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1 vs. 100 (American game show)

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1 vs. 100
1 vs 100 gameshow.png
GenreGame show
Based onEén tegen 100
Presented byBob Saget (NBC)
Carrie Ann Inaba (GSN)
Narrated byJoe Cipriano (NBC)
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons3 (2 on NBC, 1 on GSN)
No. of episodesNBC: 28
GSN: 40
Executive producerScott St. John
Running time41–43 minutes (2006–08)
20–22 minutes (2010–11)
Production companyEndemol USA
Original networkNBC (2006–08)
GSN (2010–11)
Picture formatNTSC (2006-2008)
HDTV 1080i (2010–2011)
Original releaseNBC:
October 13, 2006 (2006-10-13) – February 22, 2008 (2008-02-22)
November 15, 2010 (2010-11-15) –
January 11, 2011 (2011-01-11)
External links

1 vs. 100 is an American game show that was broadcast by NBC from 2006 to 2008 and revived on Game Show Network (GSN) with a new series, which ran from 2010 to 2011. The game features a single player (the "1") competing against 100 other contestants (known as "the Mob") in a trivia match. The 1 earns prize money depending on how many Mob members he or she has eliminated from the game, but loses all winnings with an incorrect answer at any point. The host of the original NBC version was Bob Saget, while Carrie Ann Inaba hosted the GSN revival.


The game is played with the main contestant acting as the "1" answering questions against 100 other people known collectively known as "the Mob". The objective of the 1 is to be the last player standing, having eliminated all 100 members of the Mob by correctly answering a series of general-knowledge questions.[1]

To begin the game, a multiple-choice question is revealed with three choices, one of which is correct. Once all of the Mob members have locked in their answers, the contestant is given the opportunity to answer the question. If the contestant is correct, all Mob members who answered incorrectly are eliminated from the game. The amount of money in the contestant's bank also increases by an amount dependent on the number of mob members that answered incorrectly. If the contestant eliminates all 100 mob members, the winning pot is augmented to $1,000,000. However, if the contestant is incorrect on any question, the game ends, the contestant forfeits all accumulated winnings, and the Mob members who answered the question correctly equally split the losing contestant's earnings up to that point.

After every correct answer, the contestant is given the choice to either walk away with the money he or she has earned or continue playing. In conjunction with the various changes made in the sixth episode, the contestant could now only walk away after correctly answering the third question, the fifth question, and every question thereafter.[1]


To assist the main contestant, assistance from the mob is offered in the form of "helps". Originally there were two helps, which could only be used in order.[2] Starting with the sixth episode, a third option was added, the three helps were given names, and contestants could choose any of the three at any point in the game. The helps were, in order:[3]

  • "Poll The Mob": Originally known as the first help, the contestant selects one of the three answers to get more information about. The number of Mob members who chose that answer is revealed, and the contestant chooses one of the revealed mob members to discuss his or her response.[2]
  • "Ask The Mob": Originally known as the second help, two Mob members are randomly selected: one who answered correctly and one who answered incorrectly. Each explains his or her decision to the contestant, which in turn eliminates the third choice from consideration.[2] In the event all the Mob members (including the two) provide the same answer, or where all the Mob answered incorrectly and where the contestant is about to win the game, only the first Mob member in question is chosen and explains their decision, then the contestant will then decide whether to go for the answer or not.
  • "Trust The Mob" (added in episode six): The contestant is automatically committed to the answer chosen most frequently by the Mob; if there is a tie where at least two answers were chosen the most frequently, two Mob members will be chosen at random, similar to "Ask the Mob."[4]

After reaching a certain point in the game, contestants can be given a "Sneak Peek" which allows the contestant to see their next question (but not the three answers) before deciding whether or not to answer the next question. In season one, it was used when a player eliminated 90 or more members of the mob;[3] it eventually became available once a contestant used all his or her helps in season two.[5]

Payout structure

Originally, contestants were awarded a cumulative amount of money after each individual question for each Mob member eliminated; this amount increased with each question as the game went on. For example, a contestant who eliminated eight Mob members on the second question would be awarded $500 per member, adding up to $4,000 to the total.[2] The payout structure was tweaked slightly prior to the third episode of the season[6] and changed once again on the sixth episode in conjunction with introduction of the "Trust the Mob" help.[3][4]

Question Value
Episodes 1–2[2] Episodes 3–5[6] Episodes 6–20[4]
13+ $10,000
12 $10,000 $9,000
11 $9,000 $7,500 $8,000
10 $8,000 $6,000 $7,000
9 $7,000 $5,000 $6,000
8 $6,000 $4,000 $5,000
7 $5,000 $3,000 $4,000
6 $4,000 $2,000 $3,000
5 $3,000 $1,500 $2,000
4 $2,000 $1,000
3 $1,000 $500 $1,000
2 $500 $250
1 $100

In the second season and on the GSN version, the payout structure was simplified to award contestants for every tenth Mob member eliminated. Most other rules from season 1 were intact, including the option to leave the game on questions three, and five onwards.[7]

Mob members
Contestants' total
NBC (season two)[7] GSN (episodes 1–11)[8] GSN (episodes 12–33, 39–40)[9] GSN (episodes 34–38)[10]
100 $1,000,000 $50,000 $100,000
90–99 $500,000 $25,000 $50,000
80–89 $250,000 $10,000 $25,000
70–79 $100,000 $5,000 $10,000
60–69 $75,000 $2,500 $4,000 $8,000
50–59 $50,000 $2,000 $3,000 $6,000
40–49 $25,000 $1,500 $2,000 $4,000
30–39 $10,000 $1,000 $1,500 $2,000
20–29 $5,000 $750 $1,000
10–19 $1,000 $500
Fewer than 10 $0


Bob Saget hosted the NBC version (left), and Carrie Ann Inaba on the GSN revival (right).


The show first premiered on NBC as a five-episode series on October 13, 2006.[11] On October 20, 2006, it was reported that NBC ordered ten additional episodes of 1 vs. 100, citing the show's encouraging ratings performance.[12] The series returned to NBC's schedule with these new episodes on December 1, 2006.[4]

In May, NBC announced that 1 vs. 100 would return for a second season in Fall 2007 for an eight-episode run. The Singing Bee was originally scheduled to air after the initial run of 1 vs. 100, but its premiere was moved up to July to compete with Fox's new game show Don't Forget the Lyrics![13] In July, NBC announced some fall scheduling updates that included 1 vs. 100's season two premiere being temporarily delayed.[14]

In late 2007, as a result of the 2007–08 Writers Guild of America strike, NBC announced that 1 vs. 100 would return as a winter replacement sometime in January,[15] and the series debuted its second season on January 4, 2008,[16] with a revamped new set and payout structure.[7]

Special episodes

There were seven special episodes throughout the series:

  • On an episode aired December 1, 2006, the top prize was briefly raised to $3,000,000 for the episode's first contestant. The episode also features several celebrities in the Mob, including game show hosts Wink Martindale and Bob Eubanks.[4][17]
  • A Christmas special aired on December 25, 2006. Christmas-related questions were answered in this episode, while the Mob were dressed with members in character representing "The 12 Days of Christmas".[18]
  • A kids edition was played on the February 2, 2007, episode in which the Mob consisted of entirely 100 children. The contestant lost $94,000 on a question ("What was a common feature (motto) relating to the Boy Scouts of America and Girl Scouts of the USA" – founder, motto or badge system; the correct answer was Motto; the contestant incorrectly answered badge system) and evenly split $18,800 to the last five (out of 20 remaining) children.[19]
  • On February 9, 2007, a special entitled "Last Man Standing" was aired, featuring a Mob consisting largely of former top Mob members (Sister Rose and Annie Duke) and game show champions (such as Jeopardy! veterans Brad Rutter and Ken Jennings, and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire winners Nancy Christy and Kevin Olmstead), pitting for a $250,000 prize money. Several rules were modified: no helps were given, the questions had no monetary value, and the "1" was not allowed to leave the game at any point; if the contestant was incorrect, they were eliminated from further play and replaced with another Mob member. The "1" was randomly selected from the Mob and the gameplay was thus 1 vs. 99; Duke was chosen to play as the "1." The $250,000 went to entertainment lawyer and former actor Larry Zerner, who was the only Mob member among the five remaining contestants (including Duke and Jennings) to correctly answer the question (The question was "Who has been married the most times? – King Henry VIII, Larry King, or 'King of Pop', Michael Jackson; Zerner correctly answered Larry King, while the rest incorrectly answered King Henry VIII).[20]
  • The season two premiere on January 4, 2008 was entitled "Battle of the Sexes," featuring a mob entirely of 100 members of the same gender, and the "1" was the opposite gender. This was also the first episode to use the revamped set and new payout ladder system. During this episode, the female contestant Katherine Kazorla played first, but lost $50,000 to the last of the 39 surviving male Mob members; the male contestant, Jason Luna, became the show's first (and only) contestant to beat all 100 female Mob members and won the $1,000,000 top prize (Luna's final question was "According to Hallmark, what is the biggest card-giving holiday of the year?" – Christmas, Valentine's Day or Mother's Day; Luna correctly answered Christmas while the last 15 female Mob members were incorrect).[7][21]
  • On January 25, 2008, Chris Langan, who at the time of taping, had the highest IQ in America, participated in a special aptly titled "Smartest Man in America". He eliminated 80 Mob members and chose to walk away with $250,000.

GSN repeats and revival

Game Show Network (GSN) began airing reruns of the show on June 6, 2009.[22] With the ratings success of those shows in reruns,[23] GSN announced a casting call in August 2010, implying that the network would be producing new episodes.[24][25]

On October 13, 2010, GSN announced plans to premiere an original revival series, hosted by then-Dancing with the Stars judge Carrie Ann Inaba.[26] The initial order of 40 half-hour episodes began airing weekdays on November 15, 2010.[26] The Mob members participated via webcam, while the "1" plays for the top prize of $50,000 ($100,000 on some episodes). Contestants also only had two of the NBC version's helps available: "Poll the Mob" and "Trust the Mob".[26] In addition, contestants were only given the option to leave the game upon reaching at least $1,000 on the prize ladder, while the "Sneak Peek" was not used until the contestant had reached at least $10,000.

The season finale of GSN's 1 vs. 100 aired on January 11, 2011. Inaba confirmed that she would not be returning to the series,[27] leading to the show's cancellation.[28]


The series quickly became a ratings success for NBC, with the debut episode earning 12,800,000 viewers and a 4.2/13 rating/share among adults 18–49.[12] Despite the high ratings, criticism emerged asserting that the questions tended to be far less difficult than those seen on other quiz shows. Slate's Troy Patterson noted: "Indeed, the only problem with 1 vs. 100 is its determined idiocy. The quality of the quiz is of no importance to the new breed of quiz shows. All that matters is the show of emotion—the contestant's joyful squeals, worried quivers, and relieved slumps."[29] Brian Lowry of Variety added: "Endemol and NBC have managed the seemingly impossible — combining on a quiz/trivia show nearly as mentally undemanding as their no-skill-required hit Deal or No Deal the questions are so simple that amassing thousands isn't much harder than guessing which case to open.[30]

Ray Richmond argued that while the series' format is "not a terrible game", it was easier than it was promoted to be: "While the idea of having one contestant take on 100 people in a game of trivia skill sounds on paper like a hugely challenging undertaking, in truth it probably is 100 times less challenging than Who Wants to Be a Millionaire because 1) the questions tend to be far less brainy, and 2) the competition ain't all it is cracked up to be."[31] Ed Bark, a former television critic at The Dallas Morning News, gave the series a "C-minus" grade, calling it "another NBC big-money game show that really should be titled Dumb or Super-Dumb. How else to gauge the candle power required to answer the show's opening question: 'The 2003 movie Seabiscuit featured what kind of animal?'"[32] The New York Times's Alessandra Stanley opined, "the point of 1 vs 100 is different: knowledge is beside the point."[1]


The success of the series inspired several home versions to be released. These included media home versions in the form of an interactive DVD game,[33][34] a mobile app,[35] a plug-and-play game, a version for the PC, a version for the Nintendo DS,[36] and an interactive version for Xbox Live.[37] Other home versions were a board game released by Pressman Toy Corporation,[38] a card game published by Cardinal,[39] and a 100-piece puzzle that formed a home version of the game once assembled.[40]

In November 2021, it was reported by multiple gaming news outlets that Microsoft and AltSpaceVR, a virtual reality platform owned by Microsoft, were developing a new 1 vs. 100 interactive video game for Xbox. According to journalist Jeff Grubb, a revival of the game is currently in active development.[41][42][43]


  1. ^ a b c Stanley, Alessandra (October 13, 2006). "In Battle for Bucks, Personality Beats Intellect". The New York Times. Retrieved September 28, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 1. October 13, 2006. NBC.
  3. ^ a b c "1 vs 100 Official Rules" (PDF). NBC Universal. Archived from the original (PDF) on April 22, 2007.
  4. ^ a b c d e 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 6. December 1, 2006. NBC.
  5. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 2. Episode 4. January 25, 2008. NBC.
  6. ^ a b 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 3. October 27, 2006. NBC.
  7. ^ a b c d 1 vs. 100. Season 2. Episode 1. January 4, 2008. NBC.
  8. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 1. November 15, 2010. GSN.
  9. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 18. December 8, 2010. GSN.
  10. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 34–38. January 3–7, 2011. GSN.
  11. ^ "NBC Gets Its (Other) Game On". Zap2It. September 27, 2006. Archived from the original on February 22, 2014. Retrieved October 15, 2006.
  12. ^ a b "1 vs. 100 Rewarded With Additional Episodes". Reality TV Magazine. Archived from the original on October 21, 2006. Retrieved November 3, 2006.
  13. ^ "Karaoke Wars: NBC Rushes Singing Bee". Zap2it. June 21, 2007. Archived from the original on June 26, 2007. Retrieved July 4, 2007.
  14. ^ Grossman, Ben (July 16, 2007). "Ben Silverman Comes Out Swinging". Broadcasting & Cable. Archived from the original on December 11, 2008. Retrieved August 30, 2007.
  15. ^ Stelter, Brian (December 4, 2007). "As Scripted Shows Dry Up, Reality Sets In". The New York Times. Retrieved September 27, 2017.
  16. ^ "Breaking News – NBC Announces Exciting Line-Up of Reality Series Premieres in January as New American Gladiators Debuts Along with Brand New Season of The Biggest Loser and Return of Popular Game Show 1 vs 100". The Futon Critic (Press release). Futon Media. November 30, 2007. Retrieved February 29, 2012.
  17. ^ "Season 1, Episode 6: 1 vs 100". TV Guide. Retrieved November 28, 2017.
  18. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 9. December 25, 2006. NBC.
  19. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 14. February 2, 2007. NBC.
  20. ^ 1 vs. 100. Season 1. Episode 15. February 9, 2007. NBC.
  21. ^ "Mr. Trivia". San Diego Magazine. February 28, 2008. Archived from the original on September 24, 2017. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  22. ^ GSN Corporate (May 12, 2009). "Popular Game Shows Deal Or No Deal and 1 vs. 100 to Debut on Gsn, June 1 and June 6". The Futon Critic (Press release). Futon Media. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  23. ^ Bernhard, Lisa (August 30, 2010). "At the Game Show Network, Winning Is Everything". The New York Times. Retrieved April 11, 2017.
  24. ^ "GSN is now casting new series of 1 vs. 100". Reality Wanted. Archived from the original on February 21, 2014. Retrieved February 29, 2012.
  25. ^ "More on GSN's Version of 1 vs. 100". About Entertainent. August 19, 2010. Archived from the original on April 14, 2014.
  26. ^ a b c "GSN to Premiere All-New Version of Popular Game Show 1 vs. 100, Produced by Endemol USA and Hosted by Carrie Ann Inaba, Premieres Monday, November 15" (Press release). GSN Corporate. October 13, 2010. Archived from the original on November 5, 2010.
  27. ^ Grosvenor, Carrie (July 29, 2011). "Carrie Ann Inaba Not Returning to GSN's 1 vs. 100 – Will the Show Go On?". About Entertainent. Archived from the original on April 14, 2014. Retrieved August 2, 2011.
  28. ^ "Showatch: 1 vs. 100". The Futon Critic. Futon Media. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  29. ^ Patterson, Troy (December 18, 2006). "Pressing Their Luck". Slate. Retrieved September 28, 2017.
  30. ^ Lowry, Brian (October 11, 2006). "1 vs. 100". Variety. Retrieved September 28, 2017.
  31. ^ Richmond, Ray (October 13, 2006). "New NBC quiz show 1 vs. 100 unremarkable". Entertainment Weekly. Reuters. Archived from the original on August 2, 2010. Retrieved October 15, 2006.
  32. ^ Bark, Ed (October 18, 2006). "New Series Review: 1 vs 100 (NBC)". Uncle Barky's Bytes. Retrieved September 28, 2017.
  33. ^ "1 vs. 100 (DVD)". IGN. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  34. ^ "1 vs. 100 DVD Board Game (2007)". BoardGameGeek. Retrieved September 29, 2017.
  35. ^ "1 vs. 100 Review". IGN. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  36. ^ Pereira, Mike (August 1, 2008). "1 vs. 100 Review". IGN. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  37. ^ Fritz, Ben (June 3, 2009). "1 vs 100 may change how we watch and participate in game shows -- or not". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 23, 2017.
  38. ^ "1 vs. 100 Board Game (2006)". BoardGameGeek. Retrieved September 29, 2017.
  39. ^ "1 vs. 100 Card Game (2006)". BoardGameGeek. Retrieved September 29, 2017.
  40. ^ "1 vs. 100: The Puzzle Game (2007)". BoardGameGeek. Retrieved September 29, 2017.
  41. ^ Xbox, Pure (November 12, 2021). "Xbox Is 'Definitely' Working On A New Version Of 1 Vs. 100, Says Report". Pure Xbox. Retrieved January 10, 2022.
  42. ^ Wales, Matt (November 12, 2021). "Xbox's brilliant live quiz game 1 vs. 100 "definitely" making a comeback says report". Eurogamer. Retrieved January 10, 2022.
  43. ^ "1 vs. 100 is in the works at Microsoft". VentureBeat. November 11, 2021. Retrieved January 10, 2022.

External links