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Break the Bank was a gameshow that ran twice (Once in the seventies, and then again in the eighties), although under two totally different formats and hosted by no more than 4 people. The first format was more of a Hollywood Squares ripoff than anything else, and had a tacky brown color scheme. The second was a basic quiz show, only had way too much glitz to avoid being tacky itself. The information for the 70's run follows:


70's Run Stats:

Lifespan: April - July 1976, September 1976 - September 1977.
Hosts: Jack Barry, Tom Kennedy
Announcers: Johnny Jacobs, Ernie Anderson
Produced by: Barry & Enright Productions

Game Format (Part 1)

Two players play, with the help of 9 celebrities. A player picks one of 20 boxes off of a large gameboard in front of them, and then the celebrity on the same row and column as the picked box (example follows below) are asked a question. One of the celebrities gives the right answer to the question, the other gives a wrong answer. The player (in a basic Hollywood Squares agree/disagree fashion) picks the celebrity that he/she believes is giving the right answer. If they choose correctly, they win the box. If they choose incorrectly, their opponent wins the box. Play alternates until the show ends.

Game Board

       |Celeb1|Celeb2|Celeb3|Celeb4|Celeb5|
_______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb6| Box1 | Box2 | Box3 | Box4 | Box5 |
|______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb7| Box6 | Box7 | Box8 | Box9 | Box10|
|______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb8| Box11| Box12| Box13| Box14| Box15|
|______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb9| Box16| Box17| Box18| Box19| Box20|
|______|______|______|______|______|______|

For example, if player 1 picked box 11, then celebs 1 and 8 would be asked the question. If player 2 picked box 19, the question would be asked to Celeb 4 and 9.

Game Format (Part 2):
Behind each box was either $100, $200, $300, a Money Bag, or a wild card. All of the 3 money amounts were on the board 3 times, there were 5 Money Bags, and 1 Wild Card. The groups of three were all next to each other, giving the players hints as to where to go next. (Example below this paragraph)

If a player picked a blank box (NONE in the example), they lost their turn immediately.

If a player captured a Money Bag, they could either turn it over and pick another box, or keep the bag, thereby ending their turn. If a player grabbed 3 Money Bags, they won a fabulous prize package.

The Wild Card allowed a player to make any group of 3, excepting the Money Bags.

The player at the end of the round with the most winnings moved on to the bonus round.

Example of a Board Layout:
       |Celeb1|Celeb2|Celeb3|Celeb4|Celeb5|
_______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb6| $100 | $100 | MBag | NONE | WILD |
|______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb7| MBag | $100 | NONE | MBag | NONE |
|______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb8| $200 | $200 | NONE | $300 | MBag |
|______|______|______|______|______|______|
|      |      |      |      |      |      |
|Celeb9| NONE | $200 | MBag | $300 | $300 |
|______|______|______|______|______|______|


Bonus Round:The bonus round was typical "Avoid the Bad Guy" fare, a trademark of B+E productions. 8 celebs on the board had signs with dollar values from $100 - $1000 on them, while a ninth had a sign that read "BUST". A player had to pick celebrities until they either chickened out (and kept their money), hit the BUST sign (which made them lose all their money), or reached $2000 in total (which was then raised to $5000).


Sources: All information on the format, board, hosts, etc. was acquired from http://loogslair.com/gameshow/rules/breakbank.html .

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