|November 17, 1985|
This is chronicling the failed 1985 pilot of Now You See It.
The main game principle was based on the word search concept. The game board had four rows ("lines") with 14 letters of the alphabet ("positions") in each row. The host of the show read general-knowledge trivia questions with single-word answers that were concealed within the jumble of letters on the board for that round. The answers on the board were always written horizontally from left to right.
Two teams of two players competed for the whole show.
During the first round, one partner was given a word to define (much like Pyramid) and then hit a button revealing the board to the partner; the partner then had to find that word on the board. They had 15 seconds total to define and find the word. If successful, the team earned as many points as there were seconds left on the clock (e.g., eight points if there were eight seconds left). Each team played four words, with the team in the lead earning 20 bonus points.
In the second round, the host read clues to words on a new board, and the first contestant to buzz in and correctly identify that word earned 20 points. The first team to reach 100 points won the game and chose one player to play the solo round. After that, the players on both teams switched positions and played another game.
The winner of the main game was given a new board and 60 seconds to find ten words on that board. Once the host read a clue to one of those words, the contestant used an electronic pencil to circle the word that was being guessed and call it out. The contestant had the option to pass at any time and return to that question later. Each correct answer was worth $100, and if all ten words were found before time expired, the contestant won $5,000 for the team.
Host Jack Clark announced Wheel of Fortune while hosting this pilot. Additionally, due to bone cancer, Clark died on July 21, 1988 as it was even announced by long-time Wheel host Pat Sajak.
- "Well, as we have mentioned, this is, in fact, the first show of our new season. And, as many of you know, during our Summer off, we suffered a great loss. We lost a dear friend. Our announcer Jack Clark, passed away. And while the intervening time has kind of helped a little bit with the immediate grief of jolt and sorrow you feel, we're still saddened around here. But we're left with a lot of warm and wonderful memories of a great guy, and a wonderful broadcaster, who added so much to this show and was so instrumental in its success. So, while we will miss Jack very much, we treasure and just love the fact that we had the chance to know him and to work with him. He was a very special man. We'll be right back. (Applause)"
- Pat Sajak during Wheel of Fortune's sixth syndicated season on September 5, 1988
Main - "Chump Change" by Quincy Jones