Real Deal

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Real Deal TV Poster Image
Collectible dealing is mild, but not much kid appeal.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The series highlights the different strategies dealers, pickers, and pawn brokers use to negotiate deals for collectibles. It also offers some historic background on some of items.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Some sellers are interested in making a fair profit for their items, others seem a little greedy. All the dealers are interested in making a purchase that will allow them to make a profit following the item's resale. There's not much racial or gender diversity.

Violence
Sex
Language
Consumerism

Sale items include a 1958 Lincoln Continental, autographed Wilson footballs, and other brand-named collectibles. The Don Presley Auction house is featured.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this series, which features people trying to sell their collectibles, focuses on how much money one can make through direct sale or auction. Old brand logos are sometimes visible and/or discussed. It's pretty mild, but kids probably won't be too interested.

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What's the story?

REAL DEAL features people who own a piece of history and want to sell it quickly for top dollar. Each episode features someone who wants to sell his/her collectible, including vintage cars, old slot machines, autographed footballs, and other items that have some kind of nostalgic appeal. They then sit at a negotiation table with an expert dealer like San Diego picker Troy Howerton or pawn broker Chip Plemmons to negotiate a sale. If the number of greenbacks the dealer lays on the table doesn't impress the seller, he or she can take the item to auction to see if they will get more for it. Sometimes it leads to a lot more cash, but other times sellers are left wishing they hadn't taken the risk.

Is it any good?

The series highlights the negotiation process between a person who wants pay as little as possible for the item and a person who wants to get as much money as possible for the same thing. But the real fun comes from the suspense created both by the wheeling and dealing, as well as the auction bidding process.

Some may find the cash negotiation process a little uncomfortable to watch, especially when folks seem more driven by greed than by the actual retail or nostalgic value the item. But viewers who like antiques and collecting will probably like (and possibly learn something from) what they see here.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what kind of education and discipline goes into buying and selling antiques and collectible items. How do experts balance the actual resale value of an item with the historic and/or nostalgic value people may place on it?

  • What is it about buying and selling people's treasures (or trash) that makes for successful reality TV? Is it the history behind the items being featured? Or is it the potential amount of cash someone can get for their stuff?

TV details

For kids who love reality television

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