is an American television game show
A game show is a type of radio or television program in which members of the public, television personalities or celebrities, sometimes as part of a team, play a game which involves answering questions or solving puzzles usually for money and/or prizes...
, hosted by Chuck Woolery
Charles Herbert "Chuck" Woolery is an American game show host. He has had long-running tenures hosting several different game shows. He was the original host of Wheel of Fortune from 1975–81, the original incarnation of Love Connection from 1983–94, and Scrabble from 1984–90...
, in which singles attempted to connect with a compatible partner of the opposite gender. The show debuted in syndication on September 19, 1983 and ended on July 1, 1994, after more than 2,000 shows. Reruns continued to air until September 8, 1995. The series was relaunched for one season in 1998 under the same title with Pat Bullard
Patrick Bullard is a Canadian writer and comedian. He was born in Mississauga, Ontario.He has written for the sitcoms Roseanne, Reba, Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place, and Grace Under Fire...
was produced by Eric Lieber Productions in association with and distributed by Telepictures
Telepictures is an American production company, currently operating as a label of Warner Bros. Television, with Hilary Estey McLoughlin currently serving as President...
Lorimar-Telepictures was a production and television syndication firm established in 1986 with the merger of Lorimar and Telepictures until both TV divisions became separate in 1988...
(1986–1989), Lorimar Television
Lorimar, later known as Lorimar Television and Lorimar Distribution, was an American television production company that was later a subsidiary of Warner Bros., active from 1969 until 1993...
(1989–1990), and Warner Bros. Television
Warner Bros. Television is the television production arm of Warner Bros. Entertainment, itself part of Time Warner. Alongside CBS Television Studios, it serves as a television production arm of The CW Television Network , though it also produces shows for other networks, such as Shameless on...
The show was conceived as a modernized variant of The Dating Game
The Dating Game is an ABC television show that first aired on December 20, 1965 and was the first of many shows created and packaged by Chuck Barris from the 1960s through the 1980s...
, but with the opposite perspective.
The Dating Game
focused entirely on the choice of a dating partner; the date itself was a complete afterthought. A "bachelor or bachelorette
A bachelor is a man above the age of majority who has never been married . Unlike his female counterpart, the spinster, a bachelor may have had children...
" guest would question three potential dates who were present on the show's set, unseen, behind a barrier, and choose one of them. The guest would then meet his or her choice (after meeting the two losers), the venue for their date would be announced, and no further follow-up was offered; the audience never learned when (or if) the date actually took place, or whether it was a success or failure.
addressed the other end of the encounter: By the time the couple appeared on the show, they had already met and gone on their date. The guest had been offered his or her choice of three candidates selected by the show's producers. The choice was made solely on the basis of videotape
A videotape is a recording of images and sounds on to magnetic tape as opposed to film stock or random access digital media. Videotapes are also used for storing scientific or medical data, such as the data produced by an electrocardiogram...
d profiles. The couple then went on a what was essentially a blind date
A "blind date" is a date between two people who have not previously met. The phrase may also mean:Television*Blind Date , a dating game show in the United Kingdom*Blind Date , a reality show in the United States...
, their first (and often only) face-to-face encounter. After the date, an appearance on the show would be scheduled for the purpose of discussing the details of the date.
Other distinctions between the two dating shows included the contestants' minimum age (18 for Dating Game
; 23, later reduced to 21 for Love Connection
); and supervision of the date itself: A chaperone accompanied all Dating Game
couples, while Love Connection
dates were unchaperoned.
tapings took place before a live studio audience. The guest would be introduced by Woolery, and excerpts from the three candidates' videos would be shown. The studio audience members then voted on which candidate they thought would be the guest's best choice. (Results of the audience vote were not disclosed at this point.) In the 1998-99 version, home viewers also participated in the voting via the show's website, and their votes counted toward the overall vote with the studio audience. The guest then announced which of the three he or she had actually chosen, and that person, who was backstage in front of a closed-circuit television camera
Closed-circuit television cameras can produce images or recordings for surveillance purposes, and can be either video cameras, or digital stills cameras...
, was introduced. Since contestants were not permitted any sort of contact in the interim, this was theoretically the couple's first interaction since the date. Each party then related his or her impressions of the date's events, with Woolery acting as intermediary and facilitator. If both parties agreed that the date had been successful, the couple would be reunited onstage. If it had not gone well, the backstage contestant would disappear at the conclusion of the (often tumultuous) interview, never to be seen again. Woolery then revealed the results of the studio audience's earlier voting.
If the date had gone well, and a majority of studio audience members had agreed with the guest's choice, Woolery would congratulate the happy couple for making a "love connection." After confirming that they wished to see each other again - usually a formality, but in rare instances successful couples would elect not to pursue a further relationship - they would be offered a second date at the show's expense.
In the event that the date had been successful but the audience had made a different selection, the guest was given the choice of a second date with the same candidate, or a date with the candidate chosen by the audience.
If the date had been unsuccessful, and the audience had chosen a different candidate, the guest was offered a date with the audience's selection.
If the guest and the audience had both been wrong - that is, the guest and audience had picked the same candidate, but the date had not gone well - the guest was offered a date with either of the two unsuccessful candidates.
If a second date took place, the couple would be invited back for a second interview at a later taping.
The great majority of contestants were in their twenties and had never been married. However, older never-married, widowed, and divorced (some multiple times) contestants were occasionally selected as well. The show paid the expenses incurred on the date, plus $
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....
75 for incidentals. The incidental amount was increased to $100 for the 1998-1999 revival.
Usually, two or three segments aired per show. In a variation that aired on Fridays, a bachelor or bachelorette who had not yet chosen a date would make an appearance and allow the studio audience to make the choice for him or her, based on video excerpts. The couple would report back in the usual fashion several weeks later. If the couple hit it off, they were entitled to a second date at the show's expense. If not, the contestant could choose between the two losing candidates for the second date.
As of 1993, of the roughly 22,000 couples who met on the show, there were a total of 29 marriages, 8 engagements, and 15 children, according to Woolery.
"Two and two"
Woolery created his trademark phrase, "We're back in two and two" on Love Connection
(and simultaneously on Scrabble
Scrabble is an American television game show that was based on the Scrabble board game. The show was co-produced by Exposure Unlimited and Reg Grundy Productions. It ran from July 2, 1984 to March 23, 1990, and again from January 18 to June 11, 1993, both runs on NBC. A total of 1,335 episodes were...
, the day-time game show he hosted during the same period).
The line referred to the fact that the program would return in two minutes and two seconds, the total length of a standard commercial break.
The Chuck Woolery episodes were rerun on the USA Network
USA Network is an American cable television channel launched in 1971. Once a minor player in basic cable, the network has steadily gained popularity because of breakout hits like Monk, Psych, Burn Notice, Royal Pains, Covert Affairs, White Collar, Monday Night RAW, Suits, and reruns of the various...
from October 16, 1995 to June 6, 1997 and on the Game Show Network
The Game Show Network is an American cable television and direct broadcast satellite channel dedicated to game shows and casino game shows. The channel was launched on December 1, 1994. Its current slogan is "The World Needs More Winners"...
from January 6, 2003 to July 18, 2008. Beginning November 9, 2009, the Woolery episodes returned to GSN's weekday lineup. The Pat Bullard version has not been aired since its cancellation.