Bob the Barker

My first memory of Bob Barker turned out to be a bit off.

What is stored in my memory banks is this:

Truth or Consequences had been on television for some time with some old dude as its host, and I had been a reasonably loyal viewer. Then one day, the old dude introduced a young dude and said he’d be taking over the hosting of the show from here on out.

The young dude was Bob Barker.

What apparently actually happened was Ralph Edwards had been the host of the nighttime version of the show, and on December 31, 1956, when a daytime version was created, Ralph introduced Bob Barker as the host of the new daytime version of the show. You can watch it here:

Meanwhile, Mark Evanier shares his memory of meeting Bob Barker at a car wash.

By the way, my only other memory of the Truth or Consequences show is from February 21, 1961, when they had George Maharis and Martin Milner on as guests. There was a remote feed from the location where a scene from their show, Route 66, was supposedly being filmed, and the unsuspecting contestant was an old lady who was watching them film it from the sidelines. Her relatives had arranged ahead of time for her to be there; apparently she had always wanted to be an actress but the demands of raising a family had never allowed her to fulfill her ambition.

The scene involved their car having broken down, and the two stars were trying to figure out what was wrong with it. As the old woman was watching the scene supposedly being rehearsed, and as the home audience was watching the whole thing remotely, the director of the scene kept saying it wasn’t working. So he plucked the old woman from the sidelines and asked if she would be willing to help out. All she had to do was look under the car’s hood, point to the spark plugs, and say, “These spark plugs are dirty, boys. You need to clean them.” 

Which she did. The director yelled “Cut!”

And Bob Barker, speaking remotely, told the woman that she was actually on Truth or Consequences


I think they also arranged for her to be an extra in a real scene from the show.

And that’s the only thing I recall from presumably years of watching that program. Alas, I can’t find a YouTube video of that episode to verify (or contradict!) my memory.

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