|Index||5 reviews in total|
It goes without saying that Allen Ludden WAS "Password". As the original host for 14 years and as the initial host of this update, it was generally considered to be his show and even the replacement hosts knew that. A show like this ("$100,000 Pyramid" was another) relies on good guest stars who really care about what they're doing in order for it to fly. This may not always have been the case here, but it certainly was when Betty White was on. A truly remarkable game player, she gave 110% every time and beat up on herself if she ever erred (which wasn't very often!) She is a joy to watch as she gracefully and assuredly assists her contestant to the winning answers. Aside from this, she's also an intelligent and witty lady, always ready with a wisecrack. Allen and Betty met on the original "Password" and had a tremendous relationship on screen and off. (They also worked together on "Liar's Club".) Despite White's festive and cheerful attitude, there's a poignancy in watching her appear on the show and referring to him on air, knowing that he was at home dying of cancer. Kennedy was a very genial and pleasant host (with his own hit "Name That Tune" to his credit), but it just wasn't the same after Ludden's death. One episode out there has Kennedy, literally, melting down with laughter (for an extended time!) after some gaffe with Dick Martin and one of his clues. This intensifies throughout the episode as he tries to rein it in, but can't. It isn't helped by the fact that the next round of passwords included vaguely suggestive terms like "french", "queen" and "head" while Betty White desperately tries to assist what has to be one of the all time dumbest players ever to appear on TV. Nearly 20 minutes of the episode are taken up with this hilarious series of wheezes, snorts, tears and giggles as the players and host attempt to contain themselves and get the show taped! At times like this, the show was fun, at least, if not quite the same as the original. On the flip side, the times were such that some really un-p.c. things could pop up. Take the time that Greg Morris (black co-star of "Mission: Impossible") was given the clues to the puzzle "Watermelon" and he and Allen joked back and forth about it only to have the next password be "Mammy" (part of the puzzle "Li'l Abner", but who knew?!?!) Or a day or two later when Joyce Bulifant was getting the second try at the password "Dick." The first contestant said "Richard" with Greg guessing "name" and Joyce's contestant followed up with "short" before Joyce blurted "DICK!", breaking everyone up and hysterically prompting her to mention Dr. Kinsey. These days are gone.
Even thought this wasn't my favorite version of password, you have to respect the fact that three of the all time legends hosted this Allen Ludden, Bill Cullen, and Tom Kennedy. I miss these shows and glad GSN has them to watch again, the legends are dying out and the era of great game shows is gone as well.
First off, I must say that this is a fun game show. Also, since I'm 24, I haven't seen every episode. However, I do know the show very well. Every time I've watched it, I've had a lot of fun playing along and watching. Despite the fact that it's finished its run, this makes me long to be a contestant. The thing I like most about it are the questions. Despite the fact that I don't know that many answers, I still have fun playing along. I hope the Game Show Network keeps it on so I can play along and watch again. If that happens, I will be really happy. Before I wrap this up, I'd like to say that I'll always remember this show in my memory forever. Now, in conclusion, I hope that you catch it one day before it goes off the air for good.
If you've never seen 'Password Plus' before, I highly suggest you tune in to watch it. It is a very entertaining show, hosted by Allen Ludden. However, the Ludden ones (79-80) are the only ones I feel are worth watching. Allen Ludden made Password, and he is what made Password Plus great before his death in 1981. The two contestants, each matched up with a celebrity, would play the classic Password game, then try and solve a puzzle (either a person, place, or a thing) using the five passwords previously guessed. Whatever team got to 300 dollars first went on to play 'Alphabetics.' In Alphabetics, ten passwords were arranged alphabetically (for example, A through J). Each word was communicated to the contestant, using one word clues. Each word was worth 100 dollars, and if you got all ten, you got 5,000 dollars. The show has a great, catchy theme song, and terrific entrances with Allen Ludden greeting you with an outstretched arm and inquiring, 'How ya doing', or saying 'I'm glad you're here', or 'Hi, Doll!'. Watch the 1979 version on Game Show Network Monday-Friday at 7:00 p.m., or the 1980 version at 4:00 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. It'll be well worth your time.
I really like to watch this show on the weekends, right after I watch the original Password. I love to solve the password puzzles, watch to see if the contestants win in the Alphabetics Round, and try to think of clues for every single password. I heard this show was never a big hit when it returned on television, but it was very good revival. (Allen Ludden will be sorely missed)
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