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Creator / Merv Griffin

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Mervyn Edward "Merv" Griffin Jr. (July 6, 1925 – August 12, 2007) was a singer ("I've Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts"), Talk Show host (The Merv Griffin Show), and television producer who created several Game Shows and wrote almost all the music they used. Merv passed away in 2007.

Shows originally produced by Merv:

  • Word for Word (1963-64, as "Milbarn Productions"; based heavily on an unsold Bill Derman game called Shopping Spree)
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  • Jeopardy! (1964-75, 1978-79, 1984-; originally pitched as What's the Question?) and its spinoffs, Super Jeopardy! (1990), Jep! (1998-99), Rock & Roll Jeopardy! (1998-2001), and Sports Jeopardy! (2014-)
  • Let's Play Post Office (1965-66)
  • Reach for the Stars (1967; Merv wanted a curtain with stars that players could pluck down for prizes— his staff built an elaborate spaceship set with flashing lights and dials and the stars hung out of portholes)
  • One in a Million (1967)
  • Joe Garagiola's Memory Game (1971)
  • Wheel of Fortune (1975-; pilots were attempted in 1973 note  and 1974) and its juvenile spinoff, Wheel 2000 (1997-98)
  • Headline Chasers (1985-86, in association with Wink Martindale Enterprises (Wink hosted the show))
  • Buzzword (1986; unsold pilot for NBC hosted by Ron Hoon)
  • Winfall (1988; unsold pilot for CBS hosted by Clint Holmes)
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  • Monopoly (1990; pilots were taped in 1987 with Marc Summers and 1989 with Peter Tomarken)
  • Ruckus (1991-92; one regular game was Merv's original intent for Reach for the Stars)
  • Click (1997-99)
  • Merv Griffin's Crosswords (2007-08; originally piloted under Let's Play Crosswords, then Let's Do Crosswords)

According to The Man with Two Brains, Merv led a secret double-life as The Elevator Killer. "Merv Griffin!" is also a common cry of comic book characters Milk & Cheese.


Example of: