Thursday, April 19, 2012

Dick Clark's Pyramid

American Bandstand and his New Year's Eve show might be getting most of the mentions with the passing of Dick Clark, but I liked him best as host of The $10,000 Pyramid, my favorite game show. I remember it as far back as the summer of 1973, the first year it was on, and remember its transformation into The $20,000 Pyramid later in the decade (indeed, those were inflationary times). After I quit watching much TV in the early '80s, I seldom saw its later iterations.

Other people, of course, kept up with it. Such as whoever compiled this detailed page on TV Tropes.

But I don't need to know that much to appreciate the show, which contestants won infrequently but just often enough to be interesting, and which combined its visual and auditory elements so well -- the contestants facing each other, the quick flip of the pyramid boards, the lights on the edge of the pyramid, and especially the mechanical drip of the 60-second clock: plonk, plonk, plonk. As if to say, Time is Your Enemy.

Clark added his own touches to the proceedings as well. These are two Winner's Circle clips from 1973 and 1987, well over a decade apart. And what did Clark always say to kick things off in the Winner's Circle? "Here's your first subject. Go!"



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