Steel building and fabrication shows are a big hit on TV, and it’s no different when it comes to MotorTrend’s “Iron Resurrection”. However, there’s more than just fixing cars and bikes for these guys, as behind Martin Bros Customs there’s an entire team of professionals with all types of skills, ready to make the best out of every seemingly irreparable vehicle which enters their shop.
Nonetheless, not a lot has been said about the show since the sixth season of “Iron Resurrection” wrapped up in mid-2021. What does this mean though? Is the show canceled, or is it possible that another season is in the making?
Keep with us to know everything about the future of “Iron Resurrection”, Joe Martin, his team, and even to get a hold of all the juicy behind-the-scenes details about the show!
What’s Up With The Show’s Sixth Season?
We know you’ve been waiting for a new “Iron Resurrection” for a long time.
Martin Bros Customs, Home of Velocity's Iron Resurrection Rad Photo captured by Tim Sutton Photography
Ever since the fifth season wrapped up in mid-2021, Joe Martin, his staff and MotorTrend haven’t said much about a renewal, added to the fact that the show’s social media accounts are updated only on special occasions, such as the cast’s birthdays.
Though past seasons’ reruns are still airing to this day, the lack of news about a new season has every keen fan of “Iron Resurrection” wondering if the series has been unofficially canceled, or put on indefinite hiatus.
Nonetheless, any rumor regarding the end of “Iron Resurrection” is fortunately false, as according to Amanda Martin, she and Joe were ‘working on season 6 now’, as she answered a fan on Instagram in February 2022.
Although an official announcement is yet to be made, we don’t doubt the upcoming season of “Iron Resurrection” will be as successful as the previous ones.
Has Anyone Left The Show?
As one of the original cast members of “Iron Resurrection”, Javier “Shorty” Ponce was undoubtedly one of the most well-known painters in the show. Given that, it’s not surprising that a huge part of the audience was flabbergasted and disappointed to not see Shorty anywhere when the fourth season premiered in early 2020, causing an avalanche of fan messages to flow into the show’s social media accounts.
Although reality TV usually keeps away from being too open about the whereabouts of its show’s former stars, “Iron Resurrection” was admittedly very sincere regarding Shorty’s absence. As someone from the show answered to a fan on Facebook, Shorty wanted to spend more time with his family after recently becoming a grandfather, resulting in him moving back permanently to Dallas, Texas, where his own shop is located.
Not long afterwards, Shorty himself took to his social media to thank his fans for the support they gave him during his time on TV: ‘I had no idea that there were so many of you out there that really like me for who I am and what I did’, he affirmed in a video, also telling his followers he meant to expand his business in the near future.
All in all, no one could blame Shorty for taking the best decision for his family and shop’s sake. Nonetheless, we hope to see him in another production sometime again.
Shorty wasn’t the only “Iron Resurrection” star to leave in the fourth season, as the interior custom builder Phil Cato also parted ways with the show in 2020.
As “Iron Resurrection ” staff explained to their fans through social media, Phil was moving to Atlanta with his wife, who had recently started a new job there, making it impossible for him to continue filming the show in Austin, Texas.
While the move might have looked sudden by the show’s fans, it seems that Phil had carefully planned his leaving, given how rapidly he established his shop Cato’s Custom Upholstery’s new location. As read on the business’ website, his new shop opened as early as February 2020, the same date his exit from “Iron Resurrection” was announced.
On the bright side of things, Cato’s Custom Upholstery seems to be doing better than ever. The business’ Instagram account has almost 30,000 followers, added to the fact the shop’s website offers more than just auto interior custom builds, but also sells a wide variety of merchandise, including caps, shirts, keyholders and bags.
Regarding his relationship with his former co-stars, the fact that Phil continues to interact with them on social media tells us they didn’t part on bad terms.
As the Martin Bros Customs’ shop assistant, Pompa gained the hearts of the audience with good humored ways and personality.
Although he didn’t appear in all show episodes, he was still missed when “Iron Resurrection”s fourth season premiered and he was nowhere in sight.
Unlike his former co-stars Phil Cato and Javier “Shorty” Ponce, the show’s staff didn’t offer an explanation regarding Pompa’s disappearance, leaving people to inevitably speculate that his absence could have been caused by negative factors.
As Distractify reported in 2021, the most common comments from fans pointed out that Pompa could have left “Iron Resurrection” to escape the ‘antics both on-screen and in the blooper reel’, that he was often the subject of. Nonetheless, there’s no way to prove those rumors, given that Pompa usually didn’t explicitly show serious annoyance at the jokes.
In early 2022, Pompa shared Instagram videos of his New Year’s Eve celebration, after being inactive on the platform since 2019.
Later in February that year, the organization Cruisin’ Southern Style tagged him on an Instagram pic, in which Pompa, Joe Martin and his shop’s staff were in a car charity event together, leaving us to think that maybe his comeback to TV is possible, once “Iron Resurrection”s new season premieres.
The Show’s Beginnings
Although the majority of events you see on TV are usually well-planned, the way the initial ideas for reality shows come to be are mostly a matter of coincidence or good luck.
For Joe Martin and “Iron Resurrection”, it was a matter of being in the right place doing the right thing. As he recalled in an interview with the website New Jersey Car Shows in 2017, having appeared in the competition series “Bike Build Off” in the mid-2000s, added to the then-current boom of car-centered shows, opened many doors for him in both the automotive and the entertainment worlds.
Keeping in contact with the right guys at Discovery eventually played in Joe’s favor, as several years later he was called by MotorTrend’s producers who were then looking for new material for the network. Finding Martin Bros Customs fitting the concept they wanted to create, everything was left in the hands of Joe and his brother Jason: ‘we put together a teaser reel that followed us all around the shop, and then they bid off on it and really enjoyed it’.
As Joe admits, ‘everything at that point kind of fell into place’ afterwards, though the road was most-likely not completely smooth.
What the guys at Martin Bros Customs do isn’t that complicated to explain. Their business is all about customizing cars, taking them from being rubbish to look a million dollars.
Although the business prides itself on resurrecting junk-looking vehicles, their compromise to deliver good work for their customers goes beyond just fixing and recovering cars, taking the aesthetic and functional aspects at heart.
The job at Martin Bros Customs isn’t limited by what they do in the garage, as exhibitions and car events are a big part of what they do, not only to promote the business, but to keep a strong presence in such a competitive field. Nonetheless, the way the business took-off in the first place isn’t that easy to explain, even for Joe: ‘I really don’t know what it is. I have been fortunate in doing the bike stuff and going to the shows and hitting the show circuit in order to gain some new customers’, he told New Jersey Car Shows.
Given the popularity of his business thanks to “Iron Resurrection”, Martin Bros Customs stopped accepting submissions online, due to the huge load of requests they were receiving. Nonetheless, those who really love the shop could either request Joe and his team for public events, or buy their merchandise available through their online shop.
The Staff Dynamics
Anyone who’s ever watched “Iron Resurrection” knows that the guys at Martin Bros’ are usually friendly with each other, often leaving aside drama in order to get the job done, unlike many reality shows, in which staged drama is often spotted.
However, Joe Martin admits that despite getting along well on a personal basis, the work relationship between his staff and him isn’t always as smooth as it looks on camera: ‘Like in any shop, you are always going to have some problems and that sort of thing. But we don’t like to focus on it’.
While the lack of drama is appreciated by the show’s motorhead audience, the changes in the work routine for Martin Bros’ staff isn’t something viewers could easily see. As Joe’s best friend and associate Jayson “Shag” Arrington said in a 2020 interview with Screen Radar, one of the few negative consequences the show had on the business is how difficult negotiations have become since hitting fame: ‘people are like ‘Wait a minute, I’m not going to let this guy take advantage of me. These guys have money, they can spend it.’ I think there’s this misperception’.
While these factors could take a toll on Joe’s business in the long run, Martin Bros seems to be doing well for the time being.
How It Changed Their Lives
There’s no doubt that appearing on a TV show affects people’s life in several different ways, but while for some it means negative things, others make the best out of it.
Fortunately for Joe Martin and his family, fame hasn’t been as overwhelming as might be expected. According to Joe, the places he usually gets stopped by fans are car exhibitions and airports, which is ‘strange’ but not enough to be intolerable: ‘is kind of strange to us as we’re regular people and we are like, well, we’ve been like this all our life, so why do people want us to sign something now’, he said in a 2017 interview.
Regarding the workload that being in such a popular TV show entails, Joe admits the hectic filming schedules sometimes make him ‘second guess’ himself, but he keeps moving forward without rush, for the sake of delivering a good job in the end, even ‘regardless of what the production team says’, as he told Fuel Curve in 2019: ‘We don’t want to sacrifice the quality [of the build] just to get a car done for the TV show’.
Nonetheless, the experience is ‘priceless’ in his opinion, for which he’s grateful.
Was Joe In Another Show Before?
If you haven’t been a fan of steel building and auto-centered TV shows for long, you would most-likely be surprised to know that Joe Martin has been in the entertainment world for some time, and was quite successful at it.
It all goes back to Joe’s early life, when his childhood interest in drawing cars, trains and bikes turned into a fully-fledged occupation in his teens: ‘I tried to learn some mechanical things, and picked up ideas from guys around my neighborhood, as I didn’t have any type of formal training or anything’.
The mid 1990s saw Joe’s career in the automotive world start with him doing paint jobs for bikes in Dallas. As his work skills progressed, he eventually started his bike building business, which was the booming automotive field in the early 2000s thanks to greatly popular TV shows such as “Monster Garage”, which producers shockingly ended up offering Joe a place in “Bike Build Off” in 2004.
Appearing on TV meant a great opportunity for Joe, especially when he became the show’s third season’s winner, gaining him a place in the following seasons, and in the spin-off “World Biker Build-Off 2004”.
Those glorious days eventually came to an end after a couple of years, but the experience was surely unforgettable.
How Real Is The Show?
While there’s no way to tell for sure if some scenes are staged, re-filmed or scripted in “Iron Resurrection”, the fact that Joe Martin and his staff stay away from making drama the show’s centerpiece is very telling of its genuineness.
Although including some arguments between the staff or misunderstandings could easily gain the show a wider audience, this isn’t what Joe wants at all: ‘We want our show to be educational and funny, and make the average guy want to go out and learn more about cars’, as he told Fuel Curve.
Wanting to inspire viewers to get things done by themselves is admittedly a hard goal to achieve, but there’s also nothing we love more than seeing how authentic Joe wants “Iron Resurrection” to be.