Home TV by Decade TV Shows - 1950s Dotto

Dotto

1 9 5 8 (USA)

At the time of Dotto’s cancellation in August 1958, it was the highest-rated daytime television show in American television history.

The CBS show – hosted by Jack Narz and broadcast live every weekday from 11:30 till noon – had only been on the air since January 1958.  There was also a nighttime version on NBC.

As contestants answered questions they got to connect more of the dots in a connect-the-dots puzzle which made up a caricature of someone famous. The first to guess the identity won.

But in August, the notebook of a college student contestant named Marie Winn was found in the green room of the show by a standby contestant (Edward Hilgemeier Jr) during taping. It contained the answers to the questions on the show that day.

After taping, Hilgemeier showed the notebook to the contestant who Marie had defeated that day, Yeffe Kimball Slatin. The two of them confronted the show’s producers and were paid hush money – $4,000 to Slatin and $1,500 to Hilgemeier.

Eventually, Hilgemeier took the incriminating notebook to the prosecuting attorneys. Faced with the hard evidence, CBS admitted that contestants had been “given some help.”

The network then abruptly cancelled the show without explanation following the broadcast of 15 August 1958.