Blind Date (1950s game show)
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|Also known as||''Your Big Moment''|
|Created by||Bernard Schubert|
|Presented by||Arlene Francis
|Narrated by||Walter Herlihy (1949-50)
Rex Marshall (1950-51)
|Country of origin||United States|
|Running time||25 mins.|
|Original network||ABC (1949-1951)
|Original release||May 5, 1949– September 15, 1953|
Each episode featured six men and three women. The first part of the game was played in three segments, with two men and one woman appearing in each segment. The men and women were separated by a wall. The men would take turns telephoning the woman, and asking her questions. When time was called, the woman would choose which man would be best for her.
Once all three couples were formed, the audience would determine the winning couple by means of applause. That couple would win a night on the town in New York City, including dinner at the Stork Club.
In 1953, this was changed to viewers writing to the show, and asking about a date with a type of person, or to go on a date to a special event.
Blind Date started on the stage of the Hollywood Theatre in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, as G.I. Blind Date, a radio show designed to entertain servicemen at the Army Radio Technical Training School in town. The first show was broadcast on KELO radio in January 1943. G.I. Blind Date was created by Joe Floyd, Cliff Gill and Verl Thomson as a between-movie entertainment feature. Seeing its success, Floyd peddled the idea around to other markets, eventually selling it to NBC radio where it first aired July 8, 1943, hosted by Arlene Francis.
The radio show grew into a television show. This version originally aired on ABC from May 5, 1949, to September 20, 1951, moved to NBC from June 7 to July 15, 1952, then ran on DuMont from May 19 to September 15, 1953. The ABC version aired Thursdays at 8:30pm EST during the 1949-50 TV season, and Thursdays at 9:30pm EST during the 1950-51 season.
Arlene Francis was the host of the ABC and NBC versions, and had hosted the radio version since 1943. Melvyn Douglas became host when the show moved to DuMont, but was replaced after the third show by Jan Murray.
One episode with Francis from 1950 is held among collectors, while the August 25, 1953 show with Murray is held by the Paley Center for Media.
- List of programs broadcast by the DuMont Television Network
- List of surviving DuMont Television Network broadcasts
- Billboard magazine, July 7, 1943
- Joe Floyd A Helluva Salesman by Bob Karolevitz, 1990
- Billboard magazine July 10, 1943
- David Weinstein, The Forgotten Network: DuMont and the Birth of American Television (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2004) ISBN 1-59213-245-6
- Alex McNeil, Total Television, Fourth edition (New York: Penguin Books, 1980) ISBN 0-14-024916-8
- Tim Brooks and Earle Marsh, The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network TV Shows, Third edition (New York: Ballantine Books, 1964) ISBN 0-345-31864-1
- Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle F. (2009). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows 1946–Present. Random House Publishing Group. p. 154. ISBN 9780307483201.