American Restoration follows five of the best restoration shops in the United States as they not only restore pieces of America's history, but create new and awe-inspiring works from vintage items. Each shop has a unique focus—from classic cars, to rare antique signs, to one-of-a-kind bikes. They'll prove their prowess as masters of restoration, while exploring each item's original glory, place in history and effect on pop-culture.
Runtime: 60 minutes
American Restoration - Pawn Stars - Netflix
Pawn Stars is an American reality television series, shown on History, and produced by Leftfield Pictures. The series is filmed in Las Vegas, Nevada, where it chronicles the daily activities at the World Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop, a 24-hour family business opened in 1989 and originally operated by patriarch Richard “Old Man” Harrison, his son Rick Harrison, Rick's son Corey “Big Hoss” Harrison, and Corey's childhood friend, Austin “Chumlee” Russell. The series, which became the network's highest rated show and the No. 2 reality show behind Jersey Shore, debuted on July 26, 2009. The series depicts the staff's interactions with customers, who bring in a variety of artifacts to sell or pawn, and who are shown haggling over the price and discussing its historical background, with narration provided by either the Harrisons or Chumlee. The series also follows the interpersonal conflicts among the cast. One reviewer referencing these conflicts described the show as a version of Antiques Roadshow “hijacked by American Chopper's” Teutul family. TV Guide has offered a similar description, calling the show “one part Antiques Roadshow, a pinch of LA Ink and a dash of COPS”. Numerous local experts in a variety of fields also regularly appear to appraise the items being sold or pawned, two of whom have gone on to their own spinoff programs. Antique restorer/metal artist Rick Dale is the star of the series' first spin-off, American Restoration, which premiered in October 2010, and mechanic/auto restoration expert Danny “The Count” Koker stars in the second spinoff, Counting Cars, which debuted August 13, 2012.
American Restoration - Main shop staff - Netflix
Richard (Rick) Kevin Harrison – Co-founder/co-owner of the pawn shop. The son of “The Old Man” Richard and father of “Big Hoss” Corey, he has earned the nickname of “The Spotter” due to his sharp eye for valuable items. He started in the pawn business at age 13. Rick co-founded the “Gold & Silver” pawn shop with his father in 1989 at the age of 23. Boasting that “Gold & Silver” is the only family-owned pawn shop in Las Vegas, Rick says he dropped out of high school in the tenth grade because he was making $2,000 a week selling fake Gucci bags. An avid reader since childhood, his favorite area of historical study is the British Navy, from the late 1700s to the early 1800s. Harrison also appears on United Stuff of America, an H2 series from the producers of Pawn Stars that focuses on notable artifacts that were used in important moments in history, which premiered in June 2014. Richard Benjamin “The Old Man” Harrison – Rick's father and Corey's grandfather, and the founder/co-owner of the pawn shop, which he opened in 1989 with his son Rick. He was usually referred to by his nickname, “The Old Man”, which he earned at age 38, according to the episode “Fired Up”. Originally from Lexington, North Carolina, he was the first to arrive at the shop in the morning, and had not had a sick day since 1994. He was a 20-year veteran of the U.S. Navy. He was particularly passionate about automobiles, showing an interest in all types of cars, from the 1966 Chrysler Imperial his son and grandson had restored for his 50th wedding anniversary to the mid-1960s B&Z Electra-King electric car shown to them in “Honest Abe”, which he suggested could be converted into a golf cart. In the episode that aired on July 31, 2017 it was mentioned that he was retired.
Corey Harrison – Rick's son and Richard's grandson, who is nicknamed “Big Hoss”. and started at the shop at age nine, polishing jewelry. He is now the manager of the shop's day-to-day operations, and 30 of its employees, makes the most purchases of anyone in the shop, and is being groomed by Rick to be the boss one day. Corey often comes into conflict with his father and grandfather over his knowledge of the shop's inventory, his responsibilities as a manager, and his overall judgment in sales, in particular his purchase of expensive items. Following gastric lap band surgery in 2010 and a change to his diet, Harrison's weight went down from 365 lb (166 kg) to approximately 250 lb (113 kg) by July 2011. In Season 6, he tells the elder Harrisons that he will take a job at another business if he is not given a 10% partnership in the shop. He remains with the shop after he is given a raise and a 5% partnership, with the possibility of a greater stake in the business in the future. Austin “Chumlee” Russell – Corey's childhood friend, employed for five years at the time of the first season, having started at the shop when he was 21. Chumlee was given his nickname at age 12 by the father of a childhood friend, who named him after the walrus sidekick of Tennessee Tuxedo. He does behind-the-counter work at the shop, such as testing the items, loading them, and writing the tickets for items purchased by others. He is often the butt of the others' jokes for his perceived lack of intelligence and his incompetence, for which he has been referred to as a “village idiot”. Chumlee has responded to this by explaining that he is underestimated, and points to his expertise in pinball machines, which he utilizes in the second season episode “Pinball Wizards”, much to Corey's surprise, as an example of one of the areas in which he is knowledgeable. Chumlee later displays the ability to repair a gas-powered toy car in “Never Surrender” (Episode 3.25), and expert knowledge in discerning a fake pair of Air Jordan V sneakers in the following episode, “Honest Abe” (Episode 3.26). As a result of the show, Russell formed his own company, which sells novelty items, including T-shirts of his own design, and arranges for his personal appearances. He sold half of the company in 2010 to Rick Harrison for $5,000, so that the shop could handle orders of his merchandise more efficiently.
American Restoration - References - Netflix