Game shows have been a staple on television for decades, attracting millions of viewers across different generations. One of the most iconic features of these shows is the voice of the crier, who announces the show’s title, introduces the host and contestants, and sets the stage for the game. And when it comes to game show criers, few were as legendary as Johnny Olson.
Who Was Johnny Olson?
Johnny Olson was a television announcer and personality who rose to fame in the 1950s and 1960s. He was born in Windom, Minnesota, in 1910, and started his career as a radio announcer in the 1930s. After serving in World War II, Olson moved to New York City and began working in the television industry.
Over the course of his career, Olson worked as an announcer and host for a wide range of shows, including game shows, talk shows, and variety shows. He was known for his smooth baritone voice, his impeccable timing, and his ability to convey excitement and enthusiasm to audiences.
What Were Johnny Olson’s Most Famous Shows?
While Johnny Olson worked on many different television shows over the years, he is perhaps best known for his work on game shows. He was the announcer for some of the most iconic game shows of all time, including:
- The Price is Right
- Match Game
- What’s My Line?
- The Newlywed Game
- Card Sharks
Olson’s voice became synonymous with these shows, and his enthusiastic introductions and catchphrases, like “Come on down!” and “Here’s Johnny!” are still remembered and imitated today.
How Did Johnny Olson Die?
Despite his success and popularity, Johnny Olson’s life was not without tragedy. In 1985, his wife of over 50 years, Penny, passed away. And just a few years later, on October 12, 1985, Olson himself died of a cerebral hemorrhage at the age of 75.
Olson’s death was a huge loss to the television industry, and many of the shows he worked on paid tribute to him in the weeks and months that followed. His legacy, however, lives on through his unforgettable voice and the many memories he helped create for millions of viewers over the years.
Johnny Olson was more than just a game show crier – he was a true television legend who helped shape the medium as we know it today. His voice and his personality were a huge part of the success of some of the most beloved game shows of all time, and his impact on the industry can still be felt to this day.