(1) "WML?" SPONSOR WATCH: Tonight's opening sponsor is S.C. Johnson's Bravo floor wax, while a surprising newcomer, Coca-Cola brand soft drink, is the closing sponsor.
(2) "LIVE" WATCH: This is the 47th surviving kinescope of a live telecast from within the post-Kilgallen era to maintain the original "live" wording on the intro from announcer Johnny Olson.
(3) "WML?" PANEL WATCH: Tonight's episode is the 11th time in the post-Kilgallen era that Phyllis Newman was introduced first. She mentions that starting tomorrow (May 29, 1967), Robert Q. Lewis will begin subbing on "To Tell the Truth" for regular host Bud Collyer. Miss Newman is, in fact, referring to the daytime "TTTT," as the final nighttime episode aired the prior week on May 22, 1967. Both the nighttime "TTTT" and the evening version of "Password" left the CBS airwaves that same night. ("I've Got a Secret" had aired its final episode on April 3, 1967.) This leaves only "WML?" on the CBS prime-time schedule -- and more than four months from now, this show will be gone, too.
(4) "SO LONG, OLD FRIEND": This was the final appearance of Robert Q. Lewis on the CBS "WML?" panel. In all, Robert Q. Lewis made 43 appearances on the show during its long CBS run: 42 as a guest panelist and one as a mystery guest. His debut appearance had been on EPISODE #62 of August 5, 1951. "Q-sie" would make one more set of appearances on the 1968-1975 syndicated version, during Week #83 which was taped on April 30, 1970. Mr. Lewis appeared on the syndicated panel alongside Soupy Sales, Meredith MacRae and Arlene Francis in that week's worth of shows which was hosted by Wally Bruner. During the week in question, one of the mystery guests was a longtime "WML?" favorite from CBS days, Tony Randall, who was then just a few months away from landing the role of neatnik "Felix Unger" in the 1970-1975 TV version of Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple." This would also prove to be Mr. Randall's only appearance on the syndicated "WML?"
(5) MYSTERY GUEST - PART I: Though his popular 1955-1971 show ran on ABC, "champagne music" bandleader Lawrence Welk was another of the many victims of the infamous "rural purge" of 1970-1971 which also saw many favorite shows that skewed towards an "older" audience (such as his) getting the hook. Mr. Welk, who saw his biggest chart success with "Calcutta" back in 1961, then went into syndication with new episodes, remaining on the air until 1982. "The Lawrence Welk Show" was one of two "rural purge" casualties that saw greater success in syndication, the other being the comedy/variety/country music showcase series "Hee Haw" which ran on CBS from 1969 to 1971, and would remain in syndication through 1992. In some markets, Mr. Welk and "Hee Haw" ran directly opposite each other; in a few others, there were cases of an individual TV station running both shows. In fact, in 1972, "Hee Haw's" co-host, Roy Clark, had a major country hit with a number titled "The Lawrence Welk-Hee Haw Counterrevolutionary Polka."
(6) MYSTERY GUEST - PART II: Lawrence Welk's brand of "champagne music," not to mention his pronounced accent, was for years the butt of many jokes, most notably in 1957 from radio comedian and "guerrilla satirist" Stan Freberg. That year, Stan released a Top 30 single, "Wun'erful, Wun'erful! (Sides uh-one and uh-two)" (Capitol (F)3815), which poked relentless fun at the show, most notably the "bubble machine," which on Mr. Freberg's record went totally haywire. On this release, Mr. Welk's accordion playing was imitated by session musician Billy Liebert; and in the role of "Alice Leen" (a play on the name of Mr. Welk's then-"Champagne Lady," Alice Lon) was Peggy Taylor, a moderately popular nightclub singer of the time who had previously been a resident vocalist on "Don McNeill's Breakfast Club," and who would be a part of Mr. Freberg's highly acclaimed yet short-lived (15-episode) 1957 CBS radio show. By the early 1970's, Miss Taylor moved on to announcing work, and in late March of 1973 she became a staff announcer for NBC, operating out of their West Coast base in "beautiful downtown" Burbank, California, and also handling live booth announcing duties for the network's Los Angeles flagship station, KNBC-TV (Channel 4). She was the first and only full-time female staff announcer to work for the network on either coast, and remained there until about 1989. Miss Taylor died on February 9, 2002 at age 74.
(7) "WML?" CREW CREDITS AND CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: The associate director tonight is Rowland Vance. And once more, GSN took the added step of satisfying its loyal viewers by showing the end credits "uncrunched" and in full screen on February 15, 2008.
(8) Following the February 15, 2008 airing of tonight's "WML?" installment, GSN ran the March 18, 1963 edition of "I've Got a Secret," which this time out originated from "Harrah's Lake Tahoe" casino at South Lake Tahoe, located in Stateline, Nevada. Host Garry Moore introduced this week's panel as Betsy Palmer, former regular Jayne Meadows (filling in for Bess Myerson), Alan King (subbing for Bill Cullen) and Henry Morgan, and the celebrity guest was Carol Burnett. - W-B (2008)