Debbie Reynolds was the star of the duller than dishwater premiere program. Debbie was teaching a group of Girl Scouts first-aid treatment about the correct procedure to administer when a persons clothes are afire. Regis Philbin, agreed to serve as a stand-in for demonstration purposes. Disregarding a lovely coiffure and striking evening gown, Debbie Reynolds executed a diving lunge mixed with the applicable nuances of post-graduate karate. Philbin was instantly prone on the studio floor with Debbie simulating the process of smothering the remaining flames with her matching jacket as she rolled the victim over. Debbie scraped her knee which bled slightly but she noted Philbin had been saved from serious burns.
The premiere of The Joey Bishop Show garnered an astounding 41 percent share compared with a 24 percent share for CBS' Late Show and NBC's 12 percent for The Tonight Show with Jimmy Dean sitting in as host for the absent Carson.
Singer Nancy Wilson was to appear but had a previous booking on The Perry Como Show, the same night.