A long-running quiz show hosted by TV veteran Jack Barry, and later by Bill Cullen. In this show, contestants would have to answer questions on a wide variety of topics, with the prize ... See full summary »
A long-running quiz show hosted by TV veteran Jack Barry, and later by Bill Cullen. In this show, contestants would have to answer questions on a wide variety of topics, with the prize money determined by a slot machine-style device. The winning contestant could then move on to a bonus round, where they would play a slot machine for a chance at even bigger prizes, but with the risk of losing everything. Written by
Jean-Marc Rocher <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Jack Barry planned to retire from the show in September 1984, and wanted to give the hosting job to Jim Peck (who occasionally served as the show's substitute host). However, after Jack Barry's sudden death in May 1984, series producer Dan Enright rejected Peck in favor of Bill Cullen. See more »
[Farewell speech on the June 13, 1975 finale]
Ladies and gentlemen, this is the last "Joker's Wild" program. On Monday, a new program will appear here. It is called "Spin-Off", and it features a very good friend of mine, Jim Lange. I hope that you will watch it, 'cause I'm sure you will enjoy it. 686 programs ago, I had the distinct pleasure of saying, "Welcome to 'The Joker's Wild.'" I could not have been able to say that then, nor could I say goodbye to you now, without acknowledging the ...
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The original Joker's Wild was a ground breaker for two reasons. One, it was a successful comeback for host Jack Barry after being blacklisted for his involvement in the quiz show scandal. Second, it was the first game show to use synthesizers for its theme, breaking the traditional organ music used on many early game shows.
The game itself was outstanding. Even though most of the questions were easy, I really enjoyed the show and answered most of the questions correctly. Barry always asked contestants if they can come back on the next show if time ran out in the middle of the game since he was used to live TV.
By the 1981-82 season, the show began to jump the shark when audience members got a chance to "Face the Devil." I felt it was out of place and should't belong as part of the show. But the biggest jump was in 1984 when Barry died of a heart attack and Bill Cullen was hired as host instead of regular substitute host Jim Peck. Cullen seemed slow and didn't move the game along well.
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