The $25,000 Pyramid! fills the screen before the camera pans out, showing the stage, the Winner's Circle and today's contestant.
"Welcome back to the Pyramid! I'm your host, Dick Clark." Dick slowly moves over to center stage to lean against the railing. "Joanne, you've made it to the Winner's Circle."
"Yes," she titters.
"And you have to pick now, which of our celebrities you'll be playing with today. Would you like to play with Nipsey Russell or Ed Begley, Jr.?"
"I'm going to play with Ed."
"Fine, fine, Ed you want to come on out? Ed Begley Jr. everyone!" And with this Dick moves back to his podium.
Ed comes out from backstage as applause builds and Joanne rises, smiling, to greet him. She takes her seat with her back to the Pyramid, Ed sits facing her mumbling some encouraging words.
"Okay, Joanne? Ed? Are you ready to play The $25,000 Pyramid?!" Dick pauses as Joanne nods eagerly. "Remember, you will have 60 seconds to guess all six answers. You may pass at any time and come back to a question you've missed. For each answer you get right you will earn the dollar value on that square, get them all right and you will win $25,000. Ed, you can not use any of the words in the answer for your clues." Ed nods, Joanne nods and crumples her hands in her knit skirt. "If you use a word against the rules you'll hear a buzz like this." Dick pauses for the buzz, Ed nods some more. "Okay! Then let's play the Pyramid!"
The six sections of the Pyramid show their dollar amounts. The gold and beige decor, the sparkly white Christmas lights, fill the screen before the camera pulls back to show Joanne, fiercely concentrating, awaiting the first clues.
The first square flips over and Ed begins, "Uhm, play volleyball, go swimming —"
"Things you do at a picnic! Things that get you wet!" Joanne begins shouting immediately.
Ed shakes his head and continues in his measured cadence, "put on sunscreen, jump the shark."
"Things you do at the beach!" And with that Ed nods, the audience applauds and they move on to the next one.
"Meows, scratches the furniture, purrs —"
"Things a cat does!"
Ed nods again, thinks for a moment, "A stapler, an ink blotter, a typewriter."
"Things you find on a desk!" And with this they are really moving along, Joanne is looking great as they move to the next level of the Pyramid.
Ed pauses for a moment to let the applause die down a little bit before continuing, "An apple, uh —"
"Things that are red. Things that are round."
"uhm, in a trout, uh.. mezcal —"
"Places you'd find a worm?" And with that Ed nods in obvious relief before continuing. Joanne just looks puzzled.
"Uhm, on a plane to Bali. In the locker room at the YMCA." Ed is speaking even slower, obviously concerned.
"Places you'd find... uhm."
"Pass!" And with that the top of the Pyramid flips over, the $300 square. "A doughnut."
"Things with icing on them."
"A bowling ball, Swiss cheese."
"Things with holes in them!" Joanne shouts. She's got 5 of the 6 now and needs only to return to this one. There is still 20 seconds on the clock, plenty of time.
Ed looks concerned, "The pool. A meat locker. On an airplane."
Joanne can only shake her head, this isn't getting her anywhere.
"A meat locker. In a meat locker. Meat locker sex." Joanne is looking concerned, beads of sweat have broken out on Ed's forehead. "In a, on a plane. Meat locker sex. Meat locker sex."
Off to the side Dick Clark is making shooing gestures at Ed. Finally he gestures off-stage emphatically.
"Meat locker sex!" Ed is apoplectic, face red as he shouts, "Meat locker sex! MEAT LOCKER!"
Joanne looks frightened and confused. She is mumbling guesses but they can't be heard over Ed's crazed shouting. Finally the buzzer goes off announcing the end of the game. Hands reach in, gently, from off-camera and pull Ed out of his fantasy world and out of the Winner's Circle as Dick slowly makes his way over to the railing again.
Ever the professional he leans on the railing as he has done a thousand times before, completely ignoring the now empty seat. Joanne calms down and looks at Dick, no longer worried about Ed but really wondering what just cost her $25,000.
"Tell me Joanne, if I had said, in the butt?"
"Interesting places to make whoopie?"
And Dick nods sagely, sadly, as if to say that were he not so busy hosting the show he'd take that seat opposite her and get her that $25,000 with 45 seconds to spare. "Looking up at the board here it looks like you've earned - 50, 100, 150, 200, 300 - eight hundred dollars! And of course we have some lovely parting gifts for you."
Joanne nods dumbly as the camera pulls away. "Thanks for tuning in folks! See you tomorrow on another episode of The $25,000 Pyramid!"