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Mark Towle’s Legal Troubles – Gotham Garage Owner’s Lawsuits

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Even if drama might not be the focus of their shows, it’s actually a rarity for reality stars to not have any serious issues off-camera. However, while most of the time these troubles might cause severe damage to a celebrity’s career, Gotham Garage’s owner Mark Towle’s encounters with the law aren’t well known by his newly-found “Car Masters” audience.

Counting legal battles against big companies, former employees and clients, the truth is that Mark Towle has been in court on a variety of occasions for sometimes surprising reasons.

So how many legal troubles has he been in, and has he lost any money in court? Keep with us to know more about Mark Towle’s surprisingly dark past.

The Batmobile Case

Probably the most publicized legal trouble Mark Towle has ever faced is the lawsuit filed against him by DC Comics. As it happens, for years one of Mark’s most commented upon works was his Batmobile replica, which he sold in the already established Gotham Garage since the early 2000s.

Slowly but surely, the popularity of his replicas of Batman’s car increased until attracting the attention of DC Comics, the legendary publisher and subsidiary of Warner Bros, which didn’t take much time in suing Mark and his business in 2011. As read in court papers, the company accused Mark of unfair competition, on top of trademark and copyright infringement for selling replicas based on the designs of Batman’s car, presented in past productions of the franchise from 1966 and 1989, as well for promoting the built replicas under the “Batmobile” name, naming his website with it, and selling customized kits for clients to build their replica themselves.

While Mark actually acknowledged his designs were based on said “Batman” productions, he argued their characteristics differed compared to the originals, but also admitting not having permission from the franchise to reproduce these replicas, which he sold for around $90,000 each – the case wasn’t over yet.

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Verdict & Aftermath

After concluding that the Batmobile was a character with defined physical characteristics, the district court determined DC Comics indeed held the rights to its trademark. In response, Mark’s defense argued that his car replicas were useful articles, and hence excluded from copyright laws, further warning of the possible negative implications of deeming them as copyrightable by stating big car manufacturers ‘would start publishing comic books so that they could protect what, up until now, was unprotectable’, as reported by The Hollywood Reporter.

That being said, federal court determined that despite the fact that DC Comics transferred the right to produce ‘derivative works’ of its “Batman” franchise decades before, that transaction didn’t include the rights to the Batmobile as a character, which they concluded was copyrightable. Furthermore, the test of “substantial similarity” wasn’t run due to the fact that Mark had already admitted to having copied his design from the series and movie “Batman” productions, from 1966 and 1989 respectively. Lastly, Judge Ronald Lew determined Mark had infringed DC Comics trademarks: ‘the fact that the unauthorized Batmobile replicas that Defendant manufactured, which are derivative works, may be ‘useful articles’ is irrelevant’, read his 2015 sentence.

It’s unknown if Mark had to pay financial compensation to DC Comics, but it’s for sure that he wasn’t allowed to sell any Batmobile-related articles thereafter.

The Website Case

Even if not receiving as much media coverage compared to the legal battle with DC Comics, there’s a case in Mark Towle’s records which is just as questionable. Everything goes back to 2007, when a West Virginia man named Scott Lee was contacted by Gotham Garage to perform web design services for them, receiving one of Mark’s Batmobile kits in exchange for his work.

Lee signed a contract with Mark and his associate Kory Geick, also agreeing to pay them $5,000 on top of working for them. However, finishing the website was apparently an uphill battle for Lee, who affirmed that he was denied the resources necessary for his work, and was thus also denied his kit and even threatened with legal action; ‘for four years my work was displayed for Mark Towle to sell $90,000 replicas, while he stalled completion of the project, and held most of my work captive’, as reported by The Journal.

According to Lee, three years later he was lured into signing another contract, paid an additional $3,000 in order to get his Batmobile kit, but another 17 months passed without a positive outcome. At the same time, Lee claims his original kit was old, and afterwards, Mark was unable to build or sell other Batmobile replicas due to the then-ongoing court case DC Comics filed against him.

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Lawsuit & Outcome

Around 2011, Scott Lee was sued by Mark Towle for ‘unlimited damages’, which according to Lee was surprising to say the least: ‘I couldn’t believe it. He simply quit the projects and stiffed me. I never did anything to deserve this’, as reported by The Journal. Afterwards Lee countersued Mark and had the initial lawsuit against him dismissed, but his own case didn’t proceed further due to lack of jurisdiction.

Knowing the costs of hiring a lawyer added to the expense of traveling to California, Lee started educating himself in Law, in order to defend himself in court. He then sued Mark for breach of contract, and after several years of a gruesome legal battle, in August 2016 the Superior Court Of California gave Lee the news he was waiting for: ‘they used to call me a dumb hillbilly living in a log cabin in West Virginia while they were threatening to sue me, but I won’, said Lee.

Although Gotham Garage was ordered to pay Lee over $35,000 for his work and legal costs, he didn’t get his car back, and so was apparently determined to obtain it through an appeal case, even regardless of the Court’s ruling of not allowing Mark sell or make more Batmobile replicas or kits. As well, Lee was allegedly ordered to deliver the finished Gotham Garage website to Mark.

Other Alleged Issues

Besides the eyebrow raising statements of Scott Lee about his complicated work relationship with Mark Towle and Kory Geick, there’s a lot more to uncover in this case.

Lee explicitly detailed his legal battle against Gotham Garage through several Batman-related online forums, and especially on the website Taken By Towle, the latter which also revealed some alleged incidents involving Towle’s business. According to documents posted by Lee, a Texas woman named Sandra McKee apparently lost around $8,000 in a never-finished replica of the Munster Koach from the TV series “The Munsters”, but never sued Gotham Garage due to the high legal cost that would ensue, as read in the affidavit signed by McKee.

There’s also another incident, which despite not ensuing with legal action, was quite questionable. According to Lee, during his time working for Gotham Garage, he was also asked to work as a graphic designer by delivering what he described as ‘defaming parodies’ mocking business’ competitors, including the company which was legally licensed to produce real life Batmobile replicas. Given the negative business tactics he allegedly had to perform against them, Lee ultimately apologized on his blog to the company’s owner Mark Racop, about the issue.

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The Scamming Case

Last but not least, there’s a scamming lawsuit on Mark Towle’s record that’s eyebrow-raising as well. As it happens, in 2008, a New Orleans philanthropist named Michael Hunt commissioned Gotham Garage to build a Batmobile replica, meant to be auctioned in favor of a local children’s hospital in a Halloween ball.

However, despite paying approximately $85,000 to Mark Towle, the Batmobile not only didn’t arrive in time for the charity event, but was apparently never built at all. According to a Courthouse News Service, Mark Towle had ‘failed and refused to provide Plaintiff with a date, time and place where he or his representative can inspect the vehicle’ by the time Hunt filed a lawsuit against him and Kory Geick in March 2009, in which he asked for his money back, and compensation for the distress that the whole deed apparently made him go through.

The case lasted several months in court, until in August that year it was transferred to the District of Central California, but from then it’s unclear what happened, so the possibility of it having been settled the matter out of court is not far-fetched.

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What Happened To Kory Geick?

Given that his name was mentioned more than once in the several cases involving Mark Towle, it’s only fair to wonder what Kory Geick’s whereabouts are.

For starters, Kory isn’t a known face by the “Car Masters” audience for good reasons. Only credited with a ‘special thanks’ note in a season two episode, the truth is that around 2020, Kory left Gotham Garage for good, after working with Mark for far too long.

The story of how Mark and he met was actually detailed by Kory on his website, on which he recalled commissioning a Mach 5 replica from Mark back in the late 1990s, when apparently the name Gotham Garage didn’t even exist: ‘He told me I had a gift. Well, he had gifts too, so he said we had to work together. I put everything on hold; we joined forces’.

Given that at the time Kory apparently already worked on producing props for movies, he and Mark’s similar goals intersected, and grew Gotham Garage from scratch. From then on, Kory learned how to make business alongside Mark, though their paths took different routes in 2020, when he left Gotham Garage to found Project Rustoration Garage, which nowadays serves as an addition to his years-long work as a preacher in Abba’s Own Route 66 Ministries.

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How Did Gotham Garage Start?

It’s unknown when exactly Gotham Garage was officially established, but Mark Towle had certainly been in business long before founding the shop which would gain him international fame. According to an interview he gave to Speedway Motors on YouTube, Mark was already well known for building “Speed Racer”s Mach 5 replicas, attracting clients all around the country, such as the popular Dallas’ radio host Russ Martin by the time 1999 came around.

It was Martin who first requested a Batmobile replica based on the 1966 “Batman” film from Mark, who bought a kit from one of the original Batmobile makers Bob Butts. From then on, numerous requests for Batmobiles came to Mark, whose business was then called Mach 5 Factory, but was changed to Gotham Garage in order to make it fitting to the concept he was looking for his shop: ‘A lot of the ‘Gotham’ for me is just because it’s New York City, you get to that part of the country where cars were born on the East Coast’, he admitted.

Even if Mark’s doesn’t mention Kory Geick anywhere in the process of starting Gotham Garage, both stories are fairly similar.

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What Happened To The Mach 5 Replica?

Even if Mark Towle is mainly known nowadays for his diverse car building designs, the works which took people’s attention in his beginnings were his Mach 5 replicas from the Japanese animated series “Speed Racer”.

As Mark told LSX Mag in 2012, the Mach 5 was ‘the car I wanted to build as a child’, so he put a great deal of effort into making them the best he could: ‘I try to find the nicest cars I can, the kind that have been well taken care of for a long time’, he admitted.

Built over Corvette C4’s chassis, Mark would strip them of almost everything except for doors and the drivetrain, building the rest of the body with molds and fiberglass. The average price of his replicas was $72,500, increasing the cost if extra special features were added. However, these replicas were apparently taken off Mark’s site in 2014, but while he offered no explanation for this decision, the move could have been related to the legal battle the American and Japanese “Speed Racer” distributor companies faced against each other back then.

Nowadays, it’s unknown if Mark continues producing the replicas, but one of them is currently exhibited at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles.

TV Debut & Future

The way Gotham Garage became the central focus of a show such as “Car Masters: Rust To Riches” happened in a very conventional way. Due to the fame Mark already had gained throughout his car building career, his work took the attention of Michael Lutz. who along with other producers had a clear idea of a new car show for Netflix.

However, upon meeting Mark in person, they realized Gotham Garage wasn’t as they’d imagined, and so changed the concept to fit what the business was really like, as Mark told Speedway Motors on YouTube.

Since its premiere in 2018, “Car Masters” and Gotham Garage have certainly kept away from scandal, and there’s nothing left for us other than to wish that it continues that way for a long time.

As an Author at Net Worth Post, I guide a dedicated team in the art of revealing the stories behind the world's most influential personalities. Fueled by a relentless curiosity and a knack for uncovering hidden stories, I immerse myself in the intricacies of our subjects' lives, weaving together accurate data and compelling narratives. My involvement spans the entire editorial process, from the seed of research to the final flourish of publication, ensuring that every article not only educates but also captivates and motivates our audience. At Net Worth Post, we are committed to providing thorough investigations into the net worth and life achievements of innovators across diverse sectors such as technology, culture, and social entrepreneurship. My method merges meticulous research with eloquent storytelling, designed to bridge the gap between our readers and the remarkable individuals who redefine our tomorrow. Through spotlighting their journeys to success, the hurdles they've surmounted, and their contributions to society, we aim to give our readers a deep and inspiring insight into the luminaries who are paving the way for progress and ingenuity in the modern era.

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The Untold Truth About Expedition Unknown

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Although stories about previously unknown, ancient treasures and unveiled mysteries are usually seen as fictional fantasies, those same topics are exactly what makes “Expedition Unknown” so endearing. While the show takes us to the most fantastic and historically meaningful places around the world, what has really been keeping us engrossed with it for years it’s discovering the biggest secrets history has in store for us, which wouldn’t otherwise be possible.

“Expedition Unknown”s premise is very unique and so are the show’s settings, format and approach to topics. However, knowing how well produced and planned it is, it makes us wonder about things we aren’t able to see on-screen.

For this we have prepared a list of the less known facts about the show, including interesting bits about its host Josh Gates, his crew and what they’ve discovered so far. This is the unknown truth about “Expedition Unknown“.

Josh Has An Impressive Career

Just in case you have missed it, Josh Gates has an impressive career both in and outside the entertainment industry. A native of Massachusetts and born into a British-American family, Josh graduated from Tufts University with a degree in Archeology and Drama.

Although the fields are an uncommon combination, his professional background has allowed him to incorporate both. His debut on TV happened back in 2002, when he made short appearances in the ESPN’s game show “Beg, Borrow & Deal” and other TV productions. His big time finally came in 2007 with “Ghost Hunters” and “Destination Truth”, which became Syfy’s most watched show for a while.

While his career as an actor is less well-known, it’s not non-existent either, having played roles in low-budget movies such as “Party Foul” in 2003, and “Hard Cell” in 2007.

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Josh has also been involved with the production of many of the series he’s hosted, including “Stranded” and “Legendary Locations”.

Though Josh’s background as an archaeologist has allowed him to develop the proper experience to be his show’s investigator, his involvement with paranormal-related and myth-hunter shows make him a very multi-faceted TV personality as well.

Filming Takes A Long Time

As expected, when it comes to a show so well planned and shot on location like “Expedition Unknown” is, filming could take unexpectedly long periods of hard work.

As it happens, in “Expedition Unknown” we’re used to seeing Josh and his experts travel around the world. Though that would be genuinely enjoyable for almost everyone, transporting the camera crew and production staff to those places usually takes weeks or even months of preparation, besides the normal time filming takes.

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All in all, it’s said that to produce every season of “Expedition Unknown”, the crew take 200 days a year, out of which hundreds of hours are spent in airplanes and other transport, as Josh affirms.

The Most Dangerous Place

For those who are used to seeing Josh Gates shenanigans in the show, it’s hard to think of naming only one place as the most life-endangering.

However, Josh’s closest call was definitely in Myanmar. It happened back in 2015, when he and his crew were filming the episode “Curse Of The Golden Bell” in the search for an ancient and lost artifact which took him to the depths of the Yangon River. While Josh is a professional scuba diver, he didn’t consider the difficulties that entailed swimming in such muddy waters.

The lack of visibility caused by the heavy pollution and strong currents made his mission to find King Dhammazedi’s Great Bell impossible.

As he affirms, diving there was like ‘working with a blindfold on, feeling around underwater’ and despite his initial enthusiasm, the conditions were not only just too dangerous, but actually the worst he’d ever experienced.

All in all, desisting from it was a good idea, especially considering how many people have actually died in the Yangon River while looking for the Great Bell.

Unexpected News While Filming

It’s nothing out of the normal for TV casts to be in contact with their families while filming, especially for shows like “Expedition Unknown”, in which the crews have to spend long periods traveling and away from their loved ones.

As it comes, Josh Gates was given one of the best news items of his life while filming the show. It was back in season two, when Josh and his crew were in Portugal filming the episode “Secrets of Christopher Columbus”, as he was phoned by his wife to tell him they were having a baby.

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The exact moment in which an overly excited and emotional Josh informs people around him that he was going to become a dad for the first time, was filmed and included in the episode.

Later in season four, again while on the road with the “Expedition Unknown”s crew, Josh was informed that he was going to become a father for a second time; he wasn’t filmed, we can clearly imagine his reaction.

Humor Doesn’t Always Go As It Should

Despite being an investigation-centered show, “Expedition Unknown” always has a little touch of humor to make everything lighter.

However, despite how entertaining and light-hearted Josh Gates’ jokes are to us, he affirms that being funny isn’t his strongest skill. According to him, his attempt at humor ‘falls flat all the time’, but it’s admittedly his way of not only keeping the audience’s attention, but to make the work environment easier to endure during situations hard to deal with.

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Despite the extensive planning the show’s staff does, things in “Expedition Unknown” don’t always go as they should while filming, so joking and trying to lift everyone’s spirits on set is considered important in Josh’s perspective. That positive approach is probably appreciated by his fellow co-workers, and the audience surely enjoys seeing  and hearing it.

Food Is Not Always Safe To Consume

For a show such as “Expedition Unknown”, unexpected problems related to environmental factors occur quite often. As is obvious, the crew usually deals with problems just fine, but there are times in which things get so out of hand that it could endanger the cast’s wellbeing.

The latter situation happened during the fourth season, when the crew was in Ecuador filming “Hunt for the Metal Library”, and had to spend a long time enclosed in a cave. While the crew was prepared beforehand to successfully face the conditions of said environment, having to eat in a place where there were many animals had its consequences.

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This resulted in three members of the show’s crew falling sick for consuming bat’s excrement that somehow had fallen on their food. While their health’s condition didn’t worsen and their sickness was actually not as serious as it sounds, it’s enough to give us an idea of how far the show goes to keep the cameras rolling.

Josh Married A Co-Star

As should be obvious, Josh Gates’ work schedule has been very hectic since he made his TV debut. Knowing he spends a significant part of his life on set, it’s understandable that he ended up meeting his significant other half there as well.

As it happened, Josh and his then wife-to-be Hallie Gnatovich met on the set of his formerly-hosted show “Destination Truth”, for which she worked as an off-camera researcher. Though details about their relationship are unknown, in 2014 they tied the knot, and have since welcomed two children together.

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Despite Josh’s celebrity status, he and Hallie have carefully kept their children’s privacy, by not revealing their names or faces to the public. Regardless of their choice maintaining their private, their relationship always looked blissful from the outside, that is until Hallie announced in August 2021 that she and Josh had been separated for ‘a year and half’. In her words, their divorce had been officialized just a couple of months before, and both of them were still trying to figure out their shared parenthood and separate lives.

Josh Gates Famous Necklace

One never gets surprised enough when it comes to celebrities and things their fans do for them. Although Josh Gates’ personality is pretty much on the humble and chill side, some of the weirdest aspects of being famous is the fact that his necklace, which he usually wears in the show, has become quite popular as well.

If you don’t believe us, you only have to look up “Josh Gates Necklace” on Facebook, and see it for yourself. As it turns out, the page is very active and usually updates “Expedition Unknown” fans on Josh’s shenanigans.

While the aforementioned accessory has been described as ‘not magical’ by Josh, seeing that its page has over 3,000 fans and keeps growing, it makes us question if his words are actually untrue.

How Topics Are Selected

Seeing that “Expedition Unknown”s main premise is that of pursuing and unveiling ancient mysteries, it’s only expected that a lot of research takes place prior to letting its crew adventure into often unknown territory.

There are certain aspects which play a big role while choosing what and where the show’s crew is going to explore. While every myth could be interesting enough to be considered, what catches the show’s research team’s attention is if the stories indeed have substance, or as Josh describes it, if they have ‘meat on the bone’.

With the help of international archaeologists and experts in other fields, Josh and his crew follow the leads that actually lead to something instead of simply being completely unproven.

Besides the obvious pre-research that they go through, logistics and resources are factors not to be left aside. However, according to Josh, he and the show’s crew go on their adventures without knowing a great deal about what is going to happen in the end, which obviously makes the whole deal more interesting for both them and the audience.

What Josh Has To Say About William Shatner

Throughout the years, “Expedition Unknown” has surely given us many memorable moments. Out of those, one of the most interesting was shown in the series’ spin-off, “Shark Trek”, featuring William Shatner.

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Of course, this sort of tribute to “Star Trek” was unexpected considering the show’s usual concept. Despite that, the challenges encountered by Josh Gates’ crew along the way turned out as an extraordinary experience for everyone.

However, if there’s something that stuck in our heads it was how easily William adapted to the show. It wasn’t only us who noticed it though, as Josh admitted himself that besides being an amazing co-star, William’s genuine interest made everything more enjoyable.

According to Josh, what made William’s a memorable partner was definitely his willingness to ‘tackle and understand’ his fear, in order to ultimately conquer it. Those are qualities which surely an expedition expert such as Josh appreciates a lot, and will make us remember the special show with a smile for a long time.

The Reason They Went On Exploring Sharks

As entertaining as “Expedition Unknown: Shark Trek’ was, at first many people were surprised to find that the series would continue exploring sharks, which was an admittedly unusual topic for a series mostly focused on uncovering other types of mysteries.

While the reaction is understandable, there were actually good reasons for this objective. As Josh explained, more than just going on a trip looking for sharks, his main focus was to explore human’s fearful attitude towards the unknown. In his words, the common fear towards these animals is partially caused by the media’s influence, films such as “Jaws”, and prejudices based on their appearance. However, by examining these sea creatures, Josh wanted to not only understand them, but to debunk the many misconceptions surrounding the species.

Needless to say, Josh’s intentions with the show are well appreciated by the audience, and surely by environmentalists as well.

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The Reason It Has Many Spin-Offs

“Expedition Unknown” has spawned several spin-off mini-series over the years, including titles such as “Hunt For The Yeti” and “Egypt Live”, which makes us feel happy to see it becoming a successful franchise.

However, while these aforementioned series were meant to show specific expeditions made by the crew in a deeper way, for the last couple of years, long-running spin-offs “Josh Gates Tonight” and “Expedition X” have also been released.

The reasoning behind creating these series in this new format, is a matter of adapting to the several regulations related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has made it difficult to produce “Expedition Unknown” in the same way we were used to.

Traveling and filming is also a big concern for the show’s production team for the same reason, but they’ve at least continued to produce content for the franchise until the situation improves. That’s a relief for fans, who still wait for “Expedition Unknown”s return to TV screens as it was previously.

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What happened to Christie Brimberry from Gas Monkey Garage?

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For a time, fans of the reality-television series called “Fast N’Loud” were worried that one of its stars, Christie Brimberry, wouldn’t appear again in their favorite automotive restoration TV show. Due to health issues, she couldn’t perform her duties as the office manager of Richard Rawling’s Gas Monkey Garage, which was the focal point of the reality-TV series. She took a break from managing the business in 2016 to focus on getting healthy, with the blessing of everyone in the shop. Loyal fans were relieved when she was seen again in the 15th season of one of the most-watched car shows on Discovery Channel.

Christie’s Early Life and Family

Not much information about her family and early life was revealed to the public. All that was known about her was that she was born on 25 March 1972, in Dallas, Texas, because Christie was very careful about what she shared in her social media accounts and during interviews.

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On her social media pages, she was proud to post that she had a good relationship with her parents, most especially her mother who passed away in 2015. She also shared some rare photos with her sister, and said that she was her ‘ride or die until the tires fall off’.

Christie has been married for many years to Darren Brimberry, a professional hairstylist with a hair salon in Dallas. She has six children, and some featured in her Instagram account, although some fans wondered why she has children of Afro-American descent. A fan complimented her for adopting them, but another said that she didn’t adopt any of them, but without offering any other information; much speculation formed but she never addressed the isue. Some of her children have graduated from college, and some are already married. When she posted a tribute to her mother during Mother’s Day in 2020, she mentioned that her old lady was about to be a great-grandmother soon.

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From Gas Monkey Garage to “Fast N’Loud” reality-TV

The Gas Monkey Garage is a Dallas-based custom auto shop founded by Richard Rawlings. After seeing automotive shows on TV, he realized that there was a chunk of the untapped market that those TV shows hadn’t taken advantage of – he noticed that his wife and kids wouldn’t stay and watch an auto show with him. The businessman in him knew that he needed to have a garage first to get to that point of creating a TV show. It was like hitting two birds with one stone, since his passion was automotive restoration and customization, so he sold his printing and advertising business to open up a garage in Dallas. Christie was hired through her husband, Darren, who was Richard’s hairstylist.

For many years, he had been pitching the TV show concept to Discovery Channel, until the cable executives eventually accepted the idea and “Fast N’Loud,” was born.

Unlike other automotive shows on TV with overwhelming machismo, Richard toned it down and made it appealing to women and kids without turning off the male viewers. The premise of the TV series was that he would look for worn-down classic or vintage cars all over the country, and purchase them for his team to restore them at the garage. After the fabrication and restoration process, Richard would sell the vehicle at a higher price, creating a significant profit for the business.

All through this, Christie was responsible for assisting Richard in dealing with all the chaos and drama involving the various people in the team – even shouting at her boss – to make sure everyone stayed on course so that they could meet the deadline. The first episode aired in June 2012 and the final episode in June 2020, all in all 155 episodes over the course of 16 seasons, produced by Pilgrim Studios for Discovery Channel.

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Meet Christie’s Co-Workers at Gas Monkey Garage

It might be Richard Rawlings who owned the garage, but it was his team of experienced professionals who were responsible for the actual restoration and customization of each car. He had the final say on the overall plan, such as choosing the car to be restored, the schedule, and approval of the budget for the proposed project, while Richard’s sister, Daphne Kaminski, worked as the Head of Operations.

The main mechanic and chief fabricator, Aaron Kaufman, was there almost from the start until he left the garage to open up his own fabrication shop in 2018, and subsequently starred in his own TV show also aired on Discovery Channel. He was with Richard for 14 years, but they maintained a friendship afterwards, as Richard respected him not only as a fabricator but also as a person. Christie even promoted and congratulated Aaron when he finally launched his own online shop.

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The rest of the team was comprised of Tony Cano, Mike Coy, and Kennan Hons (Paint and Body Tech Team), Chad Isbell (Automotive Parts Expert), Russell Holmes (Mechanic), J. Cheatham and J. Freeman (Fabricators), Jon Rodriguez (Wiring Expert), and Jason Aker (Firebird expert),

The Real Reason Why Christie Left Gas Monkey Garage in 2016

Ignoring potential health problems was one of the reasons why Christie had to leave Gas Monkey Garage abruptly and indefinitely. It was revealed that back in October 2016, she went through life-threatening surgery to remove a cancerous lymph node from her thyroid. Initially, she didn’t want to share her experience with the public, as she was a very private person. However, she eventually thought it best to educate people about the importance of getting a medical examination when one’s body didn’t feel right.

Apparently, before August 2016 ended, she felt something like a small knot in her throat, but ignored it, thinking that it just had something to do with her Hashimoto condition, a disease that attacks the thyroid and creates nodules in the throat. When it became annoying and felt like having a finger shoved down her throat, Christie had it examined; she had an ultrasound, and when the doctor saw the size of the nodule, a biopsy followed. Somehow she knew deep inside that it could be something worse and dangerous, and 12 days later, her suspicions were confirmed. She had thyroid cancer and the only good thing about it was the doctor saying that it had only affected one lymph node, but it had to be treated right away because it was aggressive.

Christie was assured by her doctor that it would be an easy surgery, that the removal of the thyroid and the cancerous lymph node was done in one day, however, when they operated on her, it was discovered that cancer had spread and a cluster of lymph nodes was removed.

The doctor also had to remove a part of her trachea because it was affected as well. Unfortunately, during the process of removing all of it, the nerve in her voice box was cut, which resulted in her having no voice at all, and she was informed that the condition could last for about six months or so. Christie also had chemotherapy to help fully remove the cancerous cells from her body.

In November 2016, the tube that was inserted in her throat and the stitches were removed, however, the doctor identified that the left side of her voice box was still paralyzed, which made talking and swallowing difficult. Instead of the initial prognosis of six months, the doctor said it would take around eight months to a year before she regained her voice.

Christie went back for a follow-up after a month, and there was an improvement. She got her voice tone back, but she lost a lot of volume.

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She was advised to stop taking her thyroid medication so that she could receive Radioactive Iodine treatment; this created an imbalance in her thyroid hormones, that left her emotionally drained, such that she would cry often, and had little control over her emotions. Being on a low iodine diet, which meant no bread, no dairy and no commercially processed food, made it even more unbearable.

However, after a year of non-stop treatment and a disciplined lifestyle, Christie was declared cancer-free by her doctor in December 2017. She posted on her official Facebook page, ‘I went through the last of my treatment last week, and had my one-year bone scan on Friday! The results came back today and I am CANCER FREE!!!’

Back on Gas Monkey Garage and “Fast N’Loud”

While Christie was never fired from Gas Monkey Garage, as Richard was very supportive of her, she wasn’t physically able to join the rest of the cast of “Fast N’Loud.”

She totally regretted that she wasn’t part of the filming of the Mannequin Challenge that Richard and the rest of the team did in December 2016, however, she made sure to be active on her social media platforms Instagram and Facebook to help promote the TV show. There was even a time when she went live while an episode was being aired, just to stay connected with the fans.

When the doctors cleared her to return to work, she was welcomed back in the garage. On 13 June 2018, Richard posted on his official Facebook page, a photo of him sitting behind his desk in his office at Gas Monkey Garage with Christie looking on while pointing out something on a ledger. It was business as usual, and he captioned it with ‘Working hard and havin’ fun’, while Christie posted the same photo with the caption, ‘I love my job.’ Fans were able to see her once again in the last two seasons of their reality-TV series.

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. Loyal fans were shocked that Richard announced during a guest appearance in the podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience,” in December 2020, that the 16th season that was aired earlier that year was the last from his team. He didn’t renew his contract with Discovery Channel, saying that it had run its course. However, he assured the fans that he had many plans for Gas Monkey Garage on other media platforms.

True enough, Gas Monkey Garage has been continuously uploading videos on their official YouTube channel, which has over 800,000 subscribers. They also created a podcast called “Monkey Trap with Richard Rawlings”, with their Facebook page having close to five million followers. Recently, the Gas Monkey Garage online merchandise shop launched Richard Rawling’s Car Sweepstakes, in which anyone who purchased $1 worth of merchandise automatically received a raffle ticket for the vehicle giveaway. For instance, a $35-trucker hat would mean 35 raffle entries into the giveaway contest.

A federal-regulated sweepstakes agency was tasked to draw the winner each time the giveaway countdown ends.

Christie Brimberry net worth and financial difficulties

According to authoritative sources, Christie has an estimated net worth of $2 million, some earned from her participation in the reality-TV series and her involvement with the Gas Monkey Garage business. This assess thatment must be true before her battle with cancer, because in some of her social media posts, she shared that she had a hard time paying for the medical bills she incurred for her cancer treatment, saying the insurance coverage that she had wasn’t large enough to cover all the expenses. To alleviate some of the expenses, she marketed events and brands through paid sponsorship on her social media accounts, and was even accused of being a sellout through the comments she received. One time, she was fed up with them that she told everyone that it was her way of surviving, and if they didn’t approve, they could unfollow.

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When “Fast N’Loud” ended its run, fans were worried that Christie lost another source of income. After a while, she announced that she’d opened up an account in OnlyFans.com. While some of her fans were apprehensive about this, the move no longer surprised them and they suspected it was to be used for a secondary source of revenue. Most of the celebrities and regular folks joined this web content subscription service, so that they could earn money from subscribers. It was one of those social media platforms that allowed content creators to receive funding from their fans for exclusive pay-per-view photos or videos. It actually created an uproar over the Internet, as most of the content offered consisted of sexually explicit videos and photos.

When Christie posted a teaser showing a photo of her wearing an unbuttoned shirt revealing her cleavage down to her tummy, the fans expected racy content from her.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B56O9l5A2zC/

However, she clarified many rumors that went around after her OnlyFans announcement, debunking what most of the fans thought was her reason for joining, saying that it wasn’t for financial reasons because she wasn’t broke. She also said that she wasn’t getting a divorce, that the OnlyFans idea came from her husband. Christie said she was just happy and that the timing was perfect as she was in a place where she’s most comfortable with her skin. Not everyone believed her because of her previous posts about her problems with finances due to her surgery and all that came with it. For $24, a subscriber could access the 165 digital media she posted about herself for three months on her OnlyFans account, however, the controversial crowd-sourcing site announced that it would prohibit account users from uploading explicit images and videos, as of October 2021.

https://www.facebook.com/GasMonkeyGarage/photos/t.100044231209485/675220785834592/?type=3

Her profile on her official OnlyFans account showed ‘I used to be that girl from that show but now I’m the girl from that website! No porn, I’m not a porn star.’ However, her sexy photos in which her nipples were in full view were leaked to the public, even if there was a warning on her page that said, ‘Any images/videos re-uploaded elsewhere online will be sent a DMCA from my lawyer, and legal ramifications will be enforced.’ Some of her subscribers said it was like Christie posted for racy magazines such as Playboy or Penthouse.

“Fast N’Loud” fans were wondering if she’s still connected with Gas Monkey Garage, because based on her Instagram and Facebook accounts, she hasn’t posted anything about them in 2021. The pandemic caused by the Covid-19 virus has surely created problems for all types of businesses all over the world, and it would not be impossible at all if the auto shop undertook some reorganization of its staff and crew.

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