Friday, August 15, 2014

You Know The Voice: Casey Kasem on The Dating Game (1967)

From LiteFavorites and the primetime version of The Dating Game comes an interesting offering.

The one big difference between the primetime series and its daytime counterpart was that producer Chuck Barris would routinely use celebrity guests either as bachelors/bachelorettes or contestants on the night edition, although I think it was daytime only on ABC by the time the likes of Michael Jackson and Arnold Schwarzenegger appeared on the show in the 70's. Anyway, in 1967, it was an eclectic mix that included comedians Groucho Marx, Don Rickles, and, in the following video, Bill Dana, whose Jose Jiminez persona fueled his self-titled sitcom, and, as host Jim Lange helpfully notes, Dana was working on Milton Berle's variety show at the time as a producer. The lineup also included Batgirl herself, Yvonne Craig. This same video has Dana competing with an up and coming icon in the music business, none other than Casey Kasem, who was at the time hosting Dick Clark's regionally produced Shebang. For Casey, this was, as far as I know, his national television debut. You can tell Dana was there strictly for laughs, making it almost obvious who would end up with the date.

Edit: 7/28/15: The video has been deleted due to a copyright claim placed by Sony Pictures Television, current rights holder.

Yes, as Lange notes in introducing Casey, the future king of the countdowns was doing movies at the time, and 4 years later, he'd get his most significant role in "The Incredible Two Headed Transplant", with ex-Munsters co-star Pat Priest. Suffice it to say, he fared much better in that case.


magicdog said...

This reminds of so called, "reality television" in that this whole thing was a bit of stunt casting and nowhere close to reality.

Bill Dana was in his 40s at this point so he would have been too old for the girl IMO. He was a funny guy though so I can see why she could be charmed.

Kasem seemed to be himself the whole time - not a bad thing. Notice how Lange pronounced his name? That's actually the correct pronunciation - but "kay-sum" sounded better.

I wonder whatever happened to the sales guy from CBS? Must have lead the good life since he had a boat! He seemed nice enough.

The young lady looked so sweet and wholesome! Dare I say, also educated and worldly! I miss that about TV these days; so many tarted up chicks with tats and oversexed demeanors with IQs that match their shoe sizes. Sadly, I can't see a girl like her getting on TV these days.

hobbyfan said...

Yah, Dating Game ain't coming back any time soon. Not with the Bachelor/Bachelorette on ABC. Remember, too, that MTV set the stage with Singled Out back in the 90's.

As I said, Dana was there as a stunt to draw ratings. Casey was still a ways away from becoming an icon. They actually had 2 of the Grass Roots on the show in another case of stunt casting. That may be over at Land of Whatever as a lark sometime.