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 Video Village was one of the first game shows to debut after the infamous quiz show scandals.  Up until its debut, most quiz shows fell into one of two categories. 1.) A contestant tried to stump a panel of D-list celebrities (I mean, did anyone ever know what Arlene Francis was “famous” for?) 2.) Two contestants answered questions or solved puzzles while in isolation booths or standing right next to the game show host.

Video Village’s concept was as simple as it was different. It was a board game transferred to TV. The contestants were the living game pieces. They had friends or family members (almost always a spouse or boyfriend/girlfriend) who spun the dice.

 The show debuted in prime time on July 1, 1960. A daytime version started on July 11th - both on CBS. For that summer, game show perennial Jack Narz was the host. The hostess duties were handled by Joanne Copeland, who was eventually to become Mrs. Johnny Carson # 2.

After Narz departed, the show was taken over by a young Canadian lad named Monte Hall.

The game played like any board game. Dice were spun. Players moved the number of spaces indicated and had good or bad things happen to them based on the space they landed on.

The night time version ended after the summer of 1960. The daytime version ran until June 15, 1962.

Two kid show versions were spun off: Kideo Village (from September 1961 to June 1962) and Shenanigans with Stubby Kaye on ABC (in 1964 and 1965).

The “home version” board game from Milton Bradley was a no-brainer.

BTW – Both Video Village and Shenanigans featured Kenny Williams (who joined Monte Hall on Let’s Make a Deal) as the announcer.

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