Classic Concentration (TV Series 1987–1991) - Plot Summary Poster



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  • Revival of the classic NBC game show where two contestants, one a returning champion, faced a computer-generated board of 25 squares. Game play was the same as before: Each contestant called out a pair of numbers on the board, which contained the names of prizes and WILD and TAKE cards (the latter two explained later). No match passed control to the opponent, but a match gave whatever prize was named or a TAKE marker, revealed two pieces of the rebus (identifying a person, phrase, place, thing, etc.) and allowed him/her a chance to solve the rebus. WILD cards provided an automatic match; revealing two WILD cards in the same turn earned a $500 bonus, while uncovering the third take meant a $1,000 bonus and the opportunity to reveal up to five pieces of the rebus at once. Contestants uncovering a TAKE card (red and green cards, with a color match required) could, upon a correct match, elect to hold onto the marker to wait for their opponent to collect a better prize or to take back a desired prize their opponent had already taken. Only upon correctly solving the rebus does a player actually win what he/she claimed from the board; the loser forfeits all his gifts. The winner played a bonus game that used a 15-square board, with a car used as a grand prize. The model names of eight cars (e.g., FIREBIRD, JUSTY, 323, etc.) appeared on the board, with one of them not having a match. Contestants successfully matching the seven car names within 35 seconds won the last car named and retired the player undefeated; otherwise, an extra 5 seconds was added to the clock each for each subsequent trip to the bonus game (later in the show's run, uncovering a "FIVE BONUS SECONDS" card and winning the game added 5 more seconds to the clock). The rules affecting a champion's reign, aside from winning a car and leaving undefeated, changed throughout the run at first, it was one loss and done (early on, contestants could also win more than one car); later, players cold lose twice before their defeat; still later, a best-of-three format was used, while the rules reverted back to the second format even later. An annual tournament of champions (with participants determined by cash winnings) offered a trip-around-the-world as a grand prize during the first year; during the second through fourth years, a luxury car was the top prize. Production of "Classic Concentration" ceased during the summer of 1991; the network aired reruns through January 1994.


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