Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for the December 18 episode of Jeopardy!]

The contestants of game two of the finals of Champions Wildcard may have gotten one of the Daily Double questions wrong in the December 18 episode of Jeopardy! but fans feel like they should have been harder at this point in a tournament.

Gary Hollis, a chemistry professor from Roanoke, Virginia (with 6,000 in game 1), Tyler Vandenberg, a Marine officer currently serving in Stuttgart, Germany (leading with 17,600), and Yungsheng Wang, a deputy public defender originally from Lafayette, Louisiana (with 8,000) faced off for the second of the two-game total final. And as Ken Jennings (now the sole host of the syndicated series) noted, “We have seen on more than one occasion that having the lead at the end of Game 1 does not necessarily indicate who will come out ahead in the end.” Such was the case here, with Yungsheng, the only one to get the Final Jeopardy answer, walking away as the victor with 33,800 total points, winnings of $100,000, and an invitation to the Tournament of Champions.

But before that came the Daily Doubles. In Postal Abbreviation Combos for $800, the clue read: “Hawaii + North Dakota = this ‘backward’ word.” Gary got it wrong (hand instead of hind) and lost 2,600. Then, under $1200 in U.S. Firsts, the clue read: “The first woman mayor of a major U.S. city was Bertha Landes in Seattle; soon after came Dorothy Lee in this city 172 miles south.” Yungsheng, who said before his wager, “a client once told me scared money don’t make no money,” was correct (Portland) and added $7,000. (“Your client was correct,” Jennings agreed after.) And the third, under $2,000 in “Well, They Sound the Same…” was “Any channel to walk down, or Guernsey in the English Channel.” Yungsheng (with aisle/aisle) was correct and added $10,000.

One viewer wrote on the Jeopardy! subreddit that the first and second “were both way too easy to be tournament-level DDs,” and that person wasn’t the only one. Another fan found all three to be easy, but one viewer figured that since Gary “fell into the trap on ‘hind,’ was it really that easy? And, is it really easy to know that Seattle is however many miles from Portland?”

In reply, fans noted that the second Daily Double would have been more difficult if the answer hadn’t been Portland. “I had no idea where Dorothy Lee was mayor, but ‘a city a few hours south of Seattle’ leads immediately to Portland,” one wrote.

As for “hind,” one fan assumed, “Gary had a brain-fart, but I’m guessing 90%+ of American Jeopardy watchers got it correct. Putting two state abbreviations together just isn’t that hard, and state abbreviations are common knowledge.”

But what did you think of these Daily Doubles? Let us know in the comments below.

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