top of page

Bill's Greatest Quotes

Winner Take All

BILL: (addressing a contestant who is baseball umpire) We're going to put this blindfold over your eyes for this game...Can you see anything,sir?
BILL: Well, you're a real baseball umpire now, aren't you?

I've Got A Secret

(Bill’s agent is a contestant)
AGENT: It’s no secret that Bill is the best ad-libber in the business, so Bill, I’m going to give you a test. You have to make the audience laugh right now.
BILL: Do I have my choice of audiences or do I have to use this bunch?
(Audience laughs)
GARRY: They laughed!
AGENT: Now make them boo.
BILL: Boo?
AGENT: Yes. 
BILL: Ladies and gentlemen, our next guest is a well-known figure. You may have read about him in Collier’s Magazine not that long ago… Would you please welcome Adolf Hitler? Adolf, come on out here! 

Place The Face

BILL: I had a crush on my fourth-grade teacher, but nothing came of it because of the age difference. I was about 15 years older.

The Price is Right

BILL: Just to start you off right, each of you has in front of you an RCA transistor radio. Put it aside for the time being and kindly do not listen to another network while we are on the air.

CONTESTANT: This couldn't be happening to me!

BILL: It is happening to you, and in many other cities it will happen to you again on a delayed broadcast.

BILL: Because of legal things, since none of you won, I now must destroy the check, which is easily done by ripping the signatures. This is a great moment for me,. because I've been wanting to tear up Goodson & Todman for years.

BILL: (Displaying the TV Guide issue with his picture on the cover) There's a fascinating article in this week's TV Guide about what happens to the prizes given away on The Price is Right, and on the cover is that wonderful Hollywood star, Tony Perkins-- No, wait, that's not Tony Perkins, that's Sal Mineo.

CONTESTANT: Oh, I'm so excited!
BILL: Well, just have a seat and relax. Last week you damaged several contestants.

Eye Guess

(The time's up whistle goes off after two contestants have missed five consecutive questions)
BILL: Well, I had two questions left, but you wouldn't have gotten them right anyway.

(Bill borrows catch phrases from two other shows for his sign-off)

BILL: That's all for today. Until next time, remember, it's not what you say that counts, so tell the truth!

Three on a Match

DON PARDO: ...and now, your host on Three on a Match, and here he is...
BILL: Well, I don't know about that.

(Bill is reading an entry from a “How to Conserve Energy” theme-writing contest)
BILL: “Invest in a pair of long underwear.” That’s all it says…and like the ointment, there’s a fly in that….The contestants will refrain from booing the master of ceremonies, please.

CONTESTANT: …And in my spare time my husband and I are restoring a 16-room, 200-year-old house.
BILL: Holy mackerel…my wife in her spare time has been restoring a 53-year-old husband, which has been fun.

To Tell the Truth

(After interviewing a canary expert)
Bill: Well, we have a rule on this show that if we have seen someone who is on this show, whether they're right or wrong, we can question but not vote. I disqualify myself because I met one of those gentlemen in the men's room.
PEGGY CASS: What does that have to do with it?
BILL: I want you to know where I met the man!
KITTY CARLISLE: How do you know he was the real one?
BILL: He had his bird in his hand.

BILL: Of all the shows I’ve done in my entire life…this is the easiest. This is one show where you don’t have to do anything, and the money is…mmm…well, you know. It’s okay, you know, you can live on it. The question I’m asked all the time is, what is Garry like? And I tell them that he’s loving, fine, a good, genuine guy to work with and a peach of a fellow. And I figure if they really want the truth, they’ll get it from somebody else.

The $25,000 Pyramid

BILL: And your opponents are Dick Cavett and Debbie Keepers.
DEBBIE: No, Keppers. I'm a secretary.
BILL: You're a seek-retary?


(After a contestant didn't know "Switzerland" from the clue "Heidi's country.")
BILL: Boy, that was a real cliffhanger. She wasn't familiar with "Heidi" because it was interrupted by a football game.


(Bill is talking to one of that night’s guests, Dick Clark)
BILL: Dick Clark is of course best known for hosting American Bandstand. What else are you doing these days, Dick?
DICK CLARK: We’d like “Hold Tight.”
BILL: You’ve selected “Hold Tight.” Please keep your hands above the table as you describe things that are tight.

Pass the Buck

Question: Name and spell a word that rhymes with "pie," P-I-E.
CONTESTANT: Uh...uh...Kye. K-Y-E.
*Wrong answer buzz*
BILL: Sorry. Nice try, T-R-Y.

BILL: We have hidden on the third level the names of two famous Johns...(giggles)...perhaps I should clarify that. Famous men NAMED John.

BILL: Audience, can you think of any other ways you might feel before you get married?...What?...Someone in the audience yelled out "pregnant."

CONTESTANT: My name is Betsy Tukar and I’m a page at another network.
BILL: Hi, I’m Bill Cullen and if this show doesn’t work out, I’ll be over there.

(Fast Bucks question is “Name four game show hosts.”)
BILL: You got Bill Cullen, and I’m grateful to see that I still qualify for that category. The remaining answers were the fabulous Peter Marshall, the sensational Richard Dawson, and the sensational Garry Moore, and I want to tell you, two of those guys are just great.

Caught in the Act pilot

Category: What You Might Say in Heaven

BILL: I can't tell you how surprised I am to be HERE.


Category: Something that Bites
BILL: All the girls I ever knew in Pittsburgh.

Decisions, Decisions

Question: Which animal is more productive in the creation of offspring: a mink, a rabbit, a hummingbird, an elephant, a termite, or a praying mantis?
BILL: What are you laughing at?
CONTESTANT: I'm just thinking about that mantis praying.
BILL: Yeah, we know what he's praying for, too, don't we?

DAVID LETTERMAN: I think praying mantises either die or they eat their young after breeding. Either one pretty much inhibits sexual activity, so I'll say rabbit.
BILL: Actually, after sexual activity, a praying mantis will eat the closest rabbit.

BILL: The praying mantis breeds more often. I guess his prayers were answered.

BILL: Here's a factual chart. The termite does it...uh, let's say he "reproduces."

Chain Reaction

NIPSEY RUSSELL: I'll take a letter with "white."

BILL: That's mighty big of you, Nipsey.

Password Plus

CONTESTANT...And my interests include bowling and crossword puzzles.
BILL: Oh, well, you've come to the right place. This is a great show for people who like bowling.

Card Sharks game show hosts tournament

QUESTION: How many men brought binoculars to the Miss Nude USA pageant?

Question: How many women cried on their wedding night?
BILL: My wife laughed on our wedding night.


BILL: (to a female contestant) I think you're cute. You're cute as a button. Heck, you're cuter than a button. You're cute as a zipper.

BILL: Nobody knew that? Audience did you know it?... I heard four or five people say the right answer. More than half our audience knew that.

BILL: Let me explain that answer. Friday is the Muslim sabbath, Saturday is the Jewish, and Sunday is the Christian sabbath, and I think that's it. I don't imagine a sabbath applies to any other religion... Boy... I'm sure I offended somebody with that.

BILL: We have a woman in our audience who is related to the two men in Pittsburgh who cut my hair when I was a teenager. That was so long ago, hair hadn't even been invented yet.

BILL: Powdering the horn has an aphrodisiac effect on the rhinoceros, which is why make-up people are so popular.

BILL: Investing at your age is a good idea, because you'll have some money for a rainy day. You can't tell, but for me right now, it's raining.

BILL: Thank you to our home audience. I always thank the studio audience but I don't always thank the home viewers, so thank you for twisting our knob.

BILL: Oh, you see what's happened? A bulb has burned out on our board. That hexagon is supposed to be red, so you folks at home, if you have any red crayons, get them out and fill in that balck space on your screen, and if you don't have crayons, kids, get Mommy's lipstick or Mommy's nail polish.
(After the round) Okay, now the round is over and they're fixing the board and you folks at home see a red blob on me from where you used Mommy's nail polish, so we'll take a commercial while you rub it off with Daddy's wristwatch.

BILL: (on the series finale) Over the past year and a half, We've recieved a lot of mail regarding the handicap on this show, which is...well, that I'm not a very good host.

BILL: (Also from the finale) And lest you feel sorry for me, don't because a kid my age has his whole life ahead of him.

Child's Play

(A child has just defined “Mascara” by saying, “I use it every day.”)
BILL: My, how times have changed. She’s seven and she uses mascara every day? I was 21 before I ever ate a bite of it.

(A child is defining “Bo Derek”)
CHILD: A lot of boys like her, but I think she’s a dog.
BILL: If Bo Derek is a dog, I’m opening a kennel tomorrow.

CONTESTANT: …And I’ll be getting married in a few months, and I hope that lasts forever.
BILL: And even if it doesn’t, it will certainly feel that way.

Hot Potato

BILL: Tell us a little bit about yourself, uh,...Diane. I'm sorry, your nametag was hidden from me, for the best possible reason.

Question: The Davis Research Group asked people across the country, "Who is your favorite comedian?"
BILL: The remaining answers-George Carlin, Bill Cosby, Don Rickles, and Mark Humbolt.
Contestants: Who?!
Bill: Kid I knew in school, he tried all kinds of stuff.

Question: Name the Seven Dwarfs.
CONTESTANT: I'll answer, Bill.
BILL: Well, don't answer Bill, because that's going to be wrong.

BILL: What's the first thing you notice about a man?
CONTESTANT: I don't know.
BILL: Okay, look at me. Now close your eyes. Open them back up. What's the first thing you noticed about me?
CONTESTANT: Your glasses.
BILL: Good to know I'm every bit as sexy as I ever was.

Question: Name seven of the 10 countries with the longest life expectancies.
(USA is declared a wrong answer)
BILL: Isn't that interesting that the USA was wrong, which means none of the long-lifed people are watching this show. So you folks keep watching, because you're liable to go at any minute now.

(After being introduced at the show's opening)

CONTESTANT: We're all softball managers. Jenny has a daughter who's third base, Mimi's daughter is a pitcher, and I have a daughter who's catcher.
BILL: That's a coincidence, I have a son who could never make it to first base.

BILL: What'll you do with all that money?
CONTESTANT: Probably go on a second honeymoon.
BILL: Who with?

Question: Davis Research asked people to complete this sentence-- The schools don't teach students enough about what?
CONTESTANT: Sex Education.
BILL: You know in my day, not only did we not have sex education, we didn't (laughs) Boy, I got out of that one by the skin of my teeth.

BILL: Bert Convy, host of Tattletales, he's the best-looking of the game show hosts, if you ask me. Peter Tomarken hosts Press Your Luck and he's also a good looking guy. Jim Perry hosts Sale of the Century and he's a good-looking guy. Bob Eubanks hosts Dream House, he's good-looking. You know, come to think of it I can only think of one network game show host who isn't all that good-looking. Think about that for a minute, we'll be right back.

(on the series finale)

BILL: I don't care. I'm coming in on Monday and read my questions and if anyone wants to listen, let them.

bottom of page