Pioneers of Television: Season 1, Episode 4

Game Shows (23 Jan. 2008)

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Game shows existed long before TV and were popular on radio. Producer Mark Goodson created a national sensation with Stop the Music which offered a huge prize to a randomly selected ... See full summary »



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Title: Game Shows (23 Jan 2008)

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Episode credited cast:
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Jack Barry ...
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John Daly ...
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Bob Eubanks ...
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George Fenneman ...
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Game shows existed long before TV and were popular on radio. Producer Mark Goodson created a national sensation with Stop the Music which offered a huge prize to a randomly selected contestant. Ralph Edwards created Truth or Consequences and later on TV passed it on to Bob Barker to act as host. Early TV needed programming to fill the schedule and game shows were easy to produce. Edwards later created the popular This Is Your Life (1952) and Groucho Marx had You Bet Your Life (1950). It all came crashing down with the now infamous game show scandals where contestants were given the answers to questions to add to the drama. The first was Dotto (1958), then Twenty-One (1956) where its most successful contestant Charles Van Doren, had become nationally known. Password All-Stars (1961) from Mark Goodson was the first post-scandal hit show followed by Let's Make a Deal (1963). Merv Griffin, a game show emcee early on, had been trying to develop his own concept for a show and a suggestion ... Written by garykmcd

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23 January 2008 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Interesting stuff for us old fogies!
4 October 2015 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

This episode of "Pioneers of Television" is dedicated to game shows. Oddly, it begins with Merv Griffin and his success with "The Wheel of Fortune" and then jumps back to the days of radio when the televised game shoe began. Two main themes are the shows by Ralph Edwards (such as "Truth or Consequences" and "This is Your Life") and Mark Goodson ("The Price is Right" and many others). In addition, the panel show with various celebrity guests is discussed. To me, the most interesting part was the discussion of the quiz show scandals of the 1950s--when this super-popular type of show turned out, in at least a couple cases, to be rigged (with "Dotto" and "21"). All in all, yet another excellent episode of this wonderful PBS series--one that is well worth your time--particularly if you're old enough to remember many of these older shows.

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