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YMMV / Jeopardy!

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  • Adaptation Displacement: The current version has far outlasted the Art Fleming era, but the show clearly hasn't forgotten its roots; clues about the Art Fleming era appear now and then, and some contestants have appeared on both versions.
  • Americans Hate Tingle: Unlike most other game shows of American origin, Jeopardy! has mostly failed to catch on in other countries, with few foreign adaptations lasting more than a couple years. A notable exception is Своя играnote , the Russian adaptation, which has run since 1994. It also does reasonably well in Denmark.
  • Awesome Music:
    • Every Theme Tune from the Trebek era qualifies.
      • The original theme had a dramatic buildup to the four-way Truck Driver's Gear Change accompanied by synthesizers and saxophones. In 1992, the theme was remixed to include a bongo track, but the tournament and celebrity games would use a combined version of both.
      • The 1997 arrangement was smooth and jazzy with guitar and sax solos near the end. The 2001 update also deserves a mention, with its quicker tempo and freestyle solos. It helps that the latter version brought back the second half of the "globe swoosh" used to introduce the show.
      • Finally, the current version which debuted on the first show of Trebek's 25th season in September 2008. It's nice and relaxing, plus the eleven-note ending is styled after the iconic Daily Double sound effect.
    • The think music is iconic in itself, but the current version with a small orchestra taking over the second half of the song from the pianos is awesome, particularly when it cues up and the made-for-HD backdrop turns from blue to red.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Ken Jennings (2004). Either he's The Ace / Badass Normal who knows a lot about many things (even drinks, despite being a teetotaler), or a Boring Invincible Hero who proves why the "Unlimited win" rule is a bad idea.
    • Colby Burnett, winner of the November 2012 Teachers Tournament and 2013 Tournament of Champions. On one hand, he was quite good at the game and quite savvy with his wagering in early games. On the other hand, he got increasingly cocky with each win. By the finals of the ToC, he was about on par with Darrell Hammond as Sean Connery on Saturday Night Live's Celebrity Jeopardy! skits.
    • Arthur Chu (2014). His nontraditional, game logic driven method of playing and winning Jeopardy! by choosing questions out of order to fish out Daily Doubles is either a refreshing change of pace in a stale formula, or ruins everything that made Jeopardy! great. About 95% of the people commenting about Arthur Chu on Facebook express outrage and hatred of him. On the other hand, a good chunk of the fanbase on Reddit loves his strategy. And for those who don't mind his strategy (it's also used by savvy players who are facing equally capable foes and especially by some during the Tournament of Champions note ), Chu also grated due to his lack of contestant courtesy, often speaking over Trebek. Defenders of him often justify this as a way of speeding up gameplay, as viewers and Alex alike have often expressed disdain for games where clues are left unplayed due to time running out (which is often exacerbated by slow and/or overly-verbose contestants).
      • Chu's strategy is hardly new. The strategy is referred to as the "Forrest Bounce", named after Chuck Forrest, one of the show's early dominant players. However, even Alex himself has said that he doesn't think highly of the "Forrest Bounce".
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    • 2015: 13-day champion Matt Jackson proved to be a base breaker for many of the same reasons as Arthur Chu (ultra-serious demeanor, Forrest bouncing, cutting off Alex), and also attracted negative attention for what some perceived as a creepy smile during introductions (even being parodied on The Soup). Conversely, many fans were impressed with his intelligence and strategy (especially given that he was only 23 years old during his appearances), and noted that during interviews and when the game wasn't in progress, he was very kind and respectful. Notably, on one of his episodes, he informed the judges that they had accidentally ruled an incorrect response from him as correct, and so his score was deducted accordingly.
    • 2016: 9-day champion Buzzy Cohen turned into this during his last five games. Some fans found him smug and cocky for running his hands through his hair and gesturing during introductions, and for distracting the game when referencing the SNL Celebrity Jeopardy! sketches in Final during his runaway wins (i.e. "What is See you tomorrow, Trebek!"), but others liked that he showed his personality and injected levity into the show. And his final response during the conclusion of the 2017 Tournament of Champions to Alex "What is LOVE YOU" redeemed him because that proved he was doing it all in good fun. Fittingly, he also won the tournament after clawing his way back from nothing on the first day, where the producers declared one of his earlier responses valid and bumped up his total winnings a little, and he then made a Herculean leap into the lead with a lucky Daily Double wager that gave him enough money to surpass his opponents even with their first day winning and second day winnings totaled together. Seeing his family cheer him on at the final day is also very uplifting because it all paid off in the end.
    • Austin Rogers quickly became one of these due of his wacky behavior on the show proper, which departed from the cordial atmosphere expected on Jeopardy!. While some love his personality and big bets, others find him annoying and distracting or an Attention Whore. It didn't help that he managed to rack up $400,000+ final total over the course of two weeks. The show actually posted on their app a page about how he was miming drink mixing at the start of almost every episode (he's a bartender), and he appeared on The Tonight Show and became James Corden's "new bae" on The Late Late Show. His detractors have seen these as overexposure, even long after his run ended. However, his run wasn't over yet, so some would say that was just the beginning. He happened to be the last person to qualify for the 2017 Tournament of Champions, in which he became a wild card semi-finalist and made it as a finalist, then placed third and won $50,000, and somehow managed to infect the others and even Trebek with his antics, including Austin "Buzzy" Cohen, whose first name he shares. The fact that one of his responses was stricken along with Buzzy's for adding an "s" to the end of a phrase—done when the producers cut in to inform Alex about the penalization—also shows that the show is not playing favorites.
    • Emma Arnold, a finalist in the 2018 teen tournament. Proponents are won over by her cute, friendly demeanor and surprisingly high intelligence. Others hate her entirely for her high-pitched, childlike voice which draws similarities to Bernadette from The Big Bang Theory.
    • James Holzhauer proved to be this for some during his 32-day reign from April to June 2019. Some fans love him for his aggressive gameplay and ballsy wagers, and are impressed at his ability to keep setting new records. Others find him to be a Curb Stomping Boring Invincible Hero not unlike Ken Jennings, which made some detractors to stop watching the show entirely.
    • The Clue Crew, for reasons to be explained below.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: After an inflatable shark was used in a video clue, said shark made an out-of-nowhere appearance going into commercial.
  • Broken Base: The removal of the five-game limit in 2003, which usually comes up when someone from Season 20 onward goes on a lengthy run. Fans who support this have speculated on how winners from before that era would have lasted had their streaks not been cut short. On the other hand, it turns champions like Ken Jennings into unstoppable machines while allowing more games to be put out of reach for challengers.
  • Creator's Pet: The Clue Crew. Since their introduction, they have appeared in clues almost weekly, and the ceremonial 4,000th episode dedicated its entire last segment to them.
  • Critical Research Failure:
    • June 11, 2012: Final Jeopardy! asked "Acts 1:13 says this event occurred in 'an upper room'." They were looking for "The Last Supper", and initially ruled the champion's response of "Pentecost" wrong, but Alex later acknowledged the latter as right in a dubbed-in clip and mentioned that, starting with the next game, his score would be adjusted accordingly. The truth is, there is no right answer — Acts 1:13 makes no mention of any "act" besides the disciples meeting there, and Pentecost doesn't show up until Acts 2. Furthermore, the exact location of the Last Supper is unknown; it is believed to have happened in an upper room simply because that was tradition. Fortunately, this did not affect the outcome, since only two players were present at Final Jeopardy! and the champion, who answered "Pentecost", had a "lock" game.
    • April 3rd, 2015: One clue asked for the Catholic sacrament that allows a person to take Communion. They were looking for the response "What is Confirmation?" Communion is a sacrament in and of itself, the initiation of it is just called "First Communion", and the "Confirmation before Communion" concept is generally found in Protestant churches. At the end of the show, Alex took a moment to acknowledge the mistake and promise they would be more careful in the future.
  • Dork Age:
    • Jeopardy! started falling into this near the start of the 1997-98 season. It was at this point when the producers began videotaping celebrities, public figures (scientists, politicians, etc.), journalists, and prolific writers to deliver individual clues and, in less frequent cases, full categories. Not only do their clues tend to break the show's pacing, often taking up to 20 seconds to deliver, their utilization has become much more common in recent years—even going so far as to feature soap opera actors awkwardly delivering clues in character.
    • However, it's more strongly arguable that Jeopardy! went full steam ahead into Dork Age territory with the Clue Crew, a regular "feature" born in 2001. It's bad enough that the clues presented by these assistants tend to eat up as much time as their celebrity counterparts. It gets even worse upon realizing that, if any member of the Clue Crew introduces a category, there's hardly any effort to speed the game up until after the crew's entire column has been cleared out.
  • Ear Worm: The "Think!" theme is an example of Tropes Are Not Bad. Many contestants claim the music serves its purpose by helping them think of the correct response.
  • Franchise Original Sin: The show has frequently used categories with Punny Names or Theme Naming, but since the 1997-98 season, almost every category has some sort of pun or theme, almost to the level of Win Ben Stein's Money. It only worsened when longtime clue writer Stephen Dorfman died in 2004.
  • Game-Breaker: Until 2003, Jeopardy! champions could win up to five games before being retired. Starting in the 2003-04 season, the producers instituted a "sky's the limit" rule, where champions could go on and on winning until being defeated. Towards the season's end, Ken Jennings came along and went on a 74-game win streak that lasted into the next season, earning well over $2 million.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • The first episode of Trebek's Jeopardy! on September 10, 1984, had these two back-to-back questions — "Two Saturday Night alumni who tried Trading Places", the answer being "Who are Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy?", and "He may Never Say Never Again when asked to be Bond", with the answer obviously being "Who is Sean Connery?" That's right — Sean Connery and SNL have been part of Trebek's Jeopardy! since the beginning. And in Finding Forrester, there's a scene where William Forrester (Connery) watches a game of Jeopardy.
    • On June 22, 1999, with a very close game for Final Jeopardy!, Alex tells the players "Someone asked me the other day if we've ever had a three-way tie...", to which he said no. On March 16, 2007, the first-evernote  nonzero three-way tie happened in Final Jeopardy.
    • January 2004 champion Tom Walsh mentions his home city of Washington DC not having a baseball team. One year later, the Montreal Expos moved there and became the Washington Nationals.
    • The July 23, 2009, Final Jeopardy! was notorious for its obscure response of Liederkranz cheese, which has gained Memetic Mutation in the fandom as a benchmark for clue obscurity (partially because a prominent member of the fandom happened to have a Curb-Stomp Battle going on that day). It turns out that at least one prior episode had a nearly-verbatim clue about the cheese, which also stumped all three players even then.
    • In the July 29, 2015, show, A question in the category of "Teams That Haven't Won a World Series", mentioned Troy Tulowitzki, a player for the Colorado Rockies, trying to lead his team to a championship. While true at the time of tapingnote , by the time the episode aired on TV, Tulowitzki had been traded to the Toronto Blue Jays note .
  • Just Here for Godzilla: This can occur when a champion goes on a lengthy run of 10+ days with many casual viewers who don't regularly (or ever) watch Jeopardy! tuning in to see the dominant champion everyone's talking about.
    • Best exemplified by Ken Jennings' 74-day run in 2004. At the midpoint of his run towards the end of Season 20, Jeopardy! started overtaking Wheel of Fortune in the Nielsen ratings.
    • It came out late in Matt Jackson's 13 day run in 2015 that advertisers were inquiring about how long he'd win for, so they could buy commercial time during his more-watched games (producers obviously declined, not wanting to leak episode results).
    • James Holzhauer's 33-game run in 2019 saw viewership grow by 32% in his first four weeks. The final game of his run was Jeopardy!'s highest rated episode in 14 years, with numbers almost matching the NBA finals that were happening around the same time (although the viewership spike of that episode likely came from its result being leaked).
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • The "answering with a question" format had so wormed its way into the brain of American audiences, as far back as the Fleming era, that practically any other game show that asks trivia will see multiple contestants answer with a question; that show's host may then remind them "this isn't Jeopardy!" with varying degrees of humor or irritation (most notably Win Ben Stein's Money, where offending contestants were forced to wear a Dunce Cap). This happens even in high school academic quiz bowls, especially since, like Jeopardy!, contestants have to buzz in.
    • Just about any news article about Jeopardy! is bound to include "What is _____?" and/or "I'll take ______ for $[X]00." They also appears frequently in situations that have nothing to do with Jeopardy!, especially the latter.
    • In the Cheers episode "What Is... Cliff Clavin?", Cliff appears on the show and, despite getting a runaway lead, wagers everything and gets Final Jeopardy! wrong. This episode has been referenced regularly on Jeopardy! — at least two contestants have copied his Final Jeopardy! response of "Who are three people that have never been in my kitchen?", and Trebek sometimes warns contestants with runaway leads not to "pull a Cliff Clavin" (i.e., wager everything—or even enough to let a player who's behind to catch up—and then get it wrong).
    • There have been countless references to Saturday Night Live's "Celebrity Jeopardy!" sketches, which almost always featured Sean Connery (Darrell Hammond) as a contestant. Both the show itself and many of its contestants have made constant references to these sketches — the writers through category names ("Months That Begin with 'Feb'"), and the contestants through Sean Connery impersonations.
    • "Who is Kebert Xela?" was used by a contestant in Final Jeopardy!
    • The Jeopardy! fanbase has made a meme out of Liederkranz cheese, the answer to a notoriously difficult Final Jeopardy! question on the July 23, 2009 show; often considered the most obscure clue the show has ever had. Its notoriety was probably exacerbated by the fact that the champion a.) had an absolutely monstrous lead going into Final Jeopardy! (the scores were $22,800/$200/$200), and b.) is a prominent member of the fanbase.
    • "Stay clam" [sic] is both this and helpful advice for Jeopardy! contestants. The meme originated from a misspelled forum post from 2002 Back to School Week player Gracie Studdard, who was giving advice on how to handle one's self on a game show. Since its introduction, watchers and players alike will say if they clam on giving the question to an answer if they are uncertain.
    • "Who is Dankey Kang?", as seen on Pop-Culture Isolation, originated from a humorous hoax concerning a photoshopped contestant allegedly giving that answer to something hinting toward Sonic the Hedgehog.
    • "SHIT TYRONE GET IT TOGETHER", an infamous viral image of a dreadlocked African-American contestant falling in the red who answered something wrong, which mutated into a phrase used to mock people's stupidity in general.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • The board fill sound at the beginning of the round (retired in July 2008 and, after a season wherein the board did not make a noise, replaced with a relaxing six-tone chime from 2009 to 2016 that Trebek has said that he likes, and the current sound since 2016).
    • The Daily Double trill.
    • The simple one-note chime when the Final Jeopardy! category and clue are revealed.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • The format of contestants being supplied the answers and having to come up with the questions was the basis for the first regularly scheduled quiz show CBS Television Quiz. For the record, Merv Griffin was likely unaware of that show since he was a teenager living in San Francisco when that show (which originated from WCBW in New York) was on the air, although his future wife Julann (who gave Merv the idea of switching the questions and answers around) probably was.
    • J! Archive was not the first fansite to archive the clues. Before them, a prior Jeopardy! archive existed on an AOL site known as the Jeoparchive. This site archived clues for Jeopardy! for season 20, but it was taken down in 2004 when founder Ronnie O'Rourke (a former Jeopardy! champion) grew disillusioned with the show once Ken Jennings started winning game after game. However, a mirror of the site has since been revived, and most of its games are in J! Archive now anyway.
  • Overshadowed by Controversy:
    • On July 31, 2013, a player on Kids' Week absolutely owned the game to the tune of $66,600. What do people best remember about this episode? One of his opponents was penalized for misspelling Emancipation Proclamation for his Final Jeopardy! response. In the days that followed, angry posts flooded the show's Facebook page, claiming that since children were playing the game, the judges should have been more lenient. Journalists and news websites also chimed in on the issue with the contestant claiming he was robbed because of his spelling error. Never mind that he would've gotten only second place regardless and the controversy over the misspelling completely overshadowed the winner's huge haul. This mess had an impact on the final fate of the Kids' Week games; the next one in December, 2014, that got caught up in the Sony hack and exposed a Stage Mom incident, which upset Trebek, led to the Kids' Week games going the way of the Seniors Tournament, as none have been held since, and the series has all but distanced itself from them.
    • The October 12, 2009, game was the third game for 5-time champion Terry Linwood. However, one of his opponents was Jeff Kirby, who'd previously played on Jeopardy in 1999, even though Trebek-era contestants are not allowed to appear again (unless specifically invited due to a production error or to play in a Tournament of Champions). The producers hadn't realized this until someone on the show's message board pointed out that he was wearing the same tie he had worn in his 1999 appearance. Because of him, this game's been barred from reruns (As for Kirby, he finished in last place after failing Final Jeopardy!, just like his 1999 appearance, and was denied the $1,000 third place prize because of his ineligibility).
  • The Problem with Licensed Games:
    • For many years the show suffered from inadequate home game adaptations. The box games produced by Milton Bradley recycled the board from their adaptation of Concentration, resulting in only five categories a game, with one of the spaces in Double Jeopardy having to be reserved for Final. The Pressman adaptations beginning in the mid 1980s inexplicably carried this forward (through as late as 2003!). Tyco/Mattel released a somewhat unusual version in the early 90s, which had all six categories, but were cards placed on stands so as many as six players could participate, each acting as host for their own category; Final Jeopardy was completely absent here. Not only that, Daily Doubles were randomly placed among the categories so you might have as many as six, or none at all. Parker Brothers released an adaptation in 1999 which many feel is the best, having a single gameboard with six categories and a reserved space below the board for Final. The most recent version from Outset Media takes a cue from the Tyco version, having category cards placed into holders mounted to stands, but has the typical three-person play pattern akin to the other versions.
    • For video game adaptations that fall into this category, earlier releases are bogged down by sluggish game play caused by moving between characters when entering responses, especially if the letters, numbers and punctuation marks are all on one row. Later games alleviate this by offering an auto-complete feature that will give different options after entering a few letters. Computer releases avert this aspect since typing responses is much quicker, and the time window is usually generous. The GameTek ports have notorious Rubber Band A.I. which will allow computer players to prevent you from running away with the game.
  • Replacement Scrappy: Alex was initially perceived as this by fans of the Fleming version due to his stricter hosting style, but over time, fans began to warm up to him more, especially as he toned down his style a bit.
    • Surprisingly averted with Harry Friedman. Jeopardy's fans agree he does a better job as head honcho than on Wheel.
  • Scenery Porn: The wall of monitors, as well as the flashing Jeopardy! logo from 1984-1996.
  • The Scrappy:
    • The Clue Crew, first introduced in 2001 and is still on the show. Many dislike the fact that their video clues tend to be overly long and distracting, causing them to become so long-winded that the contestants and viewers both lose track of the clue, or simply because they chew up so much airtime, leaving more potential for clues going unrevealed at the end of the round.
    • Since the 1997-98 season, any clue or whole categories of clues read by a celebrity—or worse, given by casts of TV shows where the clues are given in-character. Almost all of them tend to involve very long clues read very slowly which gets worse when a Daily Double is hidden there. These are hated for dragging down the game and creating a greater risk of leaving clues on the board. Many contestants have caught onto these which is why they almost always get picked last.
    • Kids or Back to School Week games, which not only make the Teen Tournament feel redundant, but include questions that are too easy, even for that demographic, or too focused on child-appropriate topics (such as contemporary cartoons, children's literature, tweenage pop music, etc.) to allow older generations to play along. They stopped doing them in Season 31, due to the two aforementioned incidents.
    • The Teachers Tournament has been seen as this. It has supporters who like tournament play and the respect and praise shown to teachers with the event, but others see the competition as being weaker in general than regular games (even though players are picked from regular play applications), and it takes away a TOC spot from a regular contestant, especially considering that teachers are historically not dominant in regular games or in tournaments. Only Colby Burnett has ever made the semifinals of a TOC (let alone win it, or qualify for the Battle of the Decades), and only one Teachers Tournament player (2011 semifinalist Charley Tinkham) has ever had a Coryat score of at least $25,000 in that event.
    • Similar opinions followed the former Seniors Tournament to some viewers, as contestants over 50 years of age have never been barred from regular play, the competition could be slower-paced, and of the 10 winners of that event, none ever won a TOC quarterfinal game (though two did advance to the finals, and another three advanced as wildcards.) Its 1995 demotion from July to December (outside of a sweeps period) seems to have been a move to ultimately kill it off.
    • Celebrity games usually have this reputation too— stereotypically, the celebrity games are constantly dragged down by the players not taking the game seriously, thus leading to constant smartass remarks, ringing in with an "Ooh, I know this, what is it?"-type quip, ego-stroking categories/clues, elongated introductions and interviews to promote the charities being played for, and general buffoonery. The 2006 episodes from Radio City Music Hall made this even worse by having singers perform during Daily Doubles, thus eating up even more time to the point that as many as fifteen clues were unplayed in each round.
      • Jeopardy!'s four Power Players Weeks are maligned by some fans even more than regular Celebrity Jeopardy! games, due to what some perceive as generally weaker competition and a relative lack of "star power" (as contestants are usually journalists, pundits, news anchors, and politicians). There are also fans who dislike Power Players games due to the inclusion of left-leaning and/or right-leaning political figures, on what is otherwise a bipartisan/nonpartisan series.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: Tie breaker clues after Final Jeopardy! in non-tournament play, as the co-champion rule worked nicely, and fans noticed it as a cheap way to save money after the 2014 Sony hacking incident.
  • Scrub: Many fans complain that champions who fish for Daily Doubles to deny them from their opponents is cheating, when in fact, though widely not utilized, there's no rule against it, and show staff make it clear to contestants that such a strategy is perfectly legal. Arthur Chu is the first contestant to get this treatment, though several players have done so before him. It's been done by several players in regular play and the Tournament of Champions, and even Watson did this during the IBM Challenge. The main reason why it isn't common is because it's high risk to choose the lower row questions early, the wordplay in the clues sometimes build top to bottom (which makes the lower row questions easier in context), and because most players would much rather use the Daily Double than waste it.
    • When he recaps pre-2003 shows when the 5-win limit was in effect, Keith Williams from The Final Wager sometimes frowns upon the 5-time champions who wagered an extra dollar to cover their opponents rather than simply tying with them and letting them become a champion, since they're not facing them again.
  • Seasonal Rot / They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: As with nearly any Long Runner Game Show, fan opinion is sharply divided:
    • The 1997-98 season not only abandoned the legendary "Jeopardy!" Thinking Music used since 1964 and the synthesizer theme used since 1984 (updated in 1992), but saw the first use of clues read by celebrities, as well as even more punny categories and travel shows than ever before. There was also the removal of podium microphones.
      • Signs of Seasonal Rot set in the previous season with the infamous "Sushi Bar" set replacing the previous sets from 1984-1996 which used a "Jeopardy!" logo with flashing lights, and the removal of the "Reverse Shatter" clue transition (see Visual Effects of Awesome below).
      • Prior to this season, the Tournament of Champions (and Celebrity Jeopardy!), Teen Tournament, College Championship, and Seniors Tournament were respectively held in the sweeps periods of November, February, May, and July. note 
    • Starting in the 2000-01 season, players no longer walked onstage in their introductions (partly due to blind 5-day champion Eddie Timanus' run), and the Teen Tournament winner was no longer invited to the Tournament of Champions, due to the Teen Tournament winner historically not being dominant in the ToC.
    • The 2001-02 season introduced the "Clue Crew", a group of Lovely Assistants who present even more video clues, and also the doubling of clue values, which some believe is unfair in regards to ranking all of the show's top money winners, and Alex Trebek shaves off his iconic mustache.
    • The 2003-04 season removed the 5-game limit for winners, which led to Ken Jennings' 74-game winning streak lasting into the next season.
    • The 2008-09 season removed the classic "clue pop-in" sound, and after a season without any popping-in effect, was replaced by another sound effect in the 2009-10 season.
    • Some also complain that the show has gotten easier over time, thus overlapping with It's Easy, So It Sucks!. To be fair, this one is very much a Justified Trope; anyone who's watched the show for a long period of time is pretty much guaranteed to find it gradually easier to play along, because they'll constantly be learning from it.
    • Another major complaint is that the writing has gotten too convoluted and "cutesy", with clues often trying way too hard to "tease out" the right answer by way of wordplay. Other clues seem to be written too vaguely, leading viewers to question whether or not another answer might be acceptable. The decline in clue quality is often thought to have started when longtime clue writer Steven Dorfman died in 2004.
    • The 2014-15 season removed the co-champion rule, where players tied for first place could each return the next day to play. All ties are now decided by tie-breaker clues, though the first instance didn't occur until March 1, 2018, somewhat negating the impact of the three-way nonzero tie from 2007 to many.
  • "Stop Having Fun" Guys: Some fans have this attitude towards contestants who write down cutesy things during Final Jeopardy! This most often occurs with the leader in a lock situation although many contestants can't resist the opportunity to give shout-outs to their families or their hometown. It came to a point where the producers got so fed up with superchamp James Holzhauer doing it that they clamped down on shout-outs after his 16th win.
  • Surprisingly Improved Sequel: The current version was a major leap from Art Fleming's three versions, which used a much simpler set and pull-cards for the clues instead of the large, electronic set and wall of monitors.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: The show's "think" music ends with a coda that matches perfectly with the end of the children's song "I'm a Little Teapot" leading many people to sing "tip me over / and pour me out" at the end.
  • That One Level:
    • Opera, ballet, or spelling categories, which are almost always saved for last. The dislike for opera as a category gets Lampshaded several times with opera themed categories called "The Dreaded Opera Category", "Oh No, It's Opera" or "Uh Oh, Opera".
    • "Before, During, And After" in the Tournaments of Champions. It's similar to the standard "Before And After" from Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune, but there are three parts with two links rather than two parts with one link, and everything has to be provided to be correct.
    • In recent seasons, categories about Broadway musicals have been given this treatment. The most egregious example was on the January 2, 2013 episode where the category "Broadway Lyrics" not only had each clue go without a correct response, no one even rang in to guess!
    • Jep! as a whole may qualify — despite the subject matter, contestant ages, and format changes, its policy on phrasing responses was the strictest of all seven versions!
    • More recently, "Videogames" or any variant of the category usually gets a wide berth from players.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: From 1992-1996, the categories were displayed on monitors with a broken/shattered glass effect which would be undone when Alex announced their names. Many fans are in agreement that this was the best way to introduce their categories as it was advanced for its time and still looks cool even 20 years they stopped doing it.
  • We're Still Relevant, Dammit!: Often occurring in recent years, such as a 2013 game in which the Jeopardy round category names were derived from Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe".
  • What an Idiot!: Has its own page.


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