Originally titled “Pantomime Quiz,” the Emmy-winning TV game show, STUMP THE STARS, premiered as a local series in 1947 and appeared intermittently – both in syndication and on the CBS network – until 1970. The format couldn’t have been simpler: two teams of celebrity panelists were joined every episode by a guest star and played Charades. It was a natural for television, drawing on the pantomime skills of Hollywood and New York actors and requiring nothing by way of special sets or costumes. Series producer Mike Stokey also acted as the amiable host, and under his guidance “Stump the Stars” pioneered the game-show tradition of showing its big-name performers in a relaxed, casual setting; ad-libbing was not only permitted but also encouraged, and even Stokey’s introductions are delivered in a refreshingly off-the-cuff manner.
This DVD features four episodes from the 1963 season, during which the regulars were Sebastian Cabot, Beverly Garland, Stubby Kaye, Ruta Lee, Richard Long, and Ross Martin. The guest stars include Nick Adams, Ed Begley, Jeanne Crain, Nina Foch, Dean Jones, Michael Landon, Paula Prentiss, Hans Conried and Roger Smith. You’ll also see the original commercials for Ajax and the various cereals manufactured by the show’s official sponsor, the Ralston Purina Company. – Ed Hulse.
Not rated. Black and white. 1963. 103 minutes (Region 0 encoding – may be played worldwide).