Common Misconceptions

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Each “question” in this section is a commonly-believed myth about the show; each “answer” details the actual facts of the situation.


Myth: The last part of the show is called the Showcase Showdown.

Fact: The last part of the show is called the Showcase. The Showcase Showdown is where the contestants spin the Big Wheel.

Myth: The pricing games did not originally have names, and "Bullseye I" and "2-Player Auction" have never officially been named.

Fact: The pricing games have always had names, all the way back to before the first episode was taped; they simply weren’t displayed on any of the games’ props until Hi Lo debuted. The real name of “Bullseye I” is Bullseye, and the real name of “2-Player Auction” is Double Bullseye.

Myth: Five Price Tags and Safe Crackers are played behind Door #1.

Fact: The games are played at Door #2, as can be verified by looking at the patterns on the doors on any playing in the first 34 seasons. The confusion stems from the fact that Bob and Drew stand between Door #2 and Door #3 while he introduces these games, while he stands between Door #1 and Door #2 to introduce all the other games played at this location.

Myth: Money Game and Give or Keep debuted on the same episode.

Fact: Money Game debuted on Christmas Day, 1972, and Give or Keep debuted two days later. The show that was long thought to contain each game’s first appearance -– the January 4, 1973 episode -– actually has their second playings.

Myth: The current Lucky $even board was introduced on the '86 Specials.

Fact: The current Lucky $even board was in use by the end of Season 14.

Myth: Temptation's pink board debuted on the '86 Specials, as did its 5-digit format.

Fact: Temptation didn’t become pink until April 11, 1988, and the game was actually one of the last car games to introduce a 5-digit format, not doing so until the spring of 1993.

Myth: Ten Chances debuted on the first show with the set's normal color scheme.

Fact: Ten Chances actually debuted on July 15, 1975, a little over a month before the show’s color scheme overhaul. The confusion stems from the first half-hour show that GSN aired with the normal color scheme also being the first one they aired on which Ten Chances appeared; this is now known to have been the Season 3 finale and Ten Chances’s fifth playing.

Myth: Golden Road debuted on the first hour-long episode.

Fact: Golden Road debuted on August 19, 1975, the first episode with the set’s normal color scheme (and an episode which, coincidentally, was itself long incorrectly believed to feature the first playing of Ten Chances). The first trial hour show has its second playing, and the first permanent hour show has its fifth playing.

Myth: Poker Game debuted on the first permanent hour show.

Fact: Poker Game debuted on the second trial hour show.

Myth: Danger Price's current set debuted on the '86 Specials.

Fact: The second Danger Price board is known to have been in use by February 11, 1986.

Myth: Switcheroo has used three different "think" cues on the daytime show.

Fact: The Celebrity Charades theme remix was only used in Switcheroo on the Kennedy version. The original cue was replaced with the current one on the daytime show around the middle of Season 20. This misconception is largely my fault, and I apologize for it.

Myth: Shower Game and It's Optional debuted on the last episode of Season 6.

Fact: The games did indeed debut on the program aired on June 30, 1978, the last new episode broadcast before the summer reruns; however, the show in question is actually the sixth episode of Season 7, which was aired during Season 6 due to an odd series of reschedulings.

As a side note, the real June 30 show wasn’t the Season 6 finale, anyway -– there were an additional 14 episodes that weren’t broadcast until August.

Myth: The name of the game with the punchboard in it is "Punchboard."

Fact: The game’s name is “Punch a Bunch,” as is displayed atop both of its sets. The misconception stems from the ten holes near the top of the game’s original board with letters on them that spelled out “PUNCHBOARD”; these were actually left over from Punch a Bunch’s original format, which was only played 11 times.

Myth: Telephone Game was a 3-prize game, in the vein of Most Expensive and One Wrøng Price.

Fact: Telephone Game was actually a car game whose real rules, which are present in its entry in the “Pricing Game Notes” section, were somehow lost to history until early 2005.

Myth: The "Samoan Chaser" incident happened on the premiere of Grand Game.

Fact: The incident in question did not occur until Grand Game's eighth playing, on November 10, 1980.

Myth: If you make a mistake in Now....and Then, you have a better chance of winning if you avoid the item across from the one you missed for as long as possible.

Fact: This strategy sounds good at first glance, but upon closer inspection, it really doesn't make any sense. If you make a mistake playing Now....and Then, regardless of how long you put off going for the item across from the one you missed, you have to get it eventually, so unless you know that the game always uses four NOWs and two THENs (and most people don't), going for it later instead of sooner won't increase your odds of getting it right in the slightest.

Myth: Plinko is won if the center slot is hit at least once.

Fact: While some people like to consider Plinko as having been won if the contestant wins at least a certain amount of money because it’s boring to mark it as a loss all the time, in truth, the game is only regarded as a win if the player wins the full $25,000/$50,000/$100,000. As such, Plinko has never been won.

Myth: On the Nose was only played for a few months.

Fact: On the Nose was actually played for over a year; its last playing didn’t come until November 22, 1985.

Myth: $uper $aver was retired because the trilons on its set didn't work properly.

Fact: $uper $aver was retired after an episode on which Bob accidentally explained its rules incorrectly. He forgot to say that the game could still be won if the marked-up product was picked -– an omission that the contestant later claimed caused her to lose after she picked it. The staff, after consultation with Standards & Practices, decided to award her the prize, and Bob decided that if it was that easy for a costly mistake to occur in the game, they were better off just getting rid of it.

Myth: The Split Decision board had a habit of falling apart; this contributed to the game's retirement.

Fact: Split Decision only fell apart once; the playing on which it happened has been blown out of proportion. The game was retired because it was simply deemed to be too confusing.

Myth: Bob and Drew have to enter the studio through the audience when Triple Play is played.

Fact: The host always enters the studio through Door #2 when Triple Play is played on the daytime show; the game does not have any set elements that block his path across the stage. Bob did use audience entrances twice on primetime specials that opened with Triple Play, but for reasons that had nothing to do with the game.

Myth: Bonkers and Pass the Buck debuted during the same week.

Fact: The games’ first playings were both aired on CBS during the same week, but only because of a series of reschedulings that took place in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. In reality, Bonkers debuted on the 6th show of Season 30, and Pass the Buck debuted on the 14th show.

Myth: In Pay the Rent, the least expensive item should go in the mailbox.

Fact: While this seems to make sense at first glance, in reality, the least expensive product can't belong in the mailbox; the game is set up to have only one solution, and creating such a setup that has the least expensive product on the lowest level is mathematically impossible.

Myth: For a while, Rosie O'Donnell was a leading candidate to replace Bob Barker.

Fact: Rosie was never considered for the job. She'd left The View shortly before Season 35 ended and saw injecting herself into the host race as an easy way to keep her name in the media. Her name was briefly tossed around the FremantleMedia offices, but no one at The Price Is Right or CBS ever had any intention of hiring her.

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