Liar's Club

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Liar's Club
FormatGame show
StarringRod Serling (1969)
Bill Armstrong (1976)
Allen Ludden (1977-1979)
Eric Boardman (1988-1989)
Narrated byJIm Isaics (1969)
Bill Berry (1976-1979)
Joe Seiter (1976-1979)
Bill Armstrong (1988-1989)
Country of originUnited States (1969-1979)
Canada (1988-1989)
Production
Producer(s)Ralph Andrews (1969-1979)
Blair Murdoch (1988-1989)
Running timeapprox. 26 Minutes
Broadcast
Original channelSyndicated (1969, 1976-1979, 1988-1989)
Original run1969 – 1989
 
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Liar's Club
FormatGame show
StarringRod Serling (1969)
Bill Armstrong (1976)
Allen Ludden (1977-1979)
Eric Boardman (1988-1989)
Narrated byJIm Isaics (1969)
Bill Berry (1976-1979)
Joe Seiter (1976-1979)
Bill Armstrong (1988-1989)
Country of originUnited States (1969-1979)
Canada (1988-1989)
Production
Producer(s)Ralph Andrews (1969-1979)
Blair Murdoch (1988-1989)
Running timeapprox. 26 Minutes
Broadcast
Original channelSyndicated (1969, 1976-1979, 1988-1989)
Original run1969 – 1989

Liar's Club is an American comedy game show, produced by Ralph Andrews that had three syndicated runs. It was first seen in 1969 with Rod Serling as host, and returned for a three-season run from 1976-1979, after airing as a local series on Los Angeles' KTLA in 1974-75 season. Bill Armstrong was the original host, soon succeeded by Allen Ludden, with Bill Berry and Joe Seiter sharing the announcing duties.

It was later revived for almost one year from 1988-1989 as The New Liar's Club; Chicago native Eric Boardman was the host, and former emcee Bill Armstrong was announcer. This version was produced by Blair Murdoch at CKVU-TV in Vancouver, with Stan Litke as the director for the first half of its run (from his employer, CFAC/CKKX in Calgary), later replaced by Dave Stewart. A pilot for a new version in 1996 was done with Ed McMahon hosting, but the series did not sell. The title is a spin on the Friars Club.

Contents

Gameplay

The show featured a panel of celebrity guests, who would be presented with an unusual object; each would give a ridiculous explanation of what the object was used for. Contestants (two in the Serling era, three in the Ludden era, and four in the Armstrong and Boardman eras) would guess which star was telling the true story. On the original run, the player with the most correct guesses won $100. They also played for money in the 70s version; but they played for points on the New version. They started at 100 dollars/points at the beginning of the game and were allowed to place wagers in $10 increments up to $100 during most of Armstrong's tenure, half of their earnings during the Ludden era, and the 80s version's betting range was 10 to 50 points.

Celebrity attorney/actress/producer Vicki Roberts was a regular researcher on the show,[1] who brought in many of the strange objects that were used by scouring local antique shops in the Los Angeles area.

Odds

The odds increase for each round:

For the first episodes of Bill Armstrong's tenure, the odds were 2-1, 5-1, 10-1, and 20-1, and each contestant would be paid out at different odds in each round (one player would have 2-1 in the first round, one 5-1, one 10-1, and one 20-1, and then the odds would change for the players in each round after), with no maximum wager. Each contestant had to pick a different panelist, hence the increasing odds. At one point in the series, if a contestant was the only one to pick the right celebrity in a round, his or her payout was doubled.

The Liar's Club Gallery / The Art Corner

Except for Ludden's tenure as host, this was the last round of the game in which artwork was presented before the panel and contestants. Each celebrity would each offer their own title for the art. Each player would then make one last wager on which star gave the right title. Correct answers from the contestants won the wager at a 10-1 payoff. The player with the highest score won the game and a bonus prize (during the Ludden era of the '70s version and the '80s revival, a correct bet in all 4 rounds also won an additional prize). If there was a tie, the player who bet the most in the final round wins. If there was still a tie, the player who got the most right throughout the game wins. If there was still a tie, the player who came closest to their pregame score selection without going over wins.

Ludden-era final round

During Ludden's tenure as host, the final round consisted of each celebrity describing his/her own unusual item. For Ludden's second season, this round became the "Liar of the Day Round", and in a departure from the first three rounds, three of the celebrities were giving correct descriptions for their items while one was lying; it was now up to the contestants to predict which celebrity was the liar, with no betting limit in this round.

Panelists

Regular panelists on the Rod Serling version included Jonathan Harris (Dr. Smith in Lost in Space) and Betty White.

Frequent panelists on the 1970s version included White, Joey Bishop, Dick Gautier, Fannie Flagg, David Letterman and Larry Hovis.

Canadian comedian John Barbour was a regular panelist throughout the 1980s version. Originally, the three other panelists changed from week to week. Celebrities who appeared with John Barbour during the run included:

Tweed, Walker, and Barbutti eventually joined Barbour as the show's permanent celebrity panelists for the second half of the run.

The Next Line

In 1991, a Canadian game show called The Next Line, hosted by Kevin Frank, was produced. It had many similarities to the New Liar's Club: both shows were taped at the same studio, and both used the same props with a few changes. The rules were very similar to Liar's Club in terms of the game and scoring, only rather than determine the correct description of an unusual item, players had to find which celebrity was giving the correct line to a cut-off video clip or song. Like The New Liar's Club, the show was produced by Blair Murdoch and featured Pete Barbutti as a regular panelist.

Episode status

References

  1. ^ [1]

External links