You can learn more from game shows and magazines than history books and pre-fab dramas. This is what people actually looked like.

Trust me. I was there. There was a lot of this: The modified Purple Conductor’s Hat. All above the Groovy Railroad:



It’s always nice when Miss Garland drops by, dead or alive:


On to the contestants:



They were reacting to A NEW . . . sailboat. As you can tell, Lady Jumpsuit on the left is doing a quick grim calculation; the lass on the right, wearing one of those sternum-high bosom-accentuation devices so popular in 1974. is just stunned by the beauty and majesty of the moment.

The winner was:



Bob, obviously. The woman's name was Panathea. Here’s where it gets interesting. Of the PiR shows I’ve seen in this series, it’s white, white, white – one fellow of Japanese ancestry, and he was a gardener by trade. Panathea was Black, and a delightful contestant , just the sort of happy extrovert the producers look for when they’re vetting the people queued up to watch the taping.

I do wonder if the producers, or anyone in the booth, worried about this:



A fridge full of watermelons. But that was the prize for the next round, and I’m sure the producer was happy Panathea won the sailboat. Still, I wonder if anyone thought “uh oh” when Panathea came on down, given the fridge-full-of-watermelons to come, or – quite possibly – perhaps people gave no thought to the matter? You can make the argument that they should have been concerned, because it would look bad. C’mon, the African-American contestant wins a sailboat, and we give her watermelons. Yeah, that’ll play well. Or you can say Who Cares? The only color on this show is Green. Well, also orange, lots of orange, but mostly green.

Lady Jumpsuit seems to have strolled out of a country-western song, no?



Miss Gwenny Paltry, come on down:



This woman ran down with confident obvious athleticism:



Bob noted she was very good at running. She’d gotten a lot of practice being chased by boys? She said, well, no. Oh, then you got a lot of practice running after the boys? She said, well, no, Bob. I felt bad for her; most people don’t expect to end up on national television interrogated about the frequency with which they pursue the opposite sex on foot.

The prizes. We have to discuss the prizes. This was a luxury premium box in those days.


Burnt orange AND avocado green. Win win.

This was an acceptable car in those days. My. God.



When it came to the showcase, it was Lady Jumpsuit against Panathea. Keep in mind they get a Black contestant once every two months, or so it seemed. What’s her showcase? A trip to fabulous . . .



Immediate cutaway:



Gracious, she was. But she passed to Lady Jumpsuit. And now, here’s your fabulous showcase!



Riding lessons! Immediate cutaway:



I’m not trying to make a big deal of race and culture here, but it does illustrate the assumptions the show made. You can’t get any WASPier than sailing, horseback lessons and a trip to Norway.

One more thing: kids, do you know what Janet’s holding?



State of the art high-tech c. 1973. An answering machine.