Place the Face

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Place the Face
Genre Game show
Presented by Jack Smith
Jack Bailey
Bill Cullen
Narrated by Jack Narz
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 23–25 minutes
Original network CBS/NBC
Picture format Black-and-white
Audio format Monaural
Original release July 2, 1953 (1953-07-02) – September 13, 1955 (1955-09-13)

Place the Face is an American game show that aired on CBS and NBC from 1953 to 1955.[1] The series was hosted by Jack Smith, Jack Bailey, and then Bill Cullen.[1] Jack Narz was the announcer.[2]


The program was based on a similar premise to Ralph Edwards' This Is Your Life biography series. At first, regular persons were invited to be contestants. They would seek to identify an important face from their past, perhaps a former teacher, a police officer who had given the contestant a ticket, or the person next to the contestant in the graduation line.[1] The emcee gave the contestant clues, and he or she could pose "yes or no" questions.[1]

Jack Smith, a former radio figure and singer for "The Three Ambassadors" and later the host of You Asked For It, was the first host of Place the Face, with audience members in the starring role.[3] The prizes won by the studio guests were greater when they identified the mysterious face quickly.[1] Smith was soon replaced by Jack Bailey, also the host of the reality show Queen for a Day (1945-1964).

Effective February 11, 1954, when Bill Cullen became the host, celebrities were invited to recognize faces of persons from their past who had played an important role in their lives. Among such guest stars were John Carradine, Jeff Chandler, Xavier Cugat and Pat O'Brien. When the celebrities became integral to the series, the prizes awarded to contestants were minimized.[4]

Place the Face first aired as a summer replacement on Tuesdays on NBC from July to August 1953. It then switched for its first full season to CBS, where it aired at 10:30 p.m. on Thursdays following The Public Defender, which premiered on CBS on March 18, 1954, late in the 1953–1954 season. In the second season, the series was switched to NBC on Saturdays at 8:30 p.m. Eastern,[1] sandwiched between NBC's The Mickey Rooney Show: Hey, Mulligan and The Imogene Coca Show.[5] The show ended in December 1954, only to return to NBC as another summer replacement in 1955.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Tim Brooks and Earle Marsh, The Complete Directory to Prime-Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present. New York City:Random House, 2003. Retrieved March 29, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Dennis Hevesi, "Jack Narz, 85, Genial Host of Television Game Shows Dies"". The New York Times, October 17, 2008. October 17, 2008. Retrieved March 29, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Jack Smith (Host) of Place the Face (July 30, 1953)". Retrieved March 29, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Place the Face". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved March 27, 2011. 
  5. ^ Alex McNeil, Total Television, appendix, network television schedule

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