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There were already four bodies to his name when he popped up on national TV, smiling with perfect hair.
Rodney Alcala, one of the most infamous serial killers in U. history, would eventually be arrested and sentenced to death in 1980 for the murder of 12-year-old Robin Samsoe.
But now donning a sharp, brown suit and butterfly collar, Alcala had other things on his mind: Winning the affection of bachelorette Cheryl Bradshaw.
Watching the clip today, knowing that Bachelor Number One would go on to repeatedly choke his victims to unconsciousness and wait until they came to before killing them, their banter is more terrifying preview than goofy innuendo.
(He remains in prison in California.) While Alcala's body count is unknown, police estimate the now-73-year-old man killed at least dozens of women, with some counts running as high as 130 – and there are still over 100 photographs of unidentified women who may have been his victims.
But in 1978, two years before the murder conviction, there he was: Bachelor Number One.
The crimes Alcala committed date to the late 1970s.
Nobody at the time knew the man with the wavy long hair and toothy grin was an apparent psychopath -- an unstable, antisocial personality.
Alcala, who already had been convicted for the 1968 rape of an 8-year-old girl, was the first contestant to be introduced in the game-show episode. 1 is a successful photographer who got his start when his father found him in the dark room at the age of 13, fully developed," host Jim Lange said. "The best time is at night," Alcala answered with a wide smile. 2, said he had an almost immediate aversion to Alcala. If Alcala appeared likable to viewers at home, Mills said he was the complete opposite when they sat together in the show's green room, where the show's contestants waited before going on air. He was a standout creepy guy in my life." Within months of his "Dating Game" appearance, Alcala would become a killer, prosecutors said, abducting and murdering a 12-year-old girl in 1979.Congress passed amendments to the Communications Act of 1934, the game show genre lay dormant for decades and Robert Redford made a little film documenting the whole sordid affair.“Twenty One” may have been the first game show scandal, but it was certainly far from the last.At the time of his 1978 appearance on this show, contestant Rodney Alcala was a convicted rapist, having served time in prison for the rape of an 8-year-old girl.In 2010 he was sentenced to death in California for five murders he committed between 19.