If you haven’t read part one of this list, go read it now to get my criteria. Before I start on numbers 20-11, I have a few comments on the state of game shows today. Bob Saget did a great job last night on 1 vs. 100- that’s going to be a great show, I can already tell. Bob Goen is doing a good job on What’s the Question? on the Game Show Network. The only problem with that show is it gives away the answer to the question while the letters are filling in. I’m astonished, however, that Family Feud trotted out John O’Hurley as host this year. Just when I thought they couldn’t do any worse than Richard Karn, I’m proven wrong. Stick to Seinfeld and ballroom dancing.

Now, here we go once again with Matt Walker’s Comprehensive Guide to the Top 30 Game Show Hosts of All Time, numbers 20-11:

20) Bud Collyer, Beat the Clock, To Tell the Truth
Bud Collyer always managed to make the incredibly stupid stunts on Beat the Clock actually look like the production staff had spent time and money creating them, when in retrospect I’d be shocked if anything on that show cost more than $5 and took more than 5 minutes to make. He was great as host of a show that was a landmark in the era in which it was still a big deal requiring formal attire to appear on television.

Below is a typical Beat the Clock game with a stunt that was just a big version of a kids party game.

19) Chuck Barris, The Gong Show
Chuck Barris- CIA Hitman? Crazed producer? Funny pothead? What was he, really? I’ll never know. What I do know, however, is that his antics as host of the Gong Show were the highlight of the 1970s. He introduced some actual talent to the world (Cheryl Lynn, who sang “Got to Be Real”), some bizarre acts (Gene Gene the Dancing Machine!), and had the brilliance to team up Artie Johnson, Jaye P. Morgan, and Jamie Farr as judges. I bet that’s what Simon Cowell had in mind when he nabbed Brandy and David Hasslehoff for America’s Got Talent.

Here are two classic Gene Gene the Dancing Machine clips where you can see Chuck dance along.

18) Peter Marshall, Hollywood Squares
Pater Marshall was great in that he realized the star of his show was Paul Lynde, with supporting characters being the other stars. He never tried to upstage them, and like a true professional he took their ribbing and laughed as hard as anyone. Also his real name was Ralph Pierre LaCock. You have to love someone named LaCock.

Watch some classic Paul Lynde moments below, and the return of Peter Marshall to the Hollywood Squares a few years ago.

17) Bert Convy, Tattletales, Super Password, Win, Lose, or Draw
Bert Convy was a double threat in the world of game shows as both producer and host. He ushered in a new style game show with Tattletales (think The Newleywed Game with celebrities). I always liked the gimmick that show had of giving money to a section of the audience that was dependant on which celebrity couple won the show.

Here is a great funny moment from Super Password and a clip from Tattletales.

16) Groucho Marx, You Bet Your Life
Where can you start with groucho? Without a doubt the quickest witted man in history, he knew how to ride the fine line of asking uncomfortable questions while still being funny better than anyone. Harpo can keep his scene from I Love Lucy, I’ll take Groucho on You Bet Your Life. This is a great example of what he did best:

Contestant: Groucho, I have eight children.
Groucho: Well, that’s some habit your husband has.
Contestant: Well you have habits, too, Groucho. You have your cigar.
Groucho: Yes, but I take it out once in a while!

15) Richard Dawson, Family Feud
Richard Dawson probably kissed more women on TV than anyone else in history. I liked him best on Hogan’s Heroes, but his place in game show history can not be denied. From his work as a panelist on Match Game to hosting the Feud, Richard Dawson added a certain perverted older charm to all his shows. You have to love a guy with the balls to kiss a man’s mother, wife, and daughter right in front of him. He also married a contestant he met while taping the Feud. I bet he was a swinger.

This is one of the most famous game show bloopers around- watch how Richard cracks up at an incredibly stupid answer.

14) Ray Combs, Family Feud, Family Challenge
The best Family Feud host was also it’s craziest. Any man that would attempt suicide by smashing themselves in the head with a brick is coocoo for cocoa puffs. He eventually succeeded at hanging himself while in the loony bin, and died penniless while estranged from his wife and 6 kids. He thought the Feud would be his launching pad to huge success as a talk show host. Doesn’t he realize hosting a game show is the best gig in the world? He should have sat back and enjoyed the $6 Million a year he made as a host. Regardless, he was great at his job and had some memorable wrestling cameos.

Watch below to see Ray handing hosting duties over to a formar contestant for a few minutes.

13) Howie Mandel, Deal or No Deal
The two best Howie Mandel stories I’ve heard have nothing to do with game shows, but they are funny nonetheless:

1) He had a contractor working on his house that used his guest bathroom (not his personal bathroom, but his guest bathroom). Being a total germophobe, he had to have the toilet in the bathroom replaced because it drove him crazy that a dirty worker had used it.

2) He guest hosted on Live with Regis and Kathy Lee one day, while the guest that day was Halle Berry. When announcing who would be on the show that day, he said something to the effect of, “Halle Berry ran into me in the hallway and she just kept on going.” This apparently upset her to where she threatened to walk off the show and when she did come on, she berated Howie for the entire interview. What a cunt.

Now that that’s out of the way, on to his prowess as a game show host. Howie knows how to keep the show entertaining regardless of how annoying the contestants may be. He also realizes that the stars of the show are the models and doesn’t get in the way. He really does earn his $100,000 an episode.

Here’s Howie taking full advantage of the set to entertain the audience, and doing what he does best- the tease into the break and the tease to the next show.

12) Peter Tomarken, Press Your Luck, Bargain Hunters, Wipeout, Paranoia
When will people learn- STAY OUT OF SINGLE ENGINE PLANES! He sadly passed away while flying to San Diego to pick up a patient for transport to UCLA medical center. Press Your Luck was a daily staple of mine while in Elementary School- it seemd to be on when I got home from school, and I loved that show- the flashing lights, the Whammies dancing around- what’s not to love? Peter always seemed to be
astonished at what was going on, which added to the drama of the show.

Below are a few great game show moments- first the infamous “spin battle”, then Peter showing that he can’t dance, a 3-way tie at $0, and finally a clip from the great Michael Larson run where he figured out the patterns used on the show. Go read about it

11) Dick Clark, $10,000 Pyramid (and variations)
As producer of many shows, Dick Clark has influenced pop culture more than any other host on this list. From his experience hosting American Bandstand, Dick Clark knew how to run a show. I always enjoyed what he would do if a contestant lost in the bonus round. Instead of just blurting out an answer, he would offer up some clues of his own and they would invariably instantly know the right answer. There’s nothing quite like watching a host rub it in.

Here are some Dick Clark bloopers and the fantastic bonus round of Pyramid. I like the way he explains the rules and keeps everyone calm in this clip before giving the good news.

That’s it for 20-11. I will be putting up the top ten soon…