The Generation Gap
|The Generation Gap|
The Generation Gap title logo.
|Created by||Castle-Drive Productions for Talent Associates/Norton-Simon|
|Directed by||Mike Gargiulo|
|Presented by||Dennis Wholey (February 7-April 11)
Jack Barry (April 18-May 23)
|Narrated by||Fred Foy|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||16 (list of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Daniel Melnick|
|Running time||30 Minutes|
|Original release||February 7 – May 23, 1969|
The Generation Gap was a primetime American game show that aired from February 7 to May 23, 1969 on ABC. It was originally hosted by Dennis Wholey, who was replaced by Jack Barry after ten episodes had aired. Fred Foy announced during the entire run.
Two teams of three players competed – one composed of people under the age of thirty, the other being people over thirty. At least one member of each team was a well-known celebrity, occasionally playing against a relative on the other team.
Each team had to answer questions about the other's generation; for example, the under-30s might have to answer a question about the big bands, while the over-30s might have to answer a question about rock groups.
Each round featured questions directed at each individual contestant worth $20 apiece. The other team could earn $5 for predicting whether their opponents could answer correctly. Shortly into the run, the prediction rule was discarded and each correct answer now scored $25. After all six players had each answered a question, the teams answered six Cross-Generation questions. Any player could buzz in, with a correct answer worth $10 but an incorrect answer deducting $10 from the team's earnings. The team who earned the most money after three rounds would have their winnings tripled.
At least one question on each show involved a musical guest from either the past or present.
The series was aired on Friday nights and first hosted by Wholey from the pilot through the tenth episode on April 11, 1969. Beginning the following week, he was replaced by Jack Barry in his first national hosting job since the quiz show scandals over a decade earlier forced him and his company out of the business.
It was hoped that, if the show were a success in primetime, it would lead to a daytime slot. However, ratings were not strong enough and The Generation Gap ended after 16 episodes. Despite this, Barry's game show career was successfully revived, and he thanked ABC for the opportunity during his goodbyes on the last episode.
The Generation Gap has not been revived in other countries, partly due to its short run. Despite its title, The Generation Game (which originally ran in the United Kingdom from 1971-1981 and hosted by Bruce Forsyth) was based on a 1969 Dutch show entitled Een van de acht ("One of the Eight"), which in turn used a stunt-based format much like that of Beat the Clock and Truth or Consequences.
The 1998 VH1 series My Generation could be considered a revival due to a similar format and emphasis on music, which featured two teams of two people representing different years. The game was played for points, and the series used a Pyramid-esque bonus round for a prize package.
Canadian youth channel YTV produced a game show of their own called Generation Gap hosted by Jeff Rechner which ran for a single season in 1989. This version was a stunt-based show which pitted a team of kids against a team of adults. However, beyond the title, it had very little to do with the original series.
Unlike most other game shows of its era, The Generation Gap has remained intact, including its 1968 pilot. The first, eighth, and ninth episodes circulate among collectors.