What's My Line?

Season 15 Episode 26


Aired Daily 12:00 AM Feb 23, 1964 on CBS



  • Trivia

    • ZIEGFELD THEATRE TRIVIA: Arlene mentions that Bert Lahr is appearing in "Foxy" at the Ziegfeld Theatre. This theatre was built in 1927 and despite its name, the "Ziegfeld Follies" were never presented there. After a few years, the theatre became a "Loews" movie house and then a TV studio before becoming a legitimate theatre again around 1960. The theatre was closed and demolished in 1966. A "Ziegfeld" movie theatre now stands down the block from the original. Ironically, as of 2006, this theatre is currently the largest movie theatre in Manhattan. - ymike673

  • Quotes

  • Notes

    • REVIEW: This was another great performance by the panel as they went an excellent 3 for 4 this evening. It also was Bennett's final appearance on the show for three weeks as he would be leaving for a vacation which would take him to Brazil, Venezuela and Puerto Rico. Unfortunately, things didn't go too well in the first game as the panel was stumped by the elevator operator/guide who worked at the Washington Monument. Things got better in the second game as Dolly Mae correctly guessed that the young lady from Missouri was a beer tester. In the mystery guest round, Burt Lahr tried very hard to disguise his distinguishable voice, but the panel was on to him almost from the beginning. It was only a matter of time before he was correctly identified, and those honors went to Bennett. Burt was on the show to promote the musical "Foxy," which had opened a few days earlier to rave reviews. Arlene had seen the play also, and chimed in with her accolades. In the final game, Bennett was given credit for correctly guessing that the contestant was the head of the marriage license bureau. Bennett's performance this evening was a great way for him to go out in style. - Sargebri

    • During the mystery guest round, Dorothy asked Burt Lahr if he had ever been on the WML panel, to which he answered "no." Only one of the four who made that magical trip down the yellow brick road ever appeared on the CBS WML panel and that person was Ray Bolger. Three of the four appeared as mystery guests: Burt Lahr (The Cowardly Lion), Ray Bolger (The Scarecrow) and Judy Garland (Dorothy Gale). Jack Haley (The Tin Man) never made an appearance as either a panelist or a mystery guest. - Sargebri

    • There was an unusually large amount of time left in the program after the final contestant's occupation was ascertained, around four to five minutes. Often with a final contestant, there would only be enough time left to quickly identify his or her line (after a flip of the cards) followed by John signing off for the entire panel. In this case, there was plenty of time to discuss in the ins-and-outs of Mr. Thomas Lenane's occupation as the head of New York City's Marriage License Bureau. Usually, GSN simply cuts out the section of the show where John tells the public how to write in to become a contestant. On this episode, during the time that John would have been giving out the address of CBS, GSN instead airs a black-and-white promo for the GSN website. - agent_0042

    • FLIP REPORT: John flipped all the cards for the final contestant at two down, even though Bennett had correctly guessed the occupation. - agent_0042

    • BENNETT CERF'S CLOUDY CRYSTAL BALL: During the goodbyes at the end of this broadcast, Bennett Cerf said, "I want to predict you're going to see Lindsay in the governor's chair up at Albany one of these days. Remember what I said." At the time, John Lindsay was, as described by the New York Times, "the debonair political irregular who represented Manhattan's Silk Stocking district on the East Side for seven years in Congress."

      Lindsay never made it to the state governor's office up in the New York State capital of Albany, NY, but the year after this broadcast, Lindsay successfully ran for mayor as a Republican in a three-way race, defeating the Democratic candidate Abe Beame, then City Comptroller, and National Review founder William F. Buckley, Jr., who ran on the Conservative line. Lindsay served two terms as mayor of New York City during the racial unrest, antiwar protests, municipal strikes and other upheavals of the 1960's and early 1970's. Lindsay left office in 1973 an unpopular mayor, choosing not to seek re-election. - Lee McIntyre

      Read more about the trials and travails of John Lindsay at Wikipedia:


      BENNETT PREDICTS: During the good nights, Bennett made a prediction that guest panelist John V. Lindsay would one day become Governor of New York State. History would prove Mr. Cerf wrong on that score, as within two years of tonight's show, Mr. Lindsay began the first of two terms as Mayor of the City of New York. While Bennett did make some on-air predictions that came true, such as for baseball team wins, his prediction of what office Lindsay would later occupy was somewhat off the mark. Nelson Rockefeller remained N.Y. State Governor up to near the end of Lindsay's mayoralty. - W-B

    • (1) JOHN VLIET LINDSAY: At the time of tonight's "WML?" episode, guest panelist John V. Lindsay (1921-2000) was a U.S. Congressman for the 17th Congressional District of New York, aka the "Silk Stocking" district, which he served from 1959 through 1965. On the panel desk, his nameplate read as "REP. LINDSAY." During the introductions, it transpired that all three regular panelists were his constituents.

      Mr. Lindsay then served as Mayor of New York City for two tumultuous terms, from 1966 to 1973. His run as mayor was marked by major strikes by transit workers, garbagemen and school teachers, and decentralization of the city's school system, among other events. He originally ran for Mayor in 1965 as a Republican, then ran for re-election in 1969 on the Liberal ticket. A few years later, he switched his party affiliation to Democrat.

      After the last of his two terms as Mayor ended, Mr. Lindsay was a contributor to the ill-fated 1975 ABC-TV morning show "AM America," a precursor to "Good Morning America." Dorothy's opening comment of "He's really a movie star" notwithstanding, his only movie acting role was in the 1975 movie "Rosebud," in which he played "Senator Donnovan." The film, directed by Otto Preminger who had been a "WML?" guest panelist on EPISODE #542 of December 11, 1960, also starred Peter O'Toole as "Larry Martin," and in the role of Lindsay's daughter, a young actress named Kim Cattrall who would go on to greater fame as "Samantha Jones" in the HBO series "Sex and the City" which ran from 1998 to 2004.
      (2) "LIVE" WATCH: Tonight's live broadcast was the second known kinescope copy (after EPISODE #696 of January 19, 1964) to have the word "live" edited out of the opening, thus Johnny Olson's intro comes across as "And now...[click] from New York..." The reasons for this edit are explained in the notes to EPISODE #696 and the notes to EPISODE #697 of January 26, 1964. - W-B (2006)

    • Bert Lahr promoted his appearance in the 1964 Broadway play "Foxy." Performed at the Ziegfeld Theatre, this musical comedy ran for 72 total performances. His co-star is Larry Blyden, who would later host the syndicated version of What's My Line? from 1972 until his untimely death in 1975. - Suzanne

    • BEER JINGLE JOKE: After it was mentioned that the second contestant was a beer tester for Falstaff Beer, Arlene jokingly said that Falstaff was the beer you wanted if you were NOT having more than one. Arlene's comment was a joke on the advertising jingle for a competitive beer, Schaeffer Beer (brewed by the F & M Schaefer Brewing Co. in Brooklyn, NY) which advertised itself as, "The one beer to have, when you're having more than one." - Matt Ottinger & Suzanne Astorino

      By coincidence, "WML?" EPISODE #583 of October 1, 1961 featured contestant Paul Gordon, a "Beer Tester" for Schaeffer's Beer. To see the entire Schaefer Beer advertising jingle that Arlene spoofed, see EPISODE #583. - Suzanne Astorino

      Tonight's show was not the only time a beer tester appeared as a contestant on an episode where a sitting Congressman was a guest panelist. On EPISODE #450 of February 1, 1959, which featured among the panel Rep. James Roosevelt (D.-Calif., 26th Congressional District), the fourth and final contestant was John E. Eberle, a beer tester for Piel Brothers Brewing Co. - W-B

    • John Lindsay (11/24/1921 - 12/19/2000)

      Panel: Arlene Francis, Congressman John Lindsay, Dorothy Kilgallen, Bennett Cerf.

  • Allusions

    • Click "All Episode Notes" to see all the notes, as they don't all show up on the summary overview page.

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