What’s My Line

I’m a sucker for old TV shows…….

Especially if they feature personalities of which I am familiar, even if the program is from before I was born.

That’s what’s so spectacular about You Tube;

Man, if you’re interested in a particular TV show from the late 50’s or early 60’s, it’s probably on there somewhere.

And in my case, a program called
“What’s My Line” always provides an interesting mix of vintage celebrities and lighthearted quiz show fun.

It ran from 1950 through until 1967 – and was the longest running network panel show.

John Charles Daly, a well-known
and respected broadcast journalist,
did a yeoman’s job as moderator –

— and he had to be fast on his feet to keep up with the intellectual, witty panel usually consisting of Random House publisher Bennett Serf, show biz columnist Dorothy Kilgallen, and the stunningly beautiful actress Arlene Francis.

TV personality Steve Allen was
on the show for almost 2 years
filling a fourth slot , as did
comedian Fred Allen –
but after his death in 1957,
the seat was usually filled by
a guest star.

The premise of the
show was simple:
the celebrity panel would question their guests to
try to determine their
occupation or claim to fame.

Almost every show would
feature at least one well known
personality for which the panel
would have to be blindfolded-

– but folks from a wide range
of occupations would make
up the majority of guests.

John Daly would welcome the guest and ask him or her to
“Sign In Please “ .

The guest’s occupation would
then be superimposed on the
monitors and the TV screen
so the panel wouldn’t be
able to see it.

Each panelist could ask the guest yes or no questions about their occupation until they received a ‘no’ answer –

— 10 ‘no’ answers and the
guest would win the game –
and the prize of 50 bucks.

There are several things that
make the show a real treasure
for a vintage culture fan –
– seeing the celebrities in
their prime-
Willie Mays ,
Mickey Mantle,
Ella Fitzgerald, etc….

— and the lovely level of civility
that was shared among the
panel and participants alike.

And of course,
the sometimes
bizarre occupations –

— sausage stuffers,
side-show performers,
pretzel benders,
trombone teachers —

— about the only thing you’d
know for sure is that you
can’t tell by just looking at them.

One other thing —
considering the program
ran every Sunday for 17 years,
it also means that you won’t
ever have to re-watch the
same episode –
– unless you want to –
once you catch the bug !

So, why not catch it !

!! HOY !!


14 thoughts on “What’s My Line

  1. I had a lot of fun watching youtube videos of “Family Feud” with the guest stars, like the casts of Batman, Love Boat, the Dukes of Hazard, etc.

  2. hjonasson says:

    I’ve seen short clips and heard about the show, of course. I should check out more. I recently found old radio and tv shows on Spotify and downloaded some for trips in the car. My kids laughed quite a bit at “You Bet Your Life” with Groucho Marx.

  3. What fun!
    One night I sat and watched several of these old episodes…I liked watching the celebrities on it…like Lucy, or Martin and Lewis, etc. 🙂
    HUGS!!! 🙂

  4. ktz2 says:

    NO that previous comment got added to the wrong post aaaaccck, it was meant for ‘Tee Vee’ from 2014

  5. ktz2 says:

    saw this as a ‘related post’ from a time before I joined up as a follower

  6. ktz2 says:

    yeah bless youtube for access to all things weird and wonderful from vintage tv .. there’s a capture from a Steve Allen show with a young Frank Zappa..

  7. Jules says:

    I remember that show… I think they tried to reboot it.
    I know it’s different but I also like Drew Carey hosting the improv show
    “Who’s Line is it Anyway”… But that is not a kiddie show 😉

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