Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Oz in Jeopardy!

It was an exciting spring for Jeopardy! this season, as the show celebrated the thirtieth season of its revival, with Alex Trebek as host, with a big Battle of the Decades. Three weeks of preliminaries with contestants from the '80s, '90s, and 2000s got the field narrowed down to fifteen, and then the fun really began! Each of the quarterfinal matches pitted contestants from each of the three decades, and the first one (as shown on the May 5 episode) had Roger Craig, the all-time leading scorer in a single game, from season 27 and representing the 2000s; Robin Carroll, one of the earliest great women to play Jeopardy! and first to win the Tournament of Champions, from season 16 representing the '90s; and Leszek Pawlowicz, a great player and another Tournament of Champions winner from season 8, representing the '80s. In the Double Jeopardy! round, one of the categories was An Odd Cast of Characters, in which players had to identify the movie based on a list of characters. Under $800, the players found this clue (and once again, I must apologize for the technical glitch that prevents me from showing you a screen grab this time):


Leszek rang in first, and responded, "What is Oz the Magnificent?" That was wrong, of course. Roger then rang in, and said, "What is Oz the Powerful?" That, too, was wrong. Robin probably very wisely didn't try, so this clue is officially a triple stumper. Alex then told hen that the correct response should have been, "What is Oz the Great and Powerful?" This is, I believe, the first time that movie has appeared on Jeopardy!. Ironically, both of the players who rang in went on in the tournament, even though they missed this clue. Roger went on to win the game, while Keszek would advance to the semifinals as a wild car player. Roger even went on to the final, where he was thoroughly trounced by the two single greatest players in Jeopardy! history, Brad Rutter and Ken Jennings.

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