Today it is easy to think of Merv Griffin only as the creator of hit TV gameshows Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune, but there was a time when he was a bonafide TV personality in his own right. His show brought a little late night sophistication to the afternoon talk show, turning the genre from simply cooking and gossip into an entertaining program that featured many of the era's greatest stars.
Like a lot of the late night shows, The Merv Griffin Show didn't shy away from booking people that would normally be considered too topical for day time TV. Since many of the shows were shot during the Vietnam war era, his guests often had strong opinions about the war and America's foreign policy goals; serious stuff for the housewife and preshooler set.
Merv had a place in a lot of American homes, and his show both educated and entertained. This was a good show that really classed up the afternoons. It was definitely a trendsetter.