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Author Topic: From Whence Originated the Tapes  (Read 1073 times)

Nick

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From Whence Originated the Tapes
« on: April 03, 2021, 07:08:42 PM »
I suppose many of us thought not so very long ago that we would ever have the abundance of episodes of shows long absent from reruns (e.g. The Match Game Hollywood Squares Hour and Narz's Concentration), that we would forever have to remain content with the few original broadcast recordings or studio master copies that somehow made their way onto the trading circuit.

Though for these shows that formerly held such status and those that still do (e.g. '80s Break the Bank and Now You See It), I've wondered just how these tapes of what we had/have ended up on the circuit.  Who had the foresight to record these shows and hang onto them?  How did we get that grainy original broadcast copy of the MGHSH premiere, or the studio master copy of the Price's first trial hourlong show, or those five episodes of The Nighttime Price Is Right, which were all we had until the James estate released a couple of episodes Dennis himself recorded?

Just more curiosity on my part than anything else, but I've wondered if there's some stories behind from whence originated the tapes.

MikeK

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2021, 09:06:32 PM »
I can claim 3 of the James TPiRs.  20-some years ago, I bought 3 studio masters off of eBay and had them converted to VHS.

Adam Nedeff

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2021, 09:28:45 PM »
My proudest contribution is that I'm the guy who unleashed the "High Rollers" pilot with the monkey.

My first job in California was working for longtime Heatter-Quigley producer Art Alisi. He pointed to a box of tapes and says I was welcome to anything I wanted. Most of it wasn't THAT great--lots of masters of GSN originals, for example--but that "High Rollers" pilot was the gem of that archaeological dig.

Ian Wallis

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2021, 10:52:28 AM »
I was responsible for putting good copies of the Larson Press Your Luck episodes out there (previously they were lousy copies, from what I was told long ago).  I was finishing my last year in high school that year, and had set the VCR to record PYL on 6/8/84.  I did this a lot but usually recorded over the episodes the next day.  Once I saw that, I knew I had to keep it.  It was a long weekend waiting until Monday to see the outcome!

I had also saved the Those Wonderful TV Game Shows special from 1983.  There were clips in there I didn't want to erase.

When I entered the trading circuit in 1996 I had fewer than 100 episodes of various shows.  Some I had by accident - I found a tape with a bunch of Davidson Squares and '80s Dating Game on it.  At that time there wasn't much of it out there.  I guess I must have recorded them at the time and either never got around to watching them, or for some reason never erased them.  Glad it turned out that way!
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DoorNumberFour

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2021, 08:38:34 PM »
I introduced these things to the trading circuit:

Fun House pilot
Anything You Can Do episode w/ Gene Wood hosting
Headline Chasers rehearsal tape w/ Johnny Gilbert hosting

I won these tapes in Brad Franciniís Game Show Giveaway and promptly spread them around like glitter or peanut butter or Ebola.
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CarpetCrawler

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2021, 12:43:30 AM »
I introduced/you can blame me for the following stuff:

- The 5/1/89 episode of Now You See It, which I got from someone who liked game shows but was not at all a game show trader, so as a thank you for sending him stuff he sent me that along with a bunch of Garry Moore To Tell the Truth that I didn't have because he knew I liked that.

- The 11/23/67 daytime episode of To Tell the Truth.  The second half of this episode is already out there, in color, but this is the full episode.  Someone was selling the 16mm copy of this on eBay and said they'd include a DVD copy of it along with the film.  Once I lost the auction (went well into a couple of hundred dollars), I contacted the seller and he was willing to sell me a copy of the DVD for like $20.

- The 10/24/60 nighttime episode of To Tell the Truth.  The same seller from the other TTTT episode I mentioned contacted me a month later and was like "hey I happen to have another one of these if you want it".  Lucked into it being one that was never reran by GSN or Buzzr because it's a short episode due to a John F. Kennedy Presidential campaign ad that bought out the last five minutes of TTTT's timeslot that night.

- Also I haven't had anyone besides a small handful of folks (Hi Adam!!) that have wanted them but I've got a handful of studio master Hot Potato episodes that I uh, again won in an eBay auction for like $15.

- Lastly, I haven't gotten around to digitizing them but I had someone a few days ago send me seven studio master tapes of the Nickelodeon game show Figure It Out and once I get those digitized I'll be making sure they get spread around. :)

The two To Tell the Truth episodes and the Now You See It that I mentioned are on my YouTube!!
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Bryce L.

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2021, 01:56:54 AM »
I'm partially responsible for the two 1975 audio recordings of Wheel of Fortune out there (I'm the one who paid for the tapes from Archival Television Audio and mailed them to David Downs so he could get clean rips of them, to which he added graphics before uploading them to his YouTube page.)

And call this a teaser, but back in October 2020 I paid for another Woolery Wheel episode, which I received on CD in January, and since David's services are no longer available, I've got another contact working on producing graphics so it can go online as well. I think you'll all be pleasantly surprised by it.

SuperMatch93

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2021, 07:45:39 AM »
I'm partially responsible for the two 1975 audio recordings of Wheel of Fortune out there (I'm the one who paid for the tapes from Archival Television Audio and mailed them to David Downs so he could get clean rips of them, to which he added graphics before uploading them to his YouTube page.)

How much does ATA typically charge for copies of their recordings? I'd imagine it varies based on the rarity of the show, but there are a few offerings in their archive that caught my eye, most notably an episode of Say When!! from 1963.
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Bryce L.

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2021, 09:34:13 AM »
I'm partially responsible for the two 1975 audio recordings of Wheel of Fortune out there (I'm the one who paid for the tapes from Archival Television Audio and mailed them to David Downs so he could get clean rips of them, to which he added graphics before uploading them to his YouTube page.)

How much does ATA typically charge for copies of their recordings? I'd imagine it varies based on the rarity of the show, but there are a few offerings in their archive that caught my eye, most notably an episode of Say When!! from 1963.
Depends on the episode in question. The two 1975 shows I got, I paid $80 each. This last one, was $223.94. There doesn't seem to be any set-in-stone rule they use, either (case in point: they offered to sell me two Garagiola TTTT episodes for $50 each, since they'd already been transferred for sale to another client)

JMFabiano

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2021, 09:44:34 AM »
Many of the (initial) Hit Man recordings came from KRON (some you could notice the habit of them muting out network promos during the end credits, apparently). 

The OB version of the Password Plus Finale came from WTVA 9 in Miss. 

Of course, a majority of the Cullen Pyramids came from WLIG-55 in Riverhead, NY (now WLNY). 

Oh what the heck, I just dug up an old Usenet post where some guy -- can't imagine who -- tried to start up a "game show origins" list.  https://groups.google.com/g/alt.tv.game-shows/c/c8QqKiDpo9U/m/L3TUcJdKgfgJ

You know what I am curious about?  That set of 1984 Joker's Wild episodes where a CBS era opening and closing's audio is dubbed onto the shows' open/close.  One such episode used to be called the "fake final episode with Jack Barry".  I don't have it in front of me now, but I do remember station ID's being seen on some of these...all I recall now is they were based in California.
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Allstar87

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2021, 11:01:56 AM »
I put two studio masters of Legends Of The Hidden Temple on the trading circuit. Won the VHS tapes in an eBay auction in 2005. On a related note, various 1994 OC airings of Legends also came from me, the first game show I ever recorded myself...if there's Media General Cable ads on them, they're mine. A pair of Nick Arcade reruns from 1994 also float around from my recordings.

A few OC episodes of Wheel of Fortune are also on the trading circuit because my grandmother recorded them. My grandfather loved the show...he wouldn't call it Wheel of Fortune, he'd call it "Vanna", telling you why he tuned in! So my grandmother would tape episodes for him if he couldn't see them first run for whatever reason...she let me keep all her tapes in 2005, and the episodes have been circulating ever since. Said airings are from WPVI, and range from 1988 to 1998.

As for GSN airings, by far one of the most popular shows I recorded is a 1991 episode of Feud where a total of 16 points was won in Fast Money...it felt like every trader I did business with picked it! If there's a slight cable glitch during one round, that's my copy.

Matt Ottinger

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2021, 12:34:47 PM »
The string of consecutive Three on a Match episodes were saved because the champion had the presence of mind to have his local station make copies for him, even though back then there weren't home devices and he'd have no practical way of watching them.  I assume they were on 3/4" tape, though I never found out for sure.  Decades later the family got them transferred to VHS, and reached out to me because of my Bill Cullen website to ask if I'd like to see them.  Um...yes, please?
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tyshaun1

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2021, 12:43:36 PM »
I was responsible for putting good copies of the Larson Press Your Luck episodes out there (previously they were lousy copies, from what I was told long ago). 
The first time I saw the Larson episode was a very grainy picture of the 2nd episode only. About a year later was when I got the copy of your recordings, in much better quality.
As for me, I can claim some of the USA-era run of PYL, including the sweepstakes spin episode from the final Home Player Game, as well as the Jim Hess "swearing" game. I also put out a clip of the 1990 Carruthers produced 1-900 contest they did that inspired "Lucky Day USA".

Eric Paddon

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2021, 12:43:43 PM »
How much does ATA typically charge for copies of their recordings? I'd imagine it varies based on the rarity of the show, but there are a few offerings in their archive that caught my eye, most notably an episode of Say When!! from 1963.

Be prepared to spend a LOT for something from ATA, which is run by a man named Phil Gries.    I think nowadays you have to be prepared to pay a few hundred dollars for something from him unless you've got something very rare to trade to him (I lucked out recently with a rare baseball recording that got me 35 minutes of audio of the first Carson Tonight Show in 1962).     And he makes sure that what he gives out doesn't end up on YT because he gave someone some baseball audio for a book project and the author was dumb enough to put it on YT and his account got shut down.

The September 1965 Match Game with the New York Yankee players was something that someone originally got from Gries and ATA as well. 

Eric Paddon

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Re: From Whence Originated the Tapes
« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2021, 12:49:54 PM »
I'm the one who put the first wave of Cullen $25K Pyramids from Long Island recordings into circulation (the ones in snowy quality including both of Dick Clark's appearances playing).     A NY based producer got in touch with me in the late 90s back in the atgs days and he said he had 11 episodes but they were snowy because he was recording them from a distance.     I literally had to trade him 44 Cullen TPIR episodes from GSN recordings to get them and even then it was slow going getting all of them as he sent me one tape with 3 episodes initially and then I had to wait weeks before he finally made good on the other eight.    But painful as it was, it was worth the wait getting those shows, despite their fair to poor quality.    I still have the original tapes he sent me in case someone can ever do a better transfer from the "source" copy than I was able to.