You Bet Your Life

Ever watch reruns of the original Groucho Marx version of this legendary 1950-61 game show? It turns out You Bet Your Life wasn’t as golden as its legend — it was amiable but poky, with Groucho spending entirely too much time scoring easy one-liners off the contestants. Bill Cosby’s new, much-hyped version is all too true to Groucho’s show: talky, smug, and soooo slow; the Cosby-ized You Bet makes Wheel of Fortune look like cutting-edge MTV.

The game itself now seems simple-minded, with trivia questions on the order of ”What legendary rock & roll trio became a quartet when Neil Young joined them in 1969?” Fishing for ”Crosby, Stills & Nash” is a rather lame attempt to lure baby boom-ers away from Jeopardy! This You Bet plays to all of Cos’ worst comedic traits; he overdoes his patented deadpan in lieu of any real jokes, and ends up looking as bored as we are watching him. C-

You Bet Your Life
  • TV Show