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(CNN) -- Before he was a convicted serial killer, Rodney Alcala was a winning bachelor on "The Dating Game." "Oh yeah, I remember it quite clearly," said Jed Mills, the game-show contestant who sat next to Alcala in 1978. Definitely creepy." Found guilty in February of murdering four women and a child, Alcala, 66, is acting as his own attorney in the penalty phase of the trial.
He is hoping to persuade the jury in Santa Ana, California, to spare his life.
On less frequent occasions, the roles were reversed.
To wit, the game would feature a boy selecting 1 from the 3 Bachelorettes.
But thinking back on that, I probably did." Alcala was able to charm Cheryl Bradshaw from the other side of the "Dating Game" wall. "He watched the game and he gave those answers and he won, so he learned some tricks.
But a psychopath's true nature comes seeping through.
The newer version- along with Jim Lange's gaudy red tuxedo- lasted for 2 years until local stations finally got tired of the protesting phone calls.
Once again, the show featured both present-day and future stars such as Jaye P.
(In fact, in light of its success, Baskin-Robbins named an ice cream flavor in honor of the show.) And over the years, the show featured many stars of the day (Burt Reynolds, Paul Petersen and even Dick Clark showed up) as well as newcomers who would in later years become big stars in their own right (John Ritter, Teri Garr, Tom Selleck and Farrah Fawcett were among these.) The show left abc-TV on July 2-6, 1973, but stayed in syndication for another year (1973-1974) before leaving the airwaves altogether. Paul, Minn., Lange started his career as a radio broadcaster at age 15, when he won an audition to do a weekly sports report for a local station.THE DATING GAME was and still is by all accounts, the premiere game show for singles."THE DATING GAME" first premiered on December 20-24, 1965 on abc-TV and remained a fixture on the network in both daytime and nighttime incarnations through the rest of the 1960s and well into the 1970s.
Jim Lange, fresh from his announcing duties with Tennessee Ernie Ford stepped through the flower-speckled rotating partitions for the first of many, many times shortly before Christmas 1965. On one side you had 3 bachelors answering questions from a girl on the other side of the partition (each not being able to see the other).That includes Mills, a veteran television and film actor, whose only encounter with Alcala was when both of them appeared on "The Dating Game." "That's when I became part of a nightmare, and I didn't realize it was a nightmare until 32 years later," Mills said.