What's My Line?

Season 10 Episode 23


Aired Sunday 10:30 PM Feb 08, 1959 on CBS



  • Trivia

  • Quotes

  • Notes

    • FLIP REPORT: In the night's second game, John flipped the remaining cards for the second contestant at six down. Arlene Francis guessed this contestant's line, probably right at the wire. John hadn't yet said that the panel had only a minute left, but the game ran unusually long. This game provided a lot of amusement and John flipped the cards over while stating that they hadn't had this much fun in a long time. - agent_0042 (2009)

    • (1) STUDIO SET WATCH: Tonight's "WML?" episode introduces a change in appearance to the set, with a new desk for both the panel and John Daly, a new "woven" pattern background which replaces the old curtain background in use since EPISODE #273 of August 28, 1955, and a pattern of "six-sided stars" in the center stage where the panelists and John make their entrance. Coincidentally, this was also the first episode to credit Willard Levitas as set designer.
      (2) "WML?" SPONSOR AND PANEL WATCH: For this first show with a new set, Kellogg's is the chief sponsor. And it was one week and two days from tonight's show, on February 17, 1959, that guest panelist Tom Poston officially joined the panel of "To Tell the Truth," replacing Hy Gardner.
      (3) "WML?" OVERLAY FONT WATCH: The second contestant's overlay of "Dives 40 Feet Into Tank on Horseback" was set in the "last-minute" font, which appears to be making something of a comeback of late. The other contestant's overlay and mystery guest duo Marge and Gower Champion's lower-third overlay (with the "&" -- ampersand -- in a smaller size of type than their names, which were divided into two lines of type) were set in Futura Demi Bold.
      (4) CRYPTIC DOROTHY QUESTION WATCH: Miss Kilgallen started off the questioning of mystery guests Marge and Gower Champion by asking, "Have I been in the same room with you since midnight last night?" (Gower whispered "No.")
      (5) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: Following the United Airlines travel arrangements plug, we are yet again treated to the full production crew credits. Besides tonight's show being the first to credit Willard Levitas who designed the new set, this was also the first episode to credit Charles Reinhard as lighting director; he replaces Hal Anderson in this capacity (though Mr. Anderson would fill in from time to time on the show in later years, up to its final months in 1967). And once again, all the significance was lost on GSN, which made the viewing audience squint to see these important details due to its torturously cruel and inhumane "crunching" of the screen on its February 3, 2009 airing of this episode -- which fell exactly 50 years to the day after what would later be called "The Day the Music Died," when pioneering early rock 'n' roll stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson (aka "The Big Bopper") were killed in a plane crash near Clear Lake, Iowa in the early morning hours of February 3, 1959, after performing at a show in that town.
      (6) BACK TO NORMAL AT TOM POSTON'S FUTURE STOMPING GROUNDS: Right after the February 3, 2009 airing of tonight's show, GSN repeated the April 22, 1958 edition of "To Tell the Truth" -- the first show since the settlement of the two-week technicians' strike against CBS which affected the previous two "TTTT" episodes, "WML?" EPISODE #410 of April 13, 1958, and several other live studio-based shows. The host, as always, was Bud Collyer, and the panel was assembled as Polly Bergen, John Cameron Swayze, Kitty Carlisle and Jim Backus. The first game featured Mr. Jerry Mackey (aka Jerome Mackey; spelling verified; a New York-based judo instructor who held a black belt; he was also a concert pianist) and two impostors; the second game featured retired Air Force Brigadier General Robert L. Scott, Jr. (who had flown with General Claire Chennault's "Flying Tigers" and later wrote a book that became a motion picture, "God Is My Co-Pilot") and two impostors; and the third game featured New York Yankees shortstop Fritz Brickell and two impostors. - W-B (2005, updated 2009)

    • REVIEW: This was a pretty fun night for the panel. Most of the fun was provided by guest panelist Tom Poston, who really seemed to enjoy his appearances on the show. At one humorous point, Tom feigned disgust and actually started walking off the stage in frustration. The camera followed him for a few seconds and we saw a rare shot of one of the CBS cameras. Of course, Tom quickly ended his joke and returned to his seat. In spite of Tom's jokes, it was also a fairly successful night, especially for Mr. and Mrs. Gabel. Unfortunately, things didn't start off so well when the panel failed to correctly identify the personal assistant of the Duchess of Windsor. Things did get better and the fun picked up as the panel tried to figure out what was so special about the diving act that the pretty contestant from Florida performed. However, Arlene, with a little help from the audience, eventually figured out that the contestant dove from 40 feet in the air on back of a horse into about 12 feet of water. However, John (aka General Jack) must have felt sorry for her as he flipped over all the cards. In the mystery guest round, after Dorothy opened the door by determining that the guests were dancers, it was Martin's turn to make a correct guess as he correctly identified the husband and wife dance team of Gower and Marge Champion. And that pretty much ended a pretty fun night. - Sargebri (2005)

      BRITISH ROYALTY SECRETS: The official reason for Edward III's abdication of the British throne was his marriage to divorcée Wallis Warfield Simpson. However, several years later it was speculated that another reason for his abdication might have centered around his political leanings. One rumor that came out several years after his death was that he was a Nazi sympathizer and that because of this, he was asked to step down rather than cause even further embarrassment for the crown. - Sargebri (2005)

      EARLY REDNECK JOKE!!! During the questioning of the Champions, guest panelist Tom Poston asked if they were related and married to each other. When asked why he asked such a question, Tom said, "They do it down home!" - Sargebri (2005)

      1) Guest #2 (answering Tom's "Do you travel in your work?" query): "Sometimes more than I'd like!" LOL!
      2) DK (trying to clarify her "sudden movements" question): "I mean, is there a certain jerk involved?" BIG LAUGH from the crowd as John stands up and jokes, "Let's keep these conflicts on a high plain!" Be sure to catch DK's laugh after that!
      3) TP: "Do you enter the water from out of the water as part of your entertaining performance?" John squints his eyes and repeats the question and then adds, "If she can find another way to enter the water than from OUT of the water, it'll be the biggest entertainment we ever saw, Tom!" Not to be outdone, Mr. Poston replies, "You let the little lady answer these questions! I don't know if my question now makes any sense. You just distorted it...out of all...reason, John!" And, of course, not to be outdone by Tom, JD retorts, "You remind me of the man who stood in the middle of the road with a rope. He said you had him so confused, he didn't know whether he had lost a mule or found a rope, but go on." At that point, Tom says he's going to leave, and actually stands up and starts to walk out! VERY funny!
      4) When Arlene's turn comes up again, she asks a list of clarifying questions. As an apparant last resort, she finally asks, "Do you have anything to do on horseback? Do you dive?" A couple of audience members applaud and Arlene abruptly stops and gives one of those priceless "stunned" expressions. She is literally dumbfounded! It was hilarious!
      1) First of all, I would like to present the award for Best "Let Me Share My Personal Life With You" question to Miss Dorothy Kilgallen for asking, "Uhh, have I been in the same room with you since midnight last night?" (Hmmm......)
      2) AF: "...you are related in some way, we found that out already?" (yes) "Would it be a deeply emotional relationship such as marriage?"
      MC: "Yes"
      JD: "Mr. Poston."
      TP: "Then I assume that you're not blood kin." BIG LAUGH! "It happens down home!" BIGGER LAUGH! I love it when Tom is a guest panelist!
      Great episode! - fiveninegal (2003)

    • It was very interesting and historic to see the secretary to the Duchess of Windsor. The Duchess of Windsor was the American-born Wallis Simpson (06/19/1896 to 04/24/1986). When King Edward VIII of Great Britain insisted on marrying her, he was forced to abdicate the throne. This was due to the fact that Mrs. Simpson was a divorced woman. After the abdication, he became the Duke of Windsor. Although she took the title of Duchess of Windsor, she would not be given the title of Her Royal Highness. They were shunned by the Royal family members. Exiled, she and Edward lived mainly in France and became prominent in international social circles. She was not officially invited back to Britain until 1967. She attended Edward's funeral in England in 1972, and was buried next to him at her death. - Suzanne (2003)

      Panel: Arlene Francis, Tom Poston, Dorothy Kilgallen, Martin Gabel. Bennett Cerf is still on vacation in both Miami, Florida (Fountainbleu Hotel) and Jamaica (Round Hill Golf Course). Both establishments still exist today in 2005.

  • Allusions