Hoarding: Buried Alive

TV review by
Anne Louise Bannon, Common Sense Media
Hoarding: Buried Alive TV Poster Image
Another docu about obsessive behavior that's not for kids.

Parents say

age 18+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 4 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The message of the show is that people with hoarding compulsions need help and that by getting this help, they and their families can live happier lives. Because successful treatment happens at a much slower pace than a TV production schedule, we don't know the full outcome of each story, but there are clear signs of improvement at the end of the show.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The hoarders on the program are looking for help, even if it takes a TV show to do it. They often resist the treatment, but they do as much as they can to fix their problems.


Mild, occasional language, including "ass."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this show is not intended for kids. The hoarding shown in the reality program gets pretty ugly and while the actual filth (with attendant vermin) gets played down, the scenes of clutter might be confusing to younger viewers. The families of the hoarders speak frankly about the effects of the disorder on them, so it's all terribly sad. Occasional language, like "ass" is audible.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Kid, 11 years old March 8, 2014

Its Okay......

This is really really not good for kids 9 and younger it shows a lot of junk that kids may not understand why they have it shoes,paper,wrappers,toilet paper,can... Continue reading
Kid, 8 years old December 20, 2010

its good

This is a great show, I like it!

What's the story?

Each episode looks at two persons suffering from the form of obsessive compulsive disorder that is hoarding.The show explores the hoarders' histories and interviews their families while also showing examples of their hoarding -- floor to ceiling clutter throughout an entire house, in one case. A therapist and professional organizer are brought in to help the sufferers and eventually, viewers see some progress being made, though what happens after the show ends is anybody's guess.

Is it any good?

If this were the only show on looking at this condition, it might be okay. The problem is, there are too many others out there like it. The show feels like we've been here, done that and doesn't offer any new insight into the problem.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whether showing people dealing with this problem is helpful. Parents can ask their children if shows like these encourage people with this illness to seek help or is it more voyeuristic?

  • How real is this show? Parents can ask if their kids think they are getting the whole story and what might be missing?

  • Parents can ask their children why they think people with this illness want to show it on television? Does that exploit them?

TV details

  • Premiere date: March 14, 2010
  • Network: TLC
  • Genre: Reality TV
  • TV rating: TV-PG
  • Last updated: September 21, 2019

Our editors recommend

For kids who love reality TV

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate