To Tell the Truth(1969 - 1978)
"To Tell the Truth" was one of the best-known game shows of the 1970s. Airing in syndication, the series enjoyed a nine-year run in syndication from 1969 through 1978.
The 1969 version represented the second run of this durable Goodson-Todman format (it had previously aired on CBS from 1956 through 1968, in both daytime and prime time). The premise was the same: A four-member celebrity panel tries to determine which of three people is actually associated with a given story.
The three people all claim to have the same identity. The host read an affidavit, which told the person's story: it could be serious, sad, funny, inspirational, cute, weird ... but always very interesting. One at a time, each celebrity panelist questioned the three-member contestant team about the story (addressing each individually as No. 1, 2 or 3), asking questions they hoped would trip up the impostors. After each celebrity has had his/her turn asking questions, they would vote separately as to whom he/she thought was actually associated with the story. The host then asked the real person to identify him/herself ("Will the real (name) please stand up?"). Payouts depended on how well the contestant team did in fooling the panel: $50 for each wrong vote, and $500 if all the votes were wrong.
Two such games were played per show. Frequently, the games were illustrated by film clips or live demonstrations.
Garry Moore, a daytime TV personality who had previously hosted "I've Got a Secret" (another Goodson-Todman panel show) from 1969 through December 1976. Joe Garagiola, former baseball great turned game show and "Today Show" host, took over in January 1977 (when Moore had throat surgery). Moore returned for one final show, taped in June 1977 and aired that fall, to hand over the hosting reins to Garagiola.
Regular panelists were game show host Bill Cullen (he also served as substitute host from time to time), Peggy Cass and Kitty Carlisle. Frequent guests were Alan Alda, Orson Bean, Larry Blyden, Dick Clark, Bert Convy, Anita Gillette, Tom Kennedy, Allen Ludden, Gene Rayburn, Nipsey Russell, Soupy Sales and Betty White. Johnny Olson was the original announcer; he left in 1972 and was succeeded by Bill Wendell and Alan Kalter.
The 1970s run in addition to critical praise for its all-around execution was well known among game show fans for two things: It's soft rock lyrical theme ("It's a lie, lie, you're telling a lie ...) and early in the run, its wildly painted sets. Two such "mod" sets were used: the original Ted Cooper-designed set, known by some as the "psychedelic" set, which was used until 1971; and a somewhat toned-down set used from 1971-1973. The longest-lived set a blue- and gold-accented set with the show's name spelled out in large, block letters was used from 1973-1978.