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October 28th, 2003

Rod Roddy

I’d like to take a moment to mark the passing of Rod Roddy, whose “Come on down!” entertained me for years.

I don’t think the show will be the same without him, really. A few months ago I tuned in, and there was some Generic Announcer Guy on in Rod’s place. It just felt… odd.

TPIR was probably my favorite game show when I was a kid. I used to make a “home version” out of paper, and let my grandmother be my sole contestant. The paper versions of Plinko and the Big Wheel were something else, let me tell you.

Posted in Pop Culture

FROM: Ryan
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 9:35:22 am
I hadn't even heard yet... the Ping delivers news first, apparently.

Rod Roddy definitely had a distinctive voice (and personality, for sure) and is right up there with Gene Wood for sheer recognizability.

FROM: Chris [E-Mail]
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 10:40:28 am
My kids love TPIR. I think some of their early math skills were a direct result of the show. I would so clean up if I ever made it on stage with Bob. The vast majority of the pricing games can be won with simple logic and a little luck.

FROM: Greg
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 10:53:38 am
He had a great voice, his energy for what he did was unmatched and the sequin jackets he wore were unbeatable. We'll miss you Rod.

FROM: Dave Walls [E-Mail]
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 11:05:13 am
Rod had been fighting the cancer in his body for a long time now, but at least he will finally be able to rest. God bless him..

I think the show will be able to go on and do well. Remember, Johnny Olsen was the first announcer, and when he died in October of 1985, no one thought that anyone could ever fill his shoes well enough, but to his credit, Rod took the role, and in the classiest way possible, made the role his own while still giving credit to Johhny O. at the same time.

As for future replacements, the two I can think of who have filled in are Randy West (Weakest Link, Supermarket Sweep among others) and Burton Richardson (Arsenioooooooooooo.....HALL). The real key for either to succeed is how well they play off of Bob. It's really unfair to judge either so far, because it's not like they could get a good rapport going with Bob under the circumstances they filled in. That said, both are great, but I think Randy West would be a great choice.

To close, here's a great fact that I didn't know, taken right from "Roddy was the official ambassador of Chaing Mai, Thailand, and traveled there frequently to create his signature colorful Thai silk wardrobe, featured on The Price Is Right".

RIP Rod.

FROM: towinlovinit
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 4:59:25 pm
That show has been my favorite since it first aired and is my children's favorite as well. Now that it is on cable, we can tape it so when they come home from school they can enjoy it. Rod's voice will always be remembered with fondness.

FROM: Matt
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 5:19:13 pm
My fondest Price Is Right memories were when I was in 8th grade we would ocassionally get to watch it in math class for a treat.

FROM: Game Show Man Joe Van Ginkel
DATE: Tuesday October 28, 2003 -- 11:02:34 pm
It doesn't surprise me to find this Ping here today. The online game show fan community is in mourning for this great man.

BTW, the "Generic Announcer Guy" you refer to is likely either Burton Richardson (the voice of the old Arsenio Hall Show, he was the announcer on my episode of Russian Roulette) or Randy West (a prince of a guy who just happens to have been friends with Rod for many years; Rod's predecessor, the legendary Johnny Olsen, was Randy's mentor). Randy's been filling in for Rod for most of the last few weeks.

He has a tribute up for his friend on his website,

DATE: Friday October 31, 2003 -- 5:54:00 am
Rod Roddy was a part of Gordon McLendon's KLIF - 1190 - where Top 40 radio was invented, on Commerce Street in Dallas. He was the moderator of "Hotline" - one of several talk shows that served as a basis for the fictional movie "Talk Radio" (by Oliver Stone). When I met with Roddy in 1992, I told him about John Hinckley listening to his program some 20 years before. He said "That sends shivers up my spine. You never know who is out there." I sent him a copy of what Hinckley wrote in my 1972 annual. "Rod Roddy for President" I cautioned him that there was nothing about Hinckley at that time that was a problem - - he just stayed up all night listening to the radio and slept in class.

I'll do my best to maintain the tapes I have of Rod Roddy's Hotline. One of them was about the Dallas County Democratic Convention of 1972. There were others about protests of the "United Way" and of "lemon" cars. His program attracted calls from "Dixie Leber," an organizer for the Ku Klux Klan, who argued with him. (She died in 1980.)

If I can find a funeral service in Fort Worth, I'll take the time to attend it. There won't be another Rod Roddy.

FROM: Ryan
DATE: Friday October 31, 2003 -- 9:14:37 am
Before his death, I had no idea how much of an outspoken political radio host he was. He sounds like a really interesting man, beyond his work on TPIR.

FROM: Chris
DATE: Friday October 31, 2003 -- 8:25:41 pm
TPIR is my favorite show, and Rod Roddy will be sadly missed. He was so well liked

DATE: Sunday November 2, 2003 -- 5:14:51 pm
There's a guest book on, No. GB01553581

Click here:

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