The Object Is
|The Object Is...|
Clark as host in 1963.
|Presented by||Dick Clark|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||65 (+ Pilot)|
|Running time||approx. 26 Minutes|
|Production company(s)||The Object Is, Inc.|
|Original run||December 30, 1963 – March 27, 1964|
Three celebrities and three contestants competed in a game in which they tried to identify people (either celebrities, historical figures, or fictional characters) from objects typically associated with that person. Each contestant played with two celebrities - one who gave a clue and one who received it.
For example, if the person was "Charles Lindbergh" a clue from the first celebrity might be "transatlantic airplane"; if the contestant guessed correctly, it was worth ten points; if not, the contestant gave a clue to the second celebrity for seven points. Clues were worth ten points, then seven, then five, then three. If the subject was not guessed after the three-point clue, the subject was thrown out.
The first contestant to score fifteen points won $75 and the right to team with a celebrity in the "Winner's Game", in which they attempted to identify as many celebrities associated with a particular object as possible in thirty seconds, earning $5 for each correct answer.
For the last two or three weeks of the run, the format changed to two celebrity-contestant teams (similar to Password) who tried to identify the person in a maximum of three clues for up to 10 points; they now played a two-out-of-three match, with each game worth $100.
Object debuted on the second-to-last day of 1963 at 11:30 AM (10:30 Central), replacing the Jack Narz game Seven Keys in a scheduling shuffle. Object faced the same competition its predecessor did – the Ed McMahon-hosted Missing Links on NBC and local programming on CBS. While Links had a nearly four-month jump on Object, local programming managed to cause both games to bow in defeat on March 27, 1964.
The following Monday, however, showed there was a clear winner – Missing Links, which moved to ABC with Clark as host (McMahon was still under contract to NBC). Nine months later, Links fell to the Peacock's replacement series – Jeopardy!
Compared to most other game shows of the era, Object is completely intact – all 65 episodes, plus the pilot (taped November 26, 1963), are held by the UCLA Film & Television Archive.
Three episodes circulate among collectors – the premiere, the finale, and the second-to-last episode; notably, in the latter, Stubby Kaye promotes the debut of Shenanigans.
- David Schwartz, Steve Ryan, Fred Wostbrock - "The Encyclopedia of TV Game Shows", 3rd Edition