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What's My Line?

Season 7 Episode 20


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Jan 15, 1956 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
4 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Game 1: Mrs. Sue Ford - "Makes Pizza Pies In Italian Restaurant" (salaried; extremely shy; she signed her signature in Japanese characters only; she has been in America for two years and works at Ciro's Pizza in Mt. Kisco, NY; originally from Japan)

Game 2: Lloyd G. Farrar - "Counts Whales (For U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)" (salaried; he discusses the California Grey Whale which he said had been almost extinct but now numbers 5000; from San Diego, California)

Game 3: Edward G. Robinson (12/12/1893 - 1/26/1973) (as Mystery Guest) He smokes a cigar.

Game 4: Mrs. Cara Joslyn - "Paper Hanger" (self-employed; John tells us that she is "86 years young"; from Sioux Falls, South Dakota) . .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)

    Fred Allen

    Fred Allen

    Regular Panelist (1955-1956)

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (0)

    • QUOTES (4)

      • Bennett: (punning about the 1951 Post-WWII Japanese Peace Treaty) I think maybe Mrs. Ford signed the "Japanese Pizza Treaty."

      • Dorothy: How do you know you're not counting the same whale twice?
        John: Well, Dorothy, it's like when you own dogs, you get to know them. That one's Ben and that one's Charley, that one's Henry... you know.

      • Dorothy: John, who would need to know how many whales there are?
        Fred Allen: The other whales.

      • Dorothy: But I don't know what else you'd do with a whale.
        Arlene: How shortsighted of you, Dorothy!

    • NOTES (6)

      • FLIP REPORT: John flipped the remaining cards for the first contestant at eight down. Dorothy correctly guessed this contestant's line during a conference and John apparently flipped the cards off-camera, as no specific reference was made to it. John flipped the remaining cards for the final contestant at just one down because time ran out. As was customary at this point, there was no opening panel walk-by for this short final game, for which John allotted only 1 minute and 45 seconds. - agent_0042 (2008)

      • (1) "WML?" SPONSOR AND ANNOUNCER WATCH: The main sponsor for this evening is Stopette. And Lee Vines is the announcer tonight.
        (2) AN OMEN? - In her recent introductions of Fred, Dorothy mentioned that he had "just come back from a trip" to 58th Street (or 59th Street). This reference would prove to be eerie in hindsight, as it was on one of his "trips" in that region, two months from tonight's show, that Mr. Allen suffered a fatal heart attack, one of several events in "WML?'s" history that were defined as "changing the show forever."
        (3) OVERLAY SCREEN WATCH: The first contestant's overlay screen was another example of the typesetters' tendency to use a combination of capital letters and mixed case (upper and lower case) letters: "MAKES PIZZA PIES in ITALIAN RESTAURANT." This was also the case with the second contestant's overlay, "COUNTS WHALES (For U. S. FISH and WILDLIFE SERVICE)." And the lower-third overlay for mystery guest Edward G. Robinson was a bit delayed in appearing, not being displayed until the point where he answered his first question. All overlay screens tonight were set in Kabel Heavy.
        (4) EDWARD G. ROBINSON: At the time of tonight's show, Mr. Robinson's most recent picture up to then, "Hell in Frisco Bay," was playing in theatres. He played "Victor Amato" in the film; his co-stars included Alan Ladd, Joanne Dru, William Demarest, and the one-time "scream girl" of the original 1933 version of "King Kong," Fay Wray. A few months after this episode, "E.G." was in another movie, "Nightmare," as "Rene Bressard." And this was all before "The Ten Commandments" was released.
        (5) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: All that was shown during the end credit sequence tonight were the "WML?" title card (twice) and the American Airlines card (way up close). Still, GSN managed to find enough time to maintain its perfect record of aggravating the viewing audience with its "crunching" of the screen on its August 27, 2008 airing of this episode.
        (6) Following the August 27, 2008 airing of tonight's show, GSN reran the July 7, 1953 edition of "The Name's the Same," hosted by Robert Q. Lewis, with the panel this time out comprised of Carl Reiner, Joan Alexander and Gene Rayburn, and Peter Lawford as the celebrity guest. - W-B (2008)

      • When Arlene shook hands with Mr. Farrar, she asked, "How's Geraldine?" This was a reference to legendary operatic soprano Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). It's obvious Miss Francis had some knowledge of opera to come up with that name so quickly. Although Miss Farrar had remained in the public eye to some extent, at that point, she had been retired for about 25 years. More on Geraldine Farrar at the URL below. - Moffofan (2005)


      • REVIEW: The panel had a .500 average this evening. In the first game, Bennett opened the door when he figured out that the first contestant worked in a restaurant. Arlene then opened it a little wider when she figured out that the contestant worked in an Italian restaurant. However, it was during a conference that Dorothy made a correct guess that she worked as a pizza chef. In the second game, Arlene was able to narrow down the contestant's specialty to whales. She explained that she had read a newspaper article about a man who was propagating whales, but when she asked if this was the guest's line, she received a "no." She joked that her question might be too racy for TV. It turned out that the contestant counted whales, so he wound up stumping the panel. Mystery guest Edward G. Robinson had the audience and the panel in stitches with his Yiddish accent, but they pretty much were able to see through his disguise, especially Arlene who recognized his laugh and made the identification. In the final game, the panel ran out of time and the grandmotherly 86 year old wallpaper hanger won the full prize by default. - Sargebri (2005)

        THE TEN COMMANDMENTS, PART I: Surprisingly, Edward G. Robinson didn't mention a film project that he was involved in that was going to be released later that year, a little film called "The Ten Commandments." In that 1956 film, Robinson played the conniving and traitorous Hebrew overseer "Dathan." It also should be noted that many people have called this biblical epic film a camp classic for the over-the-top acting and unintentionally humorous dialogue. In fact, this film was called one of the worst films of all time and its reputation was forever cemented in the book of the same name. - Sargebri (2005)

        THE TEN COMMANDMENTS, PART II: While some may not care for this motion picture, many people consider it to be an outstanding classic film. Indeed, the ABC television network runs it annually on a national basis, and has for over 40 years, which is something unheard of in TV history. In addition, this film has earned a high rating at IMDb.com. As for the film's dialogue, it contains one of my favorite lines when Yul Brynner (as "Rameses") tells wife-to-be Anne Baxter (as "Nefretiri"), "You are going to be mine, all mine, like my dog or my horse or my falcon. Only I will love you more and trust you less." - brklnbern (2008)

      • At the close of this episode, John announced that Dorothy Kilgallen and her family would be featured on Edward R. Murrow's program, "Person to Person," next Friday, which would be January 20, 1956. - Suzanne (2005)

        Edward G. Robinson promoted his Broadway play. We are only told that the play's author is Paddy Chayefsky. The name of the play - the only one Robinson was in at this time - is "Middle of the Night." The play ran from February 8, 1956 to May 25, 1957 at the ANTA Playhouse in New York City, which is now known as the Virginia Theatre. He co-starred with Gena Rowlands. - Suzanne (2005)

        Tidbits: We are told that there are many "top flight newspaper editors" in the audience tonight. - Suzanne (2005)

        Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Fred Allen, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf.

      • A reference to the Ford Foundation was made on this episode. Ford Motor Company stock was first offered to the public on January 18, 1956, when the Ford Foundation began to sell its stock in the company. The price was $64.50 per share, and the foundation sold over 10 million shares to the public. - Suzanne (2005)

    • ALLUSIONS (0)