FLIP REPORT: In the night's first game, John flipped the remaining cards for the first contestant at five down. Bennett correctly identified this contestant's line, but John flipped the cards and said, "because it's neat and proper that they should have been flipped." Most likely, John flipped the cards because this contestant had come all the way from Britain. - agent_0042 (2009)
(1) "WML?" SPONSOR WATCH: Tonight's episode was sponsored by Kellogg's.
(2) "TOP OF THE WORLD": This evening's edition bore witness to a very rare shot of the bottom part of the banner that was atop the center stage (the "WHAT'S MY LINE?" type logo, as on the opening titles, was used), as the first contestant, the Buckingham Palace guard, signed in. This banner would have been seen by what John regularly called "the audience in the theatre," but not by "the audience at home." There was only one other known time where a part of the top banner was seen, and that was on the technicians' strike-plagued EPISODE #410 of April 13, 1958, when guest host Clifton "Kip" Fadiman entered the stage and took his seat at the moderator's desk.
(3) "WML?" OVERLAY FONT WATCH: In a reversal of last week, the regular contestants' overlays were set in Futura Demi Bold, but mystery guest Eva Marie Saint's lower-third overlay was hand-painted.
(4) EVA MARIE SAINT: This was the actress' first appearance on "WML?"; she would be on one more time, on EPISODE #842 of December 31, 1966. Prior to "North by Northwest" which was filming at the very moment of tonight's show, Miss Saint's prior film had been "Raintree County" (1957), starring Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift.
(5) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: After the studio audience tickets notice, the production crew credits were rushed, but could only get up to the art card slide crediting Bob Bach and Frances Trocaine. When shown by GSN on its January 14, 2009 airing of this episode, this rushed end credit sequence was followed by the vintage animated "multiple eyes/camera iris" CBS ident; too bad the cable and satellite channel had to ruin the effect by their continued insistence on "crunching" the screen.
(6) Immediately subsequent to the January 14, 2009 airing of tonight's show, GSN repeated the November 5, 1957 edition of "To Tell the Truth" with host Bud Collyer and the panel of Polly Bergen, Ralph Bellamy, Kitty Carlisle and Hy Gardner. The first game featured Jane Hayward (an "industrial nurse" who was twice decorated at Buckingham Palace for heroism under fire during World War II) and two impostors; the second game featured Jack Bursey (Lieutenant Commander of the U.S. Coast Guard; he had participated in Antarctic expeditions with Admiral Richard E. Byrd, who named a mountain in the Antarctic after Lt. Cmdr. Bursey) and two impostors; and the third game featured Margaret Leong (approximate spelling; she wrote fortunes that were seen inside Chinese fortune cookies; she also owned a dry-cleaning business in New York's Chinatown) and two impostors. - W-B (2009)
ON THIS DAY IN NEW YORK TELEVISION: On the same day as tonight's "WML?" edition, September 7, 1958, WABD (Channel 5), former flagship of the now-defunct DuMont network and now one of four independent commercial TV stations in New York, changed its call letters to WNEW-TV. The station's then-owner, Metropolitan Broadcasting Corporation (later to become Metromedia), adopted these call letters to conform with recently-purchased radio station WNEW (1130 AM, now WBBR), and it was around this same time that an FM station of the same calls (102.7, now WWFS) was launched. As WNEW-TV, Channel 5 became the leading independent TV station in New York (WPIX, Channel 11, was in second place and WOR-TV, Channel 9, was the last of the three independents in the ratings during much of the 28-year period from tonight's show). The station retained the WNEW-TV calls until March 7, 1986, when then-new owners Fox Television changed the calls to the current WNYW. - W-B (2009)
REVIEW: The panel did a reasonably good job this particular evening. Perhaps the blindfolds in both winning games brought about their luck. In the first game, the panel had to be blindfolded because Major Johnston of the Buckingham Palace guards came out in his full uniform, hat and all. Arlene pretty much had it nailed, but she made the mistake of asking if he was in charge of the whole group, and he wasn't. It was then Bennett who was given credit for correctly guessing who he was. There was, however, a small controversy regarding where he was from. When asked if he was from the British Isles, the major gave a "no" answer. However, he did clear it up when he said he was born in Burma and at the time of his birth, Burma was a British colony. The only hiccup of the night came in the second game when the panel was totally stumped by the fire eater from Kentucky. The main reason for their downfall in this game came about during the conference, when Dorothy suggested that the guest had something to do with music. Unfortunately, the rest of the panel took her advice and thought the guest was a singer, a musician or a square dance caller. This took up valuable questioning time and cost them in the end. The panel was more successful in the mystery guest round when the panel basically knew it was Eva Marie Saint. Unfortunately, Tony was forced to disqualify himself due to his recognition of her voice. It also led to one of the funniest exchanges of the night when he tried to sneak a question in after his disqualification and got a scolding from John. After the game, they discussed the purpose of Miss Saint's visit to New York, which was the filming of a certain film by director Alfred Hitchcock called "North by Northwest" starring Cary Grant. Of course, that film went on to become one of the classic films of all time. It was also cute to see Miss Saint plant a nice kiss on Tony's cheek. - Sargebri (2005)
MASK WATCH: Arlene wore two different masks this evening. In the first game, she wore her pearl-lined mask that she would wear mainly during the show's later years. However, in the mystery guest round tonight, she wore the harlequin mask that she frequently wore during this era. - Sargebri (2005)
Wonderful beginning to a brand new season!!! Many laughs were had by all. I must share the hilarious bantering which occurred during the questioning of the fire eater:
AF: "You classify yourself as an entertainer that goes to parties... and entertains! Well, there you are! I've won!!" (BIG LAUGH FROM EVERYONE)
JD: "7 down and 94 to go!"
AF: "Could we have a conference for a minute?"
JD: "You may have one minute for a conference."
AF: "What, what, where do we go from there?"
DK: "Well, it must be something specific that she does. See if she has anything to do with music, like one of those...OH! OH! What about those people, that's usually a man, uhh, I don't wanna give you a bum steer twice in one night Arlene, but you know the ones that call out for square dances?" (it is SO incredibly funny to watch DK when her ruthless game playing instincts emerge!!!)
AF: "Yes. I know them. (pause) Yup. I'm going to let you HAVE that one!!" (LOL!!!)
***Arlene goes on to ask if puppets are involved - she gets a 'no'***
BC: "Is there any music of any kind used in the entertaining that you do?"
BC: "Well, I think Dorothy's on the right track, so...."
DK: (interrupting) "Watch out Bennett! I'm not hot tonight!"
BC: "So...I am, I am, I'm going to pass to Dorothy because" (theatre erupts in laughter) "if she's right, I want her to get the credit."
DK: "Oh Bennett! But, I'm sure I'm wrong! I've been wrong all evening."
BC: "It's only $5, take a chance!"
After Miss Straub's profession is told (panel lost), she explains that she does her act while playing either "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" or "I Don't Want To Set The World On Fire" in the background! HAAAA!
GOD BLESS TONY RANDALL:
It's time for the mystery guest. Dorothy asks the first question - and Eva uses a very nasal, very Brooklynish (or Queensish) accent.
TR: "I know your voice, I think I'd better disqualify myself."
JD: "Soooo, Miss Francis."
Arlene and Dorothy protest and want him to stay in the game.
TR: "The last time you asked me to your house for dinner, did you call up and tell me to bring a pound of butter?"
JD: "That'll be all, Mr. Randall! Miss Francis."
DK: "Couldn't we even have the answer to that?"
AF: "Sounds like a beautiful relationship! Uhhh..."
TR: "That was a legitimate question."
AF: "Oh, pardon me! Did you get an answer?"
EMS: "Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't hear the question. Could you repeat it please?"
JD: "What was your question..."
TR: "The last time you..."
JD: (interrupting) "You disqualified yourself, Mr. Randall, I believe..."
EMS: "I'm awfully confused."
JD: "He disqualified himself. (and then jokingly) Please, Mr. Randall, will you keep qui-et?"
Later when it's his turn again...
TR: "Am I, am I here?"
JD: "Mr. Randall, did you disqualify yourself?"
TR: "I thought I did, but I thought you disqualified my disqualification!"
JD: "Let me review this whole business....NO, I didn't. Miss Francis."
FANTASTIC episode! - fiveninegal (2003)
The lovely Eva Marie Saint was in town filming Alfred Hitchcock's "North By Northwest." - Suzanne (2003)
Tony Randall announced that Arlene Francis will grace the Broadway stage this upcoming season in the play "Once More, With Feeling" with co-star Joseph Cotten. The play will open on October 21, 1958 and close on June 6, 1959, for a total of 263 performances. - Suzanne (2003)
Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Tony Randall, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf.
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