September 1989-September 1990


Daily Syndication


John Harlan, Johnny Gilbert


Bob Stewart & Sande Stewart Productions

"Today 16 players are here trying to win $25,000. Every one of them holds a different riddle, but only one of them holds the Jackpot Riddle. You never know when someone in our game will stand up and yell..."



Geoff was back behind the podium for an all-new version of his original riddle-packed hit.

 The game was largely the same as the original NBC series, with the following differences:


The Expert was now called the King/Queen of the Hill. (I know, I know, BIG difference in the  game...)


The Super Jackpot value and the Target Number had nothing to do with each other. There was no multiplier, the Target Number would be revealed and then the Super Jackpot value would be determined randomly.


A riddle's value was only added to the Jackpot if answered correctly.


Specialty riddles were mixed among the pack. Among them: "Instant Target Match," which increased the Jackpot by precisely the amount needed to reach the Target Number; "Double Dollars," which doubled the value of the Jackpot; "Return Trip Riddle," which allowed the player who answered it correctly to return the following week; and "Bonus Prize Riddle," which offered a lovely gift instead of money.


If a King/Queen of the Hill could answer all fourteen regular riddles first and hold the Jackpot riddle until the end, without a mistake along the way, $1,000 was added to the value of the Jackpot.


As a time-saving measure, contestants were distributed many wallets at the beginning of the week instead of just one. At the beginning of each game Geoff would announce a color and the gallery would use those wallets for the game.


Sadly, this version expired rather quickly due to outside circumstances. The show's syndication distributor was going bankrupt rather quickly at the time "Jackpot!" launched production. As it was the show was put on a shoestring budget (to accommodate the syndicate's dwindling resources, the entire season was taped in just over two weeks) but the corner cutting wasn't enough to salvage the syndicate, and Jackpot! was cancelled in March as a result of not having a company left to syndicate it. This couldn't have been thrilling news for Geoff, who, for the second time, was seeing "Jackpot!" go down the tubes for a reason that had nothing to do with the quality of the show as Bob Stewart intended it.


What can I say here? Usually I try to conclude these things with a round-up of the show's quality and the host's connection to it, but we're talking about a host who knows his stuff by this point hosting a familiar and proven format, so what can I say beyond "I wish the show lasted longer"? Sorry this one didn't work out Geoff, I REALLY liked this one.



Up two levels to GEOFF EDWARDS' WORLD

Up three levels to GAME SHOW UTOPIA