Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

How Do You Win A Double Showcase On The Price Is Right?

Everyone knows how you play "The Price is Right." You hope to get called down to Contestants' Row from the show's huge audience, you bid on a random prize, and if you're closest without going over, you get to play a pricing game, followed by the big wheel, and if you're lucky, the showcase showdown. That being said, the show has some weird secrets from over the years that are less well-known.

According to CBS' website, for example, there are only 10 "official" chips that can be used for the Plinko game, and because they're so exclusive, they have to be locked away after each use. Heavens forbid someone simply drops any old wooden circle down the sacred Plinko board. Oh, and that "huge" audience they pull from? Turns out the show has a smaller audience than you probably think. In 2020, showrunner Evelyn Warfel told Deadline that they couldn't keep the audience during the pandemic and happened to mention that the studio only seats about 300 people.

There's one element of the show, however, that's less of a secret and more of a mystery because of how rarely it happens: how exactly does a contestant win both showcases in the showcase showdown?

You have to guess within $250 of the correct price

According to an article in Esquire, a contestant can win both showcases if they guess the price of their own showcase within $250 of the actual retail price without going over. According to the painstaking timeline of the show compiled by Golden Road, before 1998 you had to guess within $100 of the price of your showcase to win both showcases.

As rare as it is to see someone win both showcases, it's a pretty big cause for celebration when it does happen. In 2021, a contestant named Joel guessed within $28 of the actual retail price, and his celebration was so much fun to watch that the show tweeted it out on their official account. "2 showcases! I've never seen qnyone [sic] bid that close to the actual price!" tweeted user @DemmyeB in response to the show's tweet. However, as unlikely as it might seem, one contestant has gotten their bid on the final showcase even closer than that. One contestant got his bid exactly right.

One couple memorized the game

Meet Terry Kniess. According to the previously mentioned article in Esquire, Kniess has a special talent for recognizing patterns, which is what made him one of the most accurate weathermen in the country before he started to put his talents to work catching card counters in Las Vegas casinos. Terry's wife Linda, on the other hand, has a talent for numbers, making them the perfect pair to figure out how to crack the code of "The Price is Right." In 2008, they spent four months studying the show, memorizing prices, and working out the patterns of the game before Terry got on the show in September of that year. Not only did Terry guess exactly right with his bid on Contestants' Row, but he also got the bid exactly right for his showcase, winning both showcases.

In the video of the moment this happened, host Drew Carey shows absolutely none of his trademark enthusiasm, showing a subdued reaction. That's because, as Carey told Esquire in the aforementioned article, he doubted the episode would ever air. "I remember asking, 'Are we ever going to air this?'" Carey recalls. "And nobody could see how we could. So I thought the show was never going to air. I thought somebody had cheated us, and I thought the whole show was over."

The documentary "Perfect Bid: The Contestant Who Knew Too Much" has a different take on the incident, attributing the perfect bid to Terry Kneiss getting assistance from Ted Slauson, an elementary school math teacher who became a superfan and attended tapings consistently for years, memorizing prices. Regardless, as the Esquire article points out, this led to the show changing its system to make it harder to do what the Kneisses did going forward.