Today’s Final Jeopardy – Thursday, October 1, 2020

Here’s today’s Final Jeopardy (in the category Literary Terms) for Thursday, October 1, 2020 (Season 37, Game 14):

In medieval times it was a long tale of a hero like Gisli or Njall; today it means any story of epic length

(correct response beneath the contestants)

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Today’s contestants:

Phillip Howard, a Naval officer from Santa Clarita, California
Phillip Howard on Jeopardy!
Preston Wilson, a sommelier originally from New Orleans, Louisiana
Preston Wilson on Jeopardy!
Mason Maggio, a songwriter from Los Angeles, California (2-day total: $42,600)
Mason Maggio on Jeopardy!

Preston is the first contestant since 2016 to be introduced as “originally from”; the rule that was put into place at the start of Season 33 has been relaxed in order to avoid the situation where every contestant is being introduced as from California.

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Correct response: What is a saga?

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More information about Final Jeopardy:

The literary term “sagas” originally referred to Viking stories, usually about migrating to Iceland and feuds between families there. (Here at The Jeopardy! Fan, this isn’t really a topic that I have personal experience with.) In Gisli’s case, his saga tells his story of how he was outlawed after avenging the death of a brother-in-law, while Njall’s saga outlines the Icelandic blood feuds and how minor slights of honor could lead to massive bloodshed.

The term was later co-opted to be used as a flowery term to refer to any prose story in general.

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Looking to find out who won Jeopardy! today? Tonight’s results are below!

Scores going into Final:
Mason $14,600
Phillip $13,000
Preston $5,000

Tonight’s results:
Preston $5,000 – $4,993 = $7 (What is an ?)
Phillip $13,000 + $10,000 = $23,000 (What is a saga?) (1-day total: $23,000)
Mason $14,600 – $12,000 = $2,600 (What is an opus??)

Phillip Howard, today's Jeopardy! winner (for the October 1, 2020 game.)

Scores after the Jeopardy! Round:
Mason $4,800
Preston $2,200
Phillip $2,000

Opening break taken after: 15 clues

Daily Double locations:
1) YANKEE STADIUM $1000 (clue #30)
Mason 5800 -1000 (Preston 2200 Phillip 2000)
2) INVENTORS & INVENTIONS $1600 (clue #14)
Phillip 4000 +3000 (Mason 9200 Preston 5800)
3) HISTORIC WOMEN $1200 (clue #26)
Mason 11600 +3000 (Preston 5000 Phillip 13000)
Overall Daily Double Efficiency for this game: 84

Unplayed clues:
J! Round: None!
DJ! Round: HISTORIC WOMEN $400 $800 $1600 $2000
Total Left On Board: $4,800
Number of clues left unrevealed this season: 34 (2.43 per episode average), 1 Daily Double

Game Stats:
Phillip $11,600 Coryat, 11 correct, 3 incorrect, 22.64% in first on buzzer (12/53), 0/1 on rebound attempts (on 3 rebound opportunities)
Mason $13,800 Coryat, 20 correct, 1 incorrect, 33.96% in first on buzzer (18/53), 1/1 on rebound attempts (on 5 rebound opportunities)
Preston $5,000 Coryat, 9 correct, 3 incorrect, 20.75% in first on buzzer (11/53), 1/1 on rebound attempts (on 2 rebound opportunities)
Combined Coryat Score: $30,400
Lach Trash: $14,000 (on 15 Triple Stumpers)
Coryat lost to incorrect responses (less double-correct responses): $4,800

Mason Maggio, career statistics:
63 correct, 4 incorrect
5/5 on rebound attempts (on 18 rebound opportunities)
33.13% in first on buzzer (55/166)
3/4 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $9,000)
1/3 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $16,600

Preston Wilson, career statistics:
9 correct, 4 incorrect
1/1 on rebound attempts (on 2 rebound opportunities)
20.75% in first on buzzer (11/53)
0/0 on Daily Doubles
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $5,000

Phillip Howard, career statistics:
12 correct, 3 incorrect
0/1 on rebound attempts (on 3 rebound opportunities)
22.64% in first on buzzer (12/53)
1/1 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $3,000)
1/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $11,600

Phillip Howard, to win:
2 games: 42.233%
3: 17.836%
4: 7.533%
5: 3.181%
6: 1.343%
Avg. streak: 1.731 games.

Andy’s Thoughts:

  • I thought that Mason bet too much on the first Daily Double; it was definitely the situation for a $5 wager for him. It was obvious that he knew very little about the category (judging by the Triple Stumpers on $400, $600, and $800 in that category), therefore the smart play for him there would have been to bet the $5 minimum in order to minimize his losses.

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18 Comments on "Today’s Final Jeopardy – Thursday, October 1, 2020"

  1. Day 3 of MLB game overriding Jeopardy! Bummer. The Cubs lost yesterday and perhaps J! fans jinxed them.

  2. My gosh, what is with this new season!? Nobody can make it past 2 games! Did Zach put a jinx on the game so one qualifies for the ToC until he returns?!

  3. Do we think this is the shortest FJ response in quite some time (possibly excluding allowed shortenings e.g. “FDR”)?

  4. I’m sorry to see Mason go. Is 63 correct 4 incorrect over 3 games any kind of record?
    He wagered to win in FJ but it wasn’t meant to be, was it.

    • Mark Barrett | October 1, 2020 at 3:26 pm |

      Nothing of Mason’s 3 games is close to a record for a 2-time champion. The count would easily be over 100 for players with better stat lines even when limiting it only to those who played exactly three games.

  5. Re: Andy’s Thoughts
    Why is there a minimum bet for a DD? ($5). What if it’s the last clue in DJ! and you have just secured a tie, or maybe even a win by less than $5? (Contestants do end up with odd amounts…James e.g.) You should be allowed to bet nothing, otherwise you’re being penalized for the previous correct response. It seems unlikely, but still possible.

    • It’s certainly not up to you Andy to justify the show’s rules…my first sentence above should have been “I don’t think there should be a minimum bet for a DD.” 🙂

    • Frank Smith | October 1, 2020 at 5:01 pm |

      $5 is half of the original minimum clue value of $10 from 1964.

  6. Just learned something new that DDs require a minimum bet. I assumed DDs were like FJ which not infrequently have $0 wagers. But I don’t remember the last $5 DD wager. Also hope someone from LA County will win more than two!

    • Brian Green | October 2, 2020 at 12:26 am |

      Matt Jackson (the paralegal from D.C.) is the last person I remember who wagered 5 dollars on a Daily Double, which was about 5 years ago. There may have been someone after that, but I’m thinking in terms of streaking contestants.

      Interesting fact: If Ken Jennings would have wagered the minimum amount on his two wrong Daily Doubles in his 75th game in 2004 against Nancy Zerg, he would have finished the Double Jeopardy round in a runaway and his incorrect “FedEx” response in Final wouldn’t have mattered.

      • I think I remember Arthur Chu hitting a DD in a sports category and immediately wagering $5, and then saying “I don’t know” almost before Alex had finished reading the clue. He wisely knew his weaknesses, and now I know why he didn’t wager $0. I remember it was pretty funny…he definitely conveyed that he didn’t know (or care) a lick about the subject!

  7. If you are a naval officer, you should wear your uniform. At first, it looked like a SEAL trident pin; however, the top of the SEAL insignia is a straight line across. Also, his haircut is a little bit over regs. Also, Alex didn’t ask anything about the Navy. Put it all together, I think the guy might be an active duty SEAL officer, and that the names he gave are his first and middle names. They don’t publicly disclose their names while active (their neighbors might know their names, but, in a Sam Diego newspaper article, for example, they won’t give their name, or first name only). This is just a guess, though, and I have no specific knowledge. Everyone I know that was a SEAL (NOT me) has retired!

  8. That was a bogus FJ question. In my opinion Mason’s answer of “opus” was just as valid as Philip’s “saga”. FJ questions should have one correct answer. (er question… you know what I mean)

    • “Opus” fails to fit the medieval/Gisli/Niall part of the clue. The correct response needs to fit all parts of the clue. “Opus” is in no way correct and “saga” is the only possible response that fits all parts of the clue.

    • Pizza Face Fred | October 2, 2020 at 4:15 pm |

      I nailed it, but this also entered my mind:

      An “edda” is an Old Norse term that has been attributed by modern scholars to the collective of two Medieval Icelandic literary works: what is now known as the Prose Edda and an older collection of poems without an original title now known as the Poetic Edda.


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