What's My Line?

Season 11 Episode 1


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Sep 06, 1959 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
2 votes

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Episode Summary


Game 1: Mr. I. W. Hardin aka Wayne Hardin (b. 3/23/1926) - "Head Football Coach for U.S. Naval Academy" (salaried; 32 years old; born in Arkansas, currently living in California; John awarded the win to the panel just as he was flipping the final card over at $45 down)

Game 2: Miss Dorothy M. Fraser - "Sells Submachine Guns, Pistols, Rifles & Shotguns" (salaried; she is the Sales Manager for Harrington and Richardson, Inc., which John described as being one of the country's oldest gun companies; from Worcester, Massachusetts; after Dorothy Kilgallen unilaterally discovered the guest's product, Martin Gabel guessed her exact line at $20 down)

Game 3: Esther Williams (8/8/1921 - 6/6/2013) (as Mystery Guest) Bennett Cerf guessed her identity at $20 down.


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 (1)

      • (Martin Gabel questions the night's first contestant, zeroing in on the contestant's military connection...)

        Martin Gabel: Does the work that you do have anything to do with any of the equipment for the, uh, any of the armed forces of the United States?
        John Daly: By which-- by, you're now of, of military hardware, I take it, Martin?
        Martin Gabel: Or clothing, or anything.
        John Daly: I mean the production, sale, distribution thereof, that sort of thing.
        Martin Gabel: Uh... John, history teaches us not to take your leads.

    • NOTES (5)

      • FLIP REPORT: Tonight, John did not increase any dollar amounts won by flipping cards for any of the contestants. - agent_0042 (2009)

      • (1) "WML?" SPONSOR AND ANNOUNCER WATCH: The primary sponsor tonight is Kellogg's, and the "award-winning panel of 'What's My Line?'" variation of the intro is used for this edition by announcer Hal Simms. Also, it is apparent that the ending words of Dorothy's intro have settled into "...in papers coast to coast" which, with a few exceptions, will largely hold in place until the "Voice of Broadway" columnist's tragic death in 1965.
        (2) ESTHER WILLIAMS: The aquatic actress' fourth and final "WML?" appearance was one that went out with a bang, as evidenced by her bold act of briefly sitting on Bennett's lap as she was exiting the stage. (These shenanigans were brought about in response to Dorothy's very cryptic and rather bizarre question during the mystery guest round about whether she had ever sat on Bennett's lap.) John's reference to Miss Williams as a "young lady" was somewhat odd, given that at the time of this "WML?" episode, she was 38 years old; that, plus having been in movies since the early 1940's.
        (3) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH AND ROGUE CAPTIONS WATCH: After the United Airlines travel arrangements plug, the complete production crew credits were once again shown. In contrast to the imperturbable "WML?" panel, however, GSN's "crunching" of the screen on its March 4, 2009 airing of this episode left its viewing audience very much perturbed. As if that perturbation wasn't enough, it was the second night in a row when it came to technical goofs from GSN. This time, it came in the form of a rogue closed-captioning feed for an episode of "Match Game '75" which was shown pretty much throughout the entire broadcast.
        (4) The March 4, 2009 airing of tonight's show by GSN was followed by the May 26, 1959 edition of "To Tell the Truth," hosted by Bud Collyer. This show marked the return to the panel of Polly Bergen after an absence of four shows (half of which were not shown by GSN due to its self-appointed ban on vintage cigarette advertising); she rejoined fellow "cross-examining" panelists Ralph Bellamy, Kitty Carlisle and Tom Poston. The first game featured Zack Mosley (airplane pilot and creator of the "Smilin' Jack" comic strip) and two impostors; the second game featured Alberta Jones (a skin-diver who had recently set an endurance record by staying underwater for over 50 hours via the use of an aqualung) and two impostors; and the third game featured Don Rose (head crew coach of the Columbia University rowing team; he was previously a contestant on "WML?" EPISODE #412 of April 27, 1958) and two impostors. - W-B (2009)

      • LOUIS NYE TRIBUTE: This episode of "WML?" was last shown on GSN on September 2, 2003. For what should have been its next normal rotation airing on October 16, 2005, it was skipped. The regular "Black and White Overnight" programming was preempted, including the Bud Collyer hosted "Beat the Clock" and this "What's My Line?" episode. Instead, shown was a special 1-hour tribute to comic actor Louis Nye, who had passed away on October 10, 2005 at age 92.

        GSN aired a Steve Allen hosted episode of "I've Got a Secret" from November 23, 1964. Although GSN billed the episode as a "color episode," it was shown in black and white, since it was only saved on kinescope in that format. On this 1964 "IGAS," Mr. Nye was the guest celebrity. His secret was that he was going to cook a Thanksgiving dinner, an entire table of food, in a mere 10 minutes. He cooked muffins, a small turkey, potatoes and more. He achieved his goal by the use of a microwave oven, which was quite revolutionary in those days. The panel consisted of Bess Myerson, Betsy Palmer, Bill Cullen and Henry Morgan.

        The next program shown in the tribute was a 1972 color episode of "Beat the Clock" hosted by Jack Narz. Mr. Nye was the celebrity guest competing in the games along with two "brother/sister" teams. - Suzanne (2005)

      • WELCOME TO WML SEASON ELEVEN! the panel was certainly in top form!
        During questioning of Mr. Hardin:
        DK: "Do you work for the Federal Government? (no)
        John calls a quick conference, and the guest changes his negative reply to a "yes." Dorothy, of course, does not let this go by unnoticed.
        DK: "I think we're in bad shape if you don't know!"
        And a little later:
        DK: "John, could we please have from our distinguished guest a further description of the "flimsy" attire that he wears?" (What a gleam she had in her eye!)
        Bennett had just asked Miss Fraser if her product would be found in one room of the house.
        JD: "It is not within our competence, frankly, to judge on a broad basis that it is either kept in one place in most homes or another."
        BC: "It is not within your competence?"
        JD: "No, because we wouldn't know and you'll understand when the issue..."
        BC: (cutting him off) "That's the first time you've ever admitted there was something that you didn't know."
        JD: "Well, there always has to be a first if you're going to be imperturbable and coherent." (Just for the record, that was the second or third time the word "imperturbable" was used this evening. John's not letting Bennett off the hook very easily!)
        DK: "This may seem like an odd question, but I want to rule someone out. Have you ever sat in Bennett Cerf's lap?"
        BC: "WHAAAAT?!?"
        EW: "Mr. Lil' Ol' Bennett Cerf ain't never asked me."
        AF: "I just want to know who you ruled out, Dorothy!"
        DK: "It's all right. His wife was in the room, too."
        Of course, as Esther Williams exited, she could not resist sitting in Bennett's lap!
        JD: (to home audience) "As you can see, television is an exciting and demanding business."
        And later, during the good nights:
        DK: "Good night, John. Good night, Martin. And Bennett, I think you owe me a lunch!"
        AF: (to BC) "I think you owe your WIFE a lunch!" - fiveninegal (2003)

      • Panel: Arlene Francis, Martin Gabel, Dorothy Kilgallen, Bennett Cerf.

    • ALLUSIONS (0)