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A timeline for Season 18 of Wheel of Fortune, which aired in first-run from September 4, 2000 through June 1, 2001.

Season Changes

  • The opening starts with a shot of the applauding audience, then shows flashback clips within the outline of the Wheel, which then rotates to show a golden vertical version of the two-row logo on its side. After the chant, the Wheel graphic flips up and zooms into the center. The template used is the same one from the previous season.
  • Charlie’s intro is changed to "And now, here are the stars of our show, Pat Sajak and Vanna White!"
  • The Wheel's lights flash as Pat and Vanna are introduced. This lasts until the end of Season 20.
  • Toss-Ups are introduced, bringing with them a myriad of changes:
    • The Preview Puzzle and Puzzler are retired.
    • For this season only, there are two Toss-Up puzzles, each valued at $1,000: one at the start of the show, and one after Round 4. The contestant who solves the first one also starts Round 1, with the next two clockwise respectively starting Rounds 2 and 3, while the contestant who solves the second one also starts Round 4.
    • Because of the above, the "Just before the show we drew numbers to see who would start the game" spiel is also eliminated.
    • The sets are now fitted with color-coded buzzers similar to those used on Jeopardy! Giving a wrong answer or no answer at all locks a player out for the rest of the round.
    • A light music bed plays as the letters reveal, and the right-letter ding sounds upon ringing in.
    • If a Toss-Up is not solved, the "time's up" buzzer from the Bonus Round sounds. If the first one is not solved, the red contestant starts Round 1, and if the second one is not solved, the red contestant starts Round 4.
    • The first wipe for them is a golden coin that has the traditional logo along with "Toss-Up" written in light yellow Arial, which flips from the bottom to the top of the screen.
  • The Wheel is altered once more:
    • $1,000 is retired. $2,500 becomes the top dollar for Round 1, $3,500 for Rounds 2 and 3, and $5,000 thereafter. Also, Pat no longer mentions any of the top dollar values.
    • The Jackpot wedge and second Bankrupt move to Round 2, and the $10,000 Wedge back to Round 3. Unlike Seasons 12-13, the $10,000 Wedge is removed after Round 3, even if unclaimed.
    • For this season only, Toss-Ups are not split-screened, and many use three rows even if the answer could fit on two.
  • The closed captioning plug is moved to the end of Round 3, replacing the bumper that was introduced in April.
  • With only one exception, all games now end in a Speed-Up. In addition, fourth rounds that begin as a Speed-Up have the puzzle revealed as normal, with the Final Spin bells sounding immediately after the puzzle reveal chimes; previously in such cases, no sounds would be used, and Pat would do the Final Spin before the category and puzzle were revealed.
  • The beeping timer in the Bonus Round has music added to it.
  • Both the totals of Bonus Round prizes and end-game totals are now golden numbers. These are typically in the Geometric 415 font, although some episodes use Brush Script instead.
  • Harry Friedman became the sole executive producer.
  • Karen Griffith and Steve Schwartz became producers.
  • Likely as a result of the above, "Changing Keys" is replaced by a new theme called "Happy Wheels", composed by Steve Kaplan. The use of Network Music Ensemble stock music is also retired in favor of original compositions by Kaplan.
  • The video wall behind the contestants is changed to a single rear-projection screen.
  • The category strips are changed again, giving a three-dimensional appearance to the oval outline. The "rolling Wheel" effect is replaced with a slightly smaller Wheel of Fortune logo which rolls from right to left as the category "pops" out of it, with the category now in white Arial. The unique category wipes for Show Biz, Headline, Around the House, and Classic TV are retired. The maingame category strips change at the start of each season through Season 24, and the Bonus Round category strip also changes at the start of each season through Season 21.
  • Between now and Season 20, many puzzles in grammatical singular begin including a redundant "A" or "AN" at the beginning, particularly in the Bonus Round and Toss-Ups.
  • For this season only, the contestant's Bonus Round letter choices fade in.
  • The sponsor list, eligibility disclaimer, credits, and copyright notice are switched to Albertus MT, which remains through Season 23.
  • Until Season 21, the Bonus Round is sponsored by Coach USA on road shows. Charlie states this before the Bonus Round over footage of Vanna revealing COACH USA on the puzzle board; the shot then zooms through the monitor containing the A to show one of the company's buses.

September 2000

  • September 4 is Fast Cars. During this week:
    • The Bonus Round prizes comprise four cars and the $25,000.
    • The Prize values have a graphic of a racecar next to them.
    • A new cue is used for both solving main-game puzzles and giving right answers on "bonus" categories. Toss-Ups use a different cue heard only during this week.
  • On September 4:
    • The first ever Toss-Up is played; the puzzle is SPECIAL GUEST STAR (Show Biz).
    • In a very unorthodox move, Pat gives Karen help after Round 2's Clue puzzle IT'S THE FAMOUS CARTOON CALL OF THE ROAD RUNNER. After she says "I don't know", Pat elaborates by saying "What does the Road Runner say?" and she provides the correct answer of "Beep-Beep" (or Meep-Meep). This does not affect the outcome.
    • Rounds 1 and 2 are played entirely by the contestant who began them.
    • The Round 3 Prize is a Triumph Thunderbird motorcycle.
    • The second place contestant has $15,800.
  • On September 5:
    • There is a $10,900 Jackpot win.
    • The second-place contestant has $22,550.
  • On September 6, the Round 2 puzzle WHAT WOULD YOU DO FOR A KLONDIKE BAR? is a rare instance of Slogan not using its bonus question due to the product name being part of the answer.
  • On September 7, contestant Brian is not credited with $1,000 after he solves the second Toss-Up, and this amount is instead added to his total in Round 4. This scoring error does not affect the final outcome.
  • September 11 is Endless Summer. During this week:
    • The studio has a blue floor.
    • The Round 3 Prize value graphics have a smiling sun next to them.
  • On September 11:
    • The 1997 main-game "puzzle solve" cue returns. The cue heard in the main game during the previous week is now used when Toss-Ups and the Bonus Round are solved.
    • Contestant Kice finishes in second place with $17,050.
  • The September 12 episode is preserved on archive.org due to rerunning on September 15, 2001, the Saturday after the 9/11 attacks.
  • During the week of September 18, the Round 2 Prize totals have relevant images next to the dollar sign while the Round 3 prizes have a picture of the sun.
  • September 18 is African Safari.
  • On September 18:
    • Rounds 2 and 3 are shot differently when they are solved: Round 2 shows the board at an angle, while Round 3 cuts to a shot of Jon with the board seen from a distance.
    • A "null" cycle is edited out of Round 3, as referenced by Pat saying "Jon, try again" despite it being his first turn.
  • On September 19:
    • The category strip does not appear on the second shot of the board in Round 1.
    • Rounds 1-3 have ampersands while the first Toss-Up has the word "AND".
    • Contestant Max's score is accidentally shown as $8,100 after he solves Round 2. It is corrected to $6,500 before Round 3.
  • On September 20, during the closing segment, Pat and Vanna discuss the Toss-Ups from the contestant area.
  • On September 22:
    • Vanna wears a sleeveless shirt and pants.
    • Actor Leonard Stone is a contestant.
    • The Round 1 puzzle BEAT THE HEAT has only three unique consonants.
    • No vowels are bought in Round 5.
    • Six rounds are played.
  • September 25 is European Vacation.
  • On September 25:
    • Round 3 (JOHN RITTER AS JACK TRIPPER) is categorized as Classic TV instead of Star & Role.
    • The music does not play during the second Toss-Up.
    • Round 4 (TEX-MEX) is a rare instance of both a puzzle shorter than ten letters and one with only three unique consonants.
    • The second place contestant has $14,550.
    • Before the Bonus Round is played, Pat announces that due to a scheduling error, he and Vanna have to leave right after the Bonus Round and his children Patrick and Maggie have to do the closing segment. Both of them say that they were taught "don't be funnier than Daddy is", while Maggie says that Vanna taught her how to wave goodbye. A clip of this seen in Seasons 25 and 30.
    • The version of "Happy Wheels" used at the end of the Bonus Round plays during the closing credits.
  • On September 29, contestant Brian gives the number while solving Round 2's Fill In the Number puzzle BO DEREK ROCKETED TO STARDOM IN THE MOVIE ## (10) and is credited with both a correct response and the bonus for the correct number.
  • On an episode sometime during the week of September 25 (likely the 28th, as clips of this episode were used during a WPLG news report on the 29th), Round 2 is a rare instance of Slogan not using its bonus question due to the product name being part of the answer (YOU'RE IN GOOD HANDS WITH ALLSTATE).

October 2000

  • October 2 is Ships Ahoy Week.
  • On October 5:
    • The Round 2 Prize is a $2,500 gift certificate for ibeauty.com.
    • Contestant Michelle spins only once in the entire game, landing on Bankrupt in Round 2.
    • Before the final segment, Vanna models the consolation prize (a Bushnell telescope) while holding her daughter Giovanna.
  • All five Bonus Rounds are lost on the week of October 2.
  • October 9 is Big Money Week.
  • On October 11, after the Round 1 puzzle PASSWORD (Classic TV), a clip is shown of Pat competing on Super Password.
  • On October 12:
    • Three overhead shots in Round 2 are edited in from other episodes, as evidenced by the Free Spin and Prize disappearing in those shots.
    • The Round 2 puzzle THE BEST PART OF WAKIN' UP IS FOLGERS IN YOUR CUP is a rare instance of Slogan not using its bonus due to the product name being in the answer.
  • On October 13, two contestants incorrectly solve the Round 3 puzzle STRAIT OF MAGELLAN by adding "the" to the beginning.
  • October 16 is Shopping Spree.
  • October 23 is Inns of New England. Starting this week, there is now a shot of the applauding audience before the intro.
  • On October 23, the credits abruptly change to a different font about halfway through.
  • October 30 is Halloween Week.

November 2000

  • On November 2, celebrities play the game for charity while in Halloween costumes, with a minimum guarantee of $10,000, as part of an "unmask the stars" contest held on the show's website. It is also the last all-celebrity game until Celebrity Wheel of Fortune in Season 38.
    • The celebrities are Richard Simmons, Tara Lipinski, and Alex Trebek. They are respectively disguised as William Shakespeare, a genie, and a gnome named Osment, and referred to as such by Pat.
    • Both Alex and Richard throw Round 1's puzzle A HAUNTING MELODY by deliberately calling incorrect letters with only the E, O, and Y missing, then joking about their calls.
      ShoppingGrave11200.png
    • After Round 3, a gag tombstone reading "Shopping for prizes" is seen, next to a ceramic Dalmatian sporting its $154 price tag.
    • The second Toss-Up is not played.
    • Possibly due to taping order and/or the omission of the second Toss-Up, the Speed-Up at the start of Round 4 is revealed in the "old" style.
    • The bonus puzzle is IN DISGUISE, which Tara solves for $25,000.
    • In the final segment, Charlie reveals each celebrity's identity. All three appear with Pat and Vanna, as does Alex's son, Matt (also in a gnome costume).
  • On November 3, Kristan Cummingham is a contestant; she would later appear in Season 25 on People Celebrity Week, thus becoming only the second known person to play as both a civilian and a celebrity.
  • The week of November 6 is taped at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. During this week, there is a cold open in which Pat pretends to give a campaign speech.
    • On all of the Washington D.C. episodes this season:
      • The second Bankrupt and Jackpot wedge are accidentally placed one wedge clockwise from their normal locations, putting them on the green $500 (where Jackpot should be) and orange $800, respectively.
      • The $25,000 prize in the Bonus Round is offered in Sacagawea dollars.
  • On November 6 (taped October 14):
    • The $10,000 Wedge is mistakenly placed on the Wheel for Round 2, where the second Bankrupt should be, and it is won. Pat comments on the error at the start of Round 3, and the wedge is used in that round as well. This does not affect the outcome, as contestant Camille who won the wedge would have won regardless.
    • Background music is added to the Speed-Up round. This cue is composed of ticking percussion, bass guitar, and synthesizers.
    • The audience inexplicably applauds a wrong answer in the Bonus Round.
  • On November 7:
    • The Round 3 Prize is an autographed and framed letter from Dwight D. Eisenhower.
    • In Round 3, contestant Raymond accidentally asks to buy a W, and then a zero, before calling an O. According to someone who was in the audience for this episode, the O is originally revealed normally, after which there is a 25-minute stopdown. The reveal of the O's is then re-shot, and Pat explains that he may either buy another vowel or spin again, but has to call W if he spins again. He does call W, which is in the puzzle, but later hits Lose a Turn.
    • The bonus puzzle WHICH IS WHICH? is the first of only two known puzzles with a question mark in the Bonus Round.
    • The Speed-Up cue accidentally plays during the Bonus Round countdown instead of the timer beeps.
  • On November 9:
    • Pat forgets to remove Judy's prize after she lands on Bankrupt in Round 3.
    • Despite having been an active category since 1998, Rhyme Time makes only its first appearance in the Bonus Round. The answer, HODGEPODGE, is a very rare instance of it being used for a one-word answer.
  • On November 10:
    • The Round 1 puzzle JAMES AND DOLLEY MADISON is both the first known instance since 1989 of Husband & Wife spelling out AND, and a very rare instance of it being used for a couple who is not alive at the time of taping.
    • Contestant George spins only once in the entire game, calling a wrong letter on $600 in Round 2.
    • Rounds 1 and 3 are played entirely by the teams who began them.
    • Vanna helps model the Round 2 Prize, an Epson digital camera, by saying "Smile, everybody!" and pointing said camera at a crowd.
    • Contestant Will wins both Prizes and the Gift Tag in Round 3.
    • There is an $8,250 Jackpot win.
    • Although Will loses the Bonus Round, Pat has his wife and two sons come onstage anyway.
    • Will later attempts to sue the show for $2,000,000 in damages, as he claims that Pat bear-hugging him (a moment which was edited out of the broadcast) resulted in him suffering back injuries. The matter is later settled out of court.
  • The week of November 13 is the Hershey's Pot of Gold Sweepstakes. The grand prize is five years of vacations for a family of four in Hawaii, plus a Lexus RX 300 and $25,000 cash (promoted with a $25,000 envelope, with the Hershey's Pot of Gold logo on the top half). Ten first-prize winners get to sit in the audience during the Hawaii episodes in February. Other prizes include $500 Sony Card shopping sprees and Hershey's chocolate gift packages. Home viewers may submit an entry form from the November 12 newspaper and include at least three of the bonus puzzles from that week.
  • During the week of November 13, the "Hershey's Pot of Gold Sweepstakes" logo is projected into the center of the Wheel.
  • On November 14:
    • There is a $10,100 Jackpot win.
    • The Round 3 puzzle is FIVE-TIME UNDEFEATED CHAMPION.
    • All three contestants hit Bankrupt consecutively in Round 3.
    • The buzzer sounds on a wrong answer to the second Toss-Up.
  • On November 15, the second-place contestant has $27,300.
  • November 20 is Home For the Holidays.
  • November 27 is Ultimate Adventures.
  • On November 27:
    • The Round 2 puzzle MICHAEL DOUGLAS AND CATHERINE ZETA-JONES is categorized as Show Biz instead of Proper Names; interestingly, the puzzle airs only nine days after their marriage.
    • Contestant Mica wins Round 3 with only the $10,000 Prize and the Prize, an $8,995 Thunderbird motorcycle.
    • All of the cardboard is removed from the Wheel by Round 4, as contestant Felicia picks up the Gift Tag and the other Prize.
    • Felicia asks to solve just as the Speed-Up bells sound, and is allowed to do so. After she solves, Pat initially says that they are going to play another round before consulting the staff, who tell him to wrap up the game and recap the scores instead, most likely because not enough time remained for even a shorter fifth round. As a result, this is the last game not to end in a Speed-Up.
    • The second-place contestant has $19,995.
    • Clips of contestant Felicia hugging Pat and running around the stage after winning her Bonus Round are both shown on the ceremonial 4,000th episode.

December 2000

  • December 4 is Island Hopping.
  • December 11 is Wheel Across America, the first time that this theme occurs in a month other than May.
  • December 18 is Orient Escape Week.
  • December 25 is Christmas Week. During this week, one of the bonus prizes is a "mystery prize" which is mentioned as being worth over $42,000. This is the last time that this is done.
  • On December 25:
    • The Round 3 Prize is a Triumph Thunderbird motorcycle.
    • During the credits, each staff member appears on-screen at their credit. At the end, Charlie appears on-camera to wish viewers a happy holiday.
  • On December 27, for the only time this season, a "bonus" category (Slogan) appears in Round 1.
  • On December 29, Pat and Vanna reveal the mystery prize (an Audi TT) during the closing chat.

January 2001

  • On an episode sometime this year, according to one recollection, PIKACHU is used as a bonus puzzle. This is both a tie for the longest known bonus puzzle without RSTLNE, and the last known instance of such a puzzle.
  • January 1 is Las Vegas Week.
  • On January 2, there is a Jackpot win.
  • On January 4, Vanna wears a suit.
  • All ten Bonus Rounds are lost on the weeks of December 25 and January 1, part of a losing streak comprising at least eleven days.
  • January 8 is French & Italian Riviera.
  • On an episode from the week of January 8:
    • No vowels are bought in Round 4.
    • Pat almost forgets to open the bonus envelope after the round is lost.
  • January 15 is Mexico Week.
  • On January 15:
    • A cycle of three lost turns is edited out of Round 4 despite not being "null"; the first lost turn is an incorrect vowel from contestant Frantz, as his scoreboard displays $650 instead of $900 the next time he is shown on camera.
    • Round 5 (which begins as a Speed-Up) is the first known appearance of The 60's since Retro Week in 1999.
    • The contestant displays do not turn off until after the first turn of Round 5.
    • 10 wrong letters are called during the Speed-Up, including 8 in a row.
    • The second place contestant has $20,250.
  • On January 16, Round 2's Where Are We? puzzle used three clues.
  • On January 17:
    • There is a $9,750 Jackpot win.
    • Contestant Eric loses $9,600 and the Rounds 2 and 3 Prize Wedges to Bankrupt in Round 4.
    • Eric's display does not turn off until after the first turn of Round 5.
  • On January 19:
    • There is a $7,700 Jackpot win.
    • Round 5 (NEWSWEEK) is both a rare instance of a puzzle shorter than ten letters and one with only one vowel.
    • Coincidentally, the bonus puzzle is JACKPOT.
  • January 22 is NFL Players Week, taped at DAR Constitution Hall. This is the first time since the Atlanta episodes in 1996 that a road show runs for more than two weeks, and it is the first time since then that episodes from the same venue do not air contiguously. During this week:
    • As was the case before Season 14, celebrity episodes revert to having the interviews in the normal spot, instead of interviewing one team after each of the first three rounds.
    • The highest-scoring team wins a trip 5-day trip to Tampa to attend the 989 sports NFL players party and Super Bowl XXXV. Also included VIP passes, a selection of valuable player autographed merchandise, Jeff Hamilton custom leather jacket and a Sony PlayStation with a copy of NFL GameDay 2001 and 15 other sports games from 989 Sports.
  • On January 22, the NFL players do not wear nametags in Rounds 1 and 2.
  • On January 24:
    • Vanna wears a suit.
    • The Round 2 Prize is an NFL Players Credit Card valued at $2,500.
    • Round 5 is DAFFY DUCK, a rare instance of a puzzle shorter than ten letters and one with none of the five most common consonants.
    • Lincoln Kennedy and his teammate Tamra solve the above puzzle with only the D's showing.
  • On January 22-25, all three teams are male-female combos, this is the only known time this has happened on four straight shows (not counting Sweethearts Weeks).
  • On January 26:
    • The Round 2 Prize is a chance to eat dinner with a local football player at his favorite restaurant, valued at $3,550.
    • The Free Spin falls under the Wheel as Stephen Davis and his teammate Ira hit Bankrupt. It is never retrieved, so Pat imagines them handing to them before spinning again.
  • January 29 is San Francisco Week. During this week, the Prizes are sponsored by Yahoo! Travel.
  • On January 29:
    • Vanna wears a shirt and pants.
    • Round 1 begins with a "null" cycle that is edited out, referenced by Pat telling Susan "Well, there's that Free Spin again" despite her not being shown hitting it earlier.
    • Although a repeated C is called in Round 1, it is not acknowledged as such.
    • As the Round 3 Prize is a trip to Hawaii, Pat plugs the upcoming Hawaii episodes before the puzzle is revealed.
    • Pat forgets to have Susan draw one of the W-H-E-E-L envelopes until a voice reminds him from offstage.
    • The bonus puzzle HOT STUFF uses only one line.

February 2001

  • On February 1, Vanna wears a sleeveless shirt and pants.
  • February 5 is College Week, taped at DAR Constitution Hall.
  • On February 5:
    • Contestant Camille only spins twice in the entire game.
    • The scoreboard lights glitch out at the beginning of the Speed-Up, but this is later corrected.
    • 10 wrong letters (including one vowel) are called in the Speed-Up.
    • Contestant James solves the bonus puzzle GOPHER despite getting no help from his extra letters, after which Pat pretends to frisk him. This was seen in several retrospectives, although the "frisking" was cut out of the episode as aired.
  • On February 6, for what is likely the first time, a Toss-Up is not solved. The correct answer is SHE ACED IT, and two contestants ring in with wrong answers with only the C missing.
  • On February 9:
    • There a $12,650 Jackpot win.
    • Contestant David sets a main-game winnings record of $65,250 and wins $25,000 in the Bonus Round.
    • David solves the bonus puzzle I'M SO HAPPY with only the I, M, and S revealed.
  • The weeks of February 12 and 19 are taped outdoors, in front of the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Hawaii. February 12 is Family Week, and the week of February 19 has all Hawaiian contestants. During these weeks:
    • The name tags have thinner letters than usual.
    • Pat wears Hawaiian-themed short-sleeved shirts.
    • The Toss-Up gold coin has Hawaiian flowers around it.
    • The final total graphics are in a balloon font with Hawaiian flowers.
  • On February 12:
    • In the opening segment, an unknown couple places leis on Pat and Vanna.
    • After interviewing contestants Arnold and Edward, Pat asks Edward "What was that noise you made earlier?" then Edward asks, "Noise?" and looks behind himself; the cameras cut to Pat, who says "Good night, everybody. Thank you for coming!" and pretends to walk off-set. This was seen in many retro clips.
    • The Round 2 Prize is a pair of Currie bicycles.
    • Contestants Dorothy and Alice forget to pick up the above Prize after calling a correct letter on it, and it remains on the Wheel for Round 3. This does not affect the outcome, as they are still credited with winning the bikes, and the wedge is not hit again in Round 3.
    • In the post-game chat, Angela Perez Baraquio appears as a special guest, and teaches Pat, Vanna, and all three contestants teams to hula dance.
  • On February 23:
    • After contestant Lourdes solves the Round 1 puzzle THE DREW CAREY SHOW, she hugs Pat excitedly and causes him to say "I just discovered the meaning of the aloha spirit". This was seen in several retrospectives.
    • The 60's is used as a Toss Up (the 2nd) for the only known time (MAKE LOVE NOT WAR).
  • February 26 is Winter Sports Week.
  • On February 26:
    • Microsoft announces that it is pulling the WebTV interactive elements from Wheel and Jeopardy! due to a financial dispute with Sony.
    • A cycle of three lost turns is edited out of Round 1 despite not being "null"; the first lost turn is an incorrect vowel from contestant Sarah, as evidenced by her score being off by $250 for the rest of the round. Pat references the cycle by telling contestant Rishi "That's more like it" after his first aired spin lands on $300.
    • Contestant Kathryn finishes in third place with $650, the last three-digit score not counting those who receive the $500 house minimum in Seasons 20-22.

March 2001

  • On March 2, there is an $11,600 Jackpot win.
  • March 5 is Cruise Week.
  • On March 5, a transparent Wheel of Fortune bug is added in the bottom left-hand corner of the screen, written in the same font as the two-row logo. It is seen during the intro, and whenever the contestant area or puzzle board is on-screen.
  • March 12 is Fast Cars Week, also the theme of the season premiere week. This is the first known "regular" theme, other than Big Money and America's Game, to occur more than once in one season, the second not happening until Season 32.
  • On March 14, Living Thing debuts.
  • March 19 is Caribbean Week. During this week, the Round 3 prizes are trips to the Caribbean.
  • On March 19:
    • Vanna wears a suit.
    • Both Toss-Ups are Phrase.
    • The 1997 puzzle-solve cue is accidentally used on the second Toss-Up.
    • Show Biz makes its first known appearance in the Bonus Round, despite having been an active category since Season 14. This also creates a very rare instance of the puzzle's category also containing part of the answer, which is SHOWGIRL.
  • On March 20:
    • No vowels are bought in Round 1.
    • The Prize is $2,500 credit to bikeshop.com.
    • Six rounds are played.
  • On March 21:
    • The Round 2 Prize is a $3,100 Panasonic television and ShowStopper, the former of which displays the opening to a Hawaii episode from February 18, 1999 when Charlie describes it.
    • Both Rounds 1 and 2 are completely filled in before being solved.
    • The 1997 puzzle-solve cue is accidentally used on the second Toss-Up.
  • On March 22:
    • The 1997 puzzle-solve cue is accidentally used on the first Toss-Up, with the usual cue returning for the second.
    • Contestant Blythe's last spin in Round 1 lands on the orange $800, but only $550 is added to her score. The credits mention that a portion of the show had to be re-produced, so is possible that she actually landed on the adjacent $550 and the spin was reshot after the round, as Pat never announces the dollar amount during that turn. Her arrow is sitting on the green $500 after she solves, suggesting that more than one reshoot may have been done. The incorrect scoring does not affect the outcome.
  • On March 23, Round 1 (HOOVER DAM) is a rare instance of a puzzle shorter than ten letters.
  • March 26 is Spring Break Week.
  • On March 30, nobody solves the second Toss-Up.

April 2001

  • April 2 is Travel USA.
  • On April 2:
    • Vanna wears a sleeveless shirt and pants.
    • There is a $9,200 Jackpot win.
    • The second Toss-Up is WHEEL OF FORTUNE; after it is solved, Pat jokes that "we have officially run out of puzzles, apparently."
    • The first Toss-Up and Round 4 are Thing, while Round 1 and the Bonus Round are Phrase.
  • On April 6, Living Thing makes its first known appearance in the Bonus Round.
  • April 9 is the second and final Retro Week. Besides the presence of Toss-Ups, differences from the one in 1999 include:
    • There is no chant during the opening, as was the case prior to the first nighttime tapings in July 1983.
    • The opening uses the then-current theme.
    • The 1980s clip on at least the 13th is from between February and September 1984, and "Changing Keys" is poorly dubbed over: several seconds are audible after Pat's introduction, while the first note of the bridge is audible when Vanna is introduced (replaced by a slightly different version of the first Retro Week's opening cue).
    • The contestant video wall shows a set of unique backdrops, using the bases of the 1992-96 ones with the traditional logo on top. From Round 1 through the end of the game, the logos are replaced by illustrations of the 1992-96 design.
    • On at least April 13, Pat introduces the three "shopping" prizes.
    • On at least April 13, the classic clips shown before Round 3 use a cue that somewhat resembles the 1984-89 version of "Changing Keys".
  • On April 13:
    • No vowels are bought in Round 1.
    • Greg hits the purple $600 next to $3,500 twice in a row in Round 3, but on both spins, the same shot of that wedge from another episode's Round 1 is dubbed in, as evidenced by $2,500 being visible.
    • Although a repeated S is called in Round 3, it is not acknowledged as such.
    • Contestant Cat finishes in second place with $18,114.
    • The last segment includes a montage of Vanna's outfits.
  • April 16 is the second Big Money Week of the season.
  • April 23 is San Diego Week. During this week, the then-upcoming Soap City sweepstakes is promoted after the Bonus Round.
  • On April 26, the Round 2 Prize is $2,500 credit to TicketsNow.com.
  • On April 27, the Speed-Up puzzle FOUNTAIN AND BULL PEN is the first known instance of Same Name using AND since the end of Season 6.
  • April 30 is Soap City Week, with teams consisting of contestants and soap opera stars. The week is a tie-in to soapcity.com, then the website for all of the soap operas distributed by Sony Pictures. During this week:
    • The Soap City logo is added to the intro animation.
    • The stars enter from a staircase at stage left.
    • The stars' name tags have a silver star on the right side.
    • The stars are Lynn Herring, Peter Recell, and Kim Zimmer on Monday; Scott Reeves, Galen Gering, and Coltin Scott on Tuesday; Adrienne Frantz, Michelle Stafford, and Lauren Koslow on Wednesday; Joseph Mascolo, Sarah G. Buxton, and Rick Hearst on Thursday; and David Lago, Marisa Ramirez, and Jay Kenneth Johnson on Friday.
    • Clips of the stars on their respective shows are used as bumpers.
    • Except on Thursday, one of the Prizes is a tour of a soap opera set and a trip, announced by a cast member of the soap opera in question: The Young and the Restless on Monday, Days of Our Lives on Tuesday, General Hospital and Port Charles on Wednesday, and Guiding Light on Friday.
    • There is a sweepstakes where home viewers may enter a form online for a chance to tour a soap opera set, sponsored by eharlequin.com.
    • During the closing chat, all three stars appear onstage. Except on Friday, they throw to Charlie, who then introduces the next day's stars via footage of them modeling on the staircase.
  • On April 30:
    • As contestant Laurie is a in wheelchair, her teammate Kim Zimmer spins for her. This is the first instance of a "designated spinner" overall, and one of only three known instances of one during a team week.
    • The soap stars do not wear name tags until the Jackpot Round.
    • The Round 2 Prize is a $2,500 Bed Bath & Beyond gift certificate.

May 2001

  • On May 1:
    • All three teams are male-female combos.
    • No vowels are bought in Round 1.
    • The Round 3 Prize is placed on the yellow $400 between $300 and $550 instead of the one two wedges counterclockwise from Lose a Turn.
    • The second-place team has $20,300.
  • On May 2:
    • Vanna wears a sleeveless top and pants.
    • Round 3 is a Before & After of FREE SPIN THE BOTTLE; coincidentally, the team that solves this puzzle uses the Free Spin.
    • Rounds 2 and 3 are are played entirely by the contestants who played them.
    • The Final Spin chimes sound after Michelle Stafford and her teammate Jenna call an R. They are allowed to finish their turn, and end up buying an E before the bells sound again and Pat does the Final Spin. Likely in relation to this, the ding does not sound when the E is revealed.
    • The second-place team has $13,300.
  • On May 3:
    • All three teams are male-female combos.
    • The category strip disappears on the third shot of the board in Round 1.
    • The Round 2 Prize is a $2,500 IKEA gift certificate.
    • Sarah G. Buxton and her teammate David spin only once in the maingame, calling a wrong letter on $300 in Round 3.
    • The Round 2 puzzle JOAN COLLINS AS ALEXIS CARRINGTON is categorized as The 80's instead of Star & Role, which is all the more unusual as Star & Role is used the very next day.
    • The second-place team has $25,996.
    • Kevin Spirtas makes a guest appearance during the closing chat.
  • On May 4:
    • Once again, all three teams are male-female combos.
    • The Round 2 Prize is a Panasonic television, which Kevin Spirtas models from the set of Days of Our Lives.
  • The weeks of May 7 and 14 are taped at the Dallas (now Kay Bailey Hutchinson) Convention Center. During these weeks, the 1997 Bonus Round cue is used whenever the bonus puzzle is solved, and the 2000 cue is used after Pat opens the bonus envelope (except on the 9th).
  • On May 8:
    • The Round 1 puzzle PIE TIN MAN is a rare puzzle shorter than 10 letters.
    • Mike Modano from the Dallas Stars makes a guest appearance after the puzzle WINNING PRO HOCKEY'S STANLEY CUP.
  • On May 9, contestant Tom hugs Vanna and break-dances after winning the Bonus Round. This was seen on the 4000th episode.
  • On May 10:
    • Vanna wears a sleeveless top and pants.
    • Round 2 is the last appearance of The 60's, barring a single use on April 6, 2011 which was done exclusively for a show that intentionally recycled puzzles from previous episodes.
    • Raghib Ismail of the Dallas Cowboys does a bumper after Round 2.
    • Winning contestant Willie leaves with only $4,700. This is the lowest winning total since the introduction of Toss-Ups.
  • On May 8-11, the 1997 puzzle-solve cue accidentally sounds after the Toss-Ups are solved.
  • During the week of May 7, all five winners are male.
  • May 14 is Best Friends Week. During this week:
    • The post-Round 3 bumper includes a spinning version of the traditional logo; underneath, a star leaves a sparkling wipe to reveal the words "Dallas Week", then rotates to form an outline of Texas.
    • One Bonus Round prize is 1,000,000 Advantage Miles from American Airlines.
  • On May 16:
    • The second Bankrupt comes loose in Round 2 revealing part of the orange-yellow $300, but is fixed on the next spin.
    • No vowels are bought in Round 3.
    • The 1997 puzzle-solve cue accidentally sounds after the Toss-Ups are solved.
  • On May 18:
    • After Round 1, Pat slumps over the railing upon realizing that his pants zipper is open.
    • The Round 2 puzzle A FRIEND IN NEED IS A FRIEND INDEED is categorized as Phrase instead of Rhyme Time, possibly because Round 4 is also Rhyme Time.
    • Pat mentions before the second Toss-Up that it is the 3,500th episode.
  • May 21 is Wheel Goes to the Movies.
  • May 28 is Garage Sale.
  • On May 29 (taped April 19), one round has a Star & Role puzzle of ROBERT BLAKE AS BARETTA. Between the episode's taping and airing, Blake is accused of shooting his wife. After the round is solved, a clip is dubbed in of Pat explaining the situation.
  • On May 31, after contestant Lou wins Round 1, Pat notices that he and Lou are wearing the same outfit, a moment which has been seen in several retrospectives.

June 2001

  • On June 1:
    • Vanna wears a sleeveless top and pants.
    • The bonus puzzle is a redundant answer of BABY CRIB.