What's My Line?

Season 9 Episode 45


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Jul 06, 1958 on CBS
out of 10
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Episode Summary

Game 1: Henri La Mothe - "High Diver, Dives 40 Feet Into Two Feet of Water" (self-employed; he is a "flat" diver, and lands on his firm stomach muscles; from both New York and New Jersey; he leaves after questioning, exiting by the sign-in board, and does not meet the panel)

Game 2: Mrs. Cecelia Neville - "Hog Show Judge" (self-employed; pretty blond; she has also judges cattle; from Lafayette, Indiana)

Game 3: Benny Goodman (5/30/1909 - 6/13/1986) (as Mystery Guest)

Who was the Episode MVP ?

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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)

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (0)

    • QUOTES (0)

    • NOTES (5)

      • FLIP REPORT: In the night's second game, John flipped the remaining cards for the second contestant at five down, even though he gave credit to the panel for figuring out this contestant's line "in substance" by guessing that she was connected with hogs or pigs. The cards were flipped because time was running rather short and John ended the game before they could figure out the exact line of "hog show judge." - agent_0042 (2009)

      • (1) "WHAT'S MY LINE?" OWNERSHIP CHANGE: Effective with tonight's episode, this is the first "WML?" to become "A CBS Television Network Production in association with Mark Goodson and Bill Todman." This resulted from the producers' sale of the series to the network for a reported $1 million, per the September 4, 1967 New York Times article titled "What's My Line? Signs Off After 17 Years on TV" by George Gent. A year later, Goodson-Todman would sell "I've Got a Secret" to CBS along with the show's then-host, Garry Moore. Both transactions reportedly yielded Goodson & Todman a total of $3 million. However, when GSN aired this episode in August 2005, the end credits cut off after the new "CBS Television Network Production" card. Most likely, this was the way it was also shown in 1958, because the new producers of the show had probably not prepared the new end credit cards in time. In addition, the show announcer did not announce the words as the card appeared on the screen, which is something he usually does. - W-B (2005)
        (2) "WML?" SPONSOR AND PANEL WATCH: For this pivotal episode, the main sponsor was Helene Curtis. And this was the first of four appearances, all as a guest panelist, that actor Dana Andrews would make on "WML?" over the next three years, six months and eight days. It should be noted that Mr. Andrews was not the only member of his family to make it as an actor. His younger brother, Steve Forrest, also made numerous movie and TV appearances over the decades, but perhaps his most famous role was as "Lieutenant Dan 'Hondo' Harrelson" on the 1975-1976 TV series "S.W.A.T."
        (3) BENNY GOODMAN: This was the "King of Swing's" second "WML?" appearance, but his first to survive on kinescope (his previous mystery guest shot, on EPISODE #21 of October 22, 1950, is among the 100-plus episodes of the 1950-1952 period to have become lost to history). At this point, Mr. Goodman returned to the Columbia label after several years on Capitol Records; he was one of the charter artists on the original roster of Columbia's "red label" popular music series when it was first launched in 1939. In fact, he released the very first single on the new label, "Comes Love" b/w "Rendezvous Time in Paree," on Columbia 35201 on September 8, 1939. (This particular catalogue series lasted until mid-1974, with the last release having been "Summertime in the City" by the Manhattans on 4-46081.) Benny remained with Columbia in this particular stretch through much of the 1940's, with his biggest hit having been "Taking a Chance on Love" (Columbia 35869, originally released in 1940 but hitting Number One in 1943). While Mr. Goodman had numerous vocalists backing him on his records, including Helen Forrest, Peggy Lee, Martha Tilton and Dick Haymes, the clarinetist himself sang lead vocals on one of his best-known hits, "Gotta Be This Or That (Part 1)" (Columbia 36813, 1945).
        (4) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: In spite of the truncated end credits, which cut off after a brief shot of the aforementioned (and revamped) "A CBS Television Production" art card slide, GSN still managed to find a way to vehemently vex the viewing audience with their long-entrenched "crunching" of the screen on their January 5, 2009 airing of this episode.
        (5) GSN's January 5, 2009 airing of tonight's show was followed by the September 3, 1957 edition of "To Tell the Truth," hosted by Bud Collyer, with the panel on this occasion consisting of Polly Bergen, Jack Paar, Kitty Carlisle and Hy Gardner. The first game featured Colonel John P. Stapp (who on December 10, 1954 rode a rocket-propelled land sled at 632 miles per hour) and two impostors; the second game featured photographer Constance Bannister (who was most famous for taking baby pictures that were published in many books and on yearly calendars) and two impostors; and the third game featured boxing referee Ruby Goldstein (who was later a contestant on "WML?" EPISODE #470 of June 28, 1959 which was guest-hosted by Eamonn Andrews) and two impostors. - W-B (2009)

      • REVIEW: Once again the panel put in a poor performance as they were utterly stumped in the regular games. In the first game, Bennett correctly figured out that the contestant had something to do with entertainment and that he could use his skills in sideshows or carnivals. Unfortunately, they never guessed that he dove 40 feet into two feet of water. In the second game, Bennett once again was able to narrow down the product that the contestant dealt with, which was hogs, but they never were quite able to figure out that she judged them. Their fortunes did change in the mystery guest round when Arlene correctly identified "The King of Swing" Benny Goodman. In fact, Arlene had seen Goodman's performance at the recent Newport Jazz Festival. After the game, John brought up Goodman's recent trip to the 1958 Brussels World's Fair. Goodman said that he enjoyed the fair and that the criticisms of the American pavilion were unjustified. Those sentiments were again echoed by Dorothy in the good nights. Also, it was during the good nights that it was announced that Bennett would be taking a well deserved vacation with his family in Calgary and in California. Maybe that would give him a chance to recharge his batteries and help the panel get back on form. - Sargebri (2005)

        MUSIC SCENE: As Arlene mentioned during and after the mystery guest round, she had recently seen Benny Goodman and his band perform at the 1958 edition of the Newport Jazz Festival. The festival began in 1954 and is still going strong today in 2005. However, the jazz festival isn't the only musical event that the town of Newport, Rhode Island hosts. The town also hosts one of the most famous folk music festivals in the world. Performers who have performed at the festival have included Joan Baez, Arlo Guthrie and Bob Dylan. In fact, Dylan performed one of the most defining sets in the history of not only the festival, but modern music as well. It was at the 1965 edition of the festival where Bob Dylan walked onstage not to play acoustic folk, but electric rock and roll. His backing band for this performance was the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, featuring guitar virtuoso Mike Bloomfield. Needless to say, Dylan was booed off the stage. However, this pretty much marked the decline of folk as one of the more popular forms of music as it had been for much of the early 1960's and marked the ascendancy of folk rock. - Sargebri (2005)

      • 1) Guest #1 was pretty humorous - when asked if he needed any special training to do his work, he replied, "Being crazy helps!" (LOL!) After it is explained to panel that Mr. La Mothe is a FLAT DIVER (he uses his stomach muscles) or as John said (okay, this is a set-up, picture this and let your mind wander) "lands on his estomac" (That's French for "stomach.") Dorothy wants to ask a question.
        JD: "Yes, Dorothy, you have a question?"
        DK: (wide eyed - realizing they're on live TV) "NO, I take it all back. I was going...to ask a question and... you... wouldn't have been able to answer it!"
        John (knowingly) laughs. I'll bet she asked her question once those intrusive cameras were turned off! Mr. La Mothe sneaks off stage without meeting the panel! He exited near the chalkboard, without walking by the panel! No handshakes!
        2) During the questioning of Guest #2's product, Arlene queries, "If I did have it, would it show?" and JD (who is in top form tonight) answers, "Well, that would pretty much depend on what you were doing with it!" The audience applauds (love those double entendres.) Later Bennett asks, "Are you a pig lady?" JD chimes in, "How did you punctuate that sentence?" It takes everyone a second to get it, but soon the theatre is howling, especially sweet Bennett! After that, Mrs. Neville explains that 200 lbs is market hog weight. John jokes, "And Bennett's still underweight" (laugh laugh laugh) "I meant that kindly now, Bennett!" You hear Bennett say, "Thank you, dear boy."
        3) Following John's announcement that Bennett would be absent for 2 weeks, during his goodbye, Bennett smiles and says, "Hope you all will miss me a little." Awwwwww!! Are you kidding? Hurry back you delightful Mr. Cerf! - fiveninegal (2003)

      • Benny Goodman discusses visiting and performing in Brussels. - Suzanne (2003)

        John mentioned that Bennett Cerf will be on vacation for two weeks. He will be visiting California (including Disneyland) with his wife Phyllis and their two sons, Jonathan and Christopher. Disneyland was only three years old, since it had opened in 1955! - Suzanne (2003)

        Dana Andrews is currently on Broadway in "Two for the Seesaw." This play ran from January 16, 1958 to October 31, 1959, for a total of 750 performances at the Booth Theatre in New York. He was a replacement, as the opening night role of "Jerry Ryan" was played by Henry Fonda. - Suzanne (2003)

        Dana Andrews (1/1/1909 - 12/17/1992)

        Panel: Arlene Francis, Dana Andrews, Dorothy Kilgallen, Bennett Cerf.

    • ALLUSIONS (0)