This article needs additional citations for verification .(January 2021)
|Theme music composer
|Country of origin
|No. of episodes
| NBC Studios
|Reg Grundy Productions
|January 7 –
April 26, 1985
Time Machine is an American game show where contestants compete to answer trivia questions about popular culture and recent history to win prizes. The show aired on NBC from January 7 through April 26, 1985, and was hosted by John Davidson.Charlie Tuna was the announcer, with Rich Jeffries as his substitute. Reg Grundy Productions produced the series, and upon its premiere Time Machine was one of three Grundy series airing on NBC ( Sale of the Century , which followed Time Machine on NBC's daytime schedule, and Scrabble were the other two).
Most of the questions used focused on nostalgia, popular culture, and recent history, and more specifically what year a particular event occurred.
Three contestants, one usually a returning champion, competed in mini-games, similar to pricing games from The Price Is Right , to win prizes. The prizes won went into a contestant's "Prize Bank". Each contestant played one game, with the champion playing the third game.
After the mini-games were played the three contestants faced off in the final round, the Time Capsule. Davidson gave the players a list of four events that all happened in the same year, and then a clip from a popular song from that year was played. The contestants then attempted to guess the year, and the contestant with the closest guess became the champion, won all of their banked prizes, and advanced to the bonus round. The other two players left with parting gifts. If two or more contestants were equally close, John would read a question related to the Time Capsule year to the tied players; the first one to buzz in with the right answer won.
On February 11 (just over a month after the series began), the format was completely overhauled with many mini-games undergoing rule changes to fit the new format and others retired. The champion no longer played the mini games, with the two challengers playing for the right to meet him/her in the final round.
Three mini-games were played. The first two mini-games were worth one point, the last one was worth two, and both challengers got to keep whatever they managed to win in the mini-games. The one with the most points after three games won the game and advanced to the Challenge Round. If there was a tie after three games, a tiebreaker question was read; the first one to buzz in with the right answer won the game.
Six mini-games were used in this new format. Unlike the old format, the same two lineups were used for every episode, alternating each day.
The Challenge Round was played in the same way as the Time Capsule round from the previous format, except with two players and a different name.
The winner from the first half of the show and the returning champion competed to see which one of them would be advancing to the bonus round. As before, the closest one to the actual year, high or low, won the championship.
Three different bonus games were used during the show's run.
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