Child's Play

CBS (ended 1983)


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Child's Play

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Child: Um, you go to a computer at the library or somewhere and, uh, you try to find your favorite shows on TV. One of the pages is the show I'm on right now ... Bill Cullen: OK, for the game, what are we talking about there? Contestant: Is it the Child's Play guide at Bill Cullen: Absolutely right! Child's Play was one of two game shows - along with The $25,000 Pyramid - that once again gave CBS a full slate of daytime game shows. This cute game show saw two contestants - one a returning champion - trying to decipher the meanings of words, as defined by children ages 5-9 in pre-taped interviews. As one might expect, the children often used the word in their descriptions, so those censor "bleeps" that were heard were to bleep out the answer (or other words that would directly give away the answer). For example: "You've got to wave your arms back and forth and run real fast. You get across the finish line first and you win!" Answer: Arms race. A correct answer was worth one point; an incorrect guess allowed the opponent to view a second video of another child trying to define the same word. If that player could not guess, a third (and final) video was shown ... and by now, it was usually not that hard to guess. After an undefined time limit, a second round called "Fast Play" was played. Here, the contestants viewed more videos of children trying their darndest to define words, and the contestant could ring in to offer a guess as soon as they thought they knew the answer. A right answer won 2 points; a wrong answer allowed the player to guess after viewing the rest of the clip. The player in the lead after time expired (or after a tie-breaking clip was played, if necessary) won the game and advanced to the bonus round. Two formats were used in the year-long run of Child's Play, as thus: * "Triple Play" - September 1982-March 1983: The champion had 45 seconds to guess up to six words, using definitions as written by three children. Each correct answer was worth $100, with a $5,000 bonus awarded for getting all six. * "Turnabout" - March 1983-September 1983: The champion described words to a panel of five children, ages 5-10. The idea was to communicate the words in such a way that the children would answer correctly. The contestant earned $100 for each correct guess, and $5,000 if the kiddies guessed all seven within the 45-second time limit; the children divided $100 for every correct word and $1,000 if the bonus was won. Child's Play was a cute show, and the children were defnitely funny - not only with the definitions, but being themselves and having fun with Uncle Bill, who was his usual chipper self. Alas, the show didn't get good enough ratings and, well, I'll let a child explain: Child: It's when a show like Child's Play isn't on anymore. Correct answer: Because it was cancelled (replaced by Press Your Luck).moreless