#31: Family Fortune's Irishman Problem
Since When Is An Isreali an Irishman?

ITV: (1983)

One of the best game show concepts in the world was Family Feud.  Created by Mark Goodson in 1976, the show would thrive all over the world.  In 1980, the show would make its way over to England under the name Family Fortunes.  There, the show would really thrive, adding some new wrinkles to the format, such as bonus prizes for revealing answers and later on, giving away a car for revealing all 5 top answers in Big Money, their version of Fast Money.  The original host of the show was Bob Monkhouse.  Being one of the best presenters that there ever was in British TV history, he hosted the show well.  After Bob left, he was replaced by Max Bygraves.  While not as good as Monkhouse, he held his own.  In 1983, his greatest moment was when he met up with these two families.

Here is the Dalby family...

...and here's the Johnsons.

Things started off normally enough at the end of the second question as the Dalby's were leading the Johnsons 130 pounds to nothing.  We bring up Bob and Yvette for the following question.

"Living or Dead, name a famous Irishman"

Bob chimes in quickly and blurts out...


And in stunned silence, Max asks the infamous question, "Is he Irish?"  Bob replies, "No, hahahaha"  I'd like to wonder what was going through Bob's head at this time. However, I doubt much is going on there and he just wanted to give an answer that people will remember for years to come.  So, Max throws it to the board...


So, Yvette has a go and says Tom O'Connor.  Now, while most people might think, "Gee, isn't he the Brit that hosted Crosswits?", well, you're right.  However, there is a famous Irish footballer that is named Tom O'Connor.  So, while it might not be a good answer, it at least makes more sense than Israeli.  Does it make the board?


Now we head back to Bob, and what gem does he have for us?

"Des O'Connor"

Hello, I'm English you git.  EEE-HHAAANNUUGGGHHH

Well, back to Yvette and her second answer, or attempt....

"Thomas O'Malley." 

Now, since when were the Aristocats Irish?  I thought they were American, or at least French.  Well, as if there was any doubt to this.


So we have to bring the next two people in, that being Tina from the Dalby's and Margeret from the Johnsons.  After a few moments of thinking, and needling from Max famously saying, "Cor Blimey, there's millions of them out there."  After some thinking Margaret buzzes in and says...


The crowd is just rolling with that answer.  The reason?  Ernest Hemmingway is AMERICAN!  While the audience rolls, the board says...


I just hope Tina can save us from this.  I mean, surely there can't be any way out answers coming our way.

"Jimmy McVeigh"

I'm just guessing they're going to say many names with the last name starting with "Mc" and see if it sticks.  But Jimmy McVeigh, an English Footballer...


After that, we bring up Taffy & Michael.  Surely these two elder statesmen can get a decent answer out.  Michael buzzes in...

"Garret FitzGerald" 

Now we got something here, the President of Ireland, or as they call it the Taioseach of Ireland.  That's a good answer.  The Crowd laughed, but that's a good answer.  I mean it's miles better than the previous 6 answers combined.  At least, he named somebody that was at least Irish.


But, it didn't make the survey.  Please Taffy, with a name like yours, you gotta come up with a delicious answer.

"Terry Wogan."

THE NUMBER 1 ANSWER!!!!!!  Thank you Taffy.  You are a testament to this game and sensible people in England who know some famous irishman.  And like most sensible people, he decided to pass this question off to the other family.  After that opening quandry, the Johnson Family had a good run by listing off George Best, who was #5; Eammon Andrews, who was #8.  Bob said Gerry Fitt, who was an Irish MP, which didn't make the survey.  Margaret had Hurricane Higgins, a great Irish Snooker player, but failed to make the list.  Then we go back to Michael with Ian Paisley, who's #2.  We go back to Brian with Val Doonican who was #7.  Then we go to Jenny, who says...

"Trevor McDonald."

Hello, I'm Trevor McDonald and tonight, I'd like to say that I'm not Irish, but Trinidadian  EEE-HHAAANNUUGGGHHH.

So with 3 lives lost, Max went to the Dalbys who said former Prime Minister Eammon Devaleiragh.  Which was meant with silence, because it was a famous Irishman, but it was wrong.  Giving the Johnsons the 64 bob that was in the bank.

I don't know what it is with dumb Family Feud/Fortunes moments, like the one I did with Frog & Alligator, but they always bring a smile to my face when I'm in a mood.  It's just hilarious seeing people getting these questions obviously wrong.  What makes this even better is that the first 6 answers were so obviously wrong, that it set the tone for the rest of the episode.  And what did that tone become?

Need I say anymore?

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