Saturday, May 15, 2010

Online Pick of the Week (5/14): Card Sharks

Often times in game shows there are rules that aren’t often liked by many of the fans or the contestants on the show. Match Game for a while had a rule in 1975 where you couldn’t pick the same celebrity over and over for the SuperMatch round. Password Plus in 1981 changed the main game from a $300 maximum to a $500 one, and while there was more money involved, it made for an intensely dragging game. Scrabble had a rule for a few months earlier in the run where you had to spell the words correctly before scoring.

Card Sharks had one of these unfavorable rules as well. For the first two years of the original Perry run, in the money cards, if you played the round and got duplicate cards, it’d count against you. For instance, if you were dealt an ace and bet lower on the next card, seeing as on the show the ace is the highest card possible, and you turned up another ace; you’d lose however much you just bet. This changed late in 1980, when double cards would be considered “pushes” and didn’t count for or against you and carried onto the next card. I will admit originally that the initial rule did add to the suspense a bit. Norma Brown could have easily busted instead of going all the way for $28,800. But the change instilled a much fairer round of play for the contestants. This push rule would also be carried onto the two later versions with Bob Eubanks and Bill Rafferty.

Doubles were bad enough for the first two years, but imagine if you managed to find ALL FOUR 3’s at once? Talk about your bad luck.

Card Sharks, my online pick of the week!

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