Friday, September 3, 2010


ON FEBRUARY 2, 1950, America fell in love with a primitive video game.

Not the kind of complex, digital diversions we enjoy , today, over six decades later.No Nintendo system was required and it was not powered by PlayStation. Especially, since they had not yet been invented.

This was a sophisticated parlor game, featuring erudite panelists, and an eclectic array of guests, that was played out on the CBS Television Network, first in glorious B&W and then in vivid color, for over 17 years.

On that Sunday night in 1950, WHAT'S MY LINE debuted and the show went on to become a durable, family-viewing fixture on the Tiffany Network for years. The premise of the game required that a panel of celebrities be tasked with quizzing a guest until they could determine that person's profession.

WHAT'S MY LINE? was hosted by noted journalist, and ABC News anchorman, John Daly. After much trial and error, the core panel stabilized with effervescent actress and broadcaster Arlene Francis, acerbic columnist Dorothy Kilgallen and urbane publisher Bennet Cerf, plus a rotating guest panelist. They appeared on 876,LIVE episodes.


The final network episode aired LIVE from New York City on Sunday September 3, 1967.A new version of the venerable game show went into national syndication from 1967 to 1975.This version was firsty hosted by newsman Wally Bruner and then actor Larry Blyden.Comedian Soupy Sales was a regular on that version.

WHAT'S MY LINE? , was created by game show titans,Mark Goodson and Bill Todman. It shaped the modern television game show and it was one of Goodson/Todman's earliest television productions.They appeared to thank the audience on the final CBS episode.

(the cast as viewed by the legendary artist, Al Hirschfeld)

The long running show always respected the audience and radiated intelligence.Plus,with host and panelists clad in evening gowns and black tie attire, WHAT'S MY LINE? had an air of 1950's , New York elegance.

Here, are two clips that show excerpts of the very first edition of WHAT'S MY LINE?on CBS-TV and the very last on the network.They come from the WHEELBRAINand 8498653YOU TUBE sites.Enjoy!!!!

February 2, 1950

Sept. 3, 1967

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