Today’s Final Jeopardy – Monday, May 8, 2023

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Here’s today’s Final Jeopardy (in the category Numerical Book Titles) for Monday, May 8, 2023 (Season 39, Game 171):

This 2007 bestselling novel takes its title from a line in the poem “Kabul” by the 17th century Persian poet Saib

(correct response beneath the contestants)

Today’s Jeopardy! contestants:

Juveria Zaheer, a psychiatrist from Whitby, Ontario, Canada
Juveria Zaheer on Jeopardy!
Sami Casanova, an actuary from New York, New York
Sami Casanova on Jeopardy!
Hannah Wilson, a data scientist from Chicago, Illinois (3-day total: $90,601)
Hannah Wilson on Jeopardy!

Andy’s Pregame Thoughts:

Welcome to a new week of Jeopardy! episodes; Hannah Wilson is your defending champion after she put up a very strong performance near the end of last week. She’s averaging over $30,000 a game! She’ll need at least one more victory this week (if not two) in order to really help her Tournament of Champions chances this fall!

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Correct response: What is A Thousand Splendid Suns?

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A Thousand Splendid Suns is Afghan-American author Khaled Hosseini’s second major novel (his first being 2003’s The Kite Runner). As the clue stated, it gets its title from the fourth stanza of “Kabul” by Saib-e-Tabrizi: “Every street of Kabul is enthralling to the eye / Through the bazaars, caravans of Egypt pass / One could not count the moons that shimmer on her roofs / And the thousand splendid suns that hide behind her walls”

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Game Recap & Tonight’s Game Stats:

Looking to find out who won Jeopardy! today? Here’s the Monday, May 8, 2023 Jeopardy! by the numbers, along with a recap:

Jeopardy! Round:

(Categories: Scandal!; Pop Music-Podge; Gone Fishin’; Yeet!; Children’s Lit; Consonant Craving)

Hannah got off to a rocket start, though it was Sami who found the Daily Double. (Though, disappointing, Sami didn’t bet everything, in spite of being down more than $4,000 on clue #13). While Hannah only got 3 correct after the break, she still had a strong lead after 30 clues.

Statistics at the first break (15 clues):

Hannah 9 correct 0 incorrect
Sami 3 correct 0 incorrect
Juveria 2 correct 1 incorrect

Today’s interviews:

Juveria has a brother who was on “Survivor”.
Sami shares a birthday with John Adams; her son shares a birthday with John Quincy Adams.
Hannah has a collection of things related to unpopular Presidents.

Statistics after the Jeopardy round:

Hannah 12 correct 0 incorrect
Sami 6 correct 0 incorrect
Juveria 8 correct 3 incorrect

Scores after the Jeopardy! Round:

Hannah $7,200
Sami $3,600
Juveria $2,800

Double Jeopardy! Round:

(Categories: “B” Cool; The South Pacific; The Quotable Alex; Futility; American Woman; What Kind Of Tv Place You Live In?)

Double Jeopardy! saw both Hannah and Juveria play extremely well; Hannah got to the first Daily Double, but left Juveria a small opening when Juveria found the last one on clue #20. Juveria nearly doubled up and ended up in a very strong second place going into Final!

Statistics after Double Jeopardy:

Hannah 22 correct 1 incorrect
Juveria 20 correct 5 incorrect
Sami 9 correct 1 incorrect
Total number of unplayed clues this season: 26 (0 today).

Scores going into Final:

Hannah $21,200
Juveria $17,000
Sami $4,000

Hannah was the only player correct on a very tough Final; she’s now a 4-day champion! She’ll go for win #5 tomorrow!

Tonight’s results:

Sami $4,000 – $3,998 = $2 (What is this was fun)
Juveria $17,000 – $17,000 = $0 (What is Seventh heaven?)
Hannah $21,200 + $13,000 = $34,200 (What is A Thousand Splendid Suns?) (4-day total: $124,801)

Hannah Wilson, today's Jeopardy! winner (for the May 8, 2023 game.)

Other Miscellaneous Game Statistics:

Daily Double locations:

1) CHILDREN’S LIT $1000 (clue #13)
Sami 1400 +1000 (Hannah 5600 Juveria 800)
2) FUTILITY $1600 (clue #3)
Hannah 9600 +4000 (Sami 3600 Juveria 2800)
3) AMERICAN WOMAN $1600 (clue #20, $8400 left on board)
Juveria 7600 +7000 (Hannah 20000 Sami 2800)
Overall Daily Double Efficiency for this game: 205

Clue Selection by Row, Before Daily Doubles Found:

J! Round:
Hannah 1 2 4 5 3 4 5 3 4
Sami 3 5*
Juveria 5 5

DJ! Round:
Hannah 3 4* 5† 3 4 5 2† 4 5 2 1
Sami 4 3
Juveria 3 5 3 5 2 2 4*

† – selection in same category as Daily Double

Average Row of Clue Selection, Before Daily Doubles Found:

Hannah 3.45
Sami 3.75
Juveria 3.78

Unplayed clues:

J! Round: None!
DJ! Round: None!
Total Left On Board: $0
Number of clues left unrevealed this season: 26 (0.15 per episode average), 0 Daily Doubles

Game Stats:

Hannah $18,800 Coryat, 22 correct, 1 incorrect, 36.84% in first on buzzer (21/57), 0/1 on rebound attempts (on 5 rebound opportunities)
Sami $4,000 Coryat, 9 correct, 1 incorrect, 12.28% in first on buzzer (7/57), 1/2 on rebound attempts (on 5 rebound opportunities)
Juveria $11,600 Coryat, 20 correct, 5 incorrect, 42.11% in first on buzzer (24/57), 0/0 on rebound attempts (on 0 rebound opportunities)
Combined Coryat Score: $34,400
Lach Trash: $11,200 (on 9 Triple Stumpers)
Coryat lost to incorrect responses (less double-correct responses): $8,400

Player Statistics:

Hannah Wilson, career statistics:

104 correct, 7 incorrect
6/8 on rebound attempts (on 16 rebound opportunities)
39.91% in first on buzzer (91/228)
7/8 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $23,500)
4/4 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $19,450

Sami Casanova, career statistics:

9 correct, 2 incorrect
1/2 on rebound attempts (on 5 rebound opportunities)
12.28% in first on buzzer (7/57)
1/1 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $1,000)
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $4,000

Juveria Zaheer, career statistics:

20 correct, 6 incorrect
0/0 on rebound attempts (on 0 rebound opportunities)
42.11% in first on buzzer (24/57)
1/1 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $7,000)
0/1 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $11,600

Hannah Wilson, to win:

5 games: 74.389%
6: 55.337%
7: 41.164%
8: 30.621%
9: 22.779%
Avg. streak: 6.905 games.

Andy’s Thoughts:

  • This felt glaring to me in today’s game, but there were a number of situations where I was hoping for more explanation out of the show and Mayim as to why a response was incorrect, or maybe even more information about the correct response to Final, and was definitely left wanting. In fact, all this is going to do is lead to confused and potentially angry viewers when it’s completely preventable.
  • More specifically, I wish Mayim had been clear when giving the correct response to CHILDREN’S LIT $400 that they needed the exact title, and maybe more of an explanation as to why each player’s pronunciation of Solzhenitsyn was unacceptable. Instead, it just makes Mayim look persnickety and petty.
  • Today’s box score will be linked to when posted by the show.

Final Jeopardy! wagering suggestions:

(Scores: Hannah $21,200 Juveria $17,000 Sami $4,000)

Hannah: Standard cover bet over Sami is $12,801. (Actual bet: $13,000)

Sami: Bet whatever you like, though I’d hold something back in case Juveria goes all in. (Actual bet: $3,998)

Juveria: Bet between $8,401 and $8,599; this both wins a Double Stumper with Hannah and covers her entire potential small betting range. (Actual bet: $17,000)

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17 Comments on "Today’s Final Jeopardy – Monday, May 8, 2023"

  1. I’ve read two of his books Kite Runner and The Mountains Echoed. I had a strong intuition that it had to be Hosseini given all his books are written in/around Afghanistan. But couldn’t come up with the question to today’s Jeopardy Answer. Ugh

    • I guessed “Kite Runner” for no good reason……

    • I am unfamiliar with those, having only heard of ‘Kite Runner’ but not about it. I thought of ‘Three Thousand Years of Longing’ [which I have been longing to watch via streaming, but it hasn’t been available yet — I don’t count “paying extra” for it] but all I know about it that made it a possibility was that it features a djinn.

  2. Michael+Johnston | May 8, 2023 at 9:52 am |

    Mebs… Monday is usually a good day for me, FJ-wise, but not today! I never heard of the poem OR the book. I’m not expecting the Masters clues to be any easier :/

    Current FJ streak: 4L

  3. With Mayim’s “Call me Kat” show being cancelled I hope next season we just get a full time host and not a split of the 2. In the long run having one consistent host will help make things run smoother and we will have less minor issues like we have been having.

    • Um no, they’re both doing their jobs just fine. I like it like this and I’d be very sad if they fired one of them.

  4. A Thousand Splendid Suns was a summer reading book for my senior English students. One of my fastest correct guesses ever. 🙂

  5. It worked out for Hannah and the show in general, but I don’t love this Final because you need to be doubly lucky: land on the intended response, and also phrase it correctly.

    I decided on “A Thousand Splendid Suns” (and might have just written “Thousand Splendid Suns” if I were on stage), but there were a few ways for a contestant to make the judges think about it.

    I suspect “The Thousand Splendid Suns”, while not the English title, would be accepted because that’s how it’s phrased in the “Kabul” poem, the show is pretty lenient on articles a/an/the, and there’s room for a different translation where a second language is involved.
    I’m not as sure about “One Thousand Splendid Suns”. It may get by on the translation technicality, but I could also see it ruled incorrect. There may be a Gabriel Garcia Marquez (“One Hundred Years of Solitude”) reverse precedent here.
    Finally, “1000 Splendid Suns”. Probably wrong? I don’t know if the show would accept the title in actual number form. Would they take “Slaughterhouse-5”? (Have they?)

    • Ted Mark | May 8, 2023 at 4:49 pm |

      You bring up many good points. It seems as if the rules that determine the acceptability of a response have become more inconsistent the past two seasons. Too often judges’ decisions appear to be arbitrary rather than rule-driven because no explanations are given.

  6. Juveria: Soletznichyn
    Sami: Solznitsyn
    Hannah: Soltzenichyn

    Sami was the closest, in my opinion, but still not close enough. Indeed, in such cases they should add the actual spelling and the expected phonetic pronunciation (e.g. sohl-zhuh-neet-sin) in post-production, similar to way they do for anagrams.

    • To my ear, Sami also added a vowel sound between the “l” and “z”, and was therefore correctly ruled wrong for the extra syllable.

      I think these rulings were all correct, although accepting Hannah’s response here seems closer to justifiable than the recent acceptance of “asorbic acid” for “ascorbic acid”.

      • ‘sc’ can be pronounced as ‘s’ like in “science”, so the acceptance of the phonetical ‘asorbic’ was definitely okay.

        • Maybe there’s an exception I’m missing, but it seems the hard ‘c’ is always pronounced in ‘sco’.

  7. Bill Vollmer | May 8, 2023 at 6:08 pm |

    Given Andy’s poinnt about needing the exact title in Children’s Lit, is that a long standing Jeopardy rule, that when a response needs to refer to a SPECIFIC work, oject, or, person, the EXACT title, name, MUST be within the response. So, since the title of one books refered to within Children’s Lit was My Two Mommies, My Two Moms, wasn’t exceptable. Though a reminder of the rule wouldn’t have hurt.
    I don’t understand the rejection of the player’s pronunciation of Soltzhentysm was rejected either. It has seemed in the past when a player has seemingly come close to a correct pronounciation, it was exceptes. And, then there was the ruling a the Babylon 5 clue. I think Hannah should’ve been ruled incorrect, not given the more infomation caution. A space station is NOT a space ship, though they are both space craft. More clickbait for the tabloid websites.
    Final Jeopardy, when the category came up, I knew my chabces at having the correct responses were slim. The “answer” that was revealed, made my thought correct. Unfortunately, Lierature is noy an area where I’m strong.

  8. I got it instantly, pointing to the book on my bookshelf. The “numerical” plus “Kabul” made this one a giveaway.

    Was rooting for Juveria due to the Survivor connection – but she’ll be back for Second Chance so I can root for her then too. The Vulcan/Hephaestus and Moms/Mommies confusions + the unpronounceable last name + that correctly ballsy Daily Double wager + her actually putting pressure on Hannah should do it. Given those two confusions that cost Juveria a potential lead (given how one of them led into a Daily Double for Sami), it would be a crime for her to not return.

    However, I too don’t understand why they needed the exact title or the exact pronunciation on those two clues. The Hephaestus clue may have specified Greek (I don’t recall) but this episode was not a good look for Mayim, though I’m not quite sure how much is her fault and how much is the fault of the producers for being too picky.

    • The Hephaestus clue did specify Greek. The “Mommies” clue asked for a title in quotes to be continue, which always requires exact phrasing. Both rulings looked correct to me.

  9. I found that author name soltzenitchen difficult to pronounce but still thinking about the kite runner and I am willing to read this one in particular. Finally happy to see a lady dominating today’s game. Hannah broke the one month leader curse.

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