Thursday, April 10, 2014

Another lot of episodes

Happened across the screenshot on Game Show Confessions, and Mr. Sajak talked about it tonight. Tomorrow will be Pat and Vanna's 6,000th. Time's arrow points in one direction, as The Price is Right's 8,000th episode reminded me.

Low production costs have always been a selling point for our little genre. So after a while - like three or four decades - the episodes of a successful game show really pile up. Wheel does 195 eps a year without breaking a sweat. And they definitely don't break the bank. The show turns a tidy profit, thank you.

Our Wheel pair has an understated charm that wears well over the long haul. And Wheel's haul has been truly long by the standards of commercial TV. Most shows just pray for a 13-ep pickup and eventually enough episodes for syndication.

After all this time Wheel of Fortune rides comfortably ahead of the entire syndie field. Unlike Jeopardy, where chatter about Alex's successor has become routine, people rarely speculate about eventual replacements for Pat and Vanna. It just seems impossible, in an odd way.

UPDATE: Commenter Zach Horan says it's 195 eps a year instead of 185. I've made the change. He also points out that the 6,000 figure only covers the nighttime version with Pat and Vanna. Yep, but that's the way they're counting. The 8,000 figure CBS used for The Price is Right didn't include the original Bill Cullen version, either.


  1. Wheel does 195 episodes a year. Also, it's the 6000th nighttime episode. Pat did around 1800 daytime episodes over seven years, and Vanna did about 2200 or so daytime episodes over eight years and nine months. Wheel is over 10000 episodes between Daytime and Nighttime.

  2. Is it 195? I'll make the correction. And yes, you're right about the nighttime/daytime issue. Tell that to Mr. Sajak, who announced the 6,000 figure to the nation last night.

  3. Wheel doesn't recognize anything prior to 1983