Game Shows Wiki
Richard Kline
Dean Goss
Jumble Pilot.jpg
Unsold Pilots for Daily Syndication: 10/1988
Ron Greenberg Productions
Hillier Productions
Procter & Gamble Productions
Distributor (planned)
Multimedia Entertainment

"America's favorite newspaper game has finally come to television. So get ready to play the exciting game of fun in puns, get ready to play JUMBLE! Competing today on Jumble are returning champion Atonia Lau, a bodybuilding instructor from Chicago. Her celebrity partner, the star of the show Just The Ten of Us Bill Kirchenbauer. Today's challengers is Scott Balsim, a computer programmer from New York and his celebrity partner the star of the hit show 227 Alaina Reed. One of these teams can win today's bonus prize a 1989 Camaro convertible. And now, here's the host of Jumble, Richard Kline!"

Jumble is an unsold show based on the newspaper puzzle feature, but unrelated to the series with Wink Martindale.


Similar to Win, Lose or Draw, this game was played on a set designed to resemble a living room.

Main Game[]

Two teams of two players (one celebrity & one contestant) competed in this attempt at turning the newspaper game into a game show.

At the start of each round, a Jumble cartoon puzzle was revealed with a riddle attached and spaces representing the letter in the pun-typed answer. EX: "What Does Vanna White Say to the Preacher? Wedding Vowels!"

Each puzzle came with four jumbled words related to the cartoon. In each round, one player was dubbed the "yeller" and the other was dubbed "speller". On each word, the speller's job is to rearrange magnetic letters in the word while the yeller had 15 seconds to guess what the word is. Solving the word, won the word; but not solving it gave the opposing team a chance to unscramble it. If both teams fail, the teams alternate turns guessing the word; the host places letters of the team's choosing one at a time until one team gets it.

The first team to guess the word won $50 and the right to solve the cartoon riddle. On each turn at the cartoon, the letter that fall into the red squares were put into the cartoon puzzle from left to right. The team that won the word had a few seconds to guess the punny phrase. If they do solve it, they win the round, but if they don't solve it, another word was played. The first team to solve the puzzle, wins bonus money.

Three puzzles were played, the first worth $250, the second $500 and the third $1,000, for a grand total of $1,750 in bonus money. The team with the most money at the end of the game, wins the game and plays the bonus round for a grand prize, in this case a 1989 Camaro.

Bonus Game[]

The bonus game was played with one more cartoon puzzle and six words that share a common theme (in this case, a category of Siskel & Ebert with the words related to movies) and a 60-second time limit. As before, the speller rearranged the letters on each word while the yeller made unlimited guesses. As soon as the yeller yelled out the right word, it was revealed, and the winning team moved to the next word. Passing on a word simply moved on to the next word. Each correct word was worth $100, then when time was called, the key letters from the correctly guessed words moved over to the final puzzle. After the letters were placed on the board at random, the team was given 15 seconds to confer and then guess the puzzle. Solving the puzzle won the car.

British Version[]

While this version of Jumble didn't sell in the United States, it did make it to air in the United Kingdom. This version, hosted by Jeff Stevenson, aired on ITV from 12 March (March 12) 1991 through 4 September (September 4) 1992.


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  • A pitchfilm attached to the pilot (though not the copy below) included clips of a second pilot featuring Roger E. Mosley and Rebeca Arthur.
  • Following Dean's description of the car, Richard says "Thanks, Charlie O." The clarity of Dean's announcing suggests that Charlie O'Donnell had originally announced for the pilot.


Based on the newspaper word game. Adapted by Bill Hillier


Jumble at The Game Show Pilot Light
UK Game Shows page on the British version

YouTube Videos[]

The full pilot
A full episode of the British version