I’m interested in this subject because I’m a huge fan of older game shows; in fact the channel I love to watch occasionally is Buzzr. This channel plays game shows from the 70’s to 80’s era, and I enjoy the laughter and the comradery these people had together. Game shows hit the air in the late 30’s and early 40’s. Spelling Bee was technically the first show to broadcast, but it was ‘Truth or Consequences’ that aired on a commercially licensed television, paving the way for other game shows. It became quite popular in the 1950’s, along with other panel shows that had celebrities and usually guests… but low budgets and scandals (possible cheating) were at the forefront, helping to create newer comedy-driven panel game shows, such as Match Game and Hollywood Squares. I love the humor they bring and getting to know a little about their guests. I also enjoy their hosts, like Gene Rayburn (Match Game), Peter Marshall (Hollywood Squares), Bob Eubanks (Newlywed Game, Card Sharks & more), and Burt Convey (Tattletales). As I began watching them, I couldn’t help wondering…why there weren’t any women hosts, then…or even now.
As I begun to do a little research, (as to the reason why there weren’t females), I found an article dating back to June of last year when Jane Lynch had spoken out on this same subject; The Daily New York News by Rachel Desantis. Lynch expressed her feelings about Late Night shows as well as Game Show Hosts being male dominated. Sure there are daytime talk shows with women, but I believe it hosts an entirely different crowd during daylight hours, and once again…they are talk shows, not game shows. In the past, game shows were geared towards the average American stay-at-home housewife, but as we all know…those days have gone. As for me…I’m not speaking about the #MeToo movement while exploring the lack of female presence among shows, but while it seems Hollywood is always discussing it, maybe they should deal with some of these issues; females might be willing to show a stronger interest in other fields of show business. I admit, watching old game shows a couple of times a week vs depressing news has lifted my spirit and brings back memories of days gone by…yet it has made me wonder why there weren’t any female hosts present.
The world of television and programming has been changing for some time now, but with regards to game shows, I feel many of them just aren’t that great anymore. Today they can’t say half of the things or even ask (game show questions in particular) of what they were once able to; as someone is always overly sensitive or taking it the wrong way. People are afraid to speak freely about certain things anymore. Maybe this is part of the problem. For those who’ve never seen a show or remember the old game shows, I’d invite you to sit back and watch one someday…especially one like Match Game or Tattletales; you’d be stunned at some of the questions, but they were all in fun! Heck…if you watched Family Feud from years ago with Richard Dawson, as he kissed every woman (guest) and put his arm around them, well…that wouldn’t happen either today without someone crying #MeToo! Today they’d be fined and taken off the air if someone had their way. Sometimes things can be taken too far; and of course it is only my opinion. I will continue to watch and enjoy these shows, as I laugh and reminisce of a more simple time in our lives.
Make your week count.