Today’s Final Jeopardy! – Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Here’s today’s Final Jeopardy (in the category The Wild West) for Wednesday, January 27, 2021 (Season 37, Game 88):

These 2 legends both known for buckskin clothes & long, flowing hair met violent ends 38 days apart, in Montana & South Dakota

(correct response beneath the contestants)

As I said in my recent editorial, if you’re going to express an opinion about one host or another, I ask that you make thoughtful, reasoned arguments. A lot of your opinions on one host over another are going to be a matter of personal taste. Please also remember that a permanent host will not be named until the start of Season 38.

Today’s contestants:

Erica Holencik, a provider data specialist from Portland, Oregon
Erica Holencik on Jeopardy!
Alex Cohn, a psychiatry resident physician from Los Angeles, California
Alex Cohn on Jeopardy!
Brian Chang, an attorney from Chicago, Illinois (6-day total: $147,304)
Brian Chang on Jeopardy!

Andy’s Pregame Thoughts: Brian has reached superchampion status after a big Daily Double bet yesterday propelled him to his sixth victory. One thing that might work in his opponents’ favor, though: Brian had the third-highest Coryat score yesterday, so he is beatable, even though his 6 wins and nearly $150,000 in winnings might seem intimidating on the surface. Zach Newkirk waits in the wings to face the winner, though; last season’s last champion will make his return tomorrow, finally able to defend his 4-day championship after being sidelined due to COVID’s travel restrictions.

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Correct response: Who are (George Armstrong) Custer and (Wild Bill) Hickok?

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Famed U.S. Army commander George Armstrong Custer was killed in late June 1876 at the disastrous Battle of the Little Bighorn against a coalition of Native American tribes in Little Bighorn, Montana. A few weeks later, on August 2, folk hero Wild Bill Hickok was killed in a poker game in Deadwood, Dakota Territory, by Jack McCall; McCall had allegedly felt insulted after Hickok paid for McCall’s breakfast after McCall lost heavily the previous night at the table.

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

Scores going into Final:
Brian $16,600
Alex $15,600
Erica $7,000

Tonight’s results:
Erica $7,000 – $6,950 = $50 (Who are Wild Bill + Sitting Bull?)
Alex $15,600 – $15,000 = $600 (Who are Custard and Sitting Bull?)
Brian $16,600 – $0 = $16,600 (Who are Hickock + Crockett?) (7-day total: $163,904)

Brian Chang, today's Jeopardy! winner (for the January 27, 2021 game.)

Scores after the Jeopardy! Round:
Erica $4,200
Brian $1,800
Alex $1,400


Opening break taken after: 15 clues

Daily Double locations:
1) BOOKS BY PRESIDENTS $800 (clue #13)
Brian 3400 -3400 (Alex 1000 Erica 1200)
2) LITERARY VACATIONS $1200 (clue #6)
Alex 3800 +3800 (Brian 3000 Erica 6200)
3) CORSICAN $1600 (clue #22, $4800 left on board)
Alex 13600 +2000 (Brian 13400 Erica 6200)
Overall Daily Double Efficiency for this game: 15

Unplayed clues:
J! Round: None!
DJ! Round: None!
Total Left On Board: $0
Number of clues left unrevealed this season: 150 (1.70 per episode average), 2 Daily Doubles

Game Stats:
Brian $20,000 Coryat, 26 correct, 3 incorrect, 49.12% in first on buzzer (28/57), 0/0 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
Alex $12,600 Coryat, 14 correct, 4 incorrect, 26.32% in first on buzzer (15/57), 1/1 on rebound attempts (on 2 rebound opportunities)
Erica $7,000 Coryat, 10 correct, 0 incorrect, 12.28% in first on buzzer (7/57), 3/3 on rebound attempts (on 6 rebound opportunities)
Combined Coryat Score: $39,600
Lach Trash: $10,200 (on 9 Triple Stumpers)
Coryat lost to incorrect responses (less double-correct responses): $4,200

Brian Chang, career statistics:
163 correct, 18 incorrect
4/5 on rebound attempts (on 26 rebound opportunities)
40.00% in first on buzzer (158/395)
8/10 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $14,500)
4/7 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $17,400

Alex Cohn, career statistics:
14 correct, 5 incorrect
1/1 on rebound attempts (on 2 rebound opportunities)
26.32% in first on buzzer (15/57)
2/2 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $5,800)
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $12,600

Erica Holencik, career statistics:
10 correct, 1 incorrect
3/3 on rebound attempts (on 6 rebound opportunities)
12.28% in first on buzzer (7/57)
0/0 on Daily Doubles
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $7,000

Brian Chang, to win:
8 games: 57.454%
9: 33.009%
10: 18.965%
11: 10.896%
12: 6.260%
Avg. streak: 8.350 games.

Andy’s Thoughts:

  • This result came as a big surprise to me; I would have put a lot of money on Brian losing today, figuring the show would try to avoid keeping Brian from playing a 4-time champ at this point.

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52 Comments on "Today’s Final Jeopardy! – Wednesday, January 27, 2021"

  1. Supposedly Hickock was holding aces and eights, what is now known as dead man’s hand. We don’t know what the fifth card was.

  2. If the producers didn’t somehow know Brian lost today (writing now prior to posted results) when scheduling Zach for Thursday we see a matchup tomorrow that should happen only in TOC play, not in regular episodes. It’s unfair to both contestants, first for Zach to make his becoming the TOC more difficult after waiting so long for a chance to win 5. It’s unfair to Brian trying to extend his streak. And it’s unfair to the third contestant facing two such strong contestants.

    I’m guessing on the name of fairness they knew.

    • Correction: my “make his becoming the TOC” should just be “make the TOC”

    • This whole pandemic has been less than fair. Unless there was a game where all three ended up with zero (or less), Zach was going to be facing a winner of the previous game.

      • Zach N (from the sidebar) | January 27, 2021 at 11:59 am |

        Interestingly, had all three contestants on Friday, January 22 missed the FJ, they would have all ended with $0 and there would have been no returning champion for the next game. By sheer coincidence, I was scheduled to return for the next taping. It would have been perfect, but 2/3 of the players knew Captain Cook and the rest is history.

  3. Zach N (from the sidebar) | January 27, 2021 at 9:53 am |

    “Zach Newkirk waits in the wings to face the winner . . .” more like “Zach Newkirk nervously bites his fingernails in the audience section of the studio . . .”

    • Just curious, was there any kind of an outside audience there, or just the week’s contestants? Were you or the other contestants able to bring a +1 into the studio for moral support?

      • Zach N (from the sidebar) | January 27, 2021 at 1:10 pm |

        It was just the contestants of the week (and Jimmy Maguire as hypeman!). In March, there was no audience and we were allowed no more than 5 personal guests. But that was before substantial COVID restrictions were put in place.

    • Marty Cunningham | January 27, 2021 at 2:34 pm |

      Zach – please confirm that they still draw contestants randomly from the remaining pool. So, you could just as easily have been on Monday’s show as on Friday’s/

  4. This could be an Ali-Frazier situation if Brian pulls this off tonight. So Zach, they just put you back in the regular pool of contestants? Did you even get to draw for the champion’s podium?

  5. Billie Brewer | January 27, 2021 at 1:25 pm |

    I just finished reading O’Reilly’s book, “Killing Sitting Bull.” Both Hickok and Custer’s death were detailed, and is the only reason I knew this answer within the 30 seconds.

    • Pizza Face Fred | January 28, 2021 at 3:44 pm |

      I got it because I instantly thought of Hickok, and I was positive the Last Stand was in South Dakota, the site of Wounded Knee, not Montana. Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good. Triple Stumper Final for me! Hahaha . . .

  6. I don’t know where it came from but, what a clever (and gutsy!) move for Brian to wager $0 in Final Jeopardy!
    What does seem unfair (altho’ I see no way around it) tomorrow will be Brian’s 5th game of the day being taped and he will be somewhat fatigued. Zach, on the other hand, will be fresh and rarin’ to go. We will see what we shall see..
    GO Champs!

  7. today, if Alex had also said Wild Bill Hickock, would his “Custard” have counted? I know absolutely accurate spelling is not needed, but he actually had the name semi-wrong and mis-pronounced.

    • I would guess “no”.

    • I wonde if they would have accepted “Haycock” instead of “Hickok”. They’re pronounced differently—but Hickok himself used the name “William Haycock” during the Civil War and or times in his life. (FYI—his legal name was James Butler Hickok. His father was William.)

  8. Brad (not Rutter) | January 27, 2021 at 5:03 pm |

    Don’t approve of Brian’s wager, but he keeps winning, so who am I to complain! Disappointed that Zach and Brian have to face off. I just hope one of them wins.

    • If neither do, it’ll be an extra feather in the cap for whomever defeats them both…

    • The wager which really surprised me was Erica’s. With the two leaders only $1000 apart, and her having $7000, I would have expected a small wager from her. If both leaders had wagered big (as often happens in such situations), and she had gone small, she could have walked away with the win on a triple stumper. (Brian’s conservative wager eliminated that possibility—but it certainly seemed her best chance at pulling out the victory.)

  9. Michael Mcgee | January 27, 2021 at 5:10 pm |

    Either way tomorrow we will see both Zack and Brian in the toc. Zack is a lock even if he loses based off who he loses to. Emma got in with only 3 wins so can’t see them not putting Zack in if he loses tomorrow

  10. Very surprised that none of the players got final jeopardy. This game shows that you don’t have to wager big in final jeopardy with a small lead despite what many fans think and it could backfire. Brian probably did not feel that great about the category and a big wager would have made it possible to lose to both other competitors.

  11. For the record, I think Ken Jennings is doing a great job as host.

  12. Myron Rushetzky | January 27, 2021 at 7:38 pm |

    Andy, in the extended credits of today’s show, there was a Nicky Trebek. Is that Alex’s adopted daughter? What does she do on the show? Thank-you, Andy.

    • Here is a biography of her. Nicky Trebek Born in Toronto and raised in Hollywood. When she was 6 years old her mother Elaine Callei married game show host Alex Trebek as he lovingly raised her and gave her his name. She worked in production on Jeopardy, television specials and on several feature films. Nicky has also hosted infomercials and has modeled in consumer ads in Vogue, Cosmo, Mademoiselle, Glamour, Self and Allure magazines. She has recently recorded with platinum producer Loren Harriet, Nicky’s track “Every Beat of Your Heart” includes some of the music industry’s top session musicians such as Leland Sklar (Phil Collins), Tim Pierce (Goo Goo Dolls), JT Thomas (Bruce Hornsby), Kenny Aronoff (John Mellencamp), and engineer Talley Sherwood (N’SYNC). Nicky just finished recording five original songs including her debut single “Every Beat of Your Heart”, a duet with Bill Champlin of Chicago, as well as five covers of songs composed by Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, Elvis Presley, David Bowie and Elton John.

  13. Can anyone tell me the name of the movie that mentioned Sag Harbor and Lisa-Lisa?

  14. I am really looking forward to tomorrow. Can Zack pick up where he left off? Can Brian avoid the Thursday curse? Can the other contestant take down two multi-game champions?

  15. I personally think that Ken is doing great, he’s a bit faster than Alex was, but I can adapt.

  16. This Final Jeopardy shows once again that the contestants have no clue when it comes to history (and geography) and they have to resort to all sorts of wild guesses. For example, I mentioned in a previous post that Davy Crockett died at the Alamo in 1836, which is a well-known fact. Will Bill Hickok wasn’t even born yet. Therefore to say that the two died 38 days apart is completely illogical.
    But the beauty of this question is that it doesn’t require deep knowledge, just simple reasoning: Deadwood, South Dakota, is famous for the murder of Wild Bill Hickok; and Little Bighorn, Montana, is famous for Custer’s (not Custard’s) last stand.
    By the way, did Erica and Alex really think that Sitting Bull died at the Battle of Little Bighorn?

  17. Thomas Gazdayka | January 27, 2021 at 10:25 pm |

    I have been waiting for Zach to become a 5 time champion since the end of last season. Now he has to contend with Brian. And he’s a killer. But he made a few mistakes on this Wednesday episode. Messed up. So if he messes up on the Thursday episode, and Zach takes advantage, I sure hope Zach wins then. I like him a lot more than Brian anyway. Sorry.

  18. Pizza Face Fred | January 27, 2021 at 10:39 pm |

    Hickock and Custard, priceless! I always spell the former wrong, but Custard? Hilarious (-:

  19. Thomas Gazdayka | January 28, 2021 at 2:06 am |

    Emma eventually took out the might James. She did win three games. But she made it to the ToC because she took out the mighty James. So even though Zach might not take out the mighty Brian, the producers might not ask Zach to come back for the ToC as they might have enough 5 and above winners in the 2 years since the last ToC tournament.

    • If Zach beats Brian, it would be his fifth win. Barring personal misconduct or death, every five time winner in the history of the show has been invited to a Tournament of Champions.

      • Just curious—have either of those exceptions (personal misconduct or death) actually ever happened, impacting toc invitations?

  20. I didn’t know who Dave Chappelle is (I think he’s a comedian?) or what he’s done, but I still guessed him correctly for the answer. Funny when that happens.

  21. Thank you.

  22. To the commenters who are claiming that neither Custer nor Hickok wore buckskin:

    You are incorrect. It took me less than 60 seconds on Google to find notable pictures of both figures in buckskin.

  23. All the Mardi Gras parades were cancelled in New Orleans, so people are decorating their houses. One creative couple did a Jeopardy! theme. You can actually play it!

  24. “This result came as a big surprise to me; I would have put a lot of money on Brian losing today, figuring the show would try to avoid keeping Brian from playing a 4-time champ at this point.”

    What do you mean by this thought, Andy? It seems to imply that the producers exercise some degree of control over whether a contestant wins?

  25. Prithvi Sudhakar | January 28, 2021 at 11:56 am |

    Why did Brian bet nothing? I feel like the minimum amount he could have risked was $999, but I might be wrong.

    I guess you never know what could happen in Final.

  26. Thomas Gazdayka | January 28, 2021 at 12:05 pm |

    My sentiments exactly Andy…have Zach come back AFTER Brian loses. Be that as it may, I do hope Zach wins tonight’s game.

  27. Pizza Face Fred | January 28, 2021 at 3:26 pm |

    Zach, the long awaited prodigal son, a veritable Jeopardy! messiah. I don’t get it . . .

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