I've Got a Secret



Ben Lyon (50s)

Tom O'Connor (80s)


Associated-Rediffusion for ITV, 5 January to ?, 1956

BBC1, 1984-5


Panel of celebs are goaded on by O'Connor to try and identify an obscure claim to fame that a member of the public has. A clue was given at the start to get them going in the right direction, and there was a "look away now" moment if you didn't want to know the answer.

Similar to What's My Line?, we vaguely recall that a 'No' reply meant that the questioning passed on to the next celebrity - or maybe they had 30 seconds each? Either way, in the original 1950s version at least, the contestant won a crisp pound note each time the questioning passed from one panellist to another, up to a maximum of eight pounds (i.e. twice round the panel).

Key moments

One guest was the man who acted as a telegraph operator during WWII, and became the first person in Britain to know that the Germans had surrendered.


Based on a 1950s US game show, an early entry in the Mark Goodson-Bill Todman canon, though actually invented by Allen Sherman (of "Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh" novelty hit fame).

See also

Top Secret


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