|Down You Go was a
of Hangman long before Wheel of Fortune came along. A
panel of four received a cryptic clue to a phrase, and tried to fill in
the phrase by calling for letters. Chosing a wrong letter
a panelist for the round (hence, "down you go"). Prizes were
to the viewers who submitted phrases.
The show was originally a serious and respectable affair hosted by the distinguished Dr. Bergen Evans, better known as the question "authority" for big-money quizzes like The $64,000 Question. It was also notable as being one of the few shows seen at one time or another on all four of the original broadcast networks. On the final NBC version, a 1956 summer series, Bill and his more mainstream celebrity panel (including Jayne Mansfield and Arthur Treacher) played the show mostly for laughs.