Hardcore Pawn — worst show in the history of television.

“HARDCORE PAWN”  is a TV show on TruTv — it’s about a pawnshop in Detroit that seems to be the size of a football field.   It is run by a guy named Les Gold, his son Seth and his daughter Ashely.  They have a  lot of employees and a lot of big burly (many of them black) security guards who have the job of throwing out any customer who becomes unruly –  (that would be just about every customer — real or actor —  highlighted by the director and editor.)  There’s a lot of social stuff going on here and if you are dopey enough to watch this monstrosity, it might all go over your head.   Test your ability to find racism and stereotype exploitation.   See if any of these scenarios set off any alarms in your head.

In one episode an African-American guy is haggling with Les Gold about the price of a ring.  The guy gets enraged and Gold has him carted out like a kicking and screaming maniac.  Gold sneers and  says something to the effect that the guy will cool off and eventually come back and accept the lowball offer.

This Hollywood writer tried to stop me from writing this –>http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3834680/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1 <– I told him to go to hell.  He must have something to do with the show or something.

In another episode a women brings in a gynecologists examining table.  Gold’s daughter buys it for $50.00 but is criticized by Gold for doing so because he thinks it’s useless.  A short while later a black man comes in looking for a table.  Gold sells him that one for $200 and says, “That’s a great deal, you’ll never get another deal like that in your life.”   The gullibly smiling urban customer  buys it and smiles because the nice pawnbroker got him a good deal.   Then he proudly  does a George Jefferson strut over to the pay window.

Are you following me here?

I call this the worst show on television for so many reasons.

The customers are predominantly African-American (85% as far as I could see) and the pawn brokers are Jewish.  The area is very Detroit poor and surrounded by casinos.   They claim to get 700 customers per day so the place looks like your local DMV–  but the  lines of mostly black people going up to windows are there to pawn their stuff — not to get a new car registration.

There was an episode where an older, flashy black gentleman, (probably broke) who kept coming back to pawn more and more of his bling as he lost more and more at the casinos.  They joked with him and laughed with the old man like he was some kind of character, which he was tio some extent regardless of color, but they took his money and acted as though they were concerned about his gambling habit.  If they are so concerned about gambling addictions, why don’t they just refuse to take his stuff?  Even the scummiest bartender knows when to stop pouring drinks for somebody.

It isn’t shown outwardly, but there are moments in this show where you are led to believe that the customer was lied to and cajoled into an easy deal.  It’s not done outwardly, but it’s implied.

For example,  a young African American guy takes his pawn ticket to the clerk and she gives him $155.00.  He asserts that an associate broker in the store told him $255.00.  He looks down and sees that the ticket is $155.00.   So now the guy is going to leave but Gold counters with and offer again of $155.00.  Do you see something sneaky about this?   It looked almost like  a routine or a pinch the pawnbroker pulls on people.  I am not saying that this is what happened, but it sure looked like it.

Now, you could never write or pitch a movie with this subject theme.  You would be called Hitler or a slave trader  or a Shylock or Fagin or Step’en Fetch It —  you might end up in jail.  This show recreates and enforces the worst stereotypes you could ever conjure up.  It makes Tony and Carmella Soprano look like Ward and June Cleaver.

Les Gold and his son are often merciless and kind of mean — but they smile and take the money and pat people on the back and call them “brother” or “my man.”   Granted they are dealing with people who often try to hustle them with lies and tales of woe, but Les Gold is portrayed as the most sickening and phony and slimy creature that TV has ever offered the world — and they call this reality — is Les Gold that loathsome in real life?   It’s not possible — in fact, he comes off to me as probably a very kind and caring person, but that side of him doesn’t switch on until either the store closes or the cameras stop rolling.

The customers featured for the show, and culled from the miles of videotape, are mostly black characters taken out of a 1930s movie,  or else they are  gangstuhs from a violent ghetto rap movie.

Okay, so they say this is reality TV, but do we REALLY need to see this?  If somebody told me that this was a KKK propaganda TV show I would believe it.

Any kid who watches this show will think that Jewish people are sinister liars who make their living by exploiting poor blacks in low income neighborhoods because that’s essentially ALL that happens in this show.

People who already have these stereotypical opinions about African Americans and Jews will feel vindicated in their thinking.   Marlon Brando is not alive to see on the screen what he complained about to Larry King.  I think if Marlon Brando saw this show he might change his tune.

This show should be taken off the air immediately.  I know it’s real TV, but it’s bad — very bad.    It’s disgusting– get it out of my face.

67 thoughts on “Hardcore Pawn — worst show in the history of television.

  1. Pretty Good Show! The kids can wear on you, as your brother or sister can in a sibling strife! However, the old man is cool! He comes across as having a sense humor, good business savey, and some understanding of human nature – Oh, and a little compassion… Overall, for low budget TV; I give it a thumbs up! Are the Jews who produced this thing out to “make a fast buck”? You bet, and I am not Jewish and I am out to make a fast buck! Got anything you want to pawn?

  2. The show paints the city of Detroit in pretty bad light. I am certain not all of Detroit is that bad, but nothing about that show makes me want to step foot in Michigan let alone Detroit.

  3. It’s not the city — the producers of the show are all about stereotyping – the greedy Jewish panwnbroker and the desperate black poor people. It’s disgusting.

  4. Um, yeah the people are black cause that’s where most black people live. Plus the show wants to highlight the crazy stuff. People would find it boring to see a normal deal go on. And for the 700 customers a day thing, Detroit isn’t exactly rolling in the money. People will sell whatever they think they can to make a couple bucks. Think with your head, not with your ass.

  5. Ah Stevoman. I can’t stand dumb teenagers, but I think you might be salvagable.

    The show fosters the centuries-old idea that Jews exploit the poor for financial gain. The Jew as a money-lender, or in this case, pawnbroker, is an idea that pre-dates Shakespeare’s Shylock and takes us as far back to Jesus Christ throwing the money-lenders out of the Temple. What better way to revisit that decadent stereotype than to show us a modern day pawnbroker doing his thing in modern day Detroit. No, Steve, most people will NOT, “sell whatever they can sell to make a couple of bucks.” Most people put a deeper kind of value on their possesions — and many of these people are black — but you wouldn’t know from watching this show. Perhaps you live in a social circle wherein the people you know are always running to a pawn shop to buy bling-bling or casino chips. If you do, I’m sorry for you. Anyway, because you think that I think with my ass, I’m going to give you a homework assignment so you can learn something. Look up the following two things. Stepin Fetchit and Shylock. Tell me about them. There will be a quiz so that in the future you will learn to make your point without sounding like a caveman. You’ll thank me later.


  6. I just wan’t to say that I don’t disagree with your post, and it is well written. One thing needs to be clarified though. When you stated “Even the scummiest bartender knows when to stop pouring drinks for somebody.” In most states this is a law that when patrons show inebriation bartenders are to cut them off.

  7. Hey there. Could you write a more predictable blog? You really, really need to open your eyes and stop feeding into political correctness. Detroit is a broken slum for a reason. If you can’t handle the fact that black people really do act like that, then you shouldn’t be writing. You fit into the liberal media mold perfectly. Yes black people in Detroit do act like that. Yes, Jews will take advantage of it. Im Jewish and there is no Jewish stereotype here. Stop being blind and writing nonsense. We don’t live in this dream world you think we do. You are naive and your blog is phobic, liberal trash. God Im so sick of morons and the racist card.

  8. Have you read the other articles in my blog? Who says that because I am not biased against Jews and Blacks that I have to be a liberal? You took one blog and it exploded in your head as one giant conclusion — you are the predictable one! Obviously I have educated myself about racial stereotypes — I suggest you do the same. I regret to tell you that I do not personally know any Jews who rob people or take advantage of others. Maybe I’m just good at picking out my Jews.
    Read my blogs here and tell me I am a liberal:

    1- http://thedamienzone.com/2011/04/21/two-british-tourists-murdered-in-florida-by-savage-monster/
    2- http://thedamienzone.com/2011/04/22/unfunny-ricky-gervais-atheist-easter-message/

    3 – http://thedamienzone.com/2011/05/10/michelle-obama-invites-ghetto-poet-common-to-the-white-house/

    4- http://thedamienzone.com/2011/05/06/was-osama-bin-laden-armed-who-cares/

    There are about 400 postings where I make it patently clear where I stand on most issues.

  9. So in other words, YOU don’t like the show so WE don’t either? Turn the channel Damien.

  10. I approved your comment because it was childish — haven’t had one of them in a few weeks. If you could read, which you can’t, you would have noted that I don’t approve of the show — it’s not a question of liking or disliking. Write to me when you get to wherever it is you’re going — hopefully to Reading Comprehension School.

  11. The show is about life in Detroit. Detroit is a very poor, predominantly black city that is clearly not a good place to live.

    Why are you so surprised to that this shows up in the TV show? Have you ever had a job where you dealt with a lot of poor blacks? It is not fun


    Stupid bitch.

  13. Interesting post, but I see the show much differently than you. Is this show exploiting the predominantly black visitors to the store? Probably.

    It’s filmed in Detroit, where many poor people (mostly black) live and it’s a pawn shop. Pawn shops aren’t generally crawling with wealthy white folks.

    I think this show is entertaining, but it is socio-economic exploitation. When you start going down that road, you’re going to find a lot of minorities. I guess you could compare it to Springer or something similar.

  14. I agree, Keith, but the Jewish owner pushes the whole thing into another realm — maybe this is what Marlon Brando was waiting for when he complained to Larry King that Hollywood shows us all kinds of of racial stereotypes, but we’re never shown the Shakesperean and Dickinsonian stereotype of the Jew. This is pretty close — you think?

  15. It is close, absolutely, and yes, Hollywood showcases stereotypes all of the time. Maybe it’s as a reflection on society? This show seems to do well because of the public’s fascination with the unfortunate and the bizarre.

    I just don’t agree that it’s racist, in the same way that I don’t find prison documentaries to be racist. I find an interest in those documentaries purely out of fascination with the prison systems, but that has nothing to do with the ethnic makeup of the population. The system may be racist, but the shows are not (in my opinion).

    As far as Hardcore Pawn, obviously you are entitled to your own opinion. Your post gives an interesting perspective and makes for good discussion.

  16. To SGSCCD —who said “Waaaaaaaa” — I have nothing against the store or the owners or the clientele, Mr. Poor-Reading-Comprehension person. If you knew how to READ — which you do not — you would see that my beef is against the exploitation not from within the store but from behind the camera. Is that over your head? Sounds like it.

  17. shylock ( les gold )cruelly takes advantage of his position and keeps the poor in suspense waiting for his decision,he even goes as far as to pretend he has forgotten the amount they wanted, he is very devious. Shylock ( les gold )is also very two-faced greedy jew

  18. As someone who grew up in Detroit, lived there for 18 years and through the race riots, I say these guys do a pretty damned good job of running a store in that environment. It’s amazing how people are all so up in arms just because the guy’s Jewish and there happens to be a lot of black customers. It IS Detroit, it’s not Whitefish Montana. The guy’s running a BUSINESS. And he’s doing it in an environment where, black or white, there’s a ton of people demanding that he give them a loan and demanding he do it at a loss and thinking they’re entitled to a certain price. They’re not. It’s a simple as that. The place is a pawn shop. They offer loans and people can either take the deal or leave it. The rest is just people getting up in arms about someone because oh my God! He’s trying to make a living in a business he own in Detroit!

  19. Yes ,ex-Detroiter, but the fact that you are an EX Detroiter and not a Detroiter kind of says it all, huh? Listen, the production of the show depicts the Jew as the money lender and the Black as the bufoon — it goes a little deeper than a guy just trying to run his business.

  20. If you over analyze this show you will see the stereotypes.However this is a family in business to make money, thats what running a business is all about. If they didnt provide a service to the area they would not be in business period,The fact that they have so much repeat business shows they are valued by the community they serve..

  21. What episode were you watching with the guy who had the ticket for $155, but supposedly claimed they had offered him $255, and when he realized it was $155, he was ready to leave?
    The episode I saw, the guy had a ticket for $155, claimed they told him $255, and went berserk. They guy was a flim flam artist. Les asked for the money back, so they could sort it out, but the guy refused. Les finally if he gave him the money back he would write him a new ticket for $255 (Which yes, ended up being a lie.) He did this so he ensured he got his money back, gave the guy his items back, and said they werent iterested. If the guy wanted, he’d give him $155 ( Which is what the original offer was!) He’s under no obligation to do business with him. He owns the company, so be makes the rules. If the guy was acting like that, I would’ve done the same thing. In your post you made it seem like the guy made a mistake about the amount owed, and was going to leave peacefully; that couldn’t be further from the truth.

  22. Ben, in the paragraph where I described the incident you’re speaking about, I also wrote this — >>Do you see something sneaky about this? It looked almost like a routine or a pinch the pawnbroker pulls on people. I am not saying that this is what happened, but it sure looked like it. >>>


  23. Really, your concerned about sterotypes? So lets say there is no show, would there be less black people? Would they act differently? Would owners care less or more? Are other Jews who own businesses or in hollywood only concerned about how much they can make or are they ethical and conduct business w no strings attached? Maybe you should visist the store and speak w the customers and owners and tell THEM to stop prepetuating the STEROTYPE. GET A FREAKIN GRIP!

  24. You are all missing a crucial point. By focusing on the jewishness of the owner, ddm et al, you are guilty of the same bigotry you accuse others of. why is it that how he is described often centers on his faith? You could focus on his cheesy clothes or his hair or his political views or his sexuality, but instead you focus on judaism bc you are following a centuries-old stigma. So at the same time you cry blaxploitation, you are guilty of being an antisemitic jerkoff. Am I jewish? Yes. Do I care about the religion at all? Not a bit. But I do care about prejudiced dirtbags of any stripe. the world is not always a nice place and yes ppl are profiting, but it’s just bc theres nothing better these days for them to profit from. it would not exist if there wasn’t a market for it and I guarantee you that audience is not 100 percent white. Besides, if you hate it so much, change the channel.

  25. Don’t call me anti-Semitic — I decried the fact that both blacks and Jews are depicted in a bad light. As far as Mr. Gold’s Jewishness goes, you should be aware of the place of the Jew in a lot of western literature — but you don’t sound like you are. The producers of this show certainly are aware. I call the producers out on how they cleverly cut and edit this show so as to create a new Fagin or Shylock, and thus I am a bigot? Do me a favour — if you don’t like me, read another website. Since when does your personal religiosity have anything to do with the place of the Jew in western culture? Don’t come back.

  26. I think this show is just another form of black exploitation. Just like those history channel documentaries that show African Americans and Spanish people in Jails. The only thing about Hard core Pawn , I think it shows what possibly could be the fate of many Americans in the near future . With unemployment on the rise , and the Government unable to give aid because its running out of money , I think more people will have to start selling their valuables to stay alive. Detroit ( the state where this show is filmed ) has a very high unemployment rate so remember.. this can happen in your state or a state near you.. hell.. even to you , because most people , even though they may not realize it , are just one illness or death in their family away from bankruptcy.

  27. I watch this show every week, it shows the bad position Aameric is in, today it is the blacks and tomorrow it could be all of the USA and when money is scarce, you will do anything to get some. Nothing wrong with the show, sosmething terribly wrong with America.

  28. Jews are money lenders and if the blacks look stupid, they must be stupid. Seems that with PC correctness, we are supposed to just put our heads in the sand and pretend that things are not what they are. It should be noted that as a fan of the show, I have seen a couple of episodes where you can see the black people wearing the mic on their belt for the show. I would not be surprised if 99% of the show is staged. With shows like this and Bait Car, I do understand a concern people may have about exploiting sub economic people who are minorities, but I don’t advocate people putting their heads in the sand either to avoid seeing the realities of this world. Detroit is a rough place, if you don’t believe me, go Google the murder rate there.

  29. Fuck these shylock bastards, if this is reality than I’m a NAZI sympathizer. In one episode this poor black lady is trying to pawn her antique bike to pay her rent, the kike refuses to pay more than $20 for it then later admits he knew it was worth over $300, that’s the definition of jewing someone down if I ever saw it….

  30. Wow. I get pissed they have the guards there to back them up. The Real 8 mile show is yet to come. When one of the mistreated customers meets Les or Seth Gold outside the store without his goons .Les gold the human, needs his ass kicked. Cocky SOB. a couple good shots and knock his old ass out.

  31. I saw this show once while someone else watched it not me and that was enough.The swearing was too much and the main guy Les seemed arrogant.There was no caring approach to people at all.
    Also the name is so corny Hardcore Pawn and Pawnstars come on!
    This joking about the word Porn is childish and annoying.I don’t touch slimy reality shows with a 10 foot pole.
    I agree about it promoteing sterotypes I don’t know if it is on purpose or not.But good crtically thinking that’s rare to find! Critically thinking needs to be done more in the unreal insane world of exploited fake or real Reality T.V.
    Crtical thinking is a healthy thing which is what your blog is about I see.Keep up the good work!

  32. This show is bullshit. U nvr hear a black man say nigger once in it. Eva othr word a black man say finish in nigger. Nigger wot nigger ill fuk u up nigger Plz. Evn if da guy a white guy he will call him a nigger. Thts jst thm. No harm. I see a show wen a woman call les a jew nigger flip on her lol. Nways nigger im out

  33. Watching the Gold children makes me sick. Those two kids are horrible, nasty people. They run around and act like they’ve done something to deserve the position they’re in. They seem to think its okay to disrespect anyone, but heaven forbid you say anything to them. Worst people on TV, possibly the world!! For some reason I only pity them though. Warts on the asshole of the world. Real douchbags. If Karma is real they have it in for them. Just waiting for the episode where a disrespected customer teaches them a lesson.

  34. I’m a fan of this show, Seth and Ashley are the product of nepotism but that is everywhere, where a relative owns or is in management of a business. Second, at least for Detroit the Black population is well over 75%, so the odds of getting customers that fit the mold are high. Also, I vaguely remember an episode where a person walked in to say he needed money to support his addiction, and that was cocaine, and Seth refused to do business with him. The customer that lost his money gambling and pawned his two rings, the guy never said he had an addiction, he said that he was on a losing streak but he felt his luck changing, at the end of that episode he came back to take his ring out of pawn, and said he had won enough money. As far as the Jew stereotype, I can neither agree or disagree with you, most tv shows are based on some sort of sterotype, ie. The Big Bang Theory, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, pretty much anything in Disney.

  35. I don’t see the same thing as you do. What if they weren’t jewish, just white? What if the majority was white instead of black? What conclusions would you come to then? I don’t think it’s about race at all. The pawn shop is not just in a poor neighborhood, it’s in a broke state that’s trying to file bankruptsy. People there as well as other places not on TV are going through hard times. Pawn shops have overhead so they can’t pay retail for an item they have to resell. Did Les know he was going to get $200 for a table they paid $50 for,I doubt it. If you had an item for sale and wanted $200 for it, would you ask $200 with no room to negotiate or ask $300 and settle on your $200 price? If you got $275 for it would you only take the $200 Doubt it. All businesses buy at wholsale or below and sell retail or above so they can pay their overhead and still make a profit. I don’t see the racism you see or the sterotyping. I simply see people having trouble and needing money for whatever reason. If it wasn’t this pawn shop, it would be another. If the owners were black and the customers also black with the same circumstances, would you still see sterotyping and racism? I think people see what they want or don’t. Sometimes there is something to see, sometimes not. If people dislike what they see or hear they can always change the channel. If there was racism and steotyping going on more people would see it and there would be an out cry of disappointment and disgust and over 2 million people wouldn’t be watching. I don’t believe 2 million people are simple minded dolts drooling before the boob tube. Is there racism in the world and TV, yes, is there sterotyping, yes. When there is we need to stand up and say NO!! We don’t want this. We don’t want our children to be exposed to this. This isn’t right. Not all TV is going to be right for everyone. Some of it may even decrease your IQ if you watch it. Take “Honey Boo Boo” and “Jack Ass” I hate these shows. I can’t say if they’re streotyping or racism in these. I can say they’re simply stupid and small minded, so I don’t watch them. I don’t know the stations they’re on. I don’t know the times they’re on. Don’t care. If other people want to watch them so be it. I will be watching “Hardcore Pawn”

  36. One more thing. In the bible Jesus didn’t throw out just “lenders” as you say. He threw out “MERCHANTS” and not all were jewish. This is simply what you assume. Also why do you attack the ones that don’t agree with your opinion? Some may deserve it for their comments, but others don’t. You wrote so well and stood up for your convictions, but then when someone was hateful or rude you lowered yourself. If you want people to understand and see your side of an arguement then you must stay proffessional and detached from others opinions. You could have simply disagreed and stood your ground, but you didn’t you got angry and lashed out like a child. At least this appears to be so by your actions. Words can do many things for people. Some people can use them to unite in peace. Others can use them to unite in hate. If someone uses hateful words or says something you don’t agree with, you’re given an opportunity to enlighten them, perhaps unite them with you, if you lash out with hate all you do is alienate more against you and you belittle the point you’re trying to make. You opinion becomes moot and all that remains is an aurguement of anger and hate, the original issue becomes lost in this turmoil. I enjoyed your post. I don’t agree, but we are all free to agree or disagree. What makes it fun is our ability to have open minded discusions and not close minded arguements.

  37. I guess I just don’t have your kind of peacefulness, Watts. I see racism and exploitation on the part of the production company — not so much on the part of the show’s inner sanctum. I do not see Les Gold as an evil Jew exploiting poor black people. In fact, in my mind’s eye I can view it all as a situation wherein people need money quick, and a guy named Les has worked his ass off for decades so that he can provide that money to help certain people throught bad patches in their lives. The trouble is that I cannot look at something without referencing another thing historically real or from film or literature, and with that in my mind, I watch this show and all I see is an exploitation show within an exploitational situation that has been going on for centuries. Les Gold is the guy the producers want you to hate. I don’t hate him. I think he’s heroic in a sense, but he’s being carved out by an editor and a director to be Superjew — not the hero he is. In essence, Les is just a good businessman who has to fight off the evil villain known as Superghetto. Also, I am viciously nasty to a lot of commentors because I have learned in my real job that when dealing with really dumb opr uninformed people who have the temerity to send a comment one needs to be well armed. You don’t bring a slingshot to a gunfight. Some people make comments designed to create mayhem — I have to throw scalding water on that. I am not lowering myself. I am Saint George slaying a dragon. Thank you for taking the time to look far deeper into all of this than most people would.

    Damien LeGallienne

  38. You can see these same Negro idiots walking the streets of Detroit, like drug-crazed Zombies!

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