Boomer TV-Queen for a Day

Queen for a Day with winner and Jack Bailey (1958)
Queen for a Day with winner and Jack Bailey (1958)
Queen for a Day applause meter
Queen for a Day applause meter determined the winner. (1958)

In the tradition of shows giving away huge prizes, Boomer TV show, Queen for a Day was created. This TV and radio game show started airing on April 30, 1945, on the Mutual Radio Network in the city of New York. It then moved to Los Angeles about three months later and aired until 1957. NBC broadcasted Queen for a Day from 1956 to 1960. ABC then took over from 1960 to 1964. The show ran for 30 to 40 minutes so that it could sell more commercials at a premium fee of 4,000 USD a minute.

Jack Bailey, the show’s host, always opened by asking the majority of the audience (women), “Would you like to be queen for a day?”

Queen for a Day applause meter determined the winner. (1958)Then the contestants were presented and then asked questions with fashion commentary and commercials during intermissions. During the anticipated interview, Bailey would start asking the female contestant about the emotional and financial ordeals she had already experienced. The turning point of the interview was when Bailey asked the contestant why she wished to win the title of the show and what was it that she needed the most. Usually, therapeutic equipment or medical care were requested to improve someone’s health or way of life. It was always expected that the women cry while they were interviewed.

The audience selected the winner through the applause meter. The one who gets the highest applause level usually had the harshest situation. As the winning woman was adorned with a sparkling crown, a sable and red velvet robe, her prizes were announced. The losing contestants were given smaller prizes.

History of Queen for a Day Part 1

History of Queen for a Day Part 2

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