Home Shopping Game

Infobox Television
show_name = The Home Shopping Game
genre = Game show
creator = Roy Speer, Lowell 'Bud' Paxson
starring = Bob Goen
country = USA
language = English
num_seasons = 1
num_episodes = 65
executive_producers = Ken Yates, Robert O. Kaplan
location = KHSC-TV, Ontario, California
camera =
runtime = approx. 22-26 minutes
network = syndicated
picture_format =
audio_format =
first_run =
first_aired = June 15, 1987
last_aired = September 11, 1987
preceded_by =
followed_by =
related =
website =
imdb_id =
tv_com_id =

The 'Home Shopping Game' was a short-lived American television game show that aired in syndication during the summer of 1987. The show's key concept was blending the popularity of home shopping (such as HSN) with word-identification challenges. The show was syndicated nationally, but failed to attract enough viewers to remain on the air beyond its initial 13-week run.

Veteran game show host Bob Goen was the emcee; Bob Circosta, who was the first ever host on the Home Shopping Network, served as announcer/co-host, and Debbie Bartlett was the female model and assistant. Taped at the studios of HSN affiliate KHSC in Ontario, California, the show was an in-house production in association with MCA Television.


The game was played between two players, one a returning champion. At the beginning of each round, players were shown a piece of merchandise (which was also offered to viewers watching at home via an 800 number) and three scrambled words that pertained to that item, each containing anywhere from 6 to 8 letters. They were then asked a series of questions in a related category (for example, if the item offered was a man's watch, the category would be "Famous Men").

Each correct answer was worth $100 and revealed one letter in each word; if the answer was incorrect, no money was awarded, and the opponent was given the letters and the chance to make a guess. Correctly solving the first word paid an additional $100, the second was worth $200, and the last was worth $300. In addition, whichever player guessed more words in that round won the offered merchandise (If time ran short in a round, the questions were suspended and the remaining letters in each word were revealed one at a time, with either player buzzing in when they were able to identify it).

Round two was played exactly the same, and while gameplay remained the same for rounds three and four, the values were doubled to $200 for each correct answer and $200/$400/$600 for correctly guessing each respective word. The player with the most money after four rounds won the game and went on to play the bonus round; the losing contestant got to keep whatever money he/she earned during the game.

The bonus round was played in two parts; for the first part, the champion was shown one more item, followed by the initial letters of a five or six-word phrase pertaining to it; for example, if the item was a home blood pressure machine, the phrase might read:


If the champ was able to immediately solve the phrase (in this case, "Blood Is Thicker Than Water"), he/she won $2,000; if not, the next letter of each word was revealed, and the value dropped to $1,000. If the champ was still unable to solve it, more letters were revealed and the value dropped again to $500, and so on until the correct solution was given.

In the second part, the champ was given a word in the phrase (in this case, "thicker") and had 30 seconds to use the letters in that word to make as many new words of 3 or more letters as he/she could. Each acceptable word made within the time limit was multiplied by the value won in the first part (for example, if the champ won $1,000 in the first part and came up with 11 words in the second part, the payoff would be $11,000).

Champions were allowed to remain on the show until defeated.


* [http://imdb.com/title/tt0287227/ "Home Shopping Game"] Internet Movie Database

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