Abbey writes: My mother-in-law has a strong moral stance against “dollaring” on “The Price Is Right” — or bidding one dollar higher than your opponent. But I like to root for contestants who “dollar” others: It’s good strategy. Please tell my mother-in-law to hate the game, not the player.
Is knocking out your opponent by a buck controversial? Showy? Even a little villainous? Sure. I remember gasping at this move way back in the Bob Barker era. But damn, it made me feel something! It was exactly the energizing burst of scandal this weird only child needed to fill a lonely sick day. Certainly it would be fairer if all bids were blind. But “The Price Is Right” isn’t a talent show for people who know the price of boats. It’s a game. Like all daytime TV, it needs drama — virtuous heroes (like your mother-in-law), who are thwarted by canny scoundrels (like you).