Break the Bank

ABC (ended 1957)


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Break the Bank

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BROADCAST SCHEDULE 1948 - 1949: ABC 1949 - 1952: NBC 1952 - 1953: CBS 1954 - 1956: ABC 1956 - 1957: NBC 1976: ABC 1976 - 1977: Synd. 1985 - 1986: Synd. 1976 VERSION Two contestants of each sex (one a returning champion), competed on this ABC game show, hosted by Tom Kennedy. There were 9 celebrities (5 on the top & 4 on the side) & 20 boxes. The 20 boxes contained... $100/$200/$300: A question was asked to the two stars. After the joke answers, one would give a true answer, another a bluff. The contestant had to identify the true answer to win the $100, $200 or $300 box. If incorrect, it went back in play (later it was given to the opponent unless it gave it the win, the opponent had to earn that box outright). The $100/$200/$300 boxes connected each other (never diagonally). Three per money amount. WILD!: Can be used for anything, but must answer a question correctly. One WILD card. BLANK: Blanks never connect. When picked, you heard a BOING! sound & lost your turn. Five blanks. MONEY BAGS: No question is played. However, the contestant can either refuse it & take another turn or keep the money bag & give the turn to the opponent. Five money bags. Possesion of a box is indicated on the board by either lips (lady) or mustache (gentleman). The player wins by getting three $100/$200/$300 (3 natural or 2 + wild card) boxes plus a nice prize (IE: 3 $200 boxes = $600). However, if the contestant gets 3 MONEY BAGS, s/he BREAKS THE BANK & wins a jackpot that starts @ $5,000. Whenever a new game was played, $500 (later $250) was added to the jackpot until won or reached ABC's $20,000 cap. Contestants could stay until defeated or reached ABC's $20,000 ceiling. It was a hit, but ABC canned the series because they wanted to expand One Life To Live & General Hospital from 30 to 45 minutes (60 minutes came in 1978, moving The $20,000 Pyramid to the dreaded NOON ET/11:00 CST slot). 1976 Syndicated version Jack Barry replaced Tom Kennedy, while announcer Ernie Anderson replaced Johnny Jacobs. Game play was the same on the 1976 version, except... 1). No returning champion. Two contestants played for the entire show. 2). The $200 boxes were replaced with $500 boxes. 3). Contestants can win $10,000 in prizes if they broke the bank. Also, the winner played a bonus round. Each of the 9 stars had money amounts, but one was the "JINX". The contestant would pick a star & the star would show a money amount (or the JINX to end the game, where the contestant lost the winnings). The object was to amass $2,000 to win a $5,000 bonus. Of course, the player could quit anytime.moreless