Game Shows Wiki
Dean Jones
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Unsold Pilot: 4/1975
Carruthers Company
Warner Bros. Television

"On Initial Reaction today, it's...H for Pat Harrington...J for Elaine Joyce...C for Tim Conway...P for Jo Ann Pflug...R for Robert Reed! And these five stars will try to find five different answers to the same questions, on television's funniest game, Initial Reaction! And now, here's the star of our show, Dean Jones!"

Initial Reaction was an unsold game show.


Two contestants and five celebrity panelists play this spiritual predecessor to Scattergories.

Main Game[]

The game is played in two rounds, each using two categories from a pool of five.

One contestant picks a category, and the initial letter is the first letter of the surname of a randomly selected panelist (e.g., if Jo Ann Pflug is selected, all answers in the category must begin with P). The panelists are given 10 seconds to write their answers on cards similar to those used on Match Game. After the randomly selected panelist reveals his or her answer, contestants alternate picking from the four other panelists.

After a category is played, it is no longer available to the contestants. Valid answers that are not duplicated score $50 in the first round and $100 in the second round. The fifth and final answer for any category scores double. After four categories are played, the contestant with the most money, wins the game and advances to the bonus round for a chance to win up to $16,000.

Bonus Round[]

In the bonus round, the host gives the final category and initial letter (in the pilot, existing nations that start with I). The panelists write their answers on cards as usual, but the contestant also writes her own answer on a slate.

As in the main game, the object is to avoid duplicating answers. One panelist has a starting value of $1,000, and the others have starting values of $500. After each mismatched answer, the contestant has the choice of quitting with the money won thus far or picking another panelist in hope of doubling her money.

If any panelist duplicates an answer, the bonus round is lost unless the contestant's answer is not a repeat.


CBS Television City (Studio 33), Hollywood, California

YouTube Link[]

The full pilot