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You’re in the Picture (CBS, January 20, 1961)

You’re in the Picture was a colossal flop of a TV game show that aired for only one episode. (Now, it did air opposite John F. Kennedy’s inauguration.) You’re in the Picture was supposed to be an outlet for actor Jackie Gleason to demonstrate his versatility after success on variety shows and, of course, The Honeymooners. Johnny Olson served as the announcer while Dennis James did live commercials for Kellogg’s, the show’s sponsor.

You’re in the Picture was so bad that Time magazine called it one piece of evidence that the 1960-1961 TV season was the worst in the 13-year history of U.S. network television. In an effort to beat a dead horse, the following Friday evening (January 27, 1961), Gleason was back on the air in a “stripped to the bare walls” studio to attempt to answer the question of what went wrong.

You’re in the Picture had four celebrity panelists that would stick their heads into a life-sized illustration of a famous scene of song lyric. They would then ask Gleason yes or no questions in an attempt to figure out what scene it was. If they were able to guess, 100 CARE packages were donated in the celebrity’s name. If they couldn’t guess, the CARE packages were donated in Gleason’s name. The celebrities for the only broadcast evening were Pat Harrington, Pat Carroll, Jan Sterling and Arthur Treacher.

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