Three on a Match

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Three on a Match
Premiere August 2, 1971
Finale June 28, 1974
Creator Bob Stewart
Network/Provider NBC
Style 30-minute game show
Company Bob Stewart Productions,
(Match Productions)
Seasons 3
Episodes 740
Origin USA

Three on a Match is a game show that aired on NBC. It was shown at 1:30 Eastern, 12:30 Central and 12 Noon Pacific.

Three contestants are shown three categories. They now select how many true-or-false questions out of four they can answer. The pot of money to be won is the total number of the questions selected multiplied by 10. The highest unmatched number selects a category and must answer all the questions in his/her contract to score the money. Some categories are "Double Pot," doubling the money to be won.

If all three contestants select the same amount of questions, they must choose again until at least one player has a different number. If the answering player makes a wrong answer, the other two players make question number selections based on the remaining categories. If they match numbers, the round ends and the remaining categories are discarded.

Once a contestant has enough money, he/she may go to the prize board. The board consists of three rows of money values ($20, $30 and $40) by four rows of color blocks (blue, green, yellow, red). The contestant purchases a square with the objective of selecting three matching prize squares (each prize appears once in each column) which constitutes a game win. One square is labeled "No Match" and merely serves as a red herring. A contestant may purchase up to three squares per column and may continue buying squares until he/she has made a match of three squares or has run out of sufficient money (any money left over is carried to the next game). Winning five games awards the contestant a new car. Making a match on the first three picks won the contestant an "Instant Jackpot" that started at $1000 and went up $100 each game it was not won. Later in the run, the Instant Jackpot prize was the car, and a contestant winning five games won a European vacation.

Later in the show, the main game featured elements such as "Two Free Picks" or "Three Free Picks" to assist players in the prize round. Contestants vied to win $5000 in cash and prizes by being the first to win three matches. The board had pictures of people and things the players had to match up. Also, the contestants tried to pair up halves of a $1000 bill on the board. Each contestant in turn made up to three picks; the first to uncover either half of the $1000 bill made one more pick to find the other half.

NBC daytime head Lin Bolen apparently wanted Bob Stewart to modify Three on a Match, but instead of doing that, he created Winning Streak, in lieu of canceling Three on a Match. Winning Streak was slotted at 10:30 AM ET, replacing Jeopardy!, which moved into the slot Three on a Match occupied.

There was talk of reviving Three on a Match in 1982, but there was not enough station interest. Trivia sidenote: the phrase "three on a match" is taken from a World War 2 superstition in that if three soldiers lit their cigarettes using the same match, the enemy would be able to spot the glow of the lit match, following it to the third soldier and picking him off.



Person Role Duration
Main Cast
Bill Cullen Host 1 2 3
Don Pardo Announcer 1 2 3



DVD Releases

There are no DVD releases for this show.

External Sites