Regular Panelist (1950-1967)
Regular Panelist (1951-1967)
Regular Panelist (1950-1965)
CHRISTINE JORGENSEN: Fred Allen makes a brief reference to Christine Jorgensen on this episode when he questions the sex of the mystery guest:
Fred: "Are you a man or a woman, incidentally?"
John: "That can't be answered yes or no, Fred."
Fred: "Possibly, in Christine's case, you might get an answer."
Christine Jorgensen (1926-1989, born George William Jorgensen, Jr.) was famous for having been the first widely-publicized case of an American individual who had sex reassignment surgery. She underwent her sex change operation in Denmark in 1952. - Suzanne (2008)
NO TRICKS, BUT NO CIGAR: Bennett's free guess for the first contestant's line was "washes reindeer." He stated that he wasn't going to be tricked this time, no doubt thinking of the contestant just two weeks ago who stumped the panel for the second time with the line "washes cows." - agent_0042 (2008)
FLIP REPORT: John flipped the remaining cards for the second contestant at five down because time was running short. He flipped the cards for the final contestant at just two down, again due to a shortage of time. In fact, the final game was so time-strapped that both the panel walk-by and the free wild guess segments were dispensed with. - agent_0042 (2008)
(1) "WML?" ON HALLOWEEN: This was the first of only two editions of "WML?" to air on the exact day of Halloween, October 31. The second was EPISODE #788 of October 31, 1965, which was Dorothy Kilgallen's next-to-last episode prior to her tragic death, and the last to feature the other "classic" panel of Arlene Francis, Steve Allen, Dorothy Kilgallen and Bennett Cerf.
(2) "WML?" SPONSOR WATCH: The main sponsor for this first edition after a week off (in the first of a total of 25 preemptions over the next 12 years, 8 months and one day) was Remington electric shavers.
(3) FRED ALLEN QUIP WATCH: In his introduction of Arlene, Fred, the author of "Treadmill to Oblivion," mentioned that Arlene "knows a man who has 21/21 vision - every time he comes out of '21', he sees two '21's'." Fred was undoubtedly making a reference to New York's "21 Club" on West 52nd Street, a dining and drinking establishment which is still in existence today, and whose origins date back to the "speakeasy" era of Prohibition in the 1920's.
(4) MYSTERY GUEST RAY MILLAND: For the first of a total of three mystery guest appearances that the legendary actor made between now and EPISODE #791 of November 21, 1965 (the first "true" post-Kilgallen edition), his nameplate on the panel moderator's desk bears the standard typesetting of Title Gothic Condensed No. 11. Mr. Milland's sitcom, "The Ray Milland Show," originally titled "Meet Mr. McNutley" (a reference to his character, "Professor Ray McNutley," whose surname was changed this 1954 season to "McNulty"), ran on CBS from September 17, 1953 to September 30, 1955. Also in 1955, the actor directed his first film, "A Man Alone," in which he starred as "Wes Steele." The Western also featured Raymond Burr, the future star of the TV shows "Perry Mason" and "Ironside"; Alan Hale, Jr., the future "Skipper" of "Gilligan's Island"; and Lee Van Cleef, who would be a fixture of Italian-made "spaghetti Westerns" in the 1960's and early 1970's.
(5) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: In keeping with the significance of the day of the original air date, GSN's "really scary" procedure of "crunching" the end credits was still in place when this episode was aired on June 27, 2008. Even when it's not Halloween, this crunching trick continues to haunt the viewing audience, and it's never a treat.
(6) GSN's June 27, 2008 airing of tonight's show was followed by the October 17, 1966 edition of "I've Got a Secret," hosted by Steve Allen, with the usual panel of Betsy Palmer, Bill Cullen, Bess Myerson and Henry Morgan, and celebrity guest Lucille Ball. - W-B (2008)
A "credits crunch" poem by agent_0042 (2008)
ODE TO GSN
There once was a network named GSN;
Who felt that credits-crunching was in.
For ratings, it seemed, the perfect solution;
For viewers, it was, like so much pollution.
WHAT'S IN A NAME? Like many Icelandic people, the lovely Icelandic contestant in game one, Guðný Þorgeirsdóttir, omitted some accents in her name that are otherwise there in the written version. Puzzling is the fact that she included the "ý" and nothing else. She even wrote out "th" instead of "Þ". - Dan Albertson (2005)
REVIEW: This is another night the panel probably wished they would have stayed home, as they were 0 for 3 in the regular games. In the first game, the panel was stumped by the pretty female jockey from Iceland. They couldn't be blamed, though, as she was much bigger than the jockeys in the United States. John mentioned that Iceland had differing jockey weight restrictions than in America. In the second game, the panel was so far off track that John decided to throw in the towel and give the security guard from Fort Knox the full prize by default. However, in the mystery guest round, Fred correctly guessed that the mystery guest was Academy Award winner Ray Milland, without getting a single no. Mr. Milland was on the show to promote his sitcom "The Ray Milland Show." Unfortunately, in the final game, the panel reverted to the evening's form and ran out of time as they were questioning the voting booth salesman and he won the full $50 by default. - Sargebri (2005)
1954 MIDTERM ELECTIONS: It was quite appropriate that the final contestant was a voting booth salesman. The Tuesday after this episode originally aired was Election Day for the midterm elections - November 2, 1954. - Sargebri (2005)
MYSTERY GUEST: Ray Milland promoted his 1954 film, "Dial M For Murder." Also mentioned was his 1945 Oscar-winning movie, "The Lost Weekend." - Suzanne (2005)
HAPPY HALLOWEEN 1954! "WML?" fell on Halloween twice over its run, in 1954 and in 1965. - Suzanne (2005)
Tidbits: The panel is again seated when the show begins. At the end of the show, John again announces that Dorothy will be travelling back to Cleveland for continued journalist coverage of the Sam Sheppard trial. - Suzanne (2005)
Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Fred Allen, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf.
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