When CBS picked up a revival of the classic show The Price Is Right with Bill Cullen, who would have thought that after 38 years, a ton of models, a dozen or so announcers (granted 3 were permanent, but I’m also counting sub-announcers in the wake of both Johnny Olsen & Rod Roddy’s deaths), a monumental host change in 2007 when Bob Barker stepped down and Drew Carey has taken over the helm, and over 80 different pricing games things would still be going so strongly. But when the show debuted in 1972, there was Bob and Johnny, Anitra Ford & Janice Pennington as your models, a calmer audience than the rowdy bunch you normally see at the Bob Barker Studio today, and only 5 pricing games instead of the 70 or so games that are in the rotation today. Now, even as we speak today, you have your share of unfair or just flat out bad pricing games. The first five had such issues as well. One of the most infamous in that category is what could be the hardest game ever in the history of Price is Right, and not only that, this game was just flat out bad. The game was called Bullseye.
No, wrong Bullseye.
Yeah, that’s the right one.
The rules for this pricing game are quite simple. You are trying to guess the actual retail price of a prize, in this games case was a car or a boat, and you have 7 chances to do so. If you make an incorrect guess, then Bob would say that the ARP is higher or lower. When the game first debuted, you weren’t given any range whatsoever to get the price correctly, which made an already hard game even harder.
Now, while it might sound like a good idea for a game, the execution of this game was downright bad. Firstly, the game is almost impossible to win. Your first guesses is trying to get a range on what the price is, but then as you narrow it down you’re down to your last 2 or 3 bids, giving you no hope in getting the price right.
As proven here, the contestant is close, but doesn’t quite reach the mark. And for this game, missing it by $6 was one of the closest any contestant ever got on this game. In one of the first playings, someone missed it by $1. After a couple of playings, they decided to give the contestant a $500 mark to start shooting from. While it may have made the game easier, nobody ever won this game. Out of all the 5 times it was played, nobody has won. After realizing that the game was impossible to win, the game was retired to the graveyard of TPIR Pricing games.
Another problem with this game was that it was very slow and would take about 3-4 minutes to play. It was very painful to watch at home, and there was no excitement to it. You had a better chance of nailing a bullseye playing darts blindfolded than winning this game. Like I said before, the execution was awful, so they tried to tinker around with this format and decided to make the game easier by making the game be played for 2 smaller prizes instead of 1 car and add a time limit to it.
Yup, after those tweaks were made to this game we got the classic Clock Game out of the ashes of Bullseye 1. Needless to say, this game is still played to this day and will always have its share of classic moments. So, in closing. Bullseye 1 was a badly executed game, but had a decent premise. With the proper tweaking of the game, we get a classic. So, at least we got a great game out of the mess that was Bullseye 1.
Game Show Garbage can also be found at Robert Seidelman’s own site here
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