Whether you enjoy playing online casino games or you’re more of an in-person casino player, chances are that you’ve seen the most popular movies about casinos and gambling. Movies like Rainman, Casino Royale, 21, Rounders, Oceans 11 and so many more come to mind.
What most people don’t realize is that there are actually some really great TV shows about casinos and gambling too. They certainly aren’t as well known as the Hollywood blockbuster movies. However, they are definitely worth checking out if you enjoy playing casino table games, online slots and other types of casino games.
Here are five of the best TV shows about gambling and casinos that are worth watching.
1. Poker After Dark
We’re kicking off our list of TV shows with Poker After Dark. This is a show that features actual poker players and games rather than being a fictionalized story. The show was first aired in 2007 and was made up of hour-long episodes that showed the progression of a specific Texas hold’em poker game over the course of a week. The blinds would start at $100, there was a buy-in of $20k and the grand prize was $120k.
In the first couple of seasons, it simply featured professional poker players up against each other, but it soon evolved and let non-professionals into the show too. This was an excellent show for those looking to learn how the professionals play the game. While Poker After Dark is no longer aired on TV, it can be streamed on PokerGo.
2. Las Vegas
If you’re looking for something on the lighter side, then you should have a look at the comedy-drama Las Vegas. This is a show that covers a fictional group of employees working at a casino and hotel. It covers everything from love to security, sleazy guests and everything else that you’d expect to happen at a Las Vegas casino.
The cast for this show is pretty impressive, with Tom Selleck, James Caan and Josh Duhamel all included. Las Vegas is a great watch for people who want to see behind the scenes in a casino without the negative elements that some other movies and shows portray.
3. Breaking Vegas
If docu-series are more your vibe, then this 14-episode show is going to be right up your alley. Breaking Vegas focuses on some of the renowned illegal acts that have taken place in Vegas. It covers the people who have tried to lie, cheat and trick casinos in order to win.
Ken Uston is one of the more famous characters who is covered. He was one of the first people to perfect card counting in blackjack and many casinos blacklisted him from their establishments. He took these casinos to court and actually won his case.
It’s undoubtedly an interesting show to watch for those who are interested in finding out how people try (and sometimes succeed) to get one over casinos.
We’re out of the casino and into the horse racing scene. Luck is the story of a man involved in the horse racing industry who is driven to take revenge against the people who have wronged him. It goes very much into the depths of the racing industry and sheds light on some of the goings-on there. The main character is played by Dustin Hoffman, who you may know as Raymond Babbitt in Rainman.
Unfortunately, the show only had one season despite the excellent reception it received. This was due to a few horse deaths during filming, and although HBO was cleared of any wrongdoing, they decided not to continue with the show.
5. King of Vegas
King of Vegas is a reality-based TV show that focuses on a number of different casino games in every episode. There are six amateur players and six professional players and a grand prize of $1 million at stake.
In every episode, the players have to take each other on in four games and the person who produces the worst result leaves the show. There are 12 episodes of the show and in the last episode, they crown the “King of Vegas,” who walks away with the prize money.
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