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August 31, 2015

Game Show Marathon: Family Feud (finale)

by Richard Keller, posted Jun 29th 2006 11:24PM

Family Feud(S01E07) In my opinion, it's pretty hard to mess up a game like Family Feud. Sure, you could have a bad host like Ray Combs or Louie Anderson, but that usually doesn't deter from the game play of the families who participate on the show. So it's no surprise that Game Show Marathon chose this particular classic to be the Championship Game. That, and the fact that it could easily be played in an hour and not feel awkward like some of the other games that were played during the series.

Oh, and it certainly didn't hurt that both finalists, Kathy Najimy and Brande Roderick, had actually been on Feud in the past:  Najimy back in 1981 with host Richard Dawson, and Roderick back in the late 90's with host Louie Anderson. Pretty convenient, don't you think?

The set used was from the Richard Dawson era of the series. However, like many of the games re-enacted (except for maybe Press Your Luck) there were some minor modern differences. The most glaring of these examples was the electronic display board, which really wasn't a electronic display board. It seemed to be a large video screen that projected a computer simulated version of the original board. Other differences could be seen (the head-to-head podium used the mushroom plungers rather than the original flat-top signalers) and heard (the theme music seemed to be from the Ray Combs version of the show, but I could have imagined it). But for the most part they did a good job, although I'm sure brother Joel would have a different opinion on that.

Game play between the Najimys and the Rodericks was even during the first two rounds, and both sides did an admirable job in guessing the top answers. However, Kathy's team took the lead during the third round and then won the game during the fourth (when money values were doubled). She guessed the last answer on the board was 'diet' (the question was: name something people cheat on). The Fast Money game, played by Kathy and husband Dan, was fairly easy. I mean, would they really have peppered it with questions like 'Name a famous 18th Century physicist'? They certainly didn't give Najimy a hard question on last week's Match Game episode during the Head-to-Head match. Blank Kong? Come on!

For her final game Ricki Lake did pretty well. She used her talk show skills and made the contestants feel comfortable, and she seemed comfortable herself. The only thing that grated on my nerves was the repeated mention that it only took three strikes before the other team could try and answer the question. The show has been on for 30 years now in some form or another, and has probably been seen by a majority of the population. We know that the families only have three strikes. Plus, as I mentioned previously, Kathy and Brande had played Feud before. I don't think they needed a constant refresher about the rules each time.

Now that the show is over (at least for the time being) I can say that I enjoyed Game Show Marathon. Yes, the first two episodes (featuring The Price is Right and Let's Make a Deal) were not the greatest, and some of the celebrity contestants had as much personality as a piece of cardboard; however, as the show progressed the games and enthusiasm of the contestants improved. The best episodes were when they played Press Your Luck, Card Sharks and Family Feud. While Ricki was a little rough at the beginning the last group of episodes she hosted were pretty good, and I wouldn't mind if she came back for a next round of the show.

That's it from my easy chair. Hope to see you again for more Game Show Marathon.

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julia Plummer

hi i love the game family feud on line and was wondering since i dont have a credit card could i send a actual money order to have the full length game on line can someone please ''E' mail me the address to send the money order too
my address is ladydragone3865@hotmail.com

July 22 2006 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I liked last night's version of Family Feud on Game Show Marathon. They made an effort to stick with the original set. They showed Richard Dawson's shows, but why didn't they show the clips of when Ray Combs, Louie Anderson and Richard Karn (who's leaving this year), hosted the shows in the different incarnations? They've been just as good as Richard has with hosting. Rande Roderick kind of fell short on this game with her family playing against Kathy Najimy. Kathy and her family played sharp in their rounds as well as Fast Money. Both their families looked nice--you didn't have anybody aloof or crazy from them.
I liked most of the Game Show Marathon shows. But they should get normal people to play it instead of high paying celebrities. Some of those celebrities have movies, TV shows and music to make and rarely have time to watch TV.I watch Price Is Right and you can see the nervousness, tension and excitement of those contestants when the doors open to show a new car! Can you just believe the same excitement they would have if they competed on Game Show Marathon? Press Your Luck was really the best; Let's Make a Deal was the worst. I wished that CBS would have pushed this show more than the Rock Star Supernova and Big Brother that they've hyped for 28 to 35 days while Game Show was airing the past 5 weeks in May-June. You can tell that they're riled/revved up for July. The thing is, everybody remembers these game shows. Haven't heard from CBS if they're going to bring the show back or have a five-year contract for it, but they need to keep it! I'm sure they're scratching their heads in the boardroom now about keeping it. Would have liked Todd Newton to host it--it could have increased his stock 15,000 times more on a major network than when he was on cable. But they chose a familiar name with Ricki Lake. And she got better as the shows progressed.

June 30 2006 at 10:20 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

please dont bring this back next year, i rather have the actual family feud back in primetime

June 30 2006 at 9:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Keith L. Dick

Hollywood can mess up anything...

Just give them some time...


June 30 2006 at 4:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Internet TV

I have always loved family fued. I think I like the old reruns the best though :)

June 30 2006 at 1:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think they did a good job with this one. The set looked relatively close to the original (and, once I realized that using that rotating question board wasn't going to work on that small set, I was quite happy with the computer recreations they used), and it looked like everyone played enthusiastically.

I didn't like Ricki mechanically pointing to the board and saying "Do we have...?" for every single contestant response. It was quite a bit stiff, but I guess no more stiff than Dawson, Combs, Anderson, or Karn were when they first hosted (have you *seen* how stiff Dawson was in the first few months of FF?). And, just like every rookie FF host, she forgot to give the #1 answers in Fast Money (except for one, where she thought the #1 answer was what Kathy said. Whoops!).

I also scratched my head a bit at their FF montage; it was if the only version that existed was the Dawson version.

Looks like Najimy's had a bit of work done since her 1981 FF appearance, huh? No one said anything, but her nose now looks quite a bit smaller than it did then.

Overall, they did an "OK" job with Gameshow Marathon. It needs to be edited more smoothly, and they need to do with a slightly better job recreating the sets. I think the biggest drawback is its use of celebrities as contestants. Having normal people as contestants would make the shows so much more exciting than they are now. Even in the more exciting games, the celebrities were maybe 10% as enthusiastic about winning (and 10% as upset about losing) as normal people would be, and *that* tension is what makes game shows great. Maybe they'll try that concept next year.

Oh, and I don't know why you think Combs was a bad host, Rich. Yeah, he wasn't as "smooth" as Dawson, and he was pretty robotic in the first year of his hosting stint, but as he got more comfortable, he did a good job with game pacing, relating to the contestants and keeping things loose (and yes, he was a hacky stand-up comic. But that's perfect for a game show host).

June 30 2006 at 12:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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