For the last few years, there has been a fascination with reality television programs that focus on blue-collar folks and their working class jobs often overlooked by the mainstream. With shows centering on everything from bounty hunters to ice truckers to pawn shop extraordinaires, it was only a matter of time before the likes of Lizard Lick Towing rolled into town.

Ron and Amy Shirley and Bobby Brantley of Lizard Lick Towing are no strangers to television – they were featured on truTV’s All Worked Up, a show centered on workers in the rowdiest of occupations, from bouncers to repo men. Although the three big personalities must have made a big enough impression on fans and truTV producers alike, this time the gang looks as though they are trying a little too hard to justify having their own show.

The series premiere of Lizard Lick Towing follows Ron and Bobby as they attempt to tow a car belonging to an ex-con, where they are met with resistance, to put it lightly, in an ordeal that only lasts about 10 minutes. Everything else happens as if the makers of Lizard Lick were going down a list: Fight with another “customer”, fight with each other, attend softball game, the use of numerous Southern sayings, like “Boy, I’m happier than a shoe fly in an outhouse.”

No reality show is even close to being completely real – if you are lucky, a show will be half real and half television production. The biggest problem with Lizard Lick is that the “reality” feels too scripted and the personality feels too forced. You could set your watch for the various climaxes, hooks or “reality moments” that occur in the series: Every 5 minutes there is a fist fight, every 4 minutes Amy is yelling at the boys for being too reckless and every 3 minutes there is the obligatory in-studio aside in which one of the stars explains or clarifies something that does not even need to be said.

Lizard Lick is a very plot oriented reality show, not to mention only 30 minutes in length, which ends up stifling the character development – the sole factor that makes or breaks a reality show. Ron, Amy and Bobby seem like very gregarious people, but Lizard Lick looks less like a program about three old friends running a tow truck business, and more like three cast members putting on a show about a tow truck business.

Most of the interactions come in the form of bickering, which does not feel natural, or in the form of flat-out fighting, which does not feel real or warranted to the situation for that matter. Even when Ron turns on the macho charm for the camera, he looks like he is performing, which is a shame – he seems like he could be a really interesting person to watch.

One thing that struck me throughout the series was the lack of towing; in the pilot episode of the show they have one tow job, and it is taken care of (sort of) in the beginning of the show. I know nothing about the tow truck business, and although I’m not exactly looking to fill that particular hole in my life, I am also not above seeing how tow truckers live and work. In these kinds of shows that are built around the less conventional of occupations, the job always needs to be in the background – it needs to function as the setting.

truTV’s All Worked Up has a lot of episodes under its belt; these folks at Lizard Lick were chosen for a spin-off for a reason. If the gang could focus less on performing and carry on business as usual in front of cameras, Lizard Lick Towing may be worth watching. Their business has enough craziness on its own, and they seem like a fun, kooky bunch – there’s no need for them to pretend.

About The Author

48 Responses

  1. big E

    well after reading this the main thing i got out of it was that the writer stated he knows nothing bout running a tow truck well i do i was a repo agent for four years in the state of mississippi i know bout it how everything runs and i can say the show might not be 100 percent real but for the most part it is alot of situations happen when your in the field looking to repossess a vehicle anything can happen i have had bats swung at me guns pulled and just different things when you think somthing is fake on the show just ask yourself what would you do are how would you feel if someone come to pick up your car and your doing your best to pay the payments but you just cant make the ends meet and need it to get to work so think bout that before you say its fake. and in the south we can fight and be pissed at each other but if you good friends like they are it is very possible to go to a softball game and make up again

    Reply
  2. jeff

    I may not be an expert on towing either but I’ve been in the emergency dispatch business awhile. The first episode bobby is apparently assulted. They call for EMS. In “real life” the cops must get on scene first and secure the scene of any assult PERIOD. It’s for the EMS personal safety. Find it odd no cops, and there was a really easy patient refusal. Softball game his face didn’t look bruised up at all.

    Reply
  3. Zon

    Fire bombs? Lololol!!!!! Those camera men have the steadiest hands in the world. Did you ever see real life situations where someone holding a camera [who was in danger] had that much video control? They are literally feet away from the fire.

    Reply
  4. Andrew

    I’m not really a huge fan of reality TV but this one hooked me because of the subject matter and the exciting circumstances they find themselves in. I’m just glad as a subscriber/employee of DISH Network I can get truTV in HD, I was recently over at a friends house who has DirecTV and learned they don’t even offer truTV in high definition. After watching so many of my shows in HD, I’ve been spoiled and it’s hard to go back.

    Reply
  5. Daniel

    I have been watching All Worked Up and now Lizard Lick Towing. I think their new series is beginning to take on the same feel as Operation Repo. I understand repo work is dangerous but why oh why aren’t the police ever seen when the bikers tore up the office door and pounded on Ronnie? In some instances you would think they would have law enforcement involved with the “Dangerous” situations. I think it is a huge let down when I find at first I like a “Reality Show”” and then it appears to come from the same mold as other “Reality Shows” like Operation Repo. BY the way Amy is definately a looker. :)

    Reply
  6. Truck Driver

    this is the most stupid show next to the “operation repo show” .. that are a show that was first run in Mexico .. then picked up in the USA .. that show is all actors and now they have to put up disclaimers about the show is not real .. but things that have been told to them by other town ships about things .. that they embellish
    Lizard Like is a town in NC .. and the show is not a real repo shop
    it is a stage and they do not show how they tow .. they just show stupid sayings …. I like in the south and have never heard so much garbage as thing said Like Jeff Foxworthy would said in him comedy act .. you could be a redneck if … the real company is just selling the rights to use there name for business .. those actors will never show up to repo anything
    with the would never have changed there name to TRU TV instead of Court TV .. at least with that name they are not saying everything they show is true
    So they can have better shows on than what they wants us to watch

    Reply
  7. Daniel

    Truck Driver – I tried to follow along with your comment but some of your sentences were very sporadic and hard to understand. If you could slow down and be a little more articulate to clarify what you mean; I think you are possibly making a good point.

    I agree that Lizard Lick Towing television program is less tru/reality than is portrayed, but it is entertaining and many times hilarious. I like looking at Amy?s booty when she bends over or struts around like a ?Peacockress? (not a real word, I just made it up but it sounds funny). I believe Lizard Lick Towing is a great deal more entertaining that operation repo.

    Reply
  8. Terry

    RON YOU NEED TO KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT ALL THOSE STUPID SAYING THAT COME OUT OF YOUR MOUTH IS ALL 2ND HAND FROM OTHER SWAMP PEOPLE YOU HAVE DEALT WITH. IT SHOWS YOU REAL INTELLIGENCE EVERYTIME YOU OPEN YOUR MOUTH. BOBBY WHY DO YOU PUT UP WITH HIS CRAP HE HAS YOU AS HIS PERSONAL GOFFER IE: BOBBY GO DO THIS, BOBBY GO GET THIS, BOBBY WATCH MY BACK, CAUSE IM NOT GONNA WATCH YOURS YOU ARE ON YOUR OWN. NOW ASK YOURSELF IF THAT DOES’NT SOUND FAMILIAR? AMY HOW DO YOU PUT UP WITH THAT HILLBILLY????

    Reply
  9. Marsha

    I love Lizard Lick towing and Bobby is so dang sexy when he is mad!

    Reply
  10. Terry

    Once again I smoked a J to watch the show and as usual, Ron with his beaverbutt haircut telling Bobby (go get that car, watch my back come on bobby you can do it. Next Ron is gonna tell you to sit up, lie down, fetch a bone and last go take a punch for me so I (ron) can run and hide. Bobby quit being motormouth’s lap dog.

    Reply
  11. Daniel

    Terry, you seem to write as a delusional fan. If the TruTV series Lizard Lick towing is real, that would make me Daniel the President of the United States.

    Bobby do this and Bobby do that is simply part of a script designed to bring curiosity, anticipation, excitement, etc… which they bank on the increase their ratings and continue the show another season.

    Television programs rely heavily on good ratings to get signed for another season. That is why they have to have an element of “danger”, quarrels, and comedic entertainment. It is all designed as entertainment not reality but actuality. If you read TruTV’s disclaimer you will find that their “reality” shows are mostly scripted. Poor delusional fans. 

    Reply
  12. Terry

    Daniel:
    U may b rite but i have to beleive whoever put the script together

    Reply
  13. Rod

    It is somewhat disheartening to find out that a show is fake when previews try to show otherwise.

    Reply
  14. Tim

    I was okay with the hokum and the characters involved on this scripted unreality show, until I found out that Ronnie is some kind of preacher. Preachers and politicians should be the two most dreaded P-words in the English language. They ONLY exist to divest you from your hard-earned dollar. In Ronnie’s case, add another dreaded P-word, poetry. Whatever laxative inspires his so-called poems, he needs to cease and desist, immediately. I’ve read better poetry on bathroom walls.

    Reply
  15. Allen

    I tried to watch this steaming pile of well ya know I’ve done a few repos with some friends they needed a hand, I felt my i.q. dropping by the second, then again she like big brother i think i need a new girlfriend

    Reply
  16. lisamarie

    I have really been looking forward to watching Lizard Lick Towing, but now I’m real disappointed . This show is fake and so obvious. I know reality shows always have fake situations to make it interesting but this is just too fake. I do however LOVE operation Repo. If Operation Repo is fake then they have some darn good actors!

    Reply
  17. rick

    You people just dont know how dangerous repoing cars is.You dip shitshave no clue.My family has been doing this for 30 years and its very scary at times and weve lost friends and family.So you jack asses can sit behind your desk and your steering wheel and talk all your shit. You have no clue.And maybe you should write lizard lick towing and see if you can spend a couple of days rideing with them.Then come back and run your mouths.You people make me sick.Nothing but a bunch of loud mouth pencil pushing behind the wheel pussies.

    Reply
  18. SmokinBear

    Oh my GOD!! Please tell me that you people are kidding. I’ve seen Lizard Lick Towing only once, out of curiosity, and was entirely appalled by the shoddy script, nonexistent acting ability of the principle characters, and manufactured scenarios. I want my 30 mintues back!! This doesn’t even qualify as “Entertainment.” If, in fact, the Shirleys are legitimate business people, then one would think they would want to present a fairly honest depiction of what they do. That they never presented legal documents to the RO’s or arranged for a Sherrif’s escort was suspect, but that they repeatedly assaulted people over and over was disgusting, ridiculous and as they represent North Carolina folk, <—-made them appear to be inbred, mindless, lowlifes. The Shirleys would be better off behind the scenes as consultants, get real actors and better writers for the show.

    Reply
  19. bored

    I think lizard lick towing is kinda neat, if nothin else good is on. I totally believed it for a couple episodes. But then i noticed bobby and ronnie go in different vehichles. If there is a car, truck, tractor parked in the way, the ppl who ownes that vehichle always seems to leave the key in it. So bobbh conviently hops in and moves it. But while ronnie is driving off with repoed car, and bobby is moving vehichle in the way, no one ever hops in bobbies truck and drives off. And its like a drama show. Ronnie and amy drive by and see bobby in a reseraunt where they apparently dont like him being. So they go in and start a fuss and fight right there with ppl eating, and no cops, noone around cares. Just too odd.

    Reply
  20. sammie

    Lizard Lick towing is fake as well as Operation Repo, i was disappointed to find out after watching both for some time…what a waste of television space! Especially after watching the episode Amy’s water breaks next thing you know, they are at the hospital camera’s and all, Bobby peaks his head in the door, next thing you know she has the baby..alot of it staged. I work in a hospital & it just doesnt work that that way. Operation Repo…Matt needs an attitude adjustment, hope he does not come back on tv..bad actors!

    Reply
  21. Terry Sayer

    Ronnie you are such a big fat-ass baby. Try doing some of the crap you have boby do. you go vin the cars. Quit coming up with these lame brain plans to do a repo. If all this show is prescripted. Get rid of ronnie & Amy. Let bobby and his old girlfreind take over the repos. New name new faces. Get rid of Beaver head and those stupid Hillbilly saying he is always coming up with. All it does is show how much education he has. Beaverhead has which is ZERO & -10 IQ

    Reply
  22. Mark

    think back to the old days of the jerry springer show then all of a sudden no more fist fights ill tell you why. be cause the local prosecutor saw the show and pressed charges on some of the guests springer had to foot the legal bill. any time a crime happens when law enforcement finds out they pick up the charges whether the victim wants to press them or not plus the liability on the producers is huge could you imagine if one of your family member’s were hurt from this show what would you do? no one no matter what they do is ever arrested

    Reply
  23. Toni

    Sammie have you heard of editing footage to shorten the time and not show certain things? They do it in movies all the time which is why there are deleted scenes. The fact that they have some times lapses is not a reason for it to be fake. They show what will fit in the 30 minutes the show airs and I dont think a lot of viewers want to spend 30 minutes riding to the hospital then another 30 watching amy give birth.. They have shows on TLC for that.

    Reply
  24. LENNI

    I love the show, but I am a little confused, when the show first aired on All Worked Up they had a double car garage built onto the office not that Lizard towing has it’s own show how come they only have a single car garage built onto the office, did they downsize.

    Reply
  25. Rich

    Of course it is scripted. It would be too much of a liability to be filmed as it happens. It is entertaining, so just enjoy it.

    Reply
  26. Ronnie

    Sorry Guys, This show is NOT fake. What Rick said is right… If you get to drive with them, You understand ALOT more.

    Reply
  27. Terry

    I guess I like to torture myself by watching this phony show (lizard Lick tow) just saw the repeat where beaver butt Ron just proposed to Amy.Ron you couldnt even do and say that right. Amy take this ring. Ron you are such a phony, does Amy know about that female your seeing on the side while she is at home watchingthe baby. Oh well its gonna catch up to your fat ass

    Reply
  28. QuagmireGiggityGiggity

    @rick
    Sorry badass repo guy. A hard job thats dangerous but this is a show aired to entertain. It’s obvious, as all reality shows JOB is to interest and attract viewers. Maybe grow you iq a bit and then you too can sit behind a desk instead of doing a job involving danger. You sir are the dumbass.

    Reply
  29. The Real Repo

    No this isn’t real, not even close. The basic storyline is real enough but that is where truth and TV show part ways. It’s a tough job that pays well when you can snatch and run and when you can’t it’s all too dangerous – they will do whatever it takes not to lose their ride. Have you ever seen Beaverbutt or Booby throw a real punch yet? Me either.

    Reply
  30. lon

    Hey dumb ass? Do u think all the james bond movies are real? It is called entertainment. Wwe isn’t real either, but it is entertainment. Oh yeah, dorthy didn’t really land in oz. People like u are why some of the good shows are taken off. Dumbass!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  31. pamela

    Once ina while, a show is found to be spool bad, it’s hard to look away. This is NOT one of them. I can ‘t even find any sophisticated way to say “it’s stupid ” It’s the very definition of stupid. It’s insulting to all involved, the actors who DO have a towing company, should be embarrassed, the people of the south, angry, and the writers …fired. A lot of folks commenting here in belief, give themselves away with bad spelling and poor grammer. Please try to find something to watch that can enhance your life and do a little research, the producers say it ‘s “not reality ” the couple are Wife Swap rejects.

    Reply
  32. pamela

    Previous comment has spelling errors due to “auto text “, it should read ‘…a show is found to be sooo bad…’ Definition of stupid “lacking in common sense, marked by lack of intelligence, pointless; worthless, slow witted etc Perfect!!!

    Reply
  33. repo man

    Lizard Lick Towing is awesome. For those of you who don’t like it (the choice is simple) don’t watch it. We should not be looking at this show as if analyzing some research paper to solve a murder mystery, but rather, looking to be entertained. And if this show is to low for your iq, (for all you super smart folk out there) I’m pretty sure you’re smart enough to find something else to watch.

    Reply
  34. george

    NO POLICE with all the attempted murder that happens each week, its all fake meatball !!!!!!

    Reply
  35. Mike from NC

    While the business is real, the show isn’t. I noticed something strangely familiar with the show about the chicken farmer in Wake Forest – the location is actually called “WintersPast Farm” and they have a .com website and I know the owner – they even show about a 2 second clip of her away from the action. And she even talks about the scouting trip for the show.

    FakeTV is basically relabeling reality tv into actuality tv to compete in the ratings – just look for the obvious microphone butt packs some people on different shows are wearing. As close to Epic Fail as you can get.

    Reply
  36. Devil

    One of the best examples of period of it being fake is the
    Episode where amy has her fight and her opponent gets “arrested”. Her and amy have some words and the girl being stressed gets free from the cops and throws a punch but amy ducks and punches her in the face…why was the lady not in cuffs? FAKE. I have to say I did enjoy the show until the coldness became way too noticeable to ignore and now its not even entertaining anymore.

    Reply
  37. Devil

    There are some typos in my last comment due to the “not so” smart phone. If you are smart enough you’ll figure out what I’m saying.

    Reply
  38. Dave

    FAKE? Kind of! – Producers:If I hear the audio clip of Bobby saying “Oh Hell No!” again I think I’m going to be sick! You run this audio clip in nearly every episode and even on some of the promos, and sometimes in places in which it simply does not fit. Bobby said “Oh Hell No” and I guess the producers liked it so much that they wanted it to become his catch phrase! LOL Anyways, Of course the show is completely scripted. Here’s an example. Remember when Bobby was seeing the woman that Amy hated and it nearly ended his career at Lizard Lick? In real life Bobby is very happily married and even has a baby! (He’s an ACTOR) Check out Bobby’s (real) Facebook page. He doesn’t hide it…. Although they are “real” towing / repo agents, they are also actors, acting in a totally scripted “reality” television show! … The episodes are SCRIPTED and you might as well say the show is (kind of) fake. It’s funny when everyone starts questioning “why aren’t the cops ever called?” or any of the many other (should be) obvious hints. People act like they are being cheated or something. Television is for our ENTERTAINMENT! If you look at it as simply ENTERTAINMENT it won’t matter whether it is “real” or not. To recap: Ronny and Amy are REALLY married and they own Lizard Lick T&R.. Bobby works for them and is also married in “real life.” Since this is an active business, Lizard Lick T&R has a staff (whom are not in the show) that runs towing and recovery jobs on a daily basis. During shooting for the TV show, the cast members, Ronny, Amy, Bobby (and some of the “staged” ACTORS) do not do REAL repos, instead, during the time of filming for the show they are staging scenes that have been written FOR THE SHOW. Ronny actually has a decent supervisory staff that runs the business while he is off filming the show. Since I know all of this and am able just to sit back and enjoy it for ENTERTAINMENT purposes and not to feel cheated LOL, I do think that (including the “Oh Hell No” overplayed audio clip) the show’s story lines are become very ridiculous! It seems as if each show is slowly (or quickly) becoming unbearable! I have a feeling that the new niche’ is going to be having famous “stars” on the show. Last week it was some country singer, this week it was a couple of Nascar guys…. If you sit an analyze or pick the show apart there are tons of things that are ridiculous (i.e. the whole New Orleans thing- and surrounding events), predicable and flat out UN-entertaining, but (since I truly like Ronny, Amy and Bobby’s CHARACTERS) I am trying to overlook the annoyances (yes, even the “Oh Hell No”) and to just ENJOY THE SHOW, just as I did during the first season when the story lines weren’t nearly as stupid and ridiculous as they are today! MAYBE, part of the producers intent is to get people wondering or asking as to whether these shows are fakes? Some of the shows (such as Operation Repo) seem to get people almost in a rage, to the point that viewers get online bitching and complaining. It all ends up being free (word of mouth) advertising for these shows. If this is the (subliminal) intent of the producers, it is absolutely brilliant and it works! Example” You probably googled something like “Is Lizard Lick real or fake?” and ended up here. Plus, I just typed all of this and you just read it!!! dave H.

    Reply
  39. Marie Ann Payton

    I enjoy the show for its entertainment value but for a long time have known that it is scripted because the cameramen are always there at the right time even on personal nights out. Its a shame because it is disappointing to find that they are so fake. Some of the fights are the same as bad acting because you can see that they miss the target. Its not the only fake show. Ghost adventures is also faked and ridiculous.

    Reply
  40. TJ

    I was a Foxtrot(782) for an ICS outta So.Cal and believe me, you folks can believe what you will. Driving a Unit be it a sling, wheel lift or the flat bed may not always be as exciting as what you see Amy, Ron and Bobby do all the time. Just wait for your rotation turn and watch how fast things can get exciting. Befriend a driver. Do a ride along and see how fast calm goes fight. To all the bros that have ever run the amber rotor. Godspeed To the bros lost on our roads will see you on the next run.

    Reply
  41. Billy Lee Mcmillion

    I just don’t see how it could be I mean every fight they get in looks 100% real and there real punches and kicks not to mention the times when the people are thrown down. I mean you expect any repo businesses to just merely drive up to some ones house and say hey I’m here to repo your car and expect them to say oooo I’ve been expecting you let me go get the cookies I baked for you. Just ask any former repo guy.And about the camera’s. The people who are picked for the job to hold camera are going to be good at doing it and there is some shaky ness to the camera its not perfectly still. If I’m wrong about it being real so be it they are amazing actors if it is but my opinion is that its real and I’m going to stick with it.

    Reply
  42. Bill

    These reality shows are just that – SHOWS! They might be fact based stories, and they might even be completely made up fictional stories, but they are ALL stories, just the same! They are as real as you think they are, and that is their purpose – to entertain. Very much like professional wrestling, that still has it’s believers. Scripted, but not without it’s believers that it is a for real situation.

    For you who still believe that these repo shows are for real situations that are happening as they are being filmed, how can you be so gullible? Do you really think that anyone would commit a felony, which is exactly what these people are doing, while they are being filmed by multiple cameras? And why aren’t the camera guys ever attacked by angry owners?

    Reply
  43. martin

    If this show is fake how come Ronnie got stabbed by bikers, like others have stated on here don’t watch the show.

    Reply
  44. AdamC

    Hey Brian. It’s definitely NOT Hollywood. As far as polished actors and actresses go. It is based on real. I believe they opened in 2008. Raleigh area is pretty backwoods and so I believe the scenarios ARE real. But it is a recreation of some of the more interesting highlights of their business. Though you and I may appreciate the hum drum day to day of the repo business business end, I imagine that the producers and directors and the white collars back in Hollywood are a bit antsy with going that direction with it. lol A show that can’t keep interests up is going to be a short run. And though I’m sure Ron and Amy and crew would like to show you the hum drum as well, I’m sure they enjoy the extra income and fame that comes with the reality tv gig. You can definitely see they are having fun. Even in the overacting. If you watch it with a less than critical eye though it’s easy to forget and you can simply enjoy the recreations of the antics that they have found themselves in over the years. But rest assured they are a real company. Don’t fret them. You know the producers and directors call the shots in all tv. Reality or production.

    Reply
  45. AJ

    Lizard Lick Towing has been in business since 1998. They’re based in Wendell, NC. Ronnie, Amy and Bobby are not actors which might explain the exaggeration in their acting.

    The show is definitely scripted and for the most part unrealistic. A lot of the scenarios depicted on Lizard Lick Towing do in fact happen though. I know several repo drivers and the stories they tell are simply insane. Getting shot at, having bats swung at them, etc. One local repo driver even had a guy throw gas on a car and ignite it to prevent the repo.

    If you want a true reality show….watch the people around you. These “reality” shows on TV are for entertainment purposes and contain little reality.

    Lizard Lick, NC is an unincorporated community at the crossroads of Lizard Lick Road and NC97 in Wake County, North Carolina…

    Reply

Leave a Reply