Deals from the Darkside

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Deals from the Darkside TV Poster Image
Interesting series has creepy stuff, disturbing images.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Steve Santini argues that it is important to learn about objects like torture devices from the past to make sure that the violent events they represent don't repeat themselves in the future.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The team has a penchant for creepy things, but they know their stuff.


Lots of ancient torture devices and other items used in violent events or deaths are featured. Occasionally the team demonstrates how the items work (but don't cause pain). Archived images of hangings and other events are sometimes shown.


Some vague or brief sexual references that will likely go over the heads of young viewers. Occasionally the team comes across items that have potentially been used in sexual activity, and they discuss this.


Words like "crap" and "s--t" are bleeped.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Deals from the Darkside showcases lots of items used in violent or scary events and features lots of discussions about how folks suffered or died. These examples are offered in a historic context, but younger or more sensitive viewers may find some of the items or discussions disturbing.

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What's the story?

DEALS FROM THE DARK SIDE features escape artist and historian Steve Santini as he searches for the darkest, most gruesome artifacts on the planet. Along with his spiritual advisor Biker Rob and research assistant Stef Proctor, the collector spends time looking for items like old torture devices, funeral boxes containing hair from the deceased, and other items from past scary and/or deadly activities, or items that may reflect paranormal activities from the past. When the item's authenticity is in doubt, he takes them to experts, appraisers, and even psychic consultants to determine their historic and financial value. After negotiating over the price of an item, he resells them for a profit, or leases parts of his collection to museums and organizations to be used in creepy exhibits.

Is it any good?

Like most reality series of this type, much of the show is spent reviewing the historic significance of an antique item, as well as how its authenticity and price is determined. Some of Santini's tough bargaining skills are also highlighted.

There are some interesting things revealed here, but the show's use of special effects to add some creepy drama makes it more humorous than scary. But folks who like history, or who enjoy things from the darker side of life, will probably find it entertaining.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the reasons people collect antiques or other items. Is it for money? The fun of looking? What can antiques tell us about history? What else can we learn from them?

  • Why do you think this series was created? What does Santini serve to gain or lose by appearing on the show?

TV details

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