first produced for KTLA (local Los Angeles television) by Desilu, hosted by Jack Barry
. It was later acquired by producers Ralph Andrews and Bill Yaggemann, and moved to NBC
with Tom Kennedy as host from 1963 to 1969.
It was a word association game like Password
, except the catch was to identify names of famous people or places. Two teams, each of a celebrity and a civilian, communicated the names by forming a sentence with the last word missing. That word could sound like, but not spelled like, part of the name. Each team had up to two attempts to communicate the name. Doing so scored a point, with three winning the game.
The show returned on KTLA in late 1974, now hosted by Clark Race with Tom Kennedy as a regular panelist (although at some point, the two swapped positions). It again expanded to a network this time ABC
, in July-November 1975, and used a larger format (also used on the KTLA series): now, four celebrity panelists alternated giving clues to two contestants, with correct guesses worth money starting at $250 for the first clue and ending at $50 for four clues. The first to get $500 won.
The last run was in daily syndication for six months in 1978-79, hosted by Jim Peck. Two contestants played on Monday and Tuesday of a particular week, while two more played on Wednesday and Thursday. In a tournament fashion, the highest scorers from those games played each other on Friday. Instead of cash being awarded on a scale for each correct answer, every answer scored only one point, regardless of the number of clues necessary, with five winning the game. Correct answers were worth $100 on the Monday–Thursday shows and $200 on Fridays, but these payouts were not reflected in the scoring.
- Bonus Round: The Bonus Board.
- NBC: Three clues were shown, one at a time, to a famous name. $300 was awarded for getting the name on the first clue, $200 for the second, and $100 for the third.
- Another bonus came shortly into the NBC run: Players that won the game 3-0 (a "blitz") and got $300 on the Bonus Board also won a car.
- ABC: The player gave clues to the celebrity, winning $500 for the first name guessed, doubled with each subsequent word up to four. They had up to six tries, with getting four names winning $5000. In November 1975, if four names were guessed each on one clue, the contestant won $10,000. The money was at risk for each name.
- Syndication: Same as above, except no money was awarded per name. On Monday-Thursday, a win was worth $5,000 cash; on Friday, $10,000 in prizes.
- Home Participation Sweepstakes: Around 1966-67, the Bonus Board puzzles began to be provided by viewers. The viewer received some S&H green stamps no matter what, but if it was used in a Blitz, the viewer got 100,000 (later 1,000,000) S&H green stamps.
- The Announcer: John Harlan.
- Game Show Host: Jack Barry on the original KTLA series, followed by Tom Kennedy. Clark Race hosted part of the 1974-75 KTLA series, followed by Tom. Jim Peck helmed the syndicated run.
- Show The Folks At Home: Names were flashed on-screen along with a hushed spiel by Harlan. Subverted at least once per show with "Guess Who" or a series of question marks.
This show provides examples of: