Jim Lange
Jay Stewart (1979–1981)
Charlie O'Donnell (1981–1982)
Pilot: 11/1979
Syndication (Daily): 9/29/1980 – 12/4/1981
Syndication (Daily): 12/7/1981 – 6/25/1982 (reruns aired until 9/24/1982)
Barry & Enright Productions
Colbert Television Sales

This article is about the Barry & Enright game show. For the 2015 reality show, see Bullseye (2).

PILOT INTRO: "This is the television program in which a player with luck can win... up to $1,000,000! This is the program of knowledge, luck and daring. This is Bullseye! And now, here's our host, Jim Lange!"

SERIES INTRO: "This is the television game in which daring determines the fate of the player. This is the game of strategy, luck and knowledge. This is Bullseye! Now, here's our host, Jim Lange!"

CELEBRITY INTRO: "During the upcoming weeks, these are some of the celebrities who'll be playing Bullseye for their favorite charities. (insert celebrities). They'll be playing the game of strategy, daring, and luck. They'll be playing Celebrity Bullseye! Now, here's your host, Jim Lange!"

(Celebrity) Bullseye was a two-year game show that combined elements of other Barry-Enright shows. It was the game of strategy, knowledge, luck, and especially daring.

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

Main Game[edit | edit source]

Two contestants, one a returning champion, competed. The game began with the champion stopping a star-shaped gameboard of three spinning windows by hitting a three-colored plunger in front of him/her. The first two windows contained eight different categories (four in each window) with dollar amounts ranging from $50 to $200 (representing the value of each question). The third window (below the two category windows) was the Contract window, and displayed numbers from one to five, as well as a "Bullseye" graphic.

When the windows stopped spinning, the contestant chose either of the displayed categories, and had to fulfill the contract by correctly answering the number of questions indicated in the Contract window. If the Contract window contained a Bullseye, the contract was unlimited; the contestant could continue answering questions for as long as he/she wanted. Each correct answer added the value of the question to a pot. A missed question gave the opponent a chance to steal control of the contract with a right answer.

After the contract had been completed, the contestant who completed the contract could elect to either bank the money in the pot, passing control to the opponent, or continue playing with a new contract; choosing the latter option would leave the accumulated money in the pot up for grabs by either player.

The first contestant to bank $1,000 or more won the game. (Beginning with a Nov. 1980 children's charity week, this was increased to $2,000, with question values increasing to $100–$400.) Contestants got to keep any money banked during a game, regardless of the outcome, making Bullseye one of the few Barry & Enright shows to allow losing contestants to keep earnings from the game.

In the event of a champion winning the game without the challenger having an opportunity to play (for example, if the champion spun a Bullseye in the Contract window and answered several consecutive questions to win the game), the challenger would return after the bonus round to play again.

As is the case with most Barry & Enright game shows, a new automobile was awarded to any contestant who won five consecutive games.

Bonus Round: "Bonus Island"[edit | edit source]

In the bonus round (known to fans as "Bonus Island" or the "Lightning Round"), the champion again stopped the spinning wheels by hitting the plunger on the bonus island. This time, the windows contained dollar amounts of $100, $200, or $300 (earlier $50, $100 or $150, then $100, $150 or $200), or bullseyes. One (and only one) window also contained a dreaded bolt of lightning.

If money came up in a window, it was added to a bank. If a bullseye appeared, the contestant had the option to "freeze" that window, which was then out of play for the remainder of the game. Later on, bullseyes were automatically frozen. The contestant had the option to stop after every spin and keep the money banked. Lightning, if it came up, bankrupted the contestant and ended the game (accompanied by a loud thunderclap).

The object was to either get bullseyes in all three windows, or to survive ten (later reduced to seven) spins without getting "struck (or hit) by lightning." Doing either of these won a bonus prize package usually worth $2,000-$4,000 in value. Getting three bullseyes doubled the value of the bank, while going the maximum number of spins or spinning three bullseyes in one spin augmented the bank to a flat $5,000; if the value of the pot was more than $5,000, the contestant won whatever money was accumulated.

Only one of the three windows contained lightning. If a contestant froze a bullseye in the window which had lightning, he or she could not lose. However, the contestant had no way of knowing that until the contents of the windows were revealed at the end of the bonus game.

Pilot Version[edit | edit source]

The original pilot, taped in 1979 at the NBC Burbank Studios, featured a different bonus round. To begin, the player stopped a "Number Jumbler," which contained numbers 3-5, or a bullseye. The three windows contained either bullseyes or lightning bolts. Starting with the $1,000 (or more) won during the main game, the contestant stopped the windows by hitting his/her plunger, and if all three contained bullseyes, it doubled the player's money. This process continued until reaching the number in the contract set by the Number Jumbler (winning $8,000/$16,000/$32,000), or a lightning bolt appeared (which bankrupted the contestant). If the Number Jumbler was stopped on a bullseye, the contestant could continue to spin until hitting the lightning or winning over $1,000,000 (which, starting at least $1,000, would take ten spins).

Celebrity Bullseye (1981–1982)[edit | edit source]

The week of November 16-20 and some or all of the week of November 23-27, 1981, Bullseye had a tournament with eight sitcom stars playing for charity. Shortly after that tournament, beginning on December 7, the show changed its name to Celebrity Bullseye and featured celebrity contestants playing for their favorite charities.

At this point, the celebrities would play a best two-out-of-three game and a $500 value was added to the maingame, but few other rules were changed. One of these rules was that the categories were no longer announced by host Jim Lange before the game began. Another was that most questions were multiple-choice, containing three possible answers, with the celebrity's job to choose the right one; the exceptions to that being visual categories or Two of a Kind. It was as Celebrity Bullseye that this series left the air in September of that year. This version has been criticized by fans of the show as slowing the game down, as there would be episodes where no Bonus Island would be played at all.

Celebrities who played the celebrity version included Harvey Korman, Greg Morris, Doug Davidson, Roxie Roker, Rue McClanahan, Diane Ladd, Richard Kline, Gloria Loring, Patrick Wayne, Lynn Redgrave, Jerry Mathers, Meredith Baxter-Birney, Ernest Borgnine and F. Lee Bailey.

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Music[edit | edit source]

Pilot – "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" by Santa Esmeralda  (Edit by Hal Hidey)

Series – Hal Hidey

Close – "That's All Folks"
Contestant Intro – "See Me Now"
Prize Cue – "Bits and Pieces"
Prize Cue – "Pieces and Bits"

Studios[edit | edit source]

NBC Studios, Burbank, CA (1980)
CBS Television City, Los Angeles, CA (1981–1982)

Rating[edit | edit source]

72px-TV-PG icon svg.png

Tagline[edit | edit source]

"This is Jim Lange hoping that everything you're going for hits the Bullseye! Bye." – Jim Lange (1980-1982)

Additional Pages[edit | edit source]

Bullseye/Photo Gallery

Links[edit | edit source]

Rules for Bullseye at the Game Show Temple
Josh Rebich's Bullseye Rule Sheet
Flash game for the Million Dollar Bonus Island
Flash game for the Regular Bonus Island
(Celebrity) Bullseye @ Game Show Garbage

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