What's My Line?

Season 6 Episode 34


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Apr 24, 1955 on CBS



  • Notes

    • (1) "EXTRA VALUE IS WHAT YOU GET WHEN YOU BUY...STOPETTE": Tonight's main sponsor is Jules Montenier, Inc.'s Stopette brand.
      (2) "WML?" PANEL WATCH: For the third time this year, the panel is introduced counterclockwise; and for the seventh time amongst still-existing episodes, Dorothy has the honors of introducing John, whom she called "the most atomic member of this combination," in reference to his upcoming trip to Yucca Flats to witness an atomic bomb test.
      (3) FRED ALLEN QUIP WATCH: In his introduction of Dorothy, Mr. Allen asserted that she knew a cellist for the New York Philharmonic who was so bowlegged that he could play his instrument standing up.
      (4) MYSTERY GUEST ROSEMARY CLOONEY: The popular singer makes the first of two "WML?" appearances this evening, for which her nameplate on the panel moderator's desk is set, "as you know" (to quote an oft-repeated phrase that Mr. Daly used over the years), in Title Gothic Condensed No. 11. Just a few months before tonight's show, she had another "ethnic novelty" hit with "Mambo Italiano" [Columbia (4-)40361], which would be introduced to a new generation when it was featured in the opening titles of the 1988 movie "Married to the Mob."
      (5) MORE ABOUT "COME ON-A MY HOUSE": The song which propelled Rosemary Clooney to superstardom back in 1951 was written by Ross Bagdasarian and William Saroyan. Interestingly, given the Italian dialectic in this number, the two composers were of Armenian descent. Both went on to greater fame in other fields in the years since collaborating on this piece. Mr. Saroyan became a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and playwright. One of his plays, "The Time of Your Life," was made into a TV production on October 9, 1958 as an episode of the CBS anthology series "Playhouse 90." This now-famous adaptation featured certain individuals who had appeared on "WML?" in the past, or who would appear in the future, such as Jackie Gleason, Dina Merrill and Betsy Palmer. But of the two who penned "Come On-a My House," the one who went furthest had to be Mr. Bagdasarian. In that same year of 1958, he had his first major hit on the music charts with "Witch Doctor," which he recorded under the nom de disque of "David Seville," and which featured an electronically sped-up vocal. This provided the impetus for his most enduring creation, "The Chipmunks," beginning with the 1958 Yuletide perennial "The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don't Be Late)." The Chipmunks' names -- Alvin, Simon and Theodore -- were derived from the names of three executives at Liberty Records where Mr. Bagdasarian had recorded: Al Bennett; label founder Simon (Si) Waronker; and engineer Theodore (Ted) Keep. A string of record albums and singles which followed this number, in turn, led to a cartoon series, "The Alvin Show," whose original run on NBC lasted from 1961 to 1962 and would be seen in reruns for years thereafter. Meanwhile, by the time of Mr. Bagdasarian's death in 1972, Chipmunk-mania had so petered out that recent new recordings (such as a version of the theme from the 1968 movie "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang") were issued on Liberty's budget-subsidiary label, Sunset. However, since the 1980's, there has been a resurgence in interest in the Chipmunks, especially after Mr. Bagdasarian's son, Ross Bagdasarian, Jr., revived the franchise with an album, "Chipmunk Punk." Thus followed more albums with covers of then-current material; another animated cartoon series, "Alvin and the Chipmunks" (1983-1991); and more recently, a 2007 live-action version with Jason Lee as the Chipmunks' mentor "David Seville." Alas, however, neither Mr. Bagdasarian nor Mr. Saroyan made any kind of appearances on "WML?"
      (5) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: This time out, the end credits cut off after the art card slide for executive producer Gil Fates, following the travel arrangements plug for American Airlines. GSN's July 22, 2008 airing of this episode continued its shameful and nauseating legacy of "crunching" the screen just the same.
      (6) The July 22, 2008 airing by GSN of tonight's show was followed by the October 1, 1952 episode of "The Name's the Same," hosted by Robert Q. Lewis, with the panel lineup of Abe Burrows, Joan Alexander and Meredith Willson, and celebrity guest Yogi Berra. - W-B (2008)

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