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TKO


Producer: Mark Goodson
Host: Peter Tomarken
Taping Info: November 10, 1989, CBS Studio 33, Los Angeles, but shot for ABC
Made it to Air: No
Availability: UCLA Archive

TKO was one of the last shows to come out of Mark Goodson Productions before his death in 1992. All known shows after this date were either full-on revivals such as Match Game and To Tell the Truth or rehashes such as Body Talk, so this could have been the last game to come out of the most fertile game show mind in history. Peter Tomarken, fresh off of falling off the board on Wipeout was the host of this reasonably fast paced quizzer, shot at CBS facilities but was for ABC.

The first round had a game board of 12 questions in three categories of four, with the questions going up in value of $100 between $100-$400. Unlike Jeopardy!, the $100 must be picked, then the $200, and so on. When a category and a dollar amount was picked, a question was read aloud and three sets of initials given to the players, one of which was the initials to the correct answer. For example, Peter would read ("What directions are you told in Monopoly when you go to jail?") and the initials DNPG, GOTF and YHS. A player would buzz in, and give the correct initials and the answer: DNPG do not pass go. An incorrect guess froze the player out and the other two players were given a chance after being given the correct initials.

Additionally, two of the 12 questions were "Knockout" questions, meaning that instead of you earning money, you designated a player and that player lost money. After all the questions in round one are played, round two is played for double the values. In this particular pilot, the leader had $5,300, the second place player had $3,400 and the last place player had $2,200.

The third round was reminiscent of Debt. Now there were questions of random categories worth $500 through $1,000, and a correct answer was always a knockout question, you picked who you wanted to lose the money, and that player lost the money. Last player standing with any money was the winner and had $5,000 added to his or her score. There was no bonus game.

Interesting little game, it probably would have sold if the game show market wasn't getting so crowded and time spots so rare. Shot for ABC, it was in contention with Match Game, Body Talk and Gambit. Since it didn't win at ABC, in the syndication world, it would have to gone up against The Challengers, The Joker's Wild, Tic Tac Dough, Trump Card and The Krypton Factor. It would be a tougher climb to get on the air today since nobody wants standard quizzers anymore.

This pilot has been viewed 11110 times since October 6, 2008 and was last modified on Dec 12, 2009 14:46 ET
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