Drag site icon to your taskbar to pin site. Learn More

Bryan's Blog

TLC Cancels OCC's American Chopper

Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Coming soon to a TV screen near you - OCC  the cartoon.  Its not really in the works now  but who knows what tomorrow holds!
TLC is cancelling American Chopper, ending its seven-year run. Will the show's demise provide an opportunity for reparations to be made within the Teutul clan?
It’s been a good run for the Teutul clan, but all good things come to an end, and after a seven-year run, American Chopper will be taking its final ride into the sunset. The Learning Channel is pulling the plug on the reality TV show that has brought the foibles and follies of the custom bike building crew from upstate New York into millions of living rooms. The last episode is set to air this Thursday, February 11, at 9 p.m. (8 Central).

Who would have known the heights of popularity American Chopper would ascend to when it debuted in September 2002 on the Discovery Channel? Now who doesn’t recognize the face of the Teutul’s gruff-demeanored patriarch, Paul Sr.? It made celebrities of his sons, Paul Jr. and Mikey, and the show thrived because of the dysfunctional family dynamic. They brought theme bikes into popular vernacular. They sold Orange County Choppers as an image, making friends and admirers along the way, but also made many enemies as well. Love them or hate them, American Chopper helped push motorcycling into the limelight, making it more attractive to the masses than ever, and the industry as a whole benefitted from the show’s meteoric rise.

While the show has progressively been on decline, it hit rock bottom when it lost the dynamic that was the most appealing, the terse but real relationship between a father and his sons. If you’ve ever worked with family, you know it isn’t easy. Throw in the mix cameras following you everywhere, TV ratings, the trappings of fame, an intense production and promotional schedule, and there’s more than enough catalysts to send relationships to the breaking point. And right now the Teutul clan is broken. The hit show has sunk low since two of the original Teutul trio have stopped speaking to their father. There’s a Junior vs. Senior lawsuit pitting son against father currently being contested. The timing of the show’s demise couldn’t have come at a better time because there are bigger issues that need to be resolved. Maybe Senior can remember that blood is thicker than water.
Post Tags: The Learning Channel, TLC, American Chopper, Orange County Choppers, OCC
Follow on Google Plus Follow Bryan Harley on Google+
Blog Archive

Login or sign up to comment.

bones -im a real biker! sr is a f**kface! January 30, 2011 08:30 AM
i have watch occ since they had their first show in 2002, they was cool back then now sr is a f**kface! he dont care about his sons he only care about the money! big house,all them sh*tin cars! superstar f**kin wanna be! im a real biker! i work hard to take care of my wife and kids! they comes first! they get want they need,i ride a old harley for years! i cant buy a $30,000 or $50,000 bike,its f**kin crazy! life is about loveing your family loveing your kids, not big money! i love ridein my old harley,because its about life! life with your family! if i ever meet sr i'll show him who the real biker! i'll kick his fat ass! i'll do it for you jr!
Malik -OCC January 24, 2011 06:25 PM
Paul Sr., is a dick!...This guy is in serious competition with Junior!...He should be happy for his son whose business is picking up and not failing as Senior has chorted...He is hating on his son, period!...And now he has the audacity to be sueing his son again...I used to like him but this guy has issues...I mean Senior complains about how is son is lazy and has had it easy, well, that's what parents are supposed to do, make it easier and better for their children...Yeah, Paulie might be a little spoiled but if he's that way Senior & Mom made him that way...Also,junior is an artist and likes to take his time and build the bike his vision dictates...He should be more concerned about Mikey, who is a loser at best and makes little effort to do any kind of work but I like him, he's the lovable loser, hell, he should be proud of Junior not being like Mikey
WadeInTN -Viewer January 4, 2011 04:00 PM
I think that Paul Sr. needs to reexamine his life a tad. They claim that we see the real deal on the show. If that's the case then I gotta say, Paul Sr just doen't get it does he. He is completely unreasonable with his rants and frankly looks foolish and looses a lot of ground while he tries desperately to justify his foolishness.His son, like all are a gift. Never are they perfect, but the fcat that he cannot seem to carry out a conversation without screaming his head off taking rediculous positions thatmake him look like a jerk - plain and simple. He needs to act like the grown up and father and he falls far short. I think the whole thing is just sad. My Dad passed when I was 13 and I couldnn't imagine us ever getting caught up in such craziness. Life's far too short guys - get it together for each of your sake.
Later -
brian fencil -paul sr. blows December 29, 2010 02:30 PM
paul sr is a total ass. ive watched the show from past to present and i bought my first bike because of it. i cant beleive how much the old man has made a total fool out of himself and hes so arogant that he doesnt even realize it. such a doushbag. i watch every week hopeing that paul jr gets back at him a little more each week. f**k paul sr

Viiper -Teutels December 8, 2010 04:35 AM
Ok, lots of opinions here and mine is no different. In this family all three men have issues. Mikey and Jr are spoiled little brats. When you work for your Father and come to work, it is that WORK and your father is your boss. Sr didn't have to bring Jr in, he could have hired someone else. Sr was a employer whom wanted his employee, Jr, to follow the rules. He couldn't do that so he was fired; TWICE. I would have done the same. All this bullshit on the show saying Sr is the ass here is crap. He is the father. He does NOT bow to the children and bend when they want something. They know how and what thier father is; no surprises. So then why when Jr gets fired is Sr the bad guy? How long should a EMPLOYER put up with a EMPLOYEEs antics? Jr even said he didn't care about the rules on NATIONAL TV!! And what's up with Vinnie? He even said when he left OCC it was because of Jr's antics and the fighting between Jr and Sr. Now he all of a sudden works with Jr and hates Sr? He can't blame anyone but himself when this goes sour. He knows how Jr is; first hand. When there is a issue between a father and one son, the others should not join the band wagon against the father. Understand also, I know nothing of the relationship of Sr and Danny. Really at the end of the day, the sons are just mad that the nipple has been removed from the mouths of babies.
ks mpls mn -Real Character November 16, 2010 04:51 AM
I think what made the show show fun and refreshing at first is becuase people like seeing reality at its finest - But the problem is reality is boring for the most part and then you find a show like "American Chopper" where the characters went from nobody to famous overnight and I think becoming famous takes skills to stay famous. I think people are sick of bret Micheals -I mean seriously lousy programming of what I think is scripted reality and then you come back to American Chopper. I think the show made the brand and the people made the show and even then it wasnt going to last forever. American economy is dried up and Europe market is similar and people keep saying its getting better but where exactly, The execs at banks that get their gov bail outs or the unemployment checks. where is the real money coming in, industry is leaving to foreign markets where labor is cheap, if ford and gm want to compete they have to start using the foreign markets, they probably already do. I dont see china getting into OCC so really the best thing Sr. could do is get out. His son wants his stake liquid cash so he can take it and invest in somethign else becuase he sees the books and sees the overhead and the fact that its going to go bankrupt. I dont kknow if the father is smart enough to sell the company because he is so proud that he is like a ship captain going down with the ship. All the real talent left the building -atleast the way the show made it seem who really knows rite, but the fact reamains that the occ brand expanded the family fell apart and I think Sr. got off the juice cuase he thinned up in the last few episodes. I think doctors told him he needed to loose the weight and lift the stress or heart attack and people like to see that drama unfold. Americans and very emotional all around they like to watch a train wreck happen then run to save everyone afterwards. Sr. may retire knowing he reached a peak and go permanent vacation depending on how much money he has. but all the toys the house the new building and the machines I dont know how much money is left if business is not coming in. Motorcycle is a luxury I use to have one and now I dont have a Motorcycle I have a bycycle which is a sobering reminder of how risky credit can be. Who knows maybe the shop will be sold, I think the name will stick around for a while becuase any publicity is somthing.
dr. science -dr of research November 15, 2010 07:52 PM
paul sr is a total jerk. greedy father who has no respect for his son who has all the talent. Hope he dies a poor old fart living under a bridge watching his son fly by on a good cycle
Ralph Murdoch -CEO of Jmoore Electronics November 15, 2010 07:49 PM
The father is a total jerk. look at how he raised Mikey Paul Jr. Has all the talent. People with talent do not watch a clock. the father is total jelous.. The father is a greed freek he wants all the credit for everything and yet he has no talent at all. He stumbled into one or two show winds back in the early years but did nothing but watch his son do the designs. I hope the old man dies on one of his cycles and his shop goes to hell as it seems to be doing. With out the tv show paying him way to much money he would be a failure. I wish his sons and Vinny the best they work hard for their money and will have something when the show money is used up.

I could not stand my self if I were Paul sr.
rusty shackleford -human November 8, 2010 06:11 PM
just watched. haven't been. "jason" needs chap stick and knee pads for talking to paul sr.
dgb19 -occ October 5, 2010 02:37 PM
still like the show.
mark noble -occ September 25, 2010 07:58 AM
what i want to know when the show finnishes on air do they rekon that paul snr will keep occ or sell it off before he looses his building and his housenow that he wont have the noteriety comming in from tv and the cash they paid him what will happen to rick and the boys
girl21s -chat July 13, 2010 06:11 PM
yes this is a chopper chatroom under w.w.w.coldtube.c.o.m
little big man -family June 29, 2010 02:49 PM
hi occ what is ther to say.well first paul snr in not what you would say is a farther.is sons how he treats them .the legal issues the bickering.on the show it was all the time and at paul jnr.it was said in a post blood is thicker than water.but for snr money is thicker than water.i think TLC did a job on the TEUTULS if they had not gone on tv things would be cool.they must have been doing fine before tv.as bike bilders.so it was tv messed up that family.all the great guys who worked for snr and all have gone.well what is ther to say just hope paul jnr does well in is new shop.29.june.2010.so stay safe on your whells guys and lades too.from manchester england.ps god bless our boys over seas.
Ron -Can't fix um June 18, 2010 07:30 PM
Can you imagine trying to repair one of these custom made choppers. No retail parts and special paint and body mouldings. Also, no noise abatement or repair facilities to handle the special hybrids. Then Sr wanted to go world wide without any mfg facilities or factory parts. This was an interesting show but the bikes can't compete with H.D. or the other international motorcyle mfg companies. The show just imploded from the grandiose egos of Paul Sr and Jr. The sudden influx of money seemed to divide the family and their excesses (i.e. their toy binges and destruction of property)sent the wrong message to the young workers in our country.
w wallace -cya May 16, 2010 12:45 PM
The show, when it started, was about a bunch of guys putting other companies parts together with a couple of bells and whistles hanging from the frame and calling it their own. What a joke.... but at the end they started to produce thier own parts and came up with some great designs. This was because of others in the shop not the two Paul's. The show never showed the technical side of bike building and really never spent much time showing the bikes paint and bodywork the engines the stuff I would love to see. It was just guys fighting and the father taking time to discount his son's efforts and attempting to take all the credit for absolutly everthing. The father should be ashamed of himself and the media should not reward him for his scraping and scratching to get every dime.
CW -Don't forget... May 15, 2010 11:27 AM
While Jr may have been an incredible driving force behind OCC, one must NEVER forget that Sr built the damn business in the first place. Say what you want about Sr but his hard work made it possible for Jr to be the star he is in the first place... and if Jr had an ounce of class, he would have respected his father, even if just a little bit.
mike -Paul Sr. is a misrable jelious spaz!!!! February 16, 2010 04:31 PM
Jr. is 1000% more talanted than his father when it come s to new ideas and innovations, Jr. is clearly the star of the show and paul sr. can't take it. That's why Sr. flips out on exstremely pette thing. Now i know why Paul Sr. dosn't speak to his children, they can't deal w/Paul Sr. BIG FAT MOUTH!!!
I can't wait until that greedy big mouth money freck drops dead with his business without a penny to his name.

Pat -Head Muckity-Muck February 12, 2010 09:30 AM
The show had some good moments, but it was getting old and tired after a while. This last season was a real puzzler with the segments around Mike and Paul Jr. Why? Both are history and have absolutely nothing to do with building "custom" bikes.

I wish they had gone into the tech details of some of the custom work they did. The Diesel bike project had some interest and I would have liked to have seen how they got the primary drive put together. But nothing. One minute there's nothing there, the next it's done and buttoned up.
Roll Dog -"Love'm or Hate'm" February 11, 2010 05:10 AM
Jr had a knack for taking an ordinary frame and making it something inspiring, cool or even at times whimsical. Three bikes stand out in my mind, the Liberty bike, the early WWII bomber bike and the Caddy Shack bike. The father/son interplay was a sideshow to the bikes. We got to see 'how the sausage was made' and that just added to the whole package for a while, as we love to watch train wrecks. Each show was carefully crafted into a 'triumph from tragedy' mellow drama.

OCC made some cool bikes. Yes, they were show peices, but so are concept cars in the auto industry. Their rise was something cool, to remind us of the freedom and open spirit that made this country great. Sr. pulled his life out of the ashes, never made excuses and finally pursued his dream. The fact that he loved his sons in his own way was cathartic at times. You could really see he cared, even though he couldn't get out of the way of being a driven, trust no one, micro manager that looked more like a Pro Wrestler than a business man.

We were a nation of excess and in many ways still are. Balloon mortgages, ever rising housing prices, let us live in a bubble that was due to pop. In that bubble, baby boomers latched on to the dream and stopped saying 'maybe some day' and stepped up to the lifestyle of riding a motorcycle. However, real bikers love to ride, not brag about the thousands they spent on a bike after riding it 2 miles to the latest bike night and parking it there for 2 hours.

We are dealing with that new/old reality our great grandparents experienced. In this latest downward trend there isn't room for such foibles at $30K plus a crack, when a large sector of the working population has lost their jobs, their homes and their dreams.

The Tuetels at their best were disfunctional. With mounting legal issues, over leveraged expansion of their business at the worst possible time and a public that grew weary and broke, the Tuetels are now at their worst. A broken family that has hit rock bottom. A family that can mend, but only with time, therapy and the will to love. Hopefully for them, they can find happiness when the lights are turned off, the cameras stop recording and the crews go home.

I hope there is a happy foot note to their story, but for now I have to concern myself with my own future. I have been out of work for over 7 months (Metro Detroit Area), I may have to sell my bike in the near future and I may loose my home. Fortunately, I have the love and support of my daughter, my girlfriend and a close group of friends. I count myself lucky and rich.
Dozeron2Wheels -Journalist February 10, 2010 09:37 PM
I often wondered when this show would finally implode.I've met Rick and Jason both,and during my interviews you could see that they were caught in the middle.Both of these men are very talented,and I feel sorry that they will be affected by the collateral damage caused by the break down between Senior and Junior.It doesn't surprise me that TLC finally got fed up with all the Bull**it.After all the show was called "American Choppers" not "American Gladiators" and that's what I expected to see when I tuned in,Choppers not a Father & Son Chopping each other!
Dennis -soon departed February 10, 2010 02:44 PM
My wife and I enjoyed watching American chopper. they had a good thing going. no matter what family comes first. Mr senior it`s your fresh & blood respect them.
James Paladino -it's about time February 10, 2010 12:04 PM
glad to see it go! what kind of man treats his family like that? is life all about money for him? he should die alone and miserable! i see the company going down hill fast.too bad for rick and the other employees.they seemed to kinda know what THEY were doing. unlike paul sr.(who i wouldn't let touch my bike). i watched some of the old shows from 02,and you could see that they(the teutels)were pretty normal people,but as the show progressed,the pauls seemed to revolve around money.it wasn't about the bikes anymore. seems like the only one with any brains in the whole damn family is mikey! god bless mikey. i hoope he turns his life around. adios american chopper!
Gary Goat -Father and Son February 10, 2010 02:02 AM
Father and Son, thats the appeal, and Paul Snr was to bloody silly to see that ... Blood is always thinker, and any man who will take the money ahead of his kids is a fool. I look forward to the decline.
Topgearamerica -Ummmmm February 10, 2010 12:17 AM
"Maybe Senior can remember that blood is thicker than water." Money is thicker than blood... I must say every time I watched the show I thought to myself "Isn't this about building motorcycle?". Now as foolish as that may seam it kind of follows the line that TLC follows. Jon and Kate plus 8 was about the family of ten living life and then it became a circus. The 18 and counting then 19 and counting or whatever, I seriously believe around 21 and counting there will be a head line reading "kid 12 from famed TLC show cleans house with a 12-gauge and a switchblade". The little couple will go for another 3 years and then I strongly believe the "little" couple will have a "little" fight and the wife will doctor her wounds while husband sits outside trying to figure out how to dislodge the pickle fork from his neck on his Iphone... American Chopper use to be on the discovery channel and I think the switch was made when TLC realized "holy crap, the kid might actual kill him"... TLC (The Learning Channel) is no longer the network for learning about crazy cancer that attacks the liver but dysfunctional families on the brink (I'm patenting DFB stamp it). But now motorcycles are of my TV in the winter again so I'm going to purpose a new show with awesome potential. Living with the Hayden's: Bet you $50 I can beat you on a Zuma... The three brothers race Zuma scooter is every kind of situation... forget Indy or the Ice I'm talking 20 laps in a McDonalds, 3 Laps around the Mall of America, first from New York to Atlantic City with a member of "the Shore" 2-up... After 2 seasons of losing Tommy will start crying about how he never wins and sue his brother for slander... After that rant I need a beer so I will leave with this note. In any other country but America, a show going for more that 3 seasons is amazing. The UK had a show in the early 2000's called Spaced, it was like the Seinfeld of its time and had amazing ratings... It ran for 2 seasons there were 3 years apart... Cheer up The Hayden's is coming on lol
Vanishing Point -Long Overdue February 9, 2010 09:00 PM
At it's best, it wasn't much more than Springer with too much chrome and a shiny paint job, which was really too bad because these guys were capable of doing beautiful work. But when you sell your soul and make your name and fortune building gaudy, silly machines that are rarely, if ever ridden, where else could it all end up, especially when everything is under a microscope all the time? I hope for the sake of their family, they can get their sh*t together and put this part of their lives behind them.
GearHead -Discovery/TLC February 9, 2010 03:40 PM
Guess Mikey called it on the Larry King Show when he said it was over. Don't think OCC can survive without the paid advertising TLC was giving it.
Frank -Silly owners, bikes are for riding February 9, 2010 02:11 PM
My favorite episode was when they got the battery cover back from the painter and when the fit was to tight due to overspray/powdercoat they stood on the battery to force it in to the box. I guess when you buy a motorcycle for tens of thousands of dollars from OCC you dont care if you need to remove the battery, after all its most likely just a show piece for your companies headquarters.
Brock -OCC February 9, 2010 12:46 PM
“Love them or hate them, American Chopper helped push motorcycling into the limelight, making it more attractive to the masses than ever, and the industry as a whole benefitted from the show’s meteoric rise”. What “motorcycling” did they promote? They pushed their crappy bikes and typical meat head biker stereotype on the masses. What good comes from that other than temporarily stimulating the now dead custom chopper market?
HawgRider -Thank God... February 9, 2010 12:30 PM
It's about time, TLC. Stick a freakin' fork in it already.