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If you've only used Shark Tank as the punchline to jokes about the quality of non-scripted shows - but never actually watched it - you're missing out on one of the most interesting (and educational) shows on television. Each week, inventors bring their products in front of a group of investors ("Sharks") and are willing to give away a percentage of their product, business or invention for specific amount of money. Of course, Shark Tank is much more than its description implies.

When it comes to actually investing in something, the Sharks breakdown every aspect of their business and then begin to negotiate their terms – that is, if they don't berate the inventor out of the room beforehand. You'll see million dollar deals, complete corporate takeovers and (a lot of) fighting between Sharks, which often gets very heated. If being honestly educated by millionaires (and a billionaire – Mark Cuban) isn't interesting to you, Shark Tank is also a great alternative to HSN and QVC - so don't be surprised if you end up buying things you see on the show (in-stores or online).

What You Need to Know: The UK and Canada have their own versions of Shark Tank (called Dragon's Den) - both are good  (particularly the UK version).

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