Match Game (1998)

(ended 1999)


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Match Game (1998)

Show Summary

The most recent revival so far of Match Game aired during the 1998-1999 season. Like other recent versions, this one used the classic CBS rules of fill-in-the-blank statements.

Two contestants competed (both new for each show), as before. This time, they faced a celebrity panel of five (not six). Sense the troubles are beginning? Read on.

Host Berger read two choices (e.g., "A bird in the hand is worth two in the tush" and "Drink 'Ya Later, Alligator"), and the contestant who won a coin toss before the show went first. After the statement was read (e.g., Bob said, "That's some bird cage lining you've got in there, Joe. I didn't know they came with pictures of *blank*"). The celebrities each separately wrote down their answers and, after the contestant was polled for his/her answer, the celebrities read them one at a time. Too often, the answers went beyond double-entendre, had four (maybe five) letters in them and would have resulted in your mother washing your mouth out with soap. Other answers simply were flat out not funny.

Anyhow, two rounds were played. Matches in round 1 were worth one point and two points in round 2 (the trailing player, if there's not a tie, went first). The first player to 10 points won and played the Super Match.

The Super Match was played mostly like before, in two parts. To review: In the Audience Match, Berger read a simple fill-in-the-blank statement (e.g., "blank Token"), and the contestant asked three celebrities for suggested answers. The player could choose one or reject them all and give another answer.

The third-most popular response was worth $100, the second-most popular answer netted $250 and the top choice earned a cool $500. Whatever answer the player chose, that's what he/she earned and could multiply by 10 with a match in the Head-to-Head Match. In the Head-to-Head, the player chose one celebrity, who was asked to write down their answer to another fill-in-the-blank. The contestant gave his answer, and if it was a match, it won the top prize ($1,000, $2,500 or $5,000).

Aside from the bonus round, this version would have disappointed fans of the classic Match Game. No Charles Nelson Reilly, no Brett Somers, foul-mouthed answers (even the double-entendre seen in the 1970s version wasn't that bad) ... no wonder this Match Game never matched with the viewers, and was thus doomed to a single season-run.