Groucho Marx hosts a quiz show which features a series of competitive questions and a great deal of humourous conversation.
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Episodes

Seasons


Years



11   10   9   8   7   6   … See all »
1961   1960   1959   1958   1957   1956   … See all »
Nominated for 7 Primetime Emmys. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

What's My Line? (1950–1967)
Comedy | Family | Game-Show
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

Four panelists must determine guests' occupations - and, in the case of famous guests, while blindfolded, their identity - by asking only "yes" or "no" questions.

Stars: John Daly, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf
The Bullwinkle Show (1960–1964)
Animation | Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Rocky, a plucky flying squirrel and Bullwinkle, a bumbling but lovable moose, have a series of ongoing adventures.

Stars: Bill Scott, Hans Conried, Charles Ruggles
Make Room for Daddy (1953–1965)
Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Danny Williams, a successful nightclub singer, encounters a variety of difficult or amusing situations in trying to balance his career with his family: his outspoken wife Kathy, teenage ... See full summary »

Stars: Danny Thomas, Rusty Hamer, Marjorie Lord
The Honeymooners (1955–1956)
Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

A bus driver and his sewer worker friend struggle to strike it rich while their wives look on with weary patience.

Stars: Jackie Gleason, Art Carney, Audrey Meadows
Father Knows Best (1954–1960)
Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The popular radio show comes to life in this hit sitcom about a wise family man, Jim Anderson, his common-sense wife Margaret and their children Betty, Bud and Kathy. Whenever the kids need... See full summary »

Stars: Robert Young, Jane Wyatt, Billy Gray
Get Smart (1965–1970)
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Bumbling Maxwell Smart, Agent 86 for CONTROL, battles the evil forces of KAOS with the help of his competent partner Agent 99.

Stars: Don Adams, Barbara Feldon, Edward Platt
Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

As the sons age, we go through their teenage dating problems, marriage and careers.

Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson
My Three Sons (1960–1972)
Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Widower Steve Douglas raises three sons with the help of his father-in-law, and is later aided by the boys' great-uncle. An adopted son, a stepdaughter, wives, and another generation of sons join the loving family in later seasons.

Stars: Fred MacMurray, Stanley Livingston, Don Grady
The Hollywood Squares (1965–1980)
Comedy | Family | Game-Show
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Contestants guess the correctness of celebrities' answers in order to win spaces in a tic-tac-toe game.

Stars: Kenny Williams, Peter Marshall, Cliff Arquette
To Tell the Truth (1956–1968)
Family | Game-Show
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Classic game show in which a person of some notoriety and two impostors try to match wits with a panel of four celebrities. The object of the game is to try to fool the celebrities into ... See full summary »

Stars: Bud Collyer, Kitty Carlisle, Tom Poston
The Donna Reed Show (1958–1966)
Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Another popular 1950's sitcom about a close family. The Stones consist of loving homemaker Donna, her pediatrician husband Alex, and their children Mary and Jeff. Many situations arise like... See full summary »

Stars: Donna Reed, Paul Petersen, Carl Betz
The Mickey Mouse Club (1955–1958)
Family | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Mickey Mouse hosts a youth oriented variety show.

Stars: Jimmie Dodd, Tommy Cole, Eileen Diamond
Edit

Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Himself - Host / ... (198 episodes, 1950-1961)
George Fenneman ...
 Himself - Announcer / ... (198 episodes, 1950-1961)
Edit

Storyline

You Bet Your Life was taken from Groucho's radio series of the same name. It was inspired after Groucho had done an improvisational scene with Bob Hope on radio. The idea was the same as it later was with Bill Cosby: to invite people on and have an unrehearsed conversation with them. Groucho could always be counted on to enliven the banter with his unique blend of comedy and wit. After talking with Groucho for several minutes, the contestants chose quiz questions from a category they had preselected and, if they answered them correctly, won money. Written by <A.Briggs@RHBNC.AC.UK>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 October 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Betcha Life  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Groucho Marx stated that the biggest laugh he ever got on the show was when he was talking to a female contestant. He asked about her husband, and she replied earthily, "Have you ever been made love to by a Frenchman?" The audience went into gales of laughter, and Groucho answered, "Not that I can recall!" See more »

Quotes

Female Contestant: I met this gentleman in Laguna Beach...
Groucho: There *are* no gentlemen in Laguna Beach.
Female Contestant: Well, this gentleman is now abroad.
Groucho: [pause while the audience titters] Couldn't be Christine, could it?
See more »

Connections

Followed by You Bet Your Life (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

Hooray for Captain Spaulding
Music and Lyrics by Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Fun show, even for a kid
14 July 2005 | by (Renton, Washington, USA) – See all my reviews

Groucho sat behind a high desk or lectern, talking to his announcer, the contestants, and the audience, raising his eyebrows or grinning slyly to make or emphasize a joke. He often fiddled with his ever-present cigar. I can't remember if he actually smoked the cigar on the show, but it would not surprise me if he did, as smoking was pervasive in those days.

"You Bet Your Life" was probably shot on a theater stage, as I remember curtains behind the performers. The announcer/straight man George Fenneman, stood nearby (left side of TV screen), his dark hair lying tight against his scalp, perhaps slicked down with Brylcreem or something similar. (To see Fenneman in a dramatic role, watch the original version of the movie "The Thing.") When this show aired on TV in the 1950s, I was in grade school so the verbal humor, aimed at adults, usually went over my head. From a kid's perspective the best part of the show was the institution of the "secret word," announced to the audience (but not the contestants) before contestants appeared on the stage. If a contestant uttered the secret word during the show, he or she would win extra money. Groucho mentioned this concept when introducing the guests at the start of their appearance ("Say the secret word and win $100.") If a contestant said the secret word, it was acknowledged with the appearance of a puppet-type duck that was lowered from above on a string or wire. The duck's mouth held an envelope containing the money and its face was modeled after Groucho's: mustache, thick eyebrows, and (I think) a cigar in its mouth. Great fun!


11 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
How Many Episodes Have Survived mjsb-2
What episode was this??? got7-1
Authur C. Clarke bigdas
January 1951 Shows dealsforjoan
With all the new dvd sets of these shows has ... jomar68
You Bet Your Life Season 6 Episode 5 mysch57
Discuss You Bet Your Life (1950) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page