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Author Topic: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:  (Read 6888 times)

Bryce L.

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #30 on: October 10, 2021, 07:34:04 PM »
...but often times, the fluff is unnecessary.
Isn't the point of the fluff to eat up the clock, and thus make the Charger's job that much harder?

chris319

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #31 on: October 10, 2021, 08:06:05 PM »
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But the frantic pace of racing against the clock is what makes this game so exhilarating.

Exhilarating for the players, yes. But the 10am audience of housewives had to work to keep up. As proof, the show didn't even last a year. Even celebrities didn't save it.

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There's something about this "we give you the answer with one part incorrect that you have to correct" concept that's just begging to be exploited in an addictive and interactive game.

Agreed, the writing and the concept behind the bloopers were clever, but the overall game was flawed.

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what did you think they missed on Double Dare?

I actually discussed this with Frank Wayne once. I didn't watch Double Dare when it was on CBS, but after seeing it on Buzzr I agree with Frank's complaint that the material was too difficult, too arcane, especially for a daytime audience. I've seen many, many questions greeted with nothing but blank stares because neither player knew the answer. The game doesn't advance. We had a few puzzles on P+ which went unsolved and it was always anticlimactic. Per the bible we had the right to edit out unsolved puzzles but never did IIRC. OTOH, I once suggested to Howard that we award a bonus for solving the puzzle on the first clue, but that idea went nowhere.

A good example is Tic Tac Dough's brief run on CBS daytime in 1978. It flopped in daytime and then succeeded in syndication where it ran mainly in prime access and got away from the hausfrau audience.

Nick

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #32 on: October 10, 2021, 08:26:18 PM »
Exhilarating for the players, yes. But the 10am audience of housewives had to work to keep up. As proof, the show didn't even last a year. Even celebrities didn't save it.

Fair enough, though if memory serves, the show was holding its own in the ratings until had had to go against The Hollywood Squares, did it not?

As for adding celebrities, it totally ruined the game, but that's just one guy's opinion.

A good example is Tic Tac Dough's brief run on CBS daytime in 1978. It flopped in daytime and then succeeded in syndication where it ran mainly in prime access and got away from the hausfrau audience.

So do you think Whew! would have had a better shot in syndication (weakness in the game's design aside)?

TimK2003

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #33 on: October 10, 2021, 08:34:59 PM »
You can either say...

IN THE '80s, MADONNA HAD A HIT ON THE DANCE CHARTS WITH "INTO THE GROUPIES."

Or, boil it down to:

MADONNA HAD A HIT WITH "INTO THE GROUPIES."

Sometimes you need more words to serve a joke, or direct the answer, but often times, the fluff is unnecessary.

I'll also say that they needed more people willing to charge up the $40-$50 bloopers. It seems like blocking 10-20-30 on one of the levels is too often a winning move.


IIRC, The Maggie Brown pilot shown during the 2021 Buzzr Lost & Found had at least one board like that.  It was on the Quotations category, where it pretty much was just the bloopered quote with no fluff whatsoever.

chris319

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #34 on: October 10, 2021, 08:41:36 PM »
After some years of working with non-professionals on their game concepts, i.e. people without much game-show experience, I've observed the following:

Non-professionals tend to focus myopically on the task the players face in winning cash and prizes. In other words, they focus on "what does the player have to accomplish in order to win?" They analyze their games strictly from the players' point of view.

What they don't tend to focus on is of paramount importance: "how will this play to an audience?". The audience could be housewives at 10am or couch potatoes in prime access. The fact remains that they are passive observers whose participation in the game is strictly vicarious. A TV game must be evaluated with this overarching consideration in mind.

WOF is the most successful of several TV adaptations of hangman and look how durable it's been. You can't watch it and not try to solve the puzzle. So a contestant wins a car or a trip to Hawaii, big whoop. The prizes are not what keep the audience engaged. After a while the novelty of winning a million dollars wears off.

One big exception to this is What's My Line?. The audience knows the answer to the problem from the outset, yet the questioning is fascinating to watch. I don't know why it works but it does.

JasonA1

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #35 on: October 10, 2021, 08:41:51 PM »
Isn't the point of the fluff to eat up the clock, and thus make the Charger's job that much harder?

If they were trying to use up the charger's time, then they really missed the mark, because even a casual observer can see it's much easier to win as a blocker than it is as a charger. However, I don't think the show was intentionally doing that. Looking at one episode real quick, though, I could cut syllables from at least a handful of bloopers easily.

Fair enough, though if memory serves, the show was holding its own in the ratings until had had to go against The Hollywood Squares, did it not?

Pretty much. Here's the post where we brought up the show's ratings. However, I don't think it's a big accomplishment that Whew could decisively beat All-Star Secrets, but not the nearly-14-year-old Hollywood Squares.

-Jason
JA1 Presents - movie reviews, TV reviews, top 5 lists and more
--or-- you can go the Twitter route

chris319

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #36 on: October 10, 2021, 08:53:07 PM »
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do you think Whew! would have had a better shot in syndication (weakness in the game's design aside)?

No. I think Whew! has possibilities if completely restructured. Jay should have run it through trying different variations on the format, such as playing the main game without a clock. He didn't have the benefit of a panoply of people critiquing it in development.

I still have all of the ratings sheets distributed throughout Goodson Todman when I worked there, but I would have to turn my place upside down to find them. ABC had nothing on against it IIRC and it was up against a show on NBC which could be abbreviated as "A.S.S.".

tyshaun1

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #37 on: October 11, 2021, 07:58:06 AM »
How Jay's version of Blackout ever saw the light of day is mystifying.
At least for Blackout, CBS green lit a pilot in 1986 and it was shot in October. It wasn't until a year later when Michael Brockman decided it was time to put Pyramid to pasture that they revisited the show and called Jay Wolpert. According to an interview, he actually had forgotten all about it! (I think he was working on his version of "Trivial Pursuit" for syndication at the time). I'm guessing the other options at the time were "I Predict" and "Money In The Blank".

Clay Zambo

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #38 on: October 11, 2021, 11:49:01 AM »
Technically, it has been, just without the underlining part. (First game @ 2:46)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1Z4IeZHSNU

I *adore* HOUSE OF GAMES, and have spent more than a few idle moments wondering if it could work here. In a podcast interview, Osman called the show "a love letter to the art of question writing," and said that it very much was an anthology of clever rounds that *wouldn't* stand on their own as a full game. Much as I love "Highbrow/Lowbrow" and "Win When They're Singing" and even "Rhyme Time," I think he's right.
czambo@mac.com

chris319

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #39 on: October 11, 2021, 11:58:08 AM »
I had pitched a show to CBS around that time before Blackout went on the air. At first they seemed interested, then they turned cold and passed on it saying they already had a merchandise game. That didn't stop NBC from having TPIR and Say When!! in the '60s, both merchandise shows. I didn't know they had already piloted Blackout (gawd knows why) and Blackout was so vastly superior to my show :P

Larry Hovis loved my show and Ira Skutch thought it was "ingenious".

Neumms

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #40 on: October 11, 2021, 02:40:09 PM »
I had pitched a show to CBS around that time before Blackout went on the air. At first they seemed interested, then they turned cold and passed on it saying they already had a merchandise game.

Out of curiosity, did you try NBC or why couldn't you?

Neumms

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #41 on: October 11, 2021, 02:45:12 PM »
Isn't the point of the fluff to eat up the clock, and thus make the Charger's job that much harder?

The Charger's job was hard to begin with. I'd bet there was a little bit of extra writing just to keep the game less frantic than it already was.

BrandonFG

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #42 on: October 11, 2021, 02:48:27 PM »
I had pitched a show to CBS around that time before Blackout went on the air. At first they seemed interested, then they turned cold and passed on it saying they already had a merchandise game.
And now, 30 years later, they have two.
"Im not gonna miss a Biggie question, Sara.

Now celebrating his 19th season on GSF!

JohnXXVII

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #43 on: October 11, 2021, 07:48:19 PM »
Watching this show really drives home what a consummate professional Tom Kennedy was. No matter how far out there things get, Tom always plays it straight, with energy and enthusiasm and no touch of irony. He was a great game show host!

chris319

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Re: After A Month Of Whew,...Random Observations:
« Reply #44 on: October 12, 2021, 02:17:06 AM »
I had pitched a show to CBS around that time before Blackout went on the air. At first they seemed interested, then they turned cold and passed on it saying they already had a merchandise game.

Out of curiosity, did you try NBC or why couldn't you?

Yes, NBC, ABC, several producers (Larry Hovis, Bob Synes) and the William Morris agency.