Our Love’s in Jeopardy

And now, today’s high quality rant about something perfectly unimportant.

As most people who have any interest whatsoever in the game show, Jeopardy, know, a guy named Matt Amodio is having a long run on the show. That means that week in, week out, when you tune in to the show, his smug smirking face is there to greet you. And as time creeps along, his run is invoking less than the big thrill in people like me who are not fans of the rather robotic manner in which he plays.

This bums me out because I enjoy the show as a kind of escape from the usual day to day miseries being foisted upon us. Sadly, Mr Amodio’s run has not endeared itself to me as it might to others.

First, however, let’s give props where props are due: he’s certainly found a winning strategy. Win the big money questions early, as many daily doubles as you can, build a big lead and coast. It also helps that he has a good memory for trivia—it is, after all, the point of the game—beyond the usual Kardashian, Star Wars, sports trifecta. Like literature, history, etc. But there’s a problem with all this…

It’s not interesting, it’s not engaging, it’s not fun.


To begin with, Mr. Amodio isn’t a particularly likeable contestant (yeah, I know, but it makes a big difference over the long haul), and his quirks have grown more irritating as his run lumbers along. Though they may be perfectly acceptable, the reference to everything, people included, as “What is” is irksome, and repeated ad nauseum, tiresome. But that’s in some ways trivial. More importantly it’s become almost unwatchable. Or perhaps it’s better to say mostly pointless. That might be great for Amodio, but not so much for the show itself…or for those of us interested in something besides the same old thing night after night.

The last episode I tuned into he had amassed $15k to the combined $2k of the other 2 contestants by the first commercial break. There was no need to stay tuned. It’s like watching Alabama play Eastern North Tuscaloosa Community College over and over. You know very early how’s it’s going to end. It’s hardly exciting or entertaining. And it makes final Jeopardy unnecessary. What’s the point? The 2 other contestants can’t possibly catch him and he not stupid enough to sabotage his lead.

And it might be one thing if he was winning by the seat of his pants, pulling out daring wins at the end of the show on final Jeopardy night after night, but from what I’ve watched, it’s mostly blitzkrieg early and coasting at the end, like the above mentioned Alabama game.

If you care, I suppose, you can watch the first round and maybe check-in at the end if somehow something’s happened, like checking a baseball game every few innings to see if the 1 in 1000 chance comeback is in the cards. They say anything is possible.

But for those of us for whom this is easy-watching “wholesome entertainment,” the idea of sitting through episode after episode for no other reason than to see if he can catch Ken Jennings and his 74 wins seems like a colossal waste of time. It’ll be in the papers (see internet). Maybe they’ll send out an email blast or a tweet whenever the streak ends.

Throw in the hoo-ha with Mike Richards and the guest hosts fiasco and it makes you long for old reruns of The Gong Show.

©2021 David William Pearce

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