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Jack Narz: 1922-2008

Jack Narz describing a puzzle on ConcentrationUpdate: GSN Tribute and Videos Below

Television lost a legend today.  Jack Narz, host of classic shows like Dotto, Seven Keys, Video Village, Beat the Clock, and Now You See It, has passed away at age 85.  Stu Shostak of Shokus Radio said that Mr. Narz had suffered from two massive strokes and kidney failure in the last three weeks.  Even though Narz’s last regular game show work was announcing on The All New Beat the Clock in 1979 and 1980, Narz was very appreciative of the current generation of television and game show fans, as younger fans called in during his appearance on Shostak’s online radio show last year and were eager to meet Mr. Narz during his appearances at Game Show Congresses over the last four years.

GSN will be doing a tribute to Jack Narz all next week.  At 1:30PM ET, episodes of Match Game featuring Narz will run.  Password episodes also featuring the late host will be shown.  You can also catch Now You See It weekdays at 2:30AM ET.  In honor of Narz, we found some videos of him through the years.  Check our comments out for more videos also.


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48 responses to "Jack Narz: 1922-2008"

  • Doug Morris says:

    When I was growing up in Knoxville, Tennessee, my first memories of Jack Narz were of him hosting “that game show with the car surrounded by the mirrors”. I was later reminded it was more than that, it was a revival of “Concentration”.

    Yesterday, when my bosses asked me to work a later shift, I thought, cool, I can stay up to watch a GSN rerun of “Now You See It”. After a visit to church last night, I was crushed to learn of Jack’s death.

    Godspeed, Jack.

  • Don Minyard says:

    I had the privilege of meeting Mr. Narz when I was a contestant on Card Sharks. He was substituting for Gene Wood as announcer that taping session. After I lost, I was invited to stay for the dinner break. I got both Jim Perry’s and Jack Narz’ autographs on the cue card that stated my name and total earnings on the show. I still have that cue card – it has been mounted and framed and hangs proudly on my den wall.

    When I asked Mr. Narz for his autograph, he told me how much he had enjoyed watching me on the show. I thanked him, and told him that I wished Now You See It would return so I could be a contestant on that show. I told Mr. Narz how much I enjoyed his work. He shook my hand and told me I was very kind to remember it, because it had been a long time (about six years was all).

    Not only was I a contestant that day, I had met someone I had always enjoyed watching, whether it was Video Village, I’ll Bet, Concentration or NYSI. I am saddened by the loss of Mr. Narz, but I’ll bet that he is already bringing on that big board in the Video Village sky! RIP Jack Narz!

  • Mark says:

    As a young(-ish) game show fan, I know Jack best from “Now You See It”, which I’ve enjoyed watching ever since GSN put the show back on the overnight schedule. Great host and, by all accounts, a great guy too. RIP.

  • Karen Ferretti-Narz says:

    Once again, it brings me great joy to read all of your posts. I have to think we’re in a somewhat unusual situation, not everyone gets to read about how people feel about your father after he has passed. All of your comments have made a big impact on me. That, and watching my grandsons today (Jack’s great grandsons). My dad announced at the 2005 GSC event that my daughter (his granddaughter) was going to make him a great-grandpa in 2006 – and that she did – to adorable twin boys! My dad lives on through them! Thanks again for all the lovely posts.

    P.S. Angie just posted the video, my brother, Michael Narz (Jack’s son) created the video – he made it when he ran out of words to express how he felt about our dad’s circumstances.

  • Jaimal says:

    This is a big shock to the game show world & to television in general. Jack is incredibly kind and wonderful man who really enjoyed what he did. Jack, IMO, is one of the hosts you need to study if you want to host a game show. Jack really know how to keep the game moving and let the contestants be the stars of the show. Just hearing Jack on his interview with Stu, I am glad that he got to hear that he was appreciated and it made me cry knowing how much it touched him.

    To Karen & Angie:
    I know the shock you all are in right now as I lost my mother 3 1/2 years ago. She had her share of problems during the last few weeks of her life as well. I pray God’s comfort and strength to you and your entire family in your time of need right now.

    God Speed and Rest In Peace Jack Narz.

  • Jay Temple says:

    I want to second part of what Jaimal said. It’s long been a pet peeve of mine that announcers will introduce the host of a game show as “the star of” the show. If a show is well done, the contestants are the stars. Jack was never the star.

  • MrQuiz says:

    To Karen and Angie;
    I went to see your dad/grandfather, when BEAT THE CLOCK was taping at the Little Theater in NYC, in what seems to be a lifetime ago.
    It was one of those “big thrills” of my life.

    I still have an extra ticket (safely misplaced) from that day’s taping of January, 1970 (I don’t recall the exact date, offhand). When I find it, I’ll frame it (as it should’ve been all along). I only wish I still had that cool “BTC” badge everyone was issued.

    I agree wholeheartedly, that he was a class act; I get the impression he was truly a gentle man, as well.

    May I ask if he was the masterful storyteller I have been led to believe?

    I should also tell you that I’ve been in radio for a number of years, and early in my career, my sign-off was “God Bless, and Godspeed!”

    My kind thanks for the privilege of sharing some thoughts. I end this posting with that same sign-off, to you, your entire family, and to the memory of Jack.

  • As a broadcast professional, I can say that I have learned a lot about being a show host from Jack Narz. But if I can remember anything, it was the fact that he always had a genuine smile on his face, which showed that he had as much fun hosting things like “I’ll bet”, “Beat the Clock”, and “Now You See It”.

    Eternal rest grant to him, and may light perpetual shine upon him. May he and the faithful departed, rest in peace.

  • Brian says:

    Being born in the later years, The only times I got to see him was on ‘Now You See It”, but still in that stint, he displayed the poise, the passion and the emotion into all of his games. This is truly a huge loss for those of us who are game show fan. My condolences to his family and his fans, of the latter there are many. May he rest in peace.


  • Steve says:

    We’ve lost a true pro — with the velvety voice we all wish we had. (at least if you’re a guy)

    His was the edition that got me into BTC. NYSI is, for me, his definitive work. Too bad it didn’t run longer. CBS seemed to have a problem with 11 a.m. until they moved that Barker guy there.

    My condolences to Karen and Angie — who were thoughtful enough (and it’s a reflection of Jack’s appreciation of the fans, even though he hadn’t done a show in almost 20 years) to come here during this time and participate — as well as to Tom K. and all the Narz family.

  • Karen Ferretti-Narz says:

    Mr. Quiz – May I ask if he was the masterful storyteller I have been led to believe? Indeed he was a beautiful story teller.

    His gentle voice just resonated. I’d have to say we all inherited his voice, to one degree or another – my brothers, of course, more so. Two of my brothers went to Radio School and became DJ’s, and those two also dabbled in a little bit of television. My oldest brother and me just stayed out. I was a stay-at-home mom for years, then returned to school to become an educator – so in a sense, I’m an emcee too! I run a media center at my local elementary school and see the entire school – nearly 800 students – and you have to have a good (and loud) voice to do that.

    My dad was a very special man, and reading all these comments just makes me smile and takes away the sadness. As long as my dad will be remembered like this – he will never fade away – and that truly helps me in my loss.

    Two of my brothers are going up to visit our step-mom tomorrow, and we have encouraged them to print out these responses….she’s not a ‘computer’ person, and we want her to know how people have been responding. I know it will mean a lot to her.

  • dropzone5 says:

    To Karen and Angie:

    First of all, let me offer my condolences to you both. Mr. Narz was a true class act in all he did.

    I think I remember seeing part of Jack’s swap with Tom K. on Password Plus, and I remember him mentioning something about how an audience member shouted out the answer to a puzzle before the contestant guessed. The contestant went with it and got the money, but after the break, Jack mentioned that said contestant brought that up with him, and that $100 wasn’t counted as part of the score. However, the contestant “w[o]n $100 for [his] honesty”, as Jack said. There’s just something about how he said “you win $100 for your honesty” that gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling inside.

    Oh, and I run a puzzle for my school’s newspaper that is vaguely based on Now You See It. And every time I make the puzzles, Jack’s voice rings in my head: “Now you see it…and now you don’t.”

  • Marc Power says:

    One of my favorite Jack Narz quotes I just remembered now from the finale of Now You See It:

    “We’ve been on the air now 13 months, 13 days, this is Friday he 13th and I think somebody’s tell me something”.

  • devares says:

    Until Now You See It aired on GSN, I’ve never seen him in action. To me he’s up there with the greats. He will be missed.

  • Intelligentfan777 says:

    Another legend has passed. Man, I hope Tom and Jack’s families get through this well, we miss you Jack.

    Now for a confession, Even though I knew how great Tom Kennedy was, I never really got into Narz until I saw his episodes on GSN, and various clips on Youtube. He really was a great host. Also, the P+ clip of him hosting a round with the “Fish and Chips” puzzle (Where an audience member blurted the solution out) was a lot of fun.

  • devares says:

    I agree, intelligentfan777. Although I never seen any of his game shows until NYSI made the GSN schedule he was one of the greatest game show host, not to mention one of the greatest people, of all time. Unlike most game show hosts today, he actually rooted for the contestants to win. He will definately be missed. My condolences goes out to Tom Kennedy and the entire Narz family.

  • MrQuiz says:

    Once again, I’m voicing my disappointment that none of Jack Narz’ work before BEAT THE CLOCK is available, either on GSN, or on video.

    As I mentioned earlier on, I grew up following his game show career.
    Take me at my word when I say to you younger game show fans…
    …he may never be the iconic host Bob Barker was. But, he was without question, one of the classiest game show hosts who ever stepped in front of a camera, and you would have marveled at watching him in action on game shows you may have never heard of, like VIDEO VILLAGE, or SEVEN KEYS.
    He also did lots of commercials for Betty Crocker/General Mills and Colgate-Palmolive products in the 1950′s. Somewhere on YouTube is a commercial Jack did for Fab laundry detergent. If you haven’t already seen it, please do so.

    However, there are videos of a short-lived TV sitcom from the early ’50s called LIFE WITH ELIZABETH available. He was the announcer and narrator. That show, BTW, was Betty White’s first sitcom; which makes it another reason to check it out.

  • Brad says:

    I know this is a 5-year-old post, but I had a question about a rule in Concentration. I was playing a PowerPoint version of the game that I made (a hybrid of Classic and original) and this scenario came up. On a twenty-five square board, three squares have yet to be revealed. In my game, I used the Wild Card rules of Downs and Narz (natural match “orphaned,” two squares revealed). All three of these squares are the second half of a natural match. Do I show the entire puzzle, which is what I didn’t do, since there were more than two spaces on the board, or do I tell the contestant to solve the puzzle based on given information? I was confused and wanted to figure this out for the next time we played. No YouTube episode that I have found has this situation.

    If I could upload a picture, it would be easier to see the board, but I was wondering if anyone had a solution besides memorizing the board or having a key and using Classic’s rules. Thanks!

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