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The third of three different Game Shows with this name, from Kline & Friends, was syndicated from 1985-86. Married couples played in this format, competing for time to play an elaborate Bonus Round. In this round, the winning couple participates in various timed stunts; completing a stunt won a punch card which could be used to help "break the Bank" and win a cash jackpot.

It was Gene Rayburn's last series on broadcast TV; Joe Farago replaced him as MC fourteen weeks into the show's run.


Game Show Tropes in use:

  • Bonus Round: The Prize Vault, which originally used stunts but was later replaced by the Master Puzzle. The Bank in and of itself is a sort of Bonus-Bonus Round.
  • Confetti Drop: Any time the Bank was broken.
  • Game Show Winnings Cap: During the Stunt era, couples could stay until reaching $75,000 or were defeated, with any winnings over that amount being donated to charity. Upon the inception of the Master Puzzle, couples retired upon breaking the Bank, with the same winnings limit in place. (The credits said the $75,000 cap was "network policy", even though this version aired in syndication.)
  • Personnel:
  • Whammy:
    • During the Master Puzzle era, one of the Bank Cards (now lined up on a podium near the Bank itself) was actually a Bankrupt Card. If it was inserted into the Bank slot, it took away any prizes the contestants had already been awarded from any Bank Cards inserted that day.
    • In addition, the Bankrupt Card remained in the Bank Card selection on every show, regardless of whether or not it was inserted into the Bank slot the previous day. At least in theory, a couple could narrow down their choice of Bank Cards to just two — the Bank-Breaking Card and the Bankrupt Card.

This version provides examples of:

  • Ascended Extra: Before becoming host, Joe Farago did a Prize Vault stunt on three episodes.
  • Missing Episode: Minus a week of reruns in December 1985 (the first week of the series), no Rayburn episodes have been reran. The most common explanation is because Rayburn was extremely dissatisfied with the program; he would refuse to talk about his experiences on the program in later interviews near the end of his life. As a result, you likely won't be seeing Rayburn's tenure again outside of YouTube ... even more than a decade after his death.
  • Title Drop: "You want to find the one Bank Card that will break the Bank."
  • Title Scream: Done as a throw to commercial in the Farago era.
  • Trans Atlantic Equivalent: A French version hosted by Michel Robbe, La Porte Magique ("The Magic Door"), aired in the late 1980s on the now-defunct LaCinq. This version used the Stunt format (complete with the 5-10-20-40-80-100 payouts and even the Number Jumbler) and a pretty similar set. Here's an opening (Bank is at ₣127,475), a promo, and a full opening segment (Bank is at ₣114,645).
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