What's My Line?

Season 12 Episode 39


Aired Daily 12:00 AM May 28, 1961 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
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Episode Summary

Game 1: Miss Pamela Praksa - "Trampoline Instructor" (salaried; she works at Bounceland in Hagerstown, Maryland; she is also a school student at North Hagerstown High School; from Hagerstown, MD)

Game 2: Jim Cook - "Tracks Tornadoes in Airplane for U.S. Weather Bureau" (salaried; he works for the Severe Local Storm Forecast Center in Kansas City and performs severe storm research in the Southwest area of the United States; from Dallas, TX)

Game 3: Sophia Loren (b. 9/30/1934) (as Mystery Guest)

Game 4: Andy Paretti - "Buys Turtles" (John said he was salaried; he works for the Bon Vivant Soup Company which he owns; see notes below; from Cedar Grove, NJ) . .moreless

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 (10)

      • This was a fair night for the panel as they batted .500 for the evening. The first game was a "good news - bad news" situation for the panel. The good news was that Bennett figured out that the lovely young high school girl from Maryland was a trampoline instructor. The bad news was that he guessed it out of turn and cost the panel a victory. Bennett later explained that he thought that the panel had already run out of time, so he felt free speak up and guess her line. However, John explained that he would have called off the game on the basis of time had the panel still been far off from the identification of her line, but when Dorothy opened the door, he decided to give them a few more minutes. In the second game, the panel was given credit for guessing that the contestant was a pilot for the weather bureau. In fact, he flew planes over tornadoes for research. In the mystery guest round, Arlene correctly identified Sophia Loren, who was in town to promote the classic World War II drama "Two Women." Of course, the panel knew she was in town and Arlene even mentioned that she hoped that Sophia would appear on the show so they could praise her for her performance. In the final game, the panel ran out of time, so the turtle buyer from New Jersey won the full prize by default. - Sargebri

      • As was mentioned, Sophia Loren was on the show to promote the 1960 film "Two Women" (La Ciociara). During the post game chat, Dorothy had nothing but praise for Loren's performance and called it the best performance of the year. Dorothy wasn't alone in praising her as Loren was awarded the Palm d'Or (Golden Palm) for best actress at the Cannes Film Festival earlier that year. However, a few months later, Sophia would make history as her performance won her the Best Actress Oscar making her win the first foreign-speaking role to win the coveted prize. Unfortunately, she wasn't in Hollywood for the ceremony. Instead, she was at home in Italy with her husband, producer Carlo Ponti. She did, however, stay awake long enough to hear her name called and to see her good friend Cary Grant accept the award in her behalf. - Sargebri

      • FLIP REPORT: Cards were flipping regularly on this episode. They were all flipped at eight down for the first challenger, after Bennett guessed the occupation. John stated that Bennett spoke out of turn. They were also flipped at eight down for the second challenger, though the panel essentially guessed the occupation. Finally, they were all flipped for the final challenger at five down because time was running very short. - agent_0042

      • (1) Dorothy unveils a change in hairstyle with tonight's show, forsaking the "bangs hairdo" with bangs covering much of her forehead that she had worn the past few weeks.
        (2) After two straight shows in which GSN aired, in January 2006, the complete first part of the program with John mentioning the sponsors' names, the network resumed to cutting him off with "...after this word" when this episode was last shown on January 14, 2006. - W-B

      • The future held sadness for the contestant in game 4: The Newark, New Jersey family-owned Bon Vivant Soup Company went bankrupt after Type A botulism in its canned Vichyssoise soup caused the death of Samuel Cochran in 1971. There were also two critically incapacitated victims. Andrew Paretti was a co-owner with Maria Paretti. The case involved 6,444 tainted cans. Bon Vivant was reorganized in November 1972 and began operation as Moore & Co. - Suzanne Astorino

      • The last challenger on the show was Andy Paretti, owner of Bon Vivant Soup Co. It was the source in 1971 of a botulism outbreak. The company's entire production was recalled, and the adverse publicity forced it into bankruptcy. Its resurrection as Moore Foods was short-lived, as it was unable to build a co-pack customer base. Upon hearing the company name, I recognized the tragedy at once. I recall that on "The Tonight Show," Johnny Carson made light of the incident in his "Carnac the Magnificent" routine. The response "Carnac" predicted to a message which was inside an envelope that he held above his turbaned head was "The Last Supper." Upon opening the letter and removing the contents, "Carnac the Magnificent" quoted "What do you get when you have Bon Vivant vichyssoise for dinner?" I wonder if Johnny Carson realized he had met the owner a decade earlier? That incident sparked reforms in the food industry, including some of the first uses of the HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) philosophy, which takes a systematic pro-active approach toward preventing problems in the processing and storage of food products. HACCP programs are now commonplace in the industry, and have been required in USDA inspected facilities since 1997. - George Balsamo, Montgomery, IL

      • Sophia Loren promoted her 1961 film "Two Women." - Suzanne

      • From Suzanne: In a rare instance, GSN did not cut out John's "mail in information" section of WML. At the end of the episode, John states the following:
        "If you'd like to apply to puzzle the panel with your occupation, send a snapshot - one that you can spare - name, occupation, and send this information to:
        What's My Line?
        485 Madison Avenue
        New York, 22, NY"

      • On January 29, 2005, this episode was aired as part of GSN's "Remembering Johnny Carson" tribute marathon, a rare 6-hour daytime broadcast of twelve back-to-back Goodson-Todman shows which all featured Johnny Carson as a guest. Included in the lineup were episodes of "What's My Line?," "To Tell the Truth," "I've Got a Secret" and "Password." The shows honored Mr. Carson, who had passed away on January 23, 2005. - Suzanne

      • Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Johnny Carson, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf.

    • ALLUSIONS (1)