This pick goes to an oldie but a goodie… Chuck Woolery’s Wheel of Fortune. As most game show fans know, Pat Sajak and Vanna White are not the original duo to grace the show. In 1975, the show began as a daytime show on NBC, with singer/songwriter Chuck Woolery as the host and Susan Stafford as the hostess.
I’m really a fan of Chuck Woolery’s hosting styles on this show. As far as favorite shows go with him, for me it’s always been a toss-up between this show and Scrabble. I appreciate any host who has a good sense of humor and a good rapport with the contestants. One of my favorite moments of his was on the 1976 episode that aired on GSN during the Merv Griffin tribute; where people apparently wrote in complaining about Chuck hugging the contestants, and he responded by hugging one of the female contestants after solving her puzzle correctly and said "I'm a hugger and if you were here, I'd hug you too!" You can tell by the way he did the final spin that he wanted the contestants to win big. Susan Stafford was a really enjoyable co-host; I really like the chemistry presented between her and Chuck. She also showed that she wanted the contestants to do extremely well.
One big reason I love the older episodes… simplicity. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: it’s the reason why I don’t enjoy the current episodes as much. I don’t mind the idea of new twists, but the show these days can focus on those more than the game itself. It’s why the older episodes are always fun for me to watch. The older episodes are fluff free.
As for the shopping on older episodes; I love the idea of it, but some of the prizes could be a tad on the undesirable side. The prizes make me lean towards all-cash.
It’s too bad not enough episodes of this show exist to constitute a full syndication cycle, because it’s really worth airing.
Chuck Woolery’s Wheel of Fortune… my online pick of the week!