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Bob Barker shows us what the 1970s were like.
March 9, 2010 3:46 PM   Subscribe

What a pretty little outfit, good girl! Look at you, wow, you're not just a pretty face! Now come over here, stand close to me.
posted by Meatbomb (47 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
That wasn't that creepy.

Bob Barker is awesome.
posted by empath at 3:51 PM on March 9, 2010 [10 favorites]


Bob's very important. He has many leather-bound books and his office smells of rich mahogany.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 3:51 PM on March 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


Half of that stuff is just so that the tight camera shots get both him and the contestant.

Was I the only one surprised by how not-dated the ticky-ticky-ticky girl looked? Everyone else looked like a thrift store threw up on them, but she could be any teenage girl walking down the street today.
posted by phunniemee at 3:53 PM on March 9, 2010 [4 favorites]


This pretty little girl works right next to Bob Barker Blvd. Really, I do. I always wear panties when I walk down its sidewalk.
posted by psylosyren at 3:55 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


I was a girl in the seventies, and I can assert from personal experience that every adult male acted exactly that way. Even the ones that didn't mean to be creepy.

Also, this show aired for 35 years.

Also, Bob talked the same way to little old ladies.

That is not to let Bob off the hook for his harassment suits, but those suits were filed on behalf of women who were adults when they worked for him, who were disgruntled, and whose suits were eventually dismissed. I don't think it's quite fair to imply that he's a pedophile. A sexist? Yes. A man who displays, in these clips, the acceptable mores of his time? Yes. A pedophile? I think that's not fair in the total absence of evidence.
posted by Miko at 3:56 PM on March 9, 2010 [33 favorites]


If you want to see what 70s sexual harassment was like through game shows, you need to move up to the big leagues with Richard Dawson.
posted by Muddler at 3:57 PM on March 9, 2010 [9 favorites]


Wow, that was painfully awkward. The blocking-for-better-camera-shots stuff I can understand, the "that child has a mind" and "you've been running after the boys" parts, not so much. I always enjoyed the show but seeing the cringiest parts edited into one 2-minute YouTube video is hard to stomach.

But Miko's right, that was just the way things were done back then, by and large. Still doesn't make it more palatable. For all of the crap going on in the world these days, we have made strides in some areas.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 3:58 PM on March 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


If you watch wheel of fortune, you'll notice that Pat Sajak always takes the arm of a woman at the end of the show to position her in the right spot on the stage... but not the guys...

we could make a big deal out of that too, but it wouldn't be any more interesting then this video is....
posted by HuronBob at 3:59 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Babblesort here reminding you to have your game show host spayed or neutered.
posted by Babblesort at 4:03 PM on March 9, 2010 [11 favorites]


Remember to spay and neuter your pets.
posted by bendybendy at 4:05 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


What the hell is this crap? Where's my alpine climber?

YODELEEEEEE-HEEE HOOOOOO!!!!
posted by ExitPursuedByBear at 4:10 PM on March 9, 2010 [8 favorites]


Born in 1923, Barker was 83 years old at the time of his retirement. He holds the record of being the oldest man ever to host a regularly scheduled television game show and the oldest man ever to host a weekday television program since the inception of American network television. He set a longevity record by holding a weekday TV job continuously for 51 years.

In 1979, he became a vegetarian and began promoting animal rights.

In 1996, Bob Barker made Adam Sandler his bitch.

Not enough proof that Bob Barker is totally bad-ass?

Bob Barker Destroys Craig Ferguson's Desk
posted by stringbean at 4:20 PM on March 9, 2010 [6 favorites]


Yeah, even at the time, I got a funny vibe off Richard Dawson that I never got off Bob Barker. I suspect if Barker had acted much differently, he wouldn't have been the host very long.
posted by stinkycheese at 4:29 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


I have a huge retro-crush on Little Miss TickyTicky.
posted by Evstar at 4:33 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ticky Ticky looks just like a friend of mine... face and hair almost exactly the same..
posted by empath at 4:52 PM on March 9, 2010


Which one is the Miss Ticky Ticky?
posted by geoff. at 4:57 PM on March 9, 2010


Well, that explains where Barney Stinson gets it from.
posted by mollywas at 4:59 PM on March 9, 2010 [4 favorites]


Oh Pamela, the one who is wearing the green American Apparel ... wait what how is this possible.
posted by geoff. at 5:00 PM on March 9, 2010


Bob Barker also markets his products to detention facilities.
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 5:09 PM on March 9, 2010


SPOILER ALERT, mollywas!
posted by cgc373 at 5:10 PM on March 9, 2010


I was hoping for something much creepier. Calling adult women "little ladies" may not fly now but it's hardly creepy.

A true pedophile used to come in my library branch until we booted him out a few years ago and he called one of my coworkers "little lady" all the time and, man, she hated his guts.
posted by zzazazz at 5:25 PM on March 9, 2010


Yes, with the clever editing and all, it looks "creepy," perhaps ..... but as others have said, this was standard TV game show host patter in the 1970s. By this standard, Richard Dawson is way creepier than Bob Barker, I'd agree. Not to say that this behavior is acceptable by 2010 standards, but there are similar things that you could find "creepy" about almost any TV show from the 1970s, from "Love American Style" all the way down to "Three's Company." And I'd be willing to bet that you could find the phrase "Atta girl!" used unironically in movies through the 1980s.

Besides, it's not as though our current cultural diet of steady reality show skankiness isn't its own brand of creepy.
posted by blucevalo at 5:39 PM on March 9, 2010 [4 favorites]


Bob Barker with non-white hair is just a bizarre image.
posted by madajb at 6:05 PM on March 9, 2010


geoff, TickyTicky's the little cutie he tickles. Am I being 1970s sexist?
posted by Evstar at 6:13 PM on March 9, 2010


Thanks, Huffington Post The Internet Newspaper, for tirelessly reblogging this earth-shattering piece of journalism.

Yes, a few of those clips were bad, but come on. So many were him just being downright sweet to a contestant that was pretty much losing it over having won. (I mean, someone wins a dishwasher or whatever and starts sobbing uncontrollably. How do you not sound condescending when you’re talking them back from the ledge?)
posted by Garak at 6:16 PM on March 9, 2010


I watched it without sound, and I was wondering when the creepiness would set in*. I saw nothing inappropriate, which is interesting. Whatever creepiness you're finding is totally based on what's being said, not on body language.

* Other than the wall-to-wall shag, I suppose...
posted by GhostintheMachine at 6:16 PM on March 9, 2010


Bob Barker with white hair is just a bizarre image.
posted by scrowdid at 6:43 PM on March 9, 2010


empath: Ticky Ticky looks just like a friend of mine... face and hair almost exactly the same...

I had the same thought. Or rather, my first thought was to briefly consider the possibility that my friend was a time traveler.
posted by Kattullus at 6:48 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


Bah. Better than Drew Carry mumbling and shuffling around.
posted by PuppyCat at 7:12 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Sorry, I only watched the show for the curvy models showing off all sortsa goods. Who's this "Bob Barker" guy again?
posted by not_on_display at 7:43 PM on March 9, 2010


I'm surprised they didn't make more mention of Barker's Beauties, many of whom went on to pose in Playboy, and at least one of whom sued Bob Barker for sexual harrassment. One of my first adolescent fantasies was about Heather Kozar, in fact, until I got a little older and realized it was actually kind of creepy that Barker basically kept a harem of playmates around to show off washer-dryers and collect Plinko chips. Though it's based on absolutely no evidence, really, I'm pretty sure that behind the scenes, Bob Barker was a mean, sadistic, lecherous bastard.
posted by albrecht at 8:28 PM on March 9, 2010


Holy cow, those are fantastic quality 1970s video clips... it looks like it's mastered straight off the 2-inch tapes. Yet there's not a "Game Network" logo. I wonder where these came from.
posted by crapmatic at 8:33 PM on March 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


The original link says that it was compiled from a "Best Of" DVD (available on Amazon).
posted by blucevalo at 8:48 PM on March 9, 2010


Great. Let's get all retro and fuck with Barker. Sure he's a sexist scumbag. But daytime game shows can't have anything to do with it right? I mean, it's not all about pandering to the LCD is it? It's all about Barker and his job. His job.

His job.

And it can't have anything to do with the state of television at the time right? Or the producers? Or the beancounters?

It has to be about the guys in the front that made money that we all just wish we had.

And BTW, Drew doesn't need the cash.

I need the cash.

And given the chance I'd tweak a girl's ribs and go ticky, ticky, ticky.

Fuck that, I'd grab a guys balls and massage them for a decent paycheck right now.

Actually I'd do that for free, but anyway...

We're all 70's TV sucks amirite?

Back then I was all, this is the best Thai stick I have ever smoked, I can't move. Where's that blotter?

Bob, who?

OOOh look. Flintstones are so fucking funny!

AHHH! Mummenschanz commercial fuck! Turn it off. TURN IT OFF!!!! Black spiders! AHHHHHH!
posted by Splunge at 9:03 PM on March 9, 2010


This video was put together by Rich, writer of the hilarious blog FourFour.
posted by Locative at 9:42 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


Daryl Somers in Australia is exaclty the same. Slimy fucker. Makes my skin crawl. He's been on Oz TV for the best part of 35 years I reckon.

The long running Hey Hey it's Saturday was where he was at his skin crawlingest best. [PREVIOUSLY]
posted by uncanny hengeman at 9:52 PM on March 9, 2010


I used to hang out at this bar where one of the bartenders actually won the whole game -- showcase showdown and everything. He had a recording of it he showed us once. Bob Barker made fun of him a bit because he kinda came off like a stoner/surfer type. He got to bounce around on a bed with the Barker Beauties while Bob signed off and the end credits rolled.

Oh, those Barker Beauties, doing their little disco pantomime performances next to random products and consumer goods, never speaking and always smiling. That show was creepy and weird on many levels way past the 1970s.
posted by Kirk Grim at 10:21 PM on March 9, 2010


Wait, what was Bert Convy doing on TPIR in that clip at the end? It's like a daytime version of the Magnum, P.I./Simon & Simon crossover.

Convy is Simon & Simon, obviously.
posted by Lazlo at 1:01 AM on March 10, 2010


It's not like the "Barker beauties" idea has disappeared from our culture. If it was creepy then, it's creepy now. Have a look around you.
posted by Miko at 5:55 AM on March 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


I was a girl in the seventies, and I can assert from personal experience that every adult male acted exactly that way. Even the ones that didn't mean to be creepy.

Ditto and Word.

If you weren't there, you have no idea how weird that time was. From about the age of 12 I was constantly hit on by men. Admittedly, I looked older, but not THAT much older. Guys my own age grabbed at me, and it was accepted and normal and no one even suggested that it wasn't cool. (I'm shuddering as I'm writing this.)

Women were paid less for similar work, and it was perfectly okay. I once had a boss tell a co-worker of mine that although she was doing a great job, that she wasn't getting a large raise, because her husband made a lot of money.

At any rate, the attitudes were different and if Bob DIDN'T make comments like that, it would have been thought weird.

Boy am I glad that shit is over. I'd have to hurt someone if they tried it today.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 9:12 AM on March 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


This video was put together by Rich, writer of the hilarious blog FourFour.

Came in here to note that, kind of surprised HuffPo couldn't toss him a link (although maybe they didn't realize to give the benefit of the doubt).
posted by imabanana at 10:10 AM on March 10, 2010


It's not like the "Barker beauties" idea has disappeared from our culture. If it was creepy then, it's creepy now. Have a look around you.

Example one: Deal or No Deal

Also, my mother was a contestant on Jeopardy! I am here to tell you that Alex Trebeck is kind of an asshole (I couldn't comment about whether he's sexist or not). It may just be a 'male game show host of a certain era' thing--and I would argue that though the Beauties may still exist, Barker's sexism towards contestants does not find the same analog in the modern game show host (note: Regis does not count, as he's still 'of a certain era').
posted by librarylis at 12:33 PM on March 10, 2010


If you weren't there, you have no idea how weird that time was. From about the age of 12 I was constantly hit on by men. Admittedly, I looked older, but not THAT much older. Guys my own age grabbed at me, and it was accepted and normal and no one even suggested that it wasn't cool. (I'm shuddering as I'm writing this.)

I was there, during puberty (!), and my sense of it was that the Bob Barkers of the world -- my Dad's generation -- thought they were being courtly. And that was before my consciousness was raised, dontchaknow, so I wasn't even squicked about it back then... just a little embarrassed.

As for the random groping by dudes my own age, somehow my friends and I had been taught to be flattered by that, especially if the boy was a hot jock. (If a nerd did it, however, you were expected to be outraged.)

What a fucked-up time that was. Being "pretty" and submissive was where it was at.
posted by GrammarMoses at 3:44 PM on March 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


Dude. Ticky Ticky looks eerily like me. I don't remember being a contestant on the Price is Right. It's kinda freaking me out.
posted by little e at 9:52 PM on March 11, 2010


Look who's back, hooray!!!!!!!111
posted by Meatbomb at 10:10 PM on March 11, 2010


Hi! I'm back!! (from 1974 and yes I too got to feel the Barker aren't you jealous)
posted by little e at 10:30 PM on March 11, 2010


shit i got to feel the barker but he said "gwan home kid yer bothrin' me STEP RIGHT THIS WAY STEP RIGHT UP" i think i went to the wrong circus
posted by not_on_display at 3:55 AM on March 12, 2010


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