Card Sharks

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Card Sharks

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Higher! Lower!
Genre: Game Show
Running Time: 22–26 minutes (1978–2002)
42–46 minutes (2019–present)
Country: United States
Release Date: April 24, 1978 – present
Network(s): NBC (1978-81)
CBS (1986-89)
Syndicated (1986-87; 2001-02)
ABC (2019-present)
Created by: Chester Feldman
Distributed by: The Television Program Source
Tribune Entertainment
Starring: Jim Perry
Bob Eubanks
Bill Rafferty
Joel McHale
Gene Wood
Ann Pennington
Janice Baker
Lois Aurino
Kristin Bjorklund
Melinda Hunter
Markie Post
Seasons: 4 (1978-81, 1986-89)
1 (1986-87, 2001-02 Syndicated)
2 (2019-present)
Episodes: 864 (NBC)
826 (CBS)
195 (1986–87 Syn.)
65 (2001–02 Syn.)
15 (ABC)


Card Sharks is an American television game show created by Chester Feldman for Mark Goodson-Bill Todman Productions. Based on the card game Acey Deucey, the game has two contestants compete for control of a row of oversized playing cards by answering questions posed by the host and then guessing if the next card is higher or lower in value than the previous one. The title "Card Sharks" is a play on the word "card sharp", a person skilled at card games. The concept has been made into a series four separate times since its debut in 1978, and also appeared as part of CBS's Gameshow Marathon. The show originally ran on NBC from 1978 to 1981 with Jim Perry hosting; a revival ran from 1986 to 1989 on CBS with Bob Eubanks as host, accompanied by another version in syndication with Bill Rafferty. Gene Wood was the announcer on these three versions. Another syndicated revival aired from 2001 to 2002 with Pat Bullard as host and Gary Kroeger as announcer. All versions of the show had various female assistants to handle the playing cards.

The UK got its own version entitled Play Your Cards Right, as hosted by Sir Bruce Forsyth. It ran from 1980 to 1987, 1994 to 1999, and 2002 to 2003.

Another revival was made in 2019 and is hosted by Joel McHale; currently airing on ABC as part of its Summer Fun & Games block.

Why It Rocks

  1. Skillful hosting from Jim Perry, Bob Eubanks, Bill Rafferty, and Joel McHale.
  2. Great format, based on the card game Acey Deucey.
  3. Nice looking sets.
  4. The Bruce Forsyth-hosted British version, Play Your Cards Right, was just as good, if not better, lasting for the better part of 23 years.
  5. Catchy theme songs, with the 1978 theme recycled from the short-lived 1976 show Double Dare (not to be confused with the Nickelodeon show)
  6. Lovely assistants, including Ann Pennington, sister of former The Price is Right model Janice Pennington, Lacey Pemberton, Suzanna Williams, etc.
  7. Funny moments, especially many of the survey questions, an element borrowed from Family Feud, another Goodson-Todman show, and the various opening verses of the 1978 version.

The Only Bad Quality

  1. The less said about the 2001 version, the better.

Trivia

  • It has been reported in 2018 that Play Your Cards Right is getting a revival in 2019, with Alan Carr as the host.


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