Sunday, May 29, 2016

Fool you all

With game show news slowing for the Memorial Day weekend, I'll write about one of my favorite clips from the ancient black and white version of To Tell the Truth. The show was never a big favorite of mine, but this segment is a gem.

On February 18, 1963 TTTT brought in three hooded contestants. The genuine guy was a turncoat Polish spy during the Cold War named Pavel Monat. One of the impostors - unknown to the panel, of course - was Henry Morgan of I've Got a Secret and other Goodson-Todman efforts.

Henry sure knew how to play a Polish spy, right down to an ersatz accent. He ended up getting all four votes from the panel. When he pulled off his hood at the end of the segment, much hilarity ensued. Panelist Tom Poston suggested an IGAS segment with Henry as a contestant. The secret: "I was a communist spy on To Tell the Truth."

Although Henry's reveal at the end is the best part of the segment, the video also holds historical interest as a Cold War artifact. Nowadays Poland is a fairly reliable ally of the U.S., but things were rather different in 1963. Wouldn't you know, the other TTTT impostor turned out to be a Nikita Khrushchev lookalike. Panelist Art James even pounded the desk with his shoe in honor of the contestant.

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