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September 26, 2017

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Parody ‘Pawn Shop Live!’ premieres at Golden Nugget with ‘Pawn Stars’ stars


Bill Hughes

Art imitating art imitating life: Derek Stonebarger has brought the “Pawn Stars” posse to the stage (partially in puppet form) at the Golden Nugget in downtown Las Vegas.

‘Pawn Shop Live!’

The “Pawn Stars” parody “Pawn Shop Live!” is set to open Jan. 21, 2014, at Golden Nugget in downtown Las Vegas. Launch slideshow »

“Pawn Shop Live!” is an all-out-fun spoof of the History Channel reality-TV hit “Pawn Stars,” and the real-life TV celebrities will all be at the Golden Nugget for the official media-night launch Thursday. I watched a preview of the multimedia, interactive stage show, and you, too, will marvel at the amazing look-alike cast (complete with an Old Man puppet) as you laugh out loud.

Yes, it’s odd. Yes, it’s totally original. Yes, it’s unique. Yes, it’s off the wall. Yes, it will have you wondering what is real and what is make believe. Yes, the cast takes on a thousand roles seamlessly. They are truly exuberant and enthusiastic, and all told me that they love what they’re doing.

Rick Harrison told me that he’s happy the family — and family friend Austin “Chumlee” Russell” — endorsed the satire and that it has turned out as fun as he envisioned and wanted. You’ll hear my voice as the narrator for the seven onstage cast members and the 20 guest-video appearances.

The spoof creates a semi-fake biographical story of how the family turned their modest downtown Las Vegas store into the venue now known around the world that attracts thousands of curious buyers, sellers and fans daily.

You will learn how Rick overcame educational challenges to become the knowledgeable bookworm and walking encyclopedia he is today and the battle with skeptical city officials who denied their original license applications for a pawnshop.

Producer Derek Stonebarger tells me that the “Pawn Stars” stars will regularly drop in for the show’s closing moments to do meet-and-greets with the audience, and they are planning to attend in full force Thursday.

Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.

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