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GSN to Air Crosswits Featuring Rosie O’Donnell and Arsenio Hall October 26th

GSN to Air Crosswits Featuring Rosie O’Donnell and Arsenio Hall October 26th

The special hour features both comedians’ first game show appearance.


This Sunday, October 26th, GSN will open the time capsule yet again to showcase a rarely seen game. This time it’s the 1986 series Crosswits. These two episodes, airing at 11:00PM ET, have not been seen since their original run.

The first episode, at 11:00PM ET, features “rising new comedian” Rosie O’Donnell, currently seen on ABC’s The View. Rosie is joined by celebrity guests Joanna Kerns (Growing Pains), Ilene Graff (Mr. Belvedere) and Charles Shaughnessy (Days of Our Lives).

11:30PM’s episode showcases Arsenio Hall’s first-ever game show appearance. Other celebrity guests include John Schuck, Roberta Leighton (The Young and The Restless) and the late comedian Charlie Callas.

Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 1.14.32 PM

Crosswits, hosted by David Sparks, features contestants trying to solve a master puzzle, after guessing smaller crossword clues, in an attempt to win a car. The 1986 series lasted one season and 160 episodes.

Photos courtesy GSN.

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  • Owen Hall

    My biggest problem with this version of “Crosswits”, besides the emcee, was the puzzleboard. Not the fact that it was computer generated. I don’t really have a problem with that. The problem I have with it is that the puzzles are rectangular in shape and not a square (as most crossword puzzles are square in shape).

  • Darryl Heine

    The 1986 version of “Crosswits” was later rerun in Summer 1993 on The Family Channel (forerunner of what is now ABC Family) and I think in the late 1990’s on the American Independent Network.

  • This might be my faulty memory playing tricks on me; but didn’t Arsenio appear on some episodes of Match Game/Hollywood Squares/Titanic Hour?

  • Kevin Solomon

    I think you’re right, Douglas. I seem to remember that, too…

  • Zach Horan

    This version of Crosswits also featured Jenny Jones’ first game show appearance as a celebrity.

  • Zach Horan

    The show also didn’t have a scoreboard on the set, the score was only recapped(and shown via computer graphics) before the second and third puzzle rounds began, and at the end of the game. Family Channel only ran Crosswits 1986 for 13 weeks between 6/7/93-9/3/93, so not the full run aired. I don’t remember how long the AIN network ran it for(the promos for the show said it would be the Jack Clark run, but when someone tuned in, they reported on ATGS it was the 1986 run).

  • Zach Horan

    Charles Shaughnessy was on Rosie’s daytime show in the late 90s, when the Nanny was still in first run. A clip was shown of them on Crosswits together.

  • Afi Keita James

    This was 3 years before arsenio changed television and the world forever with his late night talk show, something that it has not done since soul train.

  • Wayne_Stevens

    Does the Jack Clark version exist anywhere, or was that one of those destroyed shows we will never see again? I loved that one as a kid.

  • Zach Horan

    Ralph Edwards apparently has the tapes of Cross Wits and 70s Name that Tune in their vaults. In a world where most people would rather see reruns of Penis Feud, no one except us, for the most part, cares about them being rerun again.

  • Kathy Hall

    I would like to see name that tune.

  • Zach Horan

    Arsenio was a regular on the 1983 SUmmer series Half Hour Comedy HOur, where he made his national TV debut. He did a week or two of MGHS hour as well.

  • Donald Lee

    ZHMTHOP

  • Brett Alan

    This was fun to see, but, man, based on these episodes David Sparks was an awful host. He showed little charm or sense of humor, insulted one of the celebrity guests without even realizing it (telling a soap opera star that when someone looks like her, it’s easy to get acting jobs–I’m sure he meant it as compliment, but it came off as telling her she just got her job for her looks, not her talent), and made at least one major mistake, telling a contestant she could only solve the puzzle or pass when in fact there was still another word. Yeesh.

  • Kevin L. Montgomery

    Alex Davis obviously didn’t do his research. Arsenio was indeed a panelist on MGHS. That show aired in the 1983-84 season. The Sparks-era Cross-Wits aired in the 1986-87 season.