Tuesday, January 07, 2020

This is why I know I can never be on JEOPARDY

I'm a JEOPARDY addict.  I admit that up front.

And like everyone else watching, I try to call out the answers before the contestants.  Some days are better than others.   If the topic is the 1991 Baltimore Orioles I can run the board.  But if it's 3rd Century Harbors I'm toast.

Still, in the back of my mind, I wonder -- could I maybe not embarrass myself if I went on that show?

Then last week happened.

I was in the studio audience about two months ago when the episodes that aired three days last week were taped.

And I STILL don't know the answers to a lot of these questions.  I couldn't remember for two months, much less "know" these factoids.

THAT'S when you know.  

I mean, if nothing else, the value of seeing JEOPARDY taped is that you can watch those episodes with friends and dazzle them with your supposed "knowledge."

And now, if I'm going to be on that show it would have to be to replace Johnny Gilbert, the off-stage announcer.  And even that might not work.  Some of those contestants have long confusing tongue-twisting names.

As a JEOPARDY freak this is Superbowl Week.  The three greatest champions going head-to-head on ABC starting tonight.  So it should be extra great even if I feel extra stupid.  


Chad said...

Did you see this Kevin Spacey video?

The next day one of his accusers died.

Anonymous said...

Three greatest champions in the Trebek era.
There were some players in the Fleming era who could match up formidably with these three

ddrabk said...

who is Roy Smith #1991orioles

stephen catron said...

Wife and I watch Jeopardy and we are at the age where if the 'question' is What is a cocker spaniel, for example, and we say spanish dog it counts a a correct response. Love the show.

blinky said...

I have been enjoying Jeopardy since Art Fleming and Don Pardo were the host and announcer. They had actual paper cards to reveal the questions back then.
Answer: Old as Fuck!
Question: What does that make me?

Roy DeRousse said...

WARNING: These GOAT episodes are additions to the normal episodes, not replacements. If you wish to view them, you will have to either watch them starting on Tuesday, January 7, at 8 p.m. EST on ABC or set your DVR to record them. Directv has them listed as "Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time" on their programming guide.

I thought that my DVR would record these for me automatically in place of the normal episodes. THAT IS NOT THE CASE.

Looking forward to this!

Glenn said...

I've heard the hardest part of Jeopardy is the buzzer. If you ring in too early, it "locks you out" until Alex has read the entire clue. There's a sweet spot when you can ring in and you have to master that or you're screwed.

Mike Bloodworth said...

"...you can watch those episodes with friends and dazzle them with your supposed 'knowledge.'"
Wasn't that an episode of "I Love Lucy?"
Ricky attends the taping of a radio quiz show. So, he knows all the answers when he, Lucy and Fred and Ethel subsequently listen to the show. Lucy thinks Ricky is a genious and tries to get him to be a contestant the show. Hilarity ensues.

You'll have to do better than that, Ken. I guess you'll have to settle for the "home version" as one of the "lovely parting gifts."

By Ken Levine said...


A journeyman pitcher who had a momentary flash of success with the O's throwing mostly change-ups. Also a lovely guy.

Unknown said...

All that ran through my head while reading your post, was Weird Al's song, I Lost on Jeopardy.

marka said...

Friday Question:

Say I appear on a tv show as a guest star. I get paid for that. Two seasons later my scenes are used in a flashback episode. Do I get paid again for the second use of my work? Still later my scenes are used on a "funniest moments in tv" show. Do I get paid for that use as well?

gottacook said...

Glenn: In the early days (the Art Fleming years, plus Trebek's first season in 1984-85), buzzing in early did not lock you out; it locked the other players out. The tradeoff was that you had to be ready with the correct response as soon as the clue was finished; if you jumped in early and guessed wrong, you were in danger of quickly entering negative territory, especially if you did so several times in a round. This was the reason the producers changed the format beginning in season 2 (as was explained to those of us who showed up for tryouts in July 1985). Now players are prompted by a lighted perimeter around the clue board, which lights up when Alex is finished reading an item. This signals that the buzzers are now active. But as a result, Jeopardy! became in part a test of how fast one's reflexes are.

Robert Brauer said...

The lone trip I have ever made out to L.A. was to audition for the Jeopardy College Championship. The lady who ran the thing had enough energy to heat Minneapolis all winter!

My dream would be to get an insurmountable lead after Double Jeopardy, so I could naturally give a response of "Who are three people who have never been in my kitchen?" to the Final.

russell walks said...

I was on Jeopardy. I won the first day, and took second the next. The guy I lost to actually WINKED to the camera in the opening intros.
Believe me - I wanted to whip him. I didn't get a Double Jeopardy in the second game, though and I missed an answer I should've absolutely gotten:
Category - Band Names
---------- and the Gang.
I know: It's easy, but I buzzed in and said "Spanky", thinking of Spanky and Our Gang (You know: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9W0-vB9vltk ) Of course it was KOOL and the Gang, which I realized immediately. Even worse was that Alex didn't get the Spanky reference, and said, "No, the category here is BAND names." I stewed over that for about 3 questions, and by the time I got back in the swing it was too late. Bet everything on Final Jeopardy and nailed it, but couldn't catch him, and that loss overshadowed the previous day's win.
Still, it's fun to tell people that I'm a Jeopardy! champion.

russell walks said...

Oh - and Glenn's buzzer comment is absolutely right. Buzz in before Alex is finished talking, and you're locked out for tenth of a second. I would say that at least two of the contestants know 90% of the answers. Sometimes, though, one person gets a rhythm and is almost unstoppable, as long as they know the answers.

Brian said...

Thanks for the Jeopardy reminder Ken. I'm a fan too. If I was ever able to get on Jeopardy, my goal would be to not have a negative amount of money so I could attempt final Jeopardy. And not embarrass myself by shouting out ridiculous answers.

Kirk said...

I think I would get lot of the answers right, but then forget to put them in the form of a question. I've seen people actually lose Final Jeopardy that way, and there you have time to think about it!

Matt said...

When I was in high school in 1987/88 a student from my high school went on jeopardy. She did well until Final Jeopardy where she missed what we considered a fairly easy question.

“This actor has starred in five of the top ten grossing movies of all time” or something like that. Of course it was Harrison Ford based on Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Of course we mocked her.

At the end of each school year there was a quiz competition run by the seniors. Of course we put that question on there. She got it the second time.

Buttermilk Sky said...

Like you, I call out the answers before the contestants. One night I was amazed at how much I knew about, I don't know, the Constitutional Convention or something. Then I remembered it was a rerun.

The always classy Alex Trebek reached out to John Lewis this week:


Warning from History said...

As we sit on the brink of another war, I just went back and read what you wrote on election day 2016. Your warnings have turned out to be horrifically prescient.

For anyone who wasn't a reader of the blog back then, here are the main bits.

"Today we face maybe the greatest single threat in the history of the United States. And perhaps the future annihilation of our planet. You think I’m exaggerating? I am not.

Donald Trump is a dangerous man and is not qualified to be the President of the United States.

He will recklessly send your children off to war, he will rule with fear and ignorance and self-interest, and he may even escalate world tensions to where the unthinkable will happen. Most of us are too young to know first hand, but atom bombs have been dropped on civilians and have killed thousands. That threat is REAL."

Mike Barer said...

Two unrelated Baltimore Oriole stars who shared the same last name.

Cap'n Bob said...

I had the Jeopardy! home game during the Art Fleming years.

goodman.dl said...

When we were both in college, my team (University of Maryland) played against Ken Jennings (BYU) teams. I've been in touch with him a little over the years, through college quizbowl alumni circles, and he is every bit as friendly and as gracious as he seems on TV.

Mike Barer said...

Goodman.DL's comment reminds me of GE College Bowl. Another great quiz show.

Roger Owen Green said...

I won a game in '98. If you're going to try, do it now before your reflexes atrophy.

Unknown said...

Oh, the questions are much more difficult for this GOAT competition. Which is to be expected.
I usually am able to give the incorrect answer before someone buzzes in, and then 5 seconds afterwards, go, I knew that.
Not this week. Best I can do is stammer....what...why...how did he know that?