Johnny Olson - The Price Is Right

The Price Is Right

While Name That Tune, To Tell the Truth, What's My Line, and The Match Game put Olson in the upper echelons of television game show announcers, the revival of The Price Is Right cemented Olson's fame. From the first show (airing September 4, 1972) to his passing in 1985, his role transcended that of an announcer.

In addition to serving as then-host Bob Barker's sidekick, Olson was a beloved and valued member of the cast. He warmed up the audience prior to taping; during taping, he often had on-camera exposure (occasionally bantering with Barker) prior to calling out the contestants' names; he also appeared in many of the shows' Showcases.

His exhortations for contestants to "Come on down!" became a catchphrase, and a Price Is Right tradition observed by his successors, Rod Roddy (1986–2003), Rich Fields (2004–2010), and George Gray (2011–present).

On a side note, future show announcer Rich Fields attended a taping of The Price Is Right in 1978, asking Olson how he could get the announcing job. Olson then had Fields come up on stage and shout: "Johnny Olson, come on down!" Feigning annoyance, Olson told Fields: "Gimme back that microphone, kid, before Mr. Barker hears you backstage. Now go sit down!" Fields eventually became the show's announcer from 2004 to 2010.

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