Jim Lange dies at 81; best-known as host of ‘The Dating Game’

Jim Lange dies at 81; best-known as host of ‘The Dating Game’

Jim Lange had been the first and host that is best-known of television show that features turned out to be identified because of the moving belated 1960s and 1970s: “The Dating Game.”

“we had been truly the very first truth show,” he stated in a 2002 instances meeting, “paving the way in which for Howard Stern, Jerry Springer, ‘Big Brother.'”

Maybe not that Lange, whom graduated laude that is cum the University of Minnesota, ended up being therefore pleased with those offspring. He invested significantly more than 50 years in radio and tv and hoped to 1 time have a TV talk show. But Lange felt their relationship with “The Dating Game” stymied loftier ambitions, and then he knew it might be their legacy.

“It’ll be on my tombstone,” he stated in a 1991 bay area Chronicle meeting.

Lange, 81, died at his home in Mill Valley tuesday. The main cause ended up being a heart assault, stated their child, Romney.

“The Dating Game” first went regarding the atmosphere in the ABC community in belated 1965 when Lange had been a popular host on KSFO-AM radio in bay area. “He I did so the morning that is 6-to-10 time during the radio place,” Romney Lange said, “then 3 days a week he’d can get on a plane, fly to L.A., tape five ‘Dating Game’ programs and fly straight back.”

The positive daytime tv program, by which three solitary guys would respond to staff-written concerns look over by an unseen prospective date, had been built to be somewhat titillating. “We dealt in innuendo, love,” Lange stated when you look at the circumstances interview. “No swear terms or off-color material.”

Although male contestants had been sporadically showcased as questioners, more often than not it absolutely was a woman who does be doing the asking before choosing her date (an expenses-paid, chaperoned outing) predicated on his responses. Lange stated this marked a reversal within the period’s norms.

“When ‘The Dating Game’ arrived on the scene, ladies had to await a man to call” for a night out together, Lange stated. “Having them result in the alternatives appealed into the feminine populace, the prospective demographic.”

Some participants later on became famous, including Farrah Fawcett, introduced by Lange as “an artist that is accomplished sculptress.” John Ritter ended up being on a panel as “a college student majoring in drama.” Michael Jackson, Steve Martin, Andy Kaufman, Burt Reynolds and Tom Selleck additionally showed up, as did two future governors: Arnold Schwarzenegger of Ca and Jennifer Granholm of Michigan.

While web hosting, Lange had been frequently decked call at fashions for the period, including neon-colored coats with wide lapels glider that is resembling. Often he sported a tux that is pastel-colored a shirt with voluminous ruffles. “which was perhaps not my father’s option,” Romney Lange stated. “He ended up being never ever an admirer of this.”

A nighttime form of the show went on ABC from 1966 to 1970. The daytime variation had been regarding the system until 1973, then in syndication for an additional 12 months. The show ended up being revived in 1978, once again in syndication, and went until 1980. He continued to host other television game shows, such as the “$1,000,000 possibility of a very long time” therefore the “$100,000 Name That Tune.” But he had been caught by their “Dating Game” image. “It additional hints stigmatized me personally,” he stated into the Chronicle meeting. “I would personallyn’t also be looked at for commercials because I happened to be therefore identified with that one image.”

James John Lange came to be Aug. 15, 1932, in St. Paul, Minn. At age 15 he won an audition to exert effort at a radio that is local, as a disc jockey and activities reporter. He learned radio and tv message, with a small in journalism during the college, based on the Minneapolis celebrity Tribune. Into the mid-1950s he got his very first television web hosting work, portraying the name character regarding the regional “Captain 11” show by which he would introduce technology fiction activities such as “Buck Rogers.”

After a stint into the Marines, Lange relocated to bay area, where he called himself the All-Night Mayor while working the evening change at KGO radio, based on the Bay region broadcast Digest. He relocated to KSFO in 1960 as well as 2 years later on got his break in nationwide tv because the announcer on a show staring nation singer Tennessee Ernie Ford. “They desired a new, urbane-type individual,” Lange told the Chronicle, “to counteract their nation image.”

Though he gained international popularity from “The Dating Game,” Lange’s real love when you look at the broadcast industry ended up being radio. “TV took place sorts of by accident,” stated Romney Lange. “He had a good vocals and he had been good-looking. But radio is really what he spent my youth on in which he constantly adored it.”

Along with working at stations in bay area, where he had programs until 2005, Lange worked at KMPC radio in Los Angeles within the 1970s that are early on the other hand when you look at the 1980s.

As well as their child, Lange is survived by their spouse, Nancy; sons Gavin and Nicolas; stepdaughter Ingrid; stepson Steig; sis Midge; and four grandchildren.