TV Legends: Game Show Hosts

Jeff Minton

Monty Hall, Bob Barker, Tom Kennedy and Peter Marshall | Photographed by Jeff Minton on Dec. 8 at Smashbox Studios in West Hollywood in a 1936 Mercedes-Benz 200 Cabriolet; courtesy of Mercedes-Benz Classic Center, Irvine, Calif.

I’m delighted to see these guys because I assumed they died!” That’s how Bob Barker, 87, makes an entrance, but the crack speaks to another late-life issue that saddles the host of 35 years and fellow daytime veterans Peter Marshall, 84, Tom Kennedy, 83, and Monty Hall, 89: how to define retirement after you’ve been on TV nearly every day of your career. Some spend their time (and money) on philanthropic causes: Barker is an advocate for animal rights, and Hall, who still owns and produces CBS’ Deal, has raised more than $1 billion for various charities. Meanwhile, Marshall, who hosts a weekly radio show, PBS specials and a Las Vegas big-band revue, just can’t stop working. “I’ll go until I drop,” he says. Then there’s Kennedy, who’s enjoying a life of leisure outside Santa Barbara, Calif. Among his favorite activities: “Watching old videos of these guys,” he says. “I love YouTube.” They took different post-showbiz tracks but share a common philosophy: They wouldn’t win the game show they hosted. “I would be a terrible contestant,” Barker says. “People ask me to guess prices, and I always make a fool out of myself.” Adds Kennedy, “Tune was very difficult, and I’m not fast enough.” Hall, on the other hand, is still playing. “No matter where I go, if there’s an elevator, someone will ask me which door I want,” he says with a laugh.

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