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OUTTAKES THE SEQUEL

Fun And Names

May 04, 1986|Matthew J. Costello

Videocassette games take a step up in class with Mattel Toys' "Predicaments" (retail price: $34.95), an hour soap opera parody featuring Joan Rivers, due out in late May. It revolves around the manipulations, romantic entanglements and other shenanigans of a corporate dynasty, with Gordon Jump as the magnate and Arte Johnson as the butler. Mattel claims it's the first big-budget VCR game with name talent.

Players score by bidding points before each of 24 scenes, then trying to come up with the appropriate card (who, what, where, when, why, and none of your business) to questions posed on screen by the characters--while simultaneously giving a (hopefully outrageous) answer. Points are totalled at the end. Mattel claims the action is "very fast."

Rivers, who interjects as a talking rule book, wrote some of her own lines. She told us she'd do another one "in a second--I'd like to act in one!"

A trend? Parker Bros. pioneered last year with "VCR Clue." Shortly: Mattel's "Honeymooners" game, featuring segments from the "lost" episodes; Mattel's "Commercial Crazies," using Joe Sedelmaier's TV spots (for Wendy's, among others); Interactive's "NFL Quarterback Game" and Milton Bradley's "Candyland" for tykes.

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