A young woman asked provocative questions of three bachelors who sat on stools behind a large wall. After questioning, the "bachelorette" chose one of the bachelors for her date, based only on how they answered her questions. On occasion, the role would be reversed (one bachelor, three bachelorettes).
Syndicated revivals were moderated by Elaine Joyce, Jeff MacGregor, Brad Sherwood, and Chuck Woolery.
Game Show Tropes in use:
- All or Nothing: Somewhat, at least for the three potential suitors — either you get the girl/boy, or you don't.
- Carried by the Host: Averted. Jim did little more than introduce the bachelors/bachelorettes.
This show provides examples of:
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: The game became very raunchy as its popularity grew, with virtually all the questions (and answers) being veiled innuendos.
- Serial Killer: What in retrospect is one of the creepiest moments in the history of American television took place in 1978 when serial killer Rodney Alcala appeared as a contestant. The producers had no way of knowing that Alcala had killed at least four people, but probably should have done enough research to find out that he was a registered sex offender with two convictions for sexual assault. Alcala won the game, but the girl who was picking bachelors refused (per The Other Wiki) to go out with him.
- Spiritual Successor: Love Connection was basically this, but much more host-driven. Singled Out was similar, but had the contestant picking from 50 potential dates.
- Transatlantic Equivalent: Britain and Australia had their own variations of "The Dating Game", titled "Blind Date" and "Perfect Match", respectively.