Contestants guess hidden phrases by guessing letters one at a time. Contestants win money or prizes, as determined by a spin of the wheel, for each correct consonant they guess. But they have to pay to see what vowels are in a puzzle. The contestant that has amassed the most winnings at the end of a game goes on to play the bonus round, in which the player can win even more -- prizes frequently seen in the bonus round include automobiles, vacations and more cash.Written by
When first working on the show, producer Harry Friedman was not pleased with the fact that it took nearly 1 hour to tape a 30 minute show. After each puzzle the crew had to stop tape which allowed the crew to manually pull out the letters from the last puzzle and set up the letters for the next puzzle. This time consuming process took about 10 to 15 minutes to do. Within 30 days after attending a taping as producer, Friedman started asking around about what would it take to get the puzzleboard electronic. Eventually, in Season 14, the old trillion puzzle board was retired in February 1997 and was replaced with a new electronic one using touch screens. The letters were no longer manually put in, instead a button is pushed and a new puzzle magically appears. Friedman felt this was also necessary for a cosmetic change as that is the same time the red, yellow, and blue backdrops were no longer used. The change didn't really affect anything on air but for taping the shows there were no more stops in taping the shows and a 30 minute episode could be taped in 30 minutes. See more »
[Closing announcement 1992-1994]
Merv Griffin Enterprises produces...
"Wheel of Fortune." Distributed by KingWorld.
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This had got to be one of the best game show of all time and is certainly the most popular. I think the prizes have gotten better, and I love the recent addition of the "prize puzzles." Though I miss some of the old categories such as slang and megaword, the newer cateogories like fun & games and best seller work just as well. I have gotten very good at solving the puzzles at home, sometimes even immediately. I also miss some of their old prizes, such as the surprise and double play. I think this show will go down as a game show classic. Pat Sajak is a terrific host, and occasionally the show is good if only to see what Vanna White is wearing. They come up with very creative puzzles for the before & after category. I hope to appear on the show one day.
*** 1/2 out of ****
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