COUNTERPOINT: Long Live The 'Jeopardy!' Teen Tournament

Yesterday afternoon, on this very website, some cranky dingus ranted about the Jeopardy! Teen Tournament and called for its death. “WAH,” he said. “Everything is dumbed down, and sometimes they reference popular music, and the other night — AND YOU WON’T EVEN BELIEVE THIS PART — Alex Trebek even danced. It’s horrible and I hate it. WAH WAH WAH.” Two things became abundantly clear upon reading this whiny manifesto: One, the writer needs a life, or a hobby, or something, because devoting hundreds of angry words to a syndicated game show is kind of sad. And two, he was wrong. Wrong wrong wrong.

You see, on last night’s episode of the Teen Tournament, less than six hours after that post went up, something amazing happened. Something I’ve never seen before. All three contestants wagered everything in Final Jeopardy, and all three of them got the answer wrong, and they all finished with zero dollars. Zero dollars. And since no one finished with anything, Alex Trebek had to dust off the Jeopardy! rulebook, which stated that none of them got to advance, and two contestants from another episode would move on. To recap: They competed for half an hour, through three rounds of questions, then everyone tied for last and went home empty-handed. It was easily one of the goofiest things I’ve ever seen on the show, and I wish it would happen more often because the look on Trebek’s face was priceless.

Long live the Teen Tournament.

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