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The Big Surprise
Description:

In this NBC primetime game show, contestants who were judged "worthy" because of good deeds or hardship answered a series of questions, worth progressively more from $1 to $100,000. If the contestant missed one of the first four questions, he or she was out of the game. Later, if they missed a question, someone else could answer a different question, in an early version of a "lifeline." If that person answered correctly, they received ten percent of the winnings. The questions were unique in that they had to do with an individual contestant's friends, family, hobbies or hometown.

The 'easy question' girl and the 'hard question' girl brought out the questions. If the contestant missed an easy question he or she would lose all the money; if a hard question was missed, he or she only lost half.

Later, after a format change brought newsman Mike Wallace on as host (in his TV game show debut), contestants answered encyclopedia-like questions in different categories.

The Big Surprise Premiered:

October, 1955

Hosts:

Jack Barry

Mike Wallace

Assistant:

Lorraine Rogers

Announcers:

Lee Vines

Jack Clark

Easy Question Girl:

Sue Oakland

Hard Question Girl:

Mary Gardner

Celebrity Contestants Included:

Errol Flynn

 

Were you or someone you know a contestant on a classic game show? Send me your name, the contestant's name (if different from yours), the name of the game show, and any other information you have (date of appearance, what it was like to be on the show). I'll post your story here for the world to see! Email me at host@gameshowfame.com. *** NOTE: Before you send me an email asking if I can find a specific copy of a show your relative appeared on, PLEASE READ THIS ***

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SEE ALSO  
 

 1950s Game Shows

 
     
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