June 24, 1956-December 27, 1961.
The multi-talented Steve Allen- musician, composer, singer, comedian, author- was the star of this live weekly variety series that bore a strong resemblance to his informal, late-night Tonight! Show. Although the program had elements of music and serious aspects, comedy was far and away its major component. Steve had with him one of the most versatile and talented collections of improvisational comics ever assembled. Among the features that were used at one time or another on a semi-regular basis were: "Letters to the Editor," "The Allen Report to the Nation," "Mad-Libs," "Crazy Shots," "Where Are They Now," "The Question Man," "The Allen Bureau of Standards," and "The Allen All Stars." The most frequently used feature, and by far the most memorable was the "Man on the Street Interview." It was here that the comics on the show developed their best-remembered characters: Louis Nye as suave, smug Gordon Hathaway, Tom Poston as the man who can't remember his own name, Skitch Henderson as Sidney Ferguson, Don Knotts as the extremely nervous and fidgety Mr Morrison, Pat Harrington as Italian golf pro Guido Panzini, and Bill Dana as shy Jose Jimenez.
Guests include Tennessee Ernie Ford, John Payne, Gisele McKenzie, Eddie Fisher, and George Gobel. A preview of the 1957 Fall season on NBC.