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Pawn Stars: The Prince Painting That's Causing A Huge Fan Debate

Many people have walked into the World Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop hoping to make big cash off their memorabilia. But one that's caused some of the most heated debate online is a painting reportedly made by Prince.

In the "Pawn Stars" Season 19 episode "The Prince of Pawn," a guy walks into the shop and shows Rick Harrison a painting he claims was made and signed by legendary singer Prince. He has no paperwork or proof Prince made the art, so Rick's naturally skeptical. But he's intrigued enough to call in an expert, who admits there was a rumor Prince created the album cover art for "1999." While the musician may have had an interest in other art forms, there's still no way to prove the painting came from him and that he signed it. 

The "Pawn Stars" Prince painting has caused much debate online among fans. Redditor u/ceeece claimed it seems too implausible to be a genuine piece of art from Prince, "I have been a Prince fan my entire life and yet I have never seen this before. The signature I believe to be fake and added later (too shaky; Prince had a very smooth flowy signature). My thought is Prince did paint it but someone added his sig later after his death." Many people agreed the signature looked fake, but others choose to hold out hope. 

The Pawn Stars Prince painting debate rages on

If there was some way to prove Prince actually painted the piece, the expert says it could be worth between $50,000 and $100,000. With no verification, it's all hearsay, so Rick Harrison has to pass. There's been no word on whether the prospective seller ever found proof it's an original Prince, but that hasn't stopped fans from speculating wildly on the potential.

On Reddit and other forums, fans can't decide what's real and what's fake, even among the most diehard Prince fans. Many are adamant Prince didn't paint this, while others think he could've made it, but the signature seems off. Then there are those who are willing to give the biggest benefit of the doubt, like Redditor u/Immediate-Clue-3535 writing, "Have you ever tried to sign a larger version of your signature? Pretty easy for it to get sloppy." Lipstick Alley has a lengthy discussion, too, with many getting hung up on the seller's story of getting the art from a dry cleaner. User BedtimeStories wrote, "LOL. I'm still trying to figure out why a 'Prince' painting would be 'left' at the dry cleaners!!!"

A lack of paperwork hasn't stopped Prince authentication before on "Pawn Stars." When an autographed tambourine from the Purple Rain tour came into the shop, Rick got solid confirmation that the signature was real (even if they still couldn't reach a deal). It makes sense Rick would be overly cautious, as Prince memorabilia has only increased in value since his death and opened the doors for fakers. Without any definitive evidence, the "Pawn Stars" Prince painting may remain one of the all-time great mysteries surrounding the singer.