Jeopardy! is earning an unprecedented level of attention of late.
Last year, contestant James Holzhauer won 32 consecutive games using his innovative strategy of selecting the highest-value clues first, inverting the traditional method. In January, the show aired its first prime-time special since 1990 with “The Greatest of All Time” tournament where the three best contestants ever competed head-to-head, with Holzhauer finishing second to Ken Jennings. Also on the Jeopardy! screen recently? Contestants from the DMV.
It’s no secret the DC region is a smarty-pants town, so it makes sense local players pop up on the beloved game show frequently. Here, five of the most recent. When are you trying out?
The Woodbridge political consultant and UVA grad school alum (Undergrad degree? Princeton.) won eight consecutive episodes worth $159,603 in December and January. Final Jeopardy! clue for her first game: “19th-century history: Wanting more French influence in the area he called Latin America, Napoleon III installed an emperor in this country.” Farrell’s correct answer: Mexico.
The DC researcher won $22,400 in September, upsetting Albuquerque math teacher and 19-day champion Jason Zuffranieri. Final Jeopardy! clue: “World landmarks: The Eighth Wonder, by composer Alan John and librettist Dennis Watkins, is about this building that opened in 1973.” Despite trailing considerably heading into that last clue, Zuffranieri guessed wrong while Brison-Trezise correctly answered the Sydney Opera House.
The Arlington journalist and production assistant for PBS’s Washington Week won $23,600 in July. Final Jeopardy! clue: “17th-century names: In the 1670s, English author Charles Cotton built a fishing cabin on the banks of the River Dove to honor this friend and author.” Hadar actually got it wrong, guessing John Milton instead of Izaak Walton, but won regardless.
The Manassas layout artist won $15,100 in March 2019. Final Jeopardy! clue for first game: “Playwrights: Before his death in 2018 at age 91, he received four Tony Awards, a Pulitzer Prize and was nominated for four Oscars.” Wilson was the only contestant to correctly answer Neil Simon.
The National Geographic Museum visitor experience rep won three consecutive episodes worth $70,601 in February 2019. Final Jeopardy! clue for his first game: “The solar system: For a while in the 1840s, the French wanted to name this new discovery ‘Le Verrier’ and the British wanted ‘Oceanus.’” All three contestants got it correct with Neptune.
This review was originally published in our April 2020 print issue. For more local stories, subscribe to our weekly newsletters.