Talk About (game show)

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Talk About
Genre Game show
Created by Mark Maxwell-Smith
Directed by Michael Watt
Presented by Wayne Cox
Narrated by Dean Hill
Country of origin Canada
Location(s) CBC Studios
Vancouver, British Columbia
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 22-26 minutes
Production company(s) Comedia Productions
Original channel CBC
Picture format SDTV
Audio format Stereo
Original run September 18, 1989 (1989-09-18) – March 16, 1990 (1990-03-16)

Talk About is a game show produced in Canada for CBC, which bears some similarities to the board game Outburst. Originally produced for CBC for the 1988-89 season, it was later picked up for American television syndication, airing from September 18, 1989 to March 16, 1990, with repeats later airing on the USA Network from June 28 to December 31, 1993 and on GameTV starting January 3, 2011. Taped at stage 40 of CBC's Vancouver studios, the show was hosted by Wayne Cox, with local radio personality Dean Hill as announcer.


Two teams of two people, one team usually returning champions, played. For each round, the team that was not playing was placed in isolation so they could not hear anything. The champion team always played first.

The team in control was given the choice of two topics to "talk about", with the team's captain making the choice and deciding who would talk first. Both players received twenty seconds to talk, trying to come up with key words from a preselected list of ten. Each word the team got was worth one point. Forms of a word are acceptable as well. If the talking team said all 10 words between them, they won $500 and all ten points available. Otherwise, the opposing team was shown the keywords that the first team did not say and was given an opportunity to guess the topic to try and steal the points. Answering correctly gave the team the points, otherwise they went to the first team. Play continued until one team reached 15 points, at which point that team won the game, $100, and a chance for up to $2,000 in the bonus round. The losing team receives parting gifts. All contestants receive the Talk About home game, champions included. For special celebrity weeks, play continued until time was called and whoever was ahead won the game and prizes for charity.

If a team managed to win five consecutive games they retired undefeated and won the "Grand Game" jackpot, which was a prize package worth $1,000. In the 2nd season, it started at $1,000 and had a new prize added every week until they claimed it.

Bonus round[edit]

The winning team played the bonus round for a bonus prize and up to $2,000 in cash.

A choice of prizes was given to the winning team to begin the round, followed by another choice of "talk about" topics. The team captain decided what prize to play for, what topic to discuss, and whether or not they would play or go into an isolation booth. Once that was decided, the talking player was again given 20 seconds to come up with as many of the ten keywords for the selected topic. Each word was worth $100, and if the player got all of them within the 20 seconds the team won the prize and $2,000.

If the first player did not get all ten words, the words they did not come up with were shown to them and that player faced a decision. The player could either stop and take the money they had gotten or bring their partner out for a chance to double their cash total and win the prize. If the player decided to take the risk, their partner was brought out of the isolation booth and given one second for each word their partner guessed to try and come up with one of the remaining words (for a maximum of nine seconds). This was an all-or-nothing decision, as if the second player did not come up with an unsaid word the team lost the cash the first player earned.

Foreign versions[edit]

An Irish version of the show was broadcast by RTÉ in the early 1990s on Saturday nights, it was presented by Ian Dempsey.[1] The show was brought back to RTÉ in the mid-1990s and was this time presented by Alan Hughes.[2]

A Swedish version called Prata på (Speaking on!) ran briefly on TV4 in the mid-1990s. In the bonus round, each word was worth kr500, and the "doubling" option required the partner to say any one of the unsaid words within a time limit of one second per word already said. the host for this version was Lars Gustafsson.

A UK version of the show hosted by Andrew O'Connor ran for three years on ITV from 1990-1993. The only difference was in the bonus round, where each word was worth £20, and at the end, the player had two options: "doubling" (up to £400), by having their partner say any unsaid word in 10 seconds, or "double-doubling" (4 times the pounds, up to £800) by having them say a specific word within a time limit of 1 second per word already said.

Home version[edit]

A home version of the game was produced by Pressman Toy Corporation in 1989. All contestants got a copy and Wayne would originally plug it after every match. Later, Dean Hill would plug it after coming back from the first commercial break.

A computer game of the show was produced by GameTek, but is fairly rare.

Notable contestants[edit]

  • Denis Simpson: Already known for his work on TVO's Polka Dot Door, Simpson and his partner, singer Marcus Mosely went on the show and lost their game. After a dispute on a subject, in which they guessed "rugs" on the subject of "carpets", they were invited back to play the next game, which they won, and would go on to win $1,800 in 4 games. Simpson would later become a regular on Acting Crazy, another Wayne Cox-hosted show.
  • Melody Davies: Like Denis Simpson, she would later become a regular on Acting Crazy.
  • Denalda Williams: Williams became a contestant on Talk About before she was chosen as a panelist on The Next Line.

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^