Home TV by Decade TV Shows - 1960s Dating Game, The

Dating Game, The

1 9 6 5 – 1 9 8 6 (USA)

A classic (and much-imitated) game show created by Chuck Barris, The Dating Game reflected the state of American relationships through the sexual revolution of the 1960s and early 1970s.

A single woman asked a series of mildly risqué questions to three bachelors (concealed from her behind a screen, but visible to the viewing audience), who attempted to impress her with funny, clever and romantic answers.

Based on their responses and voices, the young bachelorette chose which man she wanted to take on a date, paid for by the show.

The game was also played with the roles reversed: a bachelor asking questions to three single women, and sometimes with a guest celebrity in the bachelor/bachelorette chair.

The show was first shown in black & white but in 1966, a colour version ran in prime time. The daytime edition updated to colour concurrently, becoming the first regular ABC daytime show broadcast in colour.

Jim Lange was the original and best host of the show. Tennessee Ernie Ford was the announcer.

In the UK, The Dating Game was reworked slightly to become Blind Date. It enjoyed a hugely successful eighteen-year run from 1985, hosted by former pop star Cilla Black.