What's My Line?

Season 10 Episode 20


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Jan 18, 1959 on CBS
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Episode Summary


Game 1: Louis Morisset (4/21/1915 - 12/6/1968) - "The M.C. of 'What's My Line?' in Canada" (salaried; Monsieur Morisset is the master of ceremonies or moderator of the French-speaking Canadian version of What's My Line?, and John says the name of the show in French is "Chacun son Métier"; John lets Morisset flip all the cards over at the end of his game; coincidentally, Louis and John slightly resemble each other; the French Canadian version was broadcast in Canada from 1954 to 1959; from Montréal, Canada; earlier, on EPISODE #242 of January 23, 1955, a panelist on the French Canadian version, Nicole Germain, appeared as a contestant and also as a guest panelist for Game 2 only)

Game 2: Mrs. Irene Cullinan (b.1894 - d.1960) "Night Watchman (For the Merchants of Newton, Kansas)" (salaried; she is 64 years old, wears a badge, carries a '38 caliber revolver and has sent approximately 100 people to jail over the years; she has never used her gun, but says she is not afraid to if needed; she has been known as The Merchant Police for 24 and one-half years, and this is her first night off; to help out, the merchants are taking turns watching her beat and minding the stores while Mrs. Cullinan appears on WML; from Newton, Kansas)

Game 3: Richard Boone (6/18/1917 - 1/10/1981) (as Mystery Guest) He is dressed in a cowboy outfit for his 1957-1963 television series "Have Gun - Will Travel," in which he plays the character "Paladin."


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 first game, John let Louis Morisset, who held John's job on the Canadian version of the show, flip all of the cards when Arlene guessed him without a single "no" answer, saying he wanted to see how Louis's muscle was. In the night's second game, John flipped the sole remaining card for the second contestant at nine down. Arlene guessed this contestant's line, but it was Bennett who had given her the suggestion. - agent_0042 (2009)

    • (1) "WML?" SPONSOR AND PANEL WATCH: Tonight, the primary sponsor is "Canned Grapefruit Juice from Florida." And of Van Heflin's three "WML?" appearances, this was the only time that Arlene's former co-star of the old radio soap opera "Betty and Bob" was a guest panelist.
      (2) "HAVE CHALK - WILL TRAVEL": This evening was the first of a total of seven appearances by Richard Boone on "WML?" between now and EPISODE #677 of August 18, 1963. Like Art Linkletter, Mr. Boone's first and last appearances were as a mystery guest, and all his other appearances were as a guest panelist; in addition, for his debut appearance tonight, Richard joined the ranks of such other mystery guests as Art Carney, Jackie Gleason and Phil Silvers, by appearing in the costume he wore as "Paladin" on "Have Gun - Will Travel." In the post-game chat, John made the first of a few frequent mentions of their time together on the short-lived 1949-1950 TV series adaptation of "The Front Page" on which Mr. Daly played newspaper editor "Walter Burns" and Mr. Boone was one of the reporters. John brought up the show again in the opening moments of EPISODE #596 of January 7, 1962, during one of Richard's five guest panelist appearances.
      (3) RICHARD BOONE - PART II: The actor also lent his voice to (and co-wrote) a song called "The Guns of Rio Muerto," which was issued in 1958 on Columbia single #4-41260. Mr. Boone was the narrator, and country singer Johnny Western sang the chorus. "The Guns of Rio Muerto" was the B-side of Mr. Western's "The Ballad of Paladin," which was the theme song to "Have Gun - Will Travel."
      (4) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: Following the United Airlines travel arrangements plug, the complete production crew credits are once again shown; however, as usual, GSN continued to rain on the proverbial parade with their pushy and insistent "crunching" of the screen on the January 31, 2009 airing of this episode.
      (5) Following the January 31, 2009 airing of tonight's show, GSN ran the "April Fools Day" April 1, 1958 edition of "To Tell the Truth," with host Bud Collyer and the panel this week comprised of Polly Bergen, John Cameron Swayze, Celeste Holm and Hy Gardner. The first game featured Robert J. George (a professional "Santa Claus" who made numerous appearances at the White House as the man in the white beard and red suit) and two impostors (one of whom was Columbia Records A&R chief -- and therefore, Miss Bergen's boss in her recording endeavors -- Mitch Miller); the second game featured rowing champion Jack Kelly, Jr., and two impostors; and the third game featured Dr. Doris White (she has a PhD title and she was the only licensed woman poultry show judge in America at the time) and two impostors. - W-B (2009)

    • WHAT'S MY LINE? IN CANADA: The title of the French-Canadian version, "Chacun son Métier," translates to "To Each His Job" or "To Each His Trade." We wouldn't phrase it that way in English, but it's the same principle behind the common phrase "to each his own." In French, the full phrase is either "à chacun son métier" or "chacun à son métier," but the program was simply called "Chacun son Métier." M. Morisset was a charming guest, and it was a shame that he was guessed so abruptly. - Dan Albertson (2005) WAY TO GO, ARLENE!!! The week after next, Bennett will be on vacation, and John was humorously counting the days until Bennett was gone. Tonight, however, belonged to the Queen of Mount Kisco, Arlene, who was brilliant this evening by practically pulling off a one-woman perfecto. In the first game, Arlene started off her onslaught by doing a solo in correctly figuring out that Louis Morisset was the host or emcee of the French Canadian version of WML which originated from Montreal, Canada. After the game, John and Louis compared notes on how both shows were received. In a humorous moment, Bennett asked Louis to recite one of John's long-winded explanations in French. After he did as Bennett asked, Bennett proclaimed that Louis was much easier to understand! Everybody howled! John also jokingly scolded the panel for guessing Morisset so fast. In the second game, Arlene, with a huge assist from Bennett, made the last-second save as she correctly guessed that the 64 year old lady from Kansas was a night watchman - or in her case - watchwoman. The real highlight of the evening was when mystery guest Richard Boone, dressed in his black "Paladin" costume, walked out onto the stage. Arlene correctly guessed him as well, especially after it was determined that he was in New York to act in a play. Arlene essentially had him nailed due to the fact that in a few weeks, Boone would be working with Arlene's husband, Martin Gabel, in the play "The Rivalry," which was about the Lincoln/Douglas debates. Of course, Boone not only promoted the play, but he also discussed his hugely poplar 1957 to 1963 TV program "Have Gun - Will Travel." Also, John and Boone strolled down memory lane talking about their work together on the 1949 to 1950 TV series "The Front Page." It was a good evening and a fun show - this night that definitely belonged to Arlene. - Sargebri (2005) WESTERNS GALORE: As was mentioned during the mystery guest round, "Have Gun - Will Travel" was just one of many western shows on television that year. In fact, during the 1958/1959 season, no fewer than twenty westerns premiered that year! Of course, the most successful one was "Gunsmoke." Also, the next season, no fewer than twenty-one westerns were on the schedules of the three major networks, including a very unique one titled "Bonanza." That show would go on to become a classic, but what made it so unique was that it was the first one that was filmed in color. However, this was more than just a new way of shooting westerns, it also was a marketing ploy by NBC'S parent company, RCA, as a way of enticing the public to purchase their new color television sets. - Sargebri (2005) MYSTERY GIFT: As Richard Boone left the moderator's desk after his game, he stopped in mid-stride while walking toward the panel, turned around and walked back toward John. Boone then handed something small to John. We see John look at it, perhaps slightly puzzled, then we see Boone shake hands with the panel and exit. No further reference is made to the item Boone handed to John. It was a ceramic replica of the Paladin calling card, bearing the words, "Have Gun, Will Travel." This slogan, and the accompanying card, were wildly successful trademarks of the series, but John, perhaps sharing Bennett's "confusion" among all the Westerns, apparently didn't recognize the significance of the card, or he surely would have commented on it. - Lee McIntyre (2005) PALADIN: In a sense, "Have Gun - Will Travel" was the "What's My Line?" of the TV Westerns of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Paladin was a refined character - if there had been a WML for hired guns in the old West, he'd have been a great panelist. His wardrobe (when he was in San Francisco, at least) was snappy. He could quote Shakespeare and had all sorts of charisma. He lived, ate, drank and played cards at a posh hotel. Compared to the working-class heroes of other TV Westerns, Paladin certainly had that "elan" that people always attribute to WML when comparing it to other panel or game shows. - Bill Savage (2005)

    • GREAT EPISODE! Jolly good all around!
      Arlene guessed Mr. Morisset's line after only 4 or 5 questions! She laughed and explained, "It takes one to know one!" Bennett asked him to recite one of John's long-winded answers in French, which he was more than happy to do. Afterwards, Bennett jokes and says, "Much easier to understand than Daly!" HA! Of course Mr. Cerf couldn't let LM get away without a pun! Are you ready? Okay, here goes. "You've heard of that popular song, I'm a dreamer...Montreal?" Audience groaned and everyone on the panel hung their heads at that one! Mr. Morisset was a kick! He handed out very gracious compliments to everyone on the panel and seemed genuinely thrilled to be appearing on the American version of "his" show.
      Mrs. Cullinan was ADORABLE! Aside from a couple outright laughs, she kept the same solemn expression throughout her questioning. We did get to see her laugh at this:
      DK: "Do you do your guarding, or whatever it is, out of doors more than indoors?" (yes) "Is it outside of a building rather than just at random." (She then smiles and looks over at BC) "Excuse me, Bennett!" John jumps in and teases "I'm sorry, but Mrs. Cullinan is from Newton, Kansas." (LONG pause as he is waiting for someone to get his joke, but nobody does) Dorothy asks quite seriously, "There are no buildings there?" John throws his hands up and laughs "Well, I dropped that one alright! Random's in Texas." Audience groans and Dorothy blushes at not getting his joke (and is perhaps a bit annoyed). Arlene says "Ohhhh, Bennett's influence" to which Dorothy agrees, "YES. It's catching!" Overall, it was a very funny moment, but I don't think DK appreciated JD's humor. Which, of course, is what makes this show so darn entertaining! OH, an interesting note: this was the first night off of work that Irene Cullinan has ever had!
      The funniest part of the evening occurred during the questioning of Richard Boone! Arlene cracked everyone up with her question, "Are you associated with a horse?" The more she tried to explain what she meant, the funnier and loopier it got! John asks, "Do you want to quit now and just take a 'no'?" to which Arlene replies, "I wish I were home with my first contestant." She quickly realizes what she just said and exclaimed "NOOO!! I don't mean that!" and covers her mouth with her hands. So Funny!
      Next up is Bennett, who thinks he has it: "Does the word 'gun' appear in the title of your show?" (yes) "Is it Jim Arness?" (no) Dorothy's turn, she asks, "IS your name Jim or James?" (no) Okay, Van MUST know, and asks, "Could it be Hugh O'Brian?" (no, poor Richard!) Back to Arlene, she aks, "Well, I HAVE to guess it because I think he's here to do a play with my husband. Is it Richard Boone?" (YES! HOORAY, success!) RB was indeed promoting his upcoming Broadway play, "The Rivalry," in which he will co-star (as Abraham Lincoln) with Martin Gabel. The show ran for 81 performances at the Bijou Theatre, from February 7, 1959 to April 18, 1959.
      During the farewells, Dorothy says "Good night Mr. Daly, next week I'll phone it in." Even if that phrase meant the same thing back THEN as it does today, I'm still confused! It must have referred to something that was cut out by GSN, such as the part when Mr. Daly tells them how to write in if they want to be a contestant. One thing is for sure, we'll never know! - fiveninegal (2003)

    • Van Heflin (12/13/1908 - 7/23/1971)

      Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Van Heflin, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf.