If you watch reality shows, then you know how they fear the most outrageous drama and suspense in every episode. It’s readily apparent that reality TV has strayed far from reality and plunged into the realm of the unrealistic.
It’s probably not surprising for you to learn that most reality shows are scripted in one way or another. If something you see on screen seems too good to be true, then it probably is. Whatever you see when the cameras are rolling was probably scripted.
Still, fans of reality TV shows enjoy the fact that they are at least based on reality more-so than completely fictionalized shows like sitcoms and dramas.
Counting Cars Is A Great Concept
Car fans have fallen in love with shows like Fast n’ Loud, Misfit Garage, Graveyard Carz, and Counting Cars. Despite the fact that neither of these shows are as ‘real’ as they present themselves to be.
Counting Cars is a great concept. It’s all about a Las Vegas garage that customizes and restores cars for its clients. Danny Koker, the star of the show owns and garnered a lot of viewer attention for his signature personality.
Just because the show runs on the History Channel doesn’t mean that it’s completely real. A lot of the show is fabricated, scripted, and planned – but that’s what sells in show biz.
Regardless of the many illusions the show employs to draw in viewers, many elements of the show are rooted. It is in some semblance of reality. Let’s sift through all the deceit and see what remains.
Facts Verse Presents: 10 Lies from Counting Cars (And 10 True Facts)
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Fact: Counting Cars Exists Only Because Of Pawn Stars
You may not be fully aware just how Counting Cars owes its existence to the equally fake show Pawn Stars. Unless you’ve been watching the show since its inception.
Danny Koker was actually a consultant for the folks over at Pawn Stars. He was featured in numerous episodes before network execs decided to take a chance. Then, give his own show based around his auto shop. Good call History Channel – looks like you picked another winner.
Lie: Buying Cars Right Off The Street
If you were suddenly approached by a complete stranger in an absurd bandanna and was offered a stack of cash for your car, you might question the man’s intentions or sanity. This kind of thing doesn’t happen in real life how it’s depicted in the show.
All transactions are decided off the camera and the conversations we see onscreen are scripted or staged for dramatic effect.
Fact: Count’s 77 Is A Real Band
You might assume that Danny Koker’s band is just an elaborate ploy to give his character a little more oomph, but the band is in fact legit. They have videos, albums, and tour dates all throughout the Las Vegas scene.
Now, are they any good? That’s a completely different question. If you like cheesy rock bands from the 80s and 90s then you might find something you like, but otherwise…….
Lie: Great Customer Satisfaction
Counting Cars paints this picture of everyone being super satisfied with the end result of each finished build.
And sure, it looks great on television for all of these completed projects to look like absolute masterpieces with every customer being absolutely blown away by the finished product, but in reality, Danny’s shop actually gets a fair bit of negative feedback and reviews by clients that weren’t thrilled about their purchase.
Fact: Danny Struggles To Sell His Cars
You’d think that building eye-popping cars like Danny does wouldn’t be hard to let go when it’s time to turn a profit.
But, Danny expresses a tinge of emotional pain when he has to part ways with his custom builds. He says that he puts a little bit of his heart into every project, and even though art is meant to be seen, sometimes he struggles with letting go.
Lie: The Drama
Every single episode is full of infighting, wild antics, and every other kind of interpersonal drama, and guess what? None of it is real.
Once the cameras are taping, the crew all feels the need to be the most extreme exaggerations of themselves. It’s like they suddenly are up on stage and the audience expects them to be a certain role.
So even the parts of the show that aren’t precisely scripted end up being almost entirely fake.
Fact: Mike Is Great At Pinstriping
Mike is one polarizing character for sure. He’s always wearing those crazy horns on his bandanna and won’t let up on his whole shtick. Chances are if you’ve watched any of the show, you’re probably sick and tired of his persona and brand of humor.
Despite all these unsavory elements, he actually is really talented at what he does career-wise. So if you were curious whether his craftsmanship is as good as it’s depicted, we are happy to say it is!
Lie: Frontier Lawsuit Was A Publicity Stunt
Count Kustoms ended up suing Joseph Frontier a while back and it made some pretty big waves in the media. They claimed that he was stealing from his former employer and using all that cash for his own personal gain.
Frontier’s representation filed for the suit to be dismissed and the whole thing fell through. It turns out that Count Kustoms was just trying to rile up the press to get some publicity while trying to make a rather underhanded money grab in the process.
Fact: Danny Gets His Car Facts Wrong Sometimes
Danny isn’t the know-it-all master mechanic that he likes to portray himself as. In fact, he gets a lot of his facts and details wrong all the time. He’s self-taught and not professionally trained and sometimes – more often than it should – it shows in large ways.
This has led to him receiving lots of criticism and his mechanical knowledge being called into question. Network producers have to fact check everything he says before each episode airs – it’s a good thing that they do because he misses the mark a lot.
Lie: Filming Is Chronological
Up to 15 builds are in the works at Count’s Kustoms at any given moment. This presents itself as a bit of a nightmare for the production team and the cameramen. Finished episodes need to seem like they are chronologically in order and make sense and this requires a ton of editing, splicing, and reworking to pull off. So, no, the show isn’t filmed in real-time or in order. Not even close.
Fact: Danny Is Not An Environmentalist
He has a hard time keeping his opinions to himself and sometimes he utters some nonsense that lacks both common sense and an understanding of the real-world threats that are facing humanity and the planet we call our home.
He’s well-known to be a climate change denier and for saying that he thinks environmental issues aren’t a real threat to humanity, but instead are merely a game that politicians play.
Lie: The Dialogue
Working in an auto shop definitely involves a lot of necessary conversations pertaining to the rebuilds and customization work, but in the world of television, you got to minimalize all the variables that you can. What that means, is that the majority of dialogue you hear on screen has all been scripted for the TV screen even if it was based upon a real conversation or something that needed to be discussed.
True: Danny Is Balding
The Count’s aesthetic is pretty ridiculous. He’s obviously trying to play dress-up like some kind of biker dude or something. He’s got the sunglasses, and the bandanna, the chain necklace, and all-black outfits.
But it’s that bandanna that he never takes off that has inspired a lot of speculation. What’s he hiding under there? Tattoos, an ugly birthmark?
Actually he”s covering up the fact that he has a receding hairline. Yup, he’s going bald and is in utter denial about it.
Lie: The Crew Is Really That Whiny
Yet again, this is all for show to boost ratings. If a shop had a crew as whiny and prone to endless bickering as Counts Kustoms was, everyone would be fired and promptly replaced.
Fact: Counting Cars wasn’t Danny Kokers First TV Show
A long time ago – way way back in the strange time called the 90s– Danny Koker actually hosted a completely different kind of television show.
He took the reigns on a show that featured horror movies with commentary called Saturday Fright At The Movies. He went by the nickname Count Cool Rider at the time.
The fact that he has been on TV before calls into question his expertise as a mechanic. It seems like he is purely a TV personality above anything else.
Lie: Scott Jones Embezzled Money From The Shop
Scott was a popular recurring character that mysteriously vanished after season two. Many people have speculated that he got caught siphoning money away from the company for his personal gain. This claim however is baseless and has no supporting evidence.
Fact: Every Car Is Really Restored
Even though many of the key elements of the show such as the dialogue and drama are scripted and fake, Count’s Kustoms actually restores every car that comes into the garage. The time, labor, materialize and money it takes to make these beauties look and run so beautifully is nothing short of astonishing.
Lie: Some Of The Stories Behind Each Car
While the shop really does the restorations on each car that you see on the show, not every one of the fantastic backstories behind each vehicle is rooted in reality. In fact, some of the tales told about the cars are complete fabrications that just spice up the show’s mystique and allure.
Fact: Roli Really Did Have His Trailer Stolen
He’s known to fans of the show for being the primary detailer for Count’s Customs and he is in fact really good at his job.
Being the well-known television personality that he is, Rock n’ Roli at one point faced some unexpected danger when his trailer full of all of his expensive equipment was jacked from a parking lot in Vegas. There was a full-on police investigation that eventually got to the bottom of who and for what reason people decided to gank his gear.
Lie: The Timeline Of Some Builds
A little television magic happens in every episode when the timeline of some of the builds is fast-forwarded giving the illusion that the projects are completed in an entirely unrealistic timeframe. Some builds, in fact, take well over a year to complete. The shop averages about 6 build completions a month.
It’s in post-production that the show’s content is snipped down and condensed to give the illusion that each car can go from start to finish in just one half-hour show.
It probably comes as no surprise to you that Counting Cars is far from the facts-forward reality show that it presents itself as. It’s still a pretty entertaining series despite all of these embellishments, and it’s nice to learn that not everything about this so-called reality show is pure fiction.
Now it’s time to hear some of your feedback. Would you ever have your car customized by Count and his crew or do you think it would be an utter waste of your time and money?
Let us know what you think in the comments section.
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