ABC Daytime, Monday, March 30, 1964 – Friday, December 25, 1964
Run time
30 Minutes
Frank Buxton March-September
Robert Q. Lewis September-December
Johnny Olson
Chet Gould
Elysee Theater, New York City, New York

Get the Message was a different version of Password mixed in with Match Game

Game formatEdit

Two teams of three (consisting of two celebrities & one civilian contestant) compete in a battle of the sexes word game (three men vs. three women). The object of the game for the celebrities was to get their civilian partners to say the message which was a either a familiar word, phrase or name by virtue of giving one-word clues. The celebrities were given the secret message and had their clues written on index cards by the celebrities themselves. When they were finished, they raised their hands to confirm that they're done. After that, one team of celebrity partners show their clues to their contestant partner after which he/she must take a guess. If the first contestant got it wrong, the opposing team took a chance. Both teams had two chances on the same message with different clues on the second chance. Each correct answer was worth one point, and the first team to score three points won the game, $100 for the winning contestant, and went on to the bonus game.

Turnabout (Bonus Game #1)Edit

The winning team went on to play the bonus game, called "Turnabout". The winning contestant was now shown a new message and verbally gave one-word clues to each celebrity partner. Each incorrect guess decreased the value of the message. Three messages were played and up to four clues were given for each. The first clue was worth $100, the second was worth $50, then $25, and finally $10. The highest the winning contestant could win was $300.

Open Round (Bonus Game #2)Edit

In this new bonus game, the contestant could earn up to an additional $150 by guessing up to three $50 messages. The celebrities gave one clue each and the contestant took only one guess at each message.

New contestants played each game.



Celebrity guests included Bill Cullen, Art James and Gene Rayburn, who were all hosting Goodson-Todman shows at the time. The debut guests were Abe Burrows, Orson Bean, Peggy Cass, and Betty White.

Another short-lived Goodson game show that also had a bonus round called "Turnabout" was Child's Play with Bill Cullen in 1983.

In 1986, a remake of the show was made as a unsold pilot for NBC called Oddball hosted by Jamie Farr of M*A*S*H fame. (see the "Related Show" page for details)


Milton Bradley released a Get the Message board game in 1964.


Episode StatusEdit

Get the Message is believed to have been mostly destroyed as per the network practices at the time. GSN has aired two episodes in the past, the finale and an episode hosted by Buxton.

See Also: Get the Message/Episode Guide

Related ShowEdit



Get the Message opening credits

Get the Message opening credits

Get the Message (Rare 1964 Episode hosted Frank Buxton)

Get the Message (Rare 1964 Episode hosted Frank Buxton)

Get the Message

Get the Message

Get the Message All Star Finale

Get the Message All Star Finale