Jeopardy Contestants, Why Have You Forsaken Me?

In case you missed yesterday’s episode of the Jeopardy! College Championship, you missed a great Final Jeopardy clue:

OHMYGOD! 200 years old! Apology from the Church of England! It’s Charles Darwin!

Who’s gonna win all the money?!

Girl from Colorado?

Isaac Newton?! No!

Girl from Baylor?

Thomas More?! No!

Guy from MIT?

Oscar Wilde ? No! (And I don’t even think that’s a grammatically correct response…)

You have all disappointed me.

Please leave your Atheist Cards at the door.

I’m going to go into a corner now and weep.

(Thanks to Doug for the link)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://12mtns.com/ astopy

    I guess we just have too many famous historical figures here in England :)

    • Spuddie

      Too many who were snubbed by the Church of England anyway.

      • Stev84

        Oscar Wilde was in trouble with the state. Not the church.

        • Jennifer

          Also Oscar Wilde was an Irishman, not an Englishman,

      • Gus Snarp

        And Newton wasn’t snubbed by the Church.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Nathan-Wilkes/1067532558 Nathan Wilkes

          Clearly you don’t know about that period where the Church denied the existence of gravity and refused to stop floating about the place.

      • Pseudonym

        I’d like to point out that Darwin was buried in Westminster Abbey. So he can’t have been snubbed that hard.

        • Spuddie

          Maybe it was a light “tut tutt”-ing. The British are very good at light adminishmont. =)

          • Leiningen’s Ants

            The originators of the wrist slap?!

    • Librepensadora

      too many famous historical figures, too many famous novelists, poets and dramatists, too many famous scientists, too many famous philosophers–how do you do it?

  • http://twitter.com/KevinSagui Kevin Sagui

    Do these people seriously have no idea when any of their guesses were born, or that Newton was fully integrated into the Royal Academy of sciences and needed absolutely no apology? I’m not sure I’d have come up with Darwin in thirty seconds, but c’mon guys, those are weak.

    • rhodent

      While I agree that two of the guesses are way off (Wilde was at least the right century), the way the final round works means it’s always worth it to put something down if you’re drawing a blank, on the off chance that you’re psyching yourself out and your “this can’t be right” guess actually turns out to be right.

    • Stev84

      I didn’t hear about an apology for Darwin though, so that part would have left me confused too.

  • Steve

    Sorry for sounding like a smug Englishman but I do despair at American youth!! Then again, some English schoolchildren seem to think that Churchill is a puppet bulldog on a car insurance advert!!

  • http://twitter.com/Don_Gwinn Don_Gwinn

    Jeopardy is harder than it looks. I went through an audition round in Chicago last fall and was surprised how hard it was just playing through in front of 50 people while the judges keep reminding you to smile and project your voice. The trivia itself almost runs in the background while you try to remember to smile big and announce everything to the back of the room.

    But that’s part of the magic that makes it work as a television show–letting the audience see people miss questions that many in the audience know they could have answered if they’d been there. :)

  • Mike Webster

    Dammit, Girl from Colorado. You’re making my Alma Mater look bad. Now get back to binge drinking and smoking pot.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1220871538 Alan Eckert

    It was easy to over think the question.

  • DougI

    For their credit the church owes a lot of people apologies.

    • watchemoket

      Which church? The Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints …??? I hardly think it is to the credit of any church that they owe a lot of people apologies.

  • http://www.facebook.com/angus.bohanon Angus Bohanon

    I saw this and blurted out Darwin before Trebek had even finished reading. I’m even from CU and very disappointed in my fellow Buff.

  • watchemoket

    At least MIT was in the right time frame. With a birth date in 1809, Newton and Thomas More were long dead and coudn’t possibly been correct.

  • Librepensadora

    “Who was Abraham Lincoln?” Don’t laugh; it’s the right birthday. This is how they do final jeopardy when the answer is easy: toss in extraneous information to confuse. Years ago they had one that asked about a battle in 1415 which was on some saint’s day. Instead of worrying about which day was this feast day, the basic fact was the most important battle in 1415: Agincourt, the correct answer.

    • The Vicar

      Never saw Henry V, eh? The most famous bit is the speech given to rally the troops which repeatedly talks about “Saint Crispin’s Day”. The latter half runs:

      This day is call’d the feast of Crispian.
      He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
      Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam’d,
      And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
      He that shall live this day, and see old age,
      Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
      And say ‘To-morrow is Saint Crispian.’
      Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
      And say ‘These wounds I had on Crispian’s day.’
      Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
      But he’ll remember, with advantages,
      What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
      Familiar in his mouth as household words-
      Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
      Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
      Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb’red.
      This story shall the good man teach his son;
      And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by,
      From this day to the ending of the world,
      But we in it shall be remembered-
      We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
      For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
      Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
      This day shall gentle his condition;
      And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
      Shall think themselves accurs’d they were not here,
      And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
      That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.

      Very, VERY famous. So yeah, that was actually a big hint.

  • Psychotic Atheist

    Darwin was born the same day as Lincoln. That little fact could have helped these guys out tremendously. I can understand Newton as a guess (though I’m not sure what they’d have misunderstood about him), he’s a famous Briton and is often a quiz answer. What’s strange is having heard of Thomas More and to also think he was born after the Independence of the United States. I can only imagine it was pressure of the moment.

    • Mike Smar

      Doubt any of them know who Lincoln was. BU xian >> More. CU >> Newton, only olde time Briton she knew or partied the night before and was thinking of the fig newton. The MIT guy should just be stoned. The most logical explanation is that these kids are graduates of either a xian, or TX, or Louisiana high school. OR HOME SCHOOLED.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Harrison/23417637 Michael Harrison

    Yeah, this bugged me. After the episode, I double-checked a hunch with Wikipedia: every single one of the people given as an answered died before the given birth year of 1809.

    • Pseudonym

      Except Oscar Wilde.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Harrison/23417637 Michael Harrison

        According to Wikipedia, he died in 1900.

  • Leiningen’s Ants

    2009 – 200 = 1809.
    1809 + 30*wavey = sign*40 years required for masterwork = 1839-1849
    Masterwork was rejected by C.o.E.

    That kinda narrows the search parameters down a bit, now, DON’T IT.

    Same slap on the forehead for the three contestants on this same version of this same show who could not figure out what LEEEEROOOOYYYY JEEEEEEEENKINS!!! has to do with an online game. YES REALLY GOOGLE IT.

  • http://www.facebook.com/billpg Bill P. Godfrey

    I would have answered Alan Turing, and then re-read the question.


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