Manage episode 236711239 series 9607
The Secret Word Is 'Spoon' (Aired January 18, 1950)
Contestant teams usually consisted of one male and one female, most selected from the studio audience. Occasionally famous or otherwise interesting figures were invited to play (i.e., a Korean-American contestant who was a veteran and had been a prisoner of war during the Korean War). After his signature introduction of "Here he is: the one, the ONLY..." by Fenneman and finished by a thunderous "GROUCHO!" from the audience, Marx would be introduced to the music of "Hooray for Captain Spaulding", his signature song. Some show tension revolved around whether a contestant would say the "secret word", a common word revealed to the audience at the show's outset. If a contestant said the word, a toy duck resembling Groucho with a mustache and eyeglasses, and with a cigar in its bill, descended from the ceiling to bring a $100 bill. A cartoon of a duck with a cigar was also used in opening title sequence. . Each couple was staked with $20 and were asked four questions, wagering part or all of their bankroll for each question. The scoring format was later changed to a starting bankroll of $100 and couples selecting question values from $10 to $100. A correct answer added the value of the question to their bankroll and an incorrect answer cut their bankroll to that point in half. According to co-director Robert Dwan in his book, As Long As They're Laughing, Guedel changed the scoring format because too many couples were betting—and losing—all their money.
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