Anything You Can Do (game show)

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Anything You Can Do
Format Game show
Presented by Gene Wood (1971–1972)
Don Harron (1972–1974)
Narrated by Bill Luxton
Country of origin Canada
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 3
Production
Producer(s) Lorne Freed
Allan Reid
Richard Reid
Running time 30 minutes
Broadcast
Original channel CTV (Canada)
Syndicated (US)
Original run September 13, 1971 – September, 1974

Anything You Can Do is a Canadian stunt-based game show that aired on that country's CTV network and in syndication in the United States from 1971–1974. The host in the show's first season was Gene Wood, who at the time was also the announcer on Beat the Clock. For the last two seasons, Don Harron was the host. Bill Luxton was the announcer for the series, which taped at the studios of CJOH in Ottawa, Ontario.

The game was billed as a "battle of the sexes" and was played by two teams of three, men against women.

Rules[edit]

Two teams of three, men against women, competed. Center stage was a board containing the names of occupations that are (or were, at the time) generally performed by men, and occupations generally performed by women. The men picked from the women's side of the board; the women, from the men's. The object was to complete a stunt related to the chosen occupation in 90 seconds or less. The time required to complete the stunt was added to the times for completing previous stunts; the team with the least total time at the end of the show won and received prizes; the losing team received prizes of lesser value.

There was also a "mental challenge" about midway through the show; the teams would have to complete some activity such as unscrambling a word, reciting a tongue twister, etc. The time taken to complete the task was added to the team's overall time.

Controversy[edit]

In an interview, original host Gene Wood said he left the show after the first season because producer Don Reid had assured him that all the stunts were completely safe – which proved not to be the case. On one episode, a woman choosing the occupation of "newspaper carrier" was required to ride a bicycle down a narrow yellow line (without veering from it) and throw several newspapers at targets. She lost control of the bicycle, fell to the studio floor, and apparently broke a bone. Wood mentioned other contestants being injured as well.

Trivia[edit]

The title of the show is inspired by a 1946 song called, Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better from the hit broadway musical Annie Get Your Gun (composed by Irving Berlin) as a sprirted duet with one male singer and one female singer attempting to outdo each other in incresingly complex tasks.

In September 1972, Wood became host of Beat the Clock while Canadian actor Don Harron (best known to American viewers as Charlie Farquharson on Hee Haw) took over on Anything You Can Do.

Schedule[edit]

In Canada, the series aired as a daily daytime show as well as a weekly nighttime show; Some U.S. stations aired it daily while others only showed it once a week.

References[edit]

David Hammett, "A Conversation With Gene Wood," May 27, 1996.

External links[edit]