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Author Topic: Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor  (Read 2090 times)

Gameshowguy89

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« on: December 14, 2012, 12:06:34 AM »
Did Jack Clark finish the 5th season of syndicated Wheel or did Charlie O'Donnell fill in/take over. I've read that Charlie took over (or at least was asked to take over) but couldn't because of contractual obligations with Chuck Barris. Is this true?

Also what was the deal with M.G. Kelly. Was he actually hired as the new announcer or just filling in until Charlie was able to do the show? Because I've heard Pat Sajak say Kelly could not do the job very well.

Jeremy Nelson

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2012, 09:56:48 AM »
Did Jack Clark finish the 5th season of syndicated Wheel or did Charlie O'Donnell fill in/take over.
First, welcome to the forum! Second, I believe M.G. Kelly took over announcing duties for the remainder of the season.

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I've read that Charlie took over (or at least was asked to take over) but couldn't because of contractual obligations with Chuck Barris. Is this true?
Depends on where you read it. If this was in someone's bio or an interview, then yeah, it's got weight to it. If you read it on some other forum, then I'd take it with a grain of salt. I've known people in television to not take other gigs due to network contracts, but not with production companies.

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Also what was the deal with M.G. Kelly. Was he actually hired as the new announcer or just filling in until Charlie was able to do the show?
Could have been either. His gig could have been a trial run- I'm sure someone will fill in the details at some point.

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Because I've heard Pat Sajak say Kelly could not do the job very well.
Just so we get you off on the right foot here: If YOU'VE actually heard or read something, it would be in your benefit to post a link,video,etc to whatever obscurity you're referencing. Credibility goes a long way here.
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Twentington

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2012, 03:24:59 PM »
Actually, Charlie O'Donnell did the last few weeks of Season 5. As proof, here's a late Season 5 credit roll with Charlie:

[media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TxbmC0egIX0[/media]

From what I can tell, Jack stepped down from both versions in May, with Charlie filling in for him until about August. Johnny Gilbert apparently did at least one week of daytime episodes before M.G. Kelly took over.

Also, none of the articles I've found regarding M.G. Kelly's tenure seem to imply that he was only a temporary announcer. Strange.

I've also wondered why M.G. didn't do the Radio City Music Hall episodes in Fall 1988.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 04:01:06 PM by Twentington »
Bobby Peacock

Dan88

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2012, 04:33:28 PM »
Welcome! :D

To continue from what Twentington said, Jack departed in early May due to his declining health, and a USA Today article from July 27 indicates that no replacement had been chosen at that point. Based on the tapedate of the 1,000th nighttime show (August 17, 1988), which was the 25th show of Season 6, M.G. likely began on the daytime show around August 8.

I vaguely remember reading somewhere (I think it was an article) which noted that M.G. had left the radio station he was working at around late July; Wheel was never mentioned, though.

Strangely, Kelly himself claims on his official website to have done the show for two years, although anyone who saw Seasons 5-6 on GSN would know that wasn't the case by a longshot.

M.G. was replaced after the February 17, 1989 show, but as to why...I have no idea, although it seems like a clear-cut "Oh, Charlie just became available!" (which I'm admittedly not entirely sold on, but hey). The recording date of Rolf Benirschke's first show (December 14, 1988) appears to suggest that Kelly was replaced during a Christmas/New Year's taping break.

I've also wondered why M.G. didn't do the Radio City Music Hall episodes in Fall 1988.
Most likely, it was either conflict regarding M.G. or the fact they're going on the road for the second first time ever and wanted to hit it off big. And hey, it got Don Pardo on a real game show for the first time in 13 years. :)

I've read that Charlie took over (or at least was asked to take over) but couldn't because of contractual obligations with Chuck Barris. Is this true?
Depends on where you read it. If this was in someone's bio or an interview, then yeah, it's got weight to it. If you read it on some other forum, then I'd take it with a grain of salt. I've known people in television to not take other gigs due to network contracts, but not with production companies.
I'm not sure where this came from, but at the very least there's precedent -- according to Randy West, when Charlie left Wheel in 1980 (when Silverman canned the show and later reversed it) he became committed to the syndicated Toni Tennille Show (a Hill-Eubanks series) and honored that commitment even after learning of the reversal; according to Randy, it was Charlie's credo that "A handshake is my word."

The timeframe for Charlie's return does match somewhat, as The Dating Game and The Newlywed Game ended in '89.

Because I've heard Pat Sajak say Kelly could not do the job very well.
For the record, I've never heard of this...or, for that matter, Pat giving any sort of opinion on M.G.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2014, 11:44:09 AM by Dan88 »
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SRIV94

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2012, 05:31:20 PM »
I've also wondered why M.G. didn't do the Radio City Music Hall episodes in Fall 1988.

Probably because Don Pardo was available (and Don's association with Merv goes back to J!).
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wheelloon

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2012, 05:54:16 PM »
Sajak has said in multiple interviews (off the top of my head I think of when he did one for the Archive of American Television) that M.G. was initially intended to be the successor, but he had an incredibly difficult time doing prize copy, often requiring multiple takes to do one satisfactorily (not good at all for an announcer). This ultimately led to them looking out again for another announcer mid-season, and this time, with Charlie O not contractually obligated elsewhere, he was available to do the job again on a permanent basis.
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Twentington

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2012, 06:43:03 PM »
Sajak has said in multiple interviews (off the top of my head I think of when he did one for the Archive of American Television) that M.G. was initially intended to be the successor, but he had an incredibly difficult time doing prize copy, often requiring multiple takes to do one satisfactorily (not good at all for an announcer). This ultimately led to them looking out again for another announcer mid-season, and this time, with Charlie O not contractually obligated elsewhere, he was available to do the job again on a permanent basis.

Confirmed. Around 19:14, he starts talking about the announcers, and says that Kelly had to re-take the prize copy a lot.
Bobby Peacock

Gameshowguy89

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2012, 03:48:41 PM »
Depends on where you read it. If this was in someone's bio or an interview, then yeah, it's got weight to it. If you read it on some other forum, then I'd take it with a grain of salt. I've known people in television to not take other gigs due to network contracts, but not with production companies.
I've read Charlie took over in 1988 from a few bios from November 2010. Like this one http://www.legacy.co...l&pid=146378815

Just so we get you off on the right foot here: If YOU'VE actually heard or read something, it would be in your benefit to post a link,video,etc to whatever obscurity you're referencing. Credibility goes a long way here.

Sajak has said in multiple interviews (off the top of my head I think of when he did one for the Archive of American Television) that M.G. was initially intended to be the successor, but he had an incredibly difficult time doing prize copy, often requiring multiple takes to do one satisfactorily (not good at all for an announcer). This ultimately led to them looking out again for another announcer mid-season, and this time, with Charlie O not contractually obligated elsewhere, he was available to do the job again on a permanent basis.

Pat Sajak's Achive of American Television interview is also where I've heard him say M.G. couldn't do the job. Though I didn't hear or read anything that definitively said M.G. was actually hired to be the regular announcer.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2012, 09:27:52 PM by Gameshowguy89 »

Twentington

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Jack Clark's final WOF and his successor
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2012, 10:13:28 PM »
This news article says M.G. Kelly is the "new announcer", and this one says that M.G. "has replaced Jack Clark".

It may be just me, but it seems that if M.G. were only a substitute, the articles would say something like "M.G. has begun filling in for the recently-deceased Jack Clark" — especially since daytime did have Charlie O. and Johnny Gilbert filling in before M.G. got on board. Also, seven months seems like an awfully long time for an announcer to be just filling in.
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