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American Chopper News! American Chopper Return Date + Name Change

28 Aug

August 28, 2012

This ran last week in the New York Post. I’ve added some commentary in red.

Rebuilding
‘American Chopper’ father, son try to mend feud
By MICHAEL STARR

Last Updated: 10:48 AM, August 24, 2012
Posted: 10:16 PM, August 23, 2012
EXCLUSIVE

Call it a Teutul huddle.

American Chopper” stars Paul Teutul and his son, Paul Jr. (or “Paulie”) — whose three-year feud has ripped their family apart — are talking about reuniting to build a bike and repair their shattered relationship.

“Talking” is the operative word here.

“It’s fairly early, but I have a good feeling,” Paul Sr. told The Post. “I think that, out of the last two-and-a-half years, this is probably the first time it seems kind of real.”

Father and son have been estranged since Paul fired Paulie from Orange County Choppers in 2008 after an epic blowup (they had a stormy relationship, even in the best of times).

Paulie then opened his own competing shop, Paul Jr. Designs — three miles from Orange County Choppers — which was featured for two seasons on TLC’s “American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior.” (The show is back to using its original “American Choppers” title.)

Both men, interviewed separately, say they were wary when show producers broached the idea of them reuniting to build a bike, which will be featured in the Sept. 3 season opener.

Mr. BTR: “Reality” show? The producers broached the idea? When the season finale aired and Senior called Junior with the idea of building a bike together for charity he acted like it was his idea and Paulie acted surprised. This show is so fake, so scripted, so set up it was obvious that even without this admission we all knew that there was little reality here. Yes, there is bad blood between them and yes, there are legitimate problems, but from the bikes that the network sets up for them to build (Deadliest Catch bike was the most obvious one) to the manipulative editing to the blatant situations like this, created solely for the show, there has been no reality here for ages.

“You know what? For me it just became time,” says Paulie. “It’s been a long time, and a lot of bad stuff took place, and it was just like, something is gonna change or it was never gonna change.

“The hopes were to start this earlier, but I didn’t feel like my father was necessarily saying the right things in my direction. I kind of stopped waiting for him to change and said, ‘Let’s do it.’ ”

Senior says he thinks “it’s gonna take some time” to mend fences.

“This is probably more of a beginning, hopefully,” he says. “It’s not like [the blowup] was something that happened only during the show. Our relationship was like this before the show, too. So, in essence, the [fight] was the best thing that could have happened. Even though it was upsetting to everybody, including our family, I think sometimes you have to get to that place to be able to realize that things didn’t work out . . . everything has to be re-earned again. I feel good about it.”

Paulie says he entered into the tentative agreement on two conditions.

“I wanted to make him feel comfortable, so . . . I said, instead of arguing about what kind of bike [to build] and where to do it, let’s do it up at my father’s house,” he says.

“The biggest thing was that I didn’t want to mix the businesses,” he says. “That’s the key. I’m way too far along with my company to make my clients wonder what’s going on here. I won’t allow that line to be blurred.”

Paul Sr. sounds hopeful it will all work out.

“Listen, there’s a lot of hurt and a lot of anger through this whole thing,” he says. “Do I have an open mind about the whole thing? Yeah. Do I want to see things work? Yeah. Do I want it like it was before? No.”

“You have to understand, everybody has their own issues with him,” Paulie says of his father. “I hope it starts with us and I hope it continues . . . and hopefully it will trickle down, for his sake and for the rest of the family’s sake.”

American Chopper, and Mr. Blog’s American Chopper Weekly Rundown, will return on September 3rd. 

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One Response to “American Chopper News! American Chopper Return Date + Name Change”

  1. Robert Sikorski August 29, 2012 at 11:59 pm #

    There is nothing worse than not talking to your father. The last time I seen my father was over 41 years and I was a young man we parted on a fight and never saw him till his funeral a few years later. I wish I had their opportunity to build a relationship over even if it is from years of fighting. At least they a second chance which I never had and have to live with forever.

    Like

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