What's My Line?

Season 5 Episode 19


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Jan 10, 1954 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
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Episode Summary

Game 1: Ghislaine Alexander (7/1/1922 - 4/25/2000) - "Panelist on What's My Line? in England" (as Mystery Guest #1 and the panel is blindfolded; John asked the panel to merely identify her line rather than figure out her identity; however, a still-blindfolded Dorothy was able to name Ghislaine Alexander after her occupation was identified; Ghislaine donated her game winnings to an unnamed charity; she joined the panel for the second game only) Game 2: Walter Goss - "Makes Handcuffs" (salaried; he works for Smith & Wesson Firearms Corp.; from Agawam, MA) Game 3: Brandon de Wilde (4/9/1942 - 7/6/1972) (as Mystery Guest #2) Game 4: Miss Joan Myers - "Teaches Hawaiian Hula Dancing" (salaried; from Union Beach, NJ) . .moreless

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    John Daly

    John Daly

    Moderator (1950-1967)

    Arlene Francis

    Arlene Francis

    Regular Panelist (1950-1967)

    Bennett Cerf

    Bennett Cerf

    Regular Panelist (1951-1967)

    Dorothy Kilgallen

    Dorothy Kilgallen

    Regular Panelist (1950-1965)

    Steve Allen

    Steve Allen

    Regular Panelist (1953-1954)

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (0)

    • QUOTES (1)

      • John: Every time you can dig a no answer, or give a no answer to them, I'll flip one of these cards and ten flips and they're a flop.
        Walter Goss: They flop?
        John: They flop.
        Walter: You flip and I clip.
        John: Yeah, you clip, that's right. "Flip, Flop and Clip." It's a new vaudeville act. We're going to try it out next week. Steve Allen plays the music. Bennett Cerf dances.

    • NOTES (5)

      • FLIP REPORT: John flipped the remaining cards for the final contestant at just two down because time had run out. As John has been telling the contestants lately, "Ten flips and they're a flop." - agent_0042 (2008)

        (1) "WML?" SPONSOR WATCH: Tonight, it's Remington electric shavers' turn once again to have their wares displayed on the panel desk, sign-in board and flip cards.
        (2) "WML?" FONT AND NAMEPLATE WATCH: For second mystery guest Brandon de Wilde's sole "WML?" appearance tonight, the "DE" part of his nameplate as displayed on the panel moderator's desk is set in Gothic No. 13, in a smaller size of type than the rest of his name which was set in the normal Title Gothic Condensed No. 11. As for the first mystery guest, British "WML?" panelist Ghislaine Alexander (1922-2000) -- likewise making her only appearance on the U.S. "WML?" -- there was no nameplate; rather, as she took her seat, the overlay reading "Panelist on What's My Line in England (Ghislaine Alexander)" was shown for a few seconds. This was another portent of the future, in that it preceded by nearly two years the procedure of showing the mystery guest's name on a lower-third overlay for a few seconds after he or she signed in on the board.
        (3) For the good nights, the panel is blindfolded. This appears to anticipate the ending of the 1978 "What's My Shoe Size?" parody from the Canadian sketch comedy series "Second City Television" ("SCTV") where the panel remained blindfolded after the contestant's shoe size was revealed and while he shook their hands at the conclusion of his game.
        (4) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: Once again tonight (as John said at the start of every episode during this period), GSN's despicable and disheartening "crunching" of the end credits was as clear as the morning sun on the May 20, 2008 airing of this episode.
        (5) The May 20, 2008 airing of tonight's show was followed by the September 13, 1965 edition of "I've Got a Secret," hosted by Steve Allen, with the regular panel of Betsy Palmer, Bill Cullen, Bess Myerson and Henry Morgan. The celebrity guest was Carol Burnett. An important change took place with this prerecorded 15th season premiere: Whereas up to the prior season the overlay on which a contestant's secret was displayed faded in and out, beginning with this episode, such an overlay came in and out on a cold cut. This procedure will remain in place for all remaining "IGAS" episodes in the nearly two years left of its CBS run. - W-B (2008)

      • REVIEW: This was a so-so night for the panel. Steve got the first correct guess as he figured out that the first contestant was Ghislaine Alexander of the British WML panel. It was Dorothy who came up with her exact name, though. Ghislaine gave herself away when she used her real voice and Dorothy and Arlene heard her English accent. This was a big clue, and given the previous answers, the panel was able to identify their English panel counterpart. Dorothy also mentioned that Ghislaine occupies the same spot on the panel as she does, the first chair, albeit over in London, England! Ghislaine then joined the panel for the second game, but they were totally stumped by the handcuff maker. After that round, Ghislaine departed and the panel was back to their usual four-person configuration. Bennett was able to figure out that the second mystery guest was child star Brandon de Wilde. After the game, John mentioned the youngster's current series "Jaime" that aired a half-hour after WML on ABC. Unfortunately, the panel ran out of time during the third game and the hula instructor won the full prize by default. - Sargebri (2005)

        This probably was the first time that there were two mystery guests on WML, unless it was done on one of the 1950-1952 "lost" episodes. This was also a pretty interesting night due to the fact that Ghislaine Alexander of the British WML panel paid a visit to the American branch. A few months earlier, in a sort of exchange program, Arlene had the pleasure of appearing as a guest panelist on the British version while she was in England attending the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, while Barbara Kelly of the British version took Arlene's place on the American panel. Another thing that made this episode interesting was that for the second time in a few weeks, the audience was treated to a five-person panel as Ghislaine joined the panel for the second game. In future years, we will see many other foreign WML staff members visit the American program, both as guest panelists and mystery guests. - Sargebri (2005)

        BREADBOX WATCH!!! Dorothy asks in the second game if the handcuff maker's product is smaller than a breadbox. - Sargebri (2005)

      • John refers to Brandon de Wilde as a "Boy Wonder." - Suzanne (2005)

        Brandon de Wilde, current child star of the 1953-1954 ABC television series "Jamie," is just a few months shy of his twelfth birthday as he appears on this episode of WML. Brandon is the cute freckle-faced kid who yells, "Shane! Come back! Come back, Shane!" in the classic western movie "Shane," released the previous year in 1953. His scenes open and close the movie, and he is Oscar-nominated for his role in this film. Brandon will make only eight motion pictures in a career cut short when he is killed in a traffic accident in Lakewood, Colorado, not long after his 30th birthday. For the most part, his films will be solid hits. "Member of the Wedding" and "Shane" will be rapidly followed by "Night Passage," "Blue Denim," "All Fall Down," "Hud," "In Harm's Way" and, as an adult, "Those Calloways." Sadly, aside from his short-lived television series, he is just beginning to grow into leading man roles when he dies. - Lee McIntyre (2005)

      • Beautiful Ghislaine Alexander is a panelist from the British version of What's My Line? shown in the U.K. Her name is pronounced as "Gillin" which rhymes with "Dillon." John tells the panel that they won't be trying to identify her name, just her occupation. When she signs in, John says, "X, Y, Z." (WML does not yet call certain mystery guests by "Mr. X," "Mrs. X," or "Miss X," although these terms are already in use on the 1951-1955 Goodson-Todman game show, "The Name's the Same.") John asks her to join the panel after her game. She looks a little startled at his request, but agrees and takes a seat with the regular panel. An extra chair is brought in for her use. She plays game two only, and plays it well, which is not a surprise. She is still seated with the panel prior to the mystery guest game, but says her goodbye and departs prior to game play. As the British WML is shown on the BBC, she was serious when she noted that her series has no commercials. She will later be known as Lady Foley. She passed away in 2000. - Suzanne (2005)

      • In introducing him, Bennett called John "the grand panjandrum of panel moderators." By his expression, John didn't know the meaning of the word, so that made two of us! From the dictionary: Panjandrum: NOUN - An important or influential (and often overbearing) person. ETYMOLOGY - After the Grand Panjandrum, a character in a nonsense farrago written by Samuel Foote (1720-1777). - Suzanne (2005)

        Tidbits: The panel says their goodbyes with their blindfolds on. But why? We all know GSN cuts out part of the original programming, such as when John tells the viewers how to mail in their photos to become a contestant, but did they also cut out the explanation of this unusual panel goodbye? - Suzanne (2005)

        Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Steve Allen, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf. Ghislaine Alexander is a guest panelist for game two only.

    • ALLUSIONS (0)