Bob McLean (1974–1975)
Jim Perry (1975–1989)
Jim Perry (1974–1975)
Dave Devall (1975–1989)
CTV: 9/9/1974 – 3/10/1989
Glen-Warren Productions

"Definition: (insert clue). Solution: (insert answer). And our solution to 'fun with the fun on television' is: DEFINITION! And now (insert funny line) the host/star of our show, BOB McLEAN/JIM PERRY!"

Definition was the "Give & Take" word puzzle game that's got fun with a pun.


Two teams of two (consisting of one celebrity & one contestant (and starting in 1986, two contestants)) competed in a word game similar to Hangman and the future American Wheel of Fortune but with clues called "definitions"; and the answers were puns which answered the definitions.

To start, the announcer gave the definition accompanied by the word puzzle and the host repeated it. The team in control chose a letter to "give away"; that's a letter they thought was not in the puzzle. If it wasn't, then they could choose a letter they thought was in the puzzle, a letter they could "take". Each time a chosen letter was revealed, either team could guess depending on what kind of letter it was. If it was a take away letter, the team that chose that letter got to guess; but if it was a give away letter, the opposing team got a guess and control stayed on them if they didn't guess right. Teams played back and forth until the puzzle was solved.

The first team to solve two puzzles (three for all civilians) won the match, a special prize and the right to solve a bonus puzzle for cash.

Bonus PuzzleEdit

At the bonus puzzle, the winning team was given the definition to that puzzle and then letters in that puzzle were revealed in alphabetical order from left to right. As soon as the team solved it, the contestant(s) received $10 a blank. If they failed to solve the puzzle, $10 was still given as a consolation prize.

Winning players/teams stayed on the show for up to five matches. The fifth match had the contestants play for a bigger prize.


During the earlier years of the series, when teams consisted of celebrities/contestants, there were American celebrities at times. One earlier episode had U.S. actress Audrey Landers participating.

Puzzles very rarely used punctuation. Based on fan recollection, one puzzle later in the run did involve a hyphen, which was revealed when the puzzle started.

The original puzzle board accommodated a maximum of 26 characters. By the 1986-87 season, the puzzle board was expanded to accommodate a greater number of characters.

A home game version of Definition was released by Milton-Bradley in the early-1980s.

It is believed that the vast majority of the series - except for the final two or three seasons - is erased. It is unknown whether or not celebrity clearance issues may be the reason.


1st Main - "Soul Bossa Nova" by Quincy Jones

In the early 1980s (definitely by 1983), an in-house version of "Soul Bossa Nova" replaced the Quincy Jones-recorded theme (it is unknown if legal issues may have been the reason). By 1986, an update to the in-house theme was used as the opening, and would remain until the series' demise in 1989.


Nick Nicholson and E. Roger Muir