the criticism he's gotten online, defending his way of doing things on board. "There's this whole image of me like, 'This is what Ryan wants to do,'" he continued of the criticism he's gotten for things like serving tacos and burgers. The Philadelphia native continued that he's simply been going by the preference sheet provided to him ahead of the charter, adding, "I did what the guests asked." He added of his work style, "I'm proactive. I like to fix problems before they happen."

When it comes to his relationship with Scott, McKeown said the two have never been able to get on the same page after getting off on the wrong foot. "Do you have little tantrums?" she asked him upon first meeting, to which the chef replied, "Yeah, don't be stupid." Looking back, McKeown admits there was "definitely a lack of communication" between him and Chief Stew, and while they "both did try" to get over their initial distaste for one another, "unfortunately, it didn't stick." He continued, "Nothing that came out of her mouth was positive."


Despite all the drama on board, McKeown told PopCulture there was more to his time on the yacht than that. "We have thousands and thousands of hours of footage," he said, admitting that while he would have liked to have had "a few more bones thrown [his] way" by the show's editing, he recognizes "everybody has their job to do" when it comes to making an entertaining show. "I had a job to do. ... I think at times I had my lows, but I had a job," he said. Below Deck Down Under airs new episodes Thursdays on Peacock.