The secret is, I love to watch the old black & white game shows of fifties and early sixties.
Thanks to a bout of insomnia, I’ve become reacquainted with What’s My Line and I’ve Got a Secret which run at 3 am on The Game Show Network. And I’m here to say, these programs put current game shows to shame! The men are in suits and ties, the ladies in evening wear, it’s Miss Francis and Mr. Serf and everyone is well mannered and polite. But that doesn’t mean boring. Both shows, What’s My Line in particular, is witty in the way of a Noel Coward play.
What I find truly delightful are the types of guests that appear on both of these programs. A 98 year old Indian who was one of three models for the Buffalo nickel, five elderly women who made up the ENTIRE graduating class of their high school, and a real fave – a group of people with obvious injuries who were all hurt engaging in that new fad — the Twist!
Can you imagine I’ve Got a Secret today? The solution would more likely be “I’ve slept with over 100 women” than “I broke the world’s record for jumping rope.” There’s an innocence to these old game shows that I dearly miss on TV today.
Last night, I came in late on What’s My Line and the game was already in progress. The contestant was a stately looking woman in a sequin cocktail dress, heels and hair poofed and cemented into place. The panelists were clearly stumped by the woman’s occupation and the audience was getting a good laugh. Finally, the host called time and announced with great glee that the woman was. . . get ready. . . a police DETECTIVE! Oh my! How intriguing! An actual woman police detective. Goes along nicely with the sweet young Oriental woman who was on the show last week. She turned out to be a lawyer – prompting the host to say he thought more women should think about going into law as a career.
Times really have changed, haven’t they.