GOOF ALERT: Before the first commercial, John flubs his transitory line thus: "We'll also have a famous mystery guest before my friends on the channel a little - er, panel, rather, a little bit later in the program..." - W-B
REVIEW: As the old saying goes, all good things must come to an end. Tonight, the panel's string of great performances came to a screeching halt as they went a miserable 1 for 3 this evening. In fact, if it weren't for the "Bitter and Twisted" guest panelist Terry-Thomas, the panel probably would have been shut out. In the first game, the panel was absolutely stumped by the lady who made blankets for horses and elephants. She also took time to promote the annual parade in Milwaukee where her blankets would be worn by the animals. In the second game, the panel was again fooled, this time by the winner of the Supermarket Checker of Year award for 1964. The panel's downfall came when they got lead down the garden path by John as they questioned the guest about food, thinking that she had something to do with the restaurant industry. After the game, she talked about the various prizes she won for winning the award, including a trip to Hawaii as well as a mink stole. In the mystery guest round, Terry-Thomas saved the panel's bacon when he correctly identified former guest panelist Jack Lemmon. Jack was in town for two reasons. His main reason was to promote the film "Good Neighbor Sam," which had just been released. His second reason for being in town was to start location shooting for the film "How to Murder Your Wife," which also featured Terry-Thomas. They then joked about how Jack tried to keep everything secret from him by continuing to play pool as Terry-Thomas asked him about his upcoming appearance on WML. That definitely helped to ease the pain of tonight's dreadful game performance. - Sargebri (2006)
TERRY-THOMAS: During the closing chat, Arlene asked guest panelist Terry-Thomas what his first name was. She knew something that some people didn't - that his first name wasn't Terry and his last name wasn't Thomas. She knew that his name was correctly spelled Terry-Thomas, with a hyphen. Terry-Thomas was his stage name, but his birth name was also hyphenated. Terry-Thomas was born Thomas Terry Hoar-Stevens. Terry-Thomas told Arlene to pick any old name to "fill in the gap" - a sneaky reference to the gap between his front teeth, which he was quite capable of using for comic effect in his movies. - Lee McIntyre
MISSING NAME PLAQUE THEORY? In reference to the blank name plaques on this episode, an explanation may revolve around guest panelist Terry-Thomas' name. Most people thought "Terry" was his first name and "Thomas" was his last name. It is possible that the WML staff had prepared the name plaque as "MR. THOMAS." Then, when Terry-Thomas arrived at the stage and noticed the error, he may have requested that it be corrected. Of course, there was no time to produce a new plaque and the only thing they could do was cover up or remove all of them. - John Holcombe (2006)
(1) "LIVE" WATCH: Tonight's live broadcast once again has the word "live" cut out of the intro on the kinescope recording - the ninth known episode where this has happened.
(2) ATROCIOUS RIDDLE ALERT: For the second time in five weeks, Bennett proves he's just as bad in the riddles department as he is with puns, with this "conundrum" he tried to attribute to John (who denied having said it):
"What's red and has bumps on it and lives on the prairie?"
"The Lone Raspberry."
Not surprisingly, this brought expressions of exasperation from his fellow panelists.
(3) During the end credits, announcer Johnny Olson does a PSA for the Mental Health Association. - W-B
Terry-Thomas certainly showed us why he was considered to be one of the wittiest comics ever. His "Oh so British" sense of humor made him one of the favorites in entertainment. At one point, he makes everybody laugh when he says that he is "bitter and twisted" that he got a "no." The segment with the checker of the year was probably one of the funniest segments overall, but it was Jack Lemmon's game that provided some of the funniest individual moments. During the post game chat, Lemmon revealed that he and Terry-Thomas had been playing billiards together the night before! Lemmon said that Thomas kept asking him about the show, in hopes of getting good advice about how to be a panelist. Lemmon said he did all he could to keep from revealing that he was going to be the mystery guest that night. Ironically, it was Terry-Thomas who guessed Lemmon's identity. And when he did, he seemed truly amazed that it was indeed Lemmon. - Sargebri (2004)
Jack Lemmon promoted his 1964 film, "Good Neighbor Sam." References were also make to his NY location shot filming on 1965's "How to Murder Your Wife," which also stars guest panelist Terry-Thomas. - Suzanne
Oversight? The white lettering on the name plaques is missing, including Mr. Daly's. We see dark plaques, but they are all blank, with no names. This is not the first time this has happened. - Suzanne
Terry-Thomas (7/14/1911 - 1/8/1990)
Panel: Arlene Francis, Terry-Thomas, Dorothy Kilgallen, Bennett Cerf.
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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