JEOPARDY! producers have admitted to painting themselves into a corner regarding the lineup for Mayim Bialik’s current tournament.
Two contestants in the special have the same first name, an issue the game show “goes to great lengths to avoid.”
ABCMayim Bialik is hosting the three-week-long High School Reunion Tournament[/caption]
ABCTwo contestants are competing with the same first name of Audrey[/caption]
Mayim, 47, is now hosting the 14-episode High School Reunion Tournament featuring 27 former Teen Tournament contestants who first duked it out in 2018 and 2019.
The winner will get $100,000 and a slot in the 2023 Tournament of Champions.
Audrey Sarin returned from the 2018 tournament and advanced after winning on February 13.
On February 28, Audrey Satchivi, a senior at Indiana University is competing to advance.
If she does, there could be two contestants with the same first name in an upcoming episode of the special – which Jeopardy! doesn’t like.
Longtime producer Sarah Foss brought up the issue, which in this case was unavoidable, on the podcast Inisde Jeopardy!.
Because the ongoing special has exclusively pulled from two past events, the two Audrey snafu was inevitable in this instance – but still a definite concern.
‘WE AVOID SAME NAMES’
The producer said: “We go to great lengths to avoid booking anyone with the same name on the same tape day.”
“There are times where we can’t anticipate who the returning champion will be.”
“This has happened during Ken [Jennings’] run and James [Holzhauer’s] where someone comes in and they have the same name.
“Our contestant department will ask if there a nickname you like to go by.”
“If they are agreeable to that, they’ll go by that” and if not, “they can come back on a later date,” Foss said.
In other words, if a contestant passed the audition but were named James or Ken during either champs’ iconic respective run it would be tough luck.
“Obviously in this scenario from two separate teen tournaments, this has never happened before in this way – where if and when they advance we cannot swap out the players.
Since the second Audrey hasn’t advanced yet: “You’ll just have to stay tuned and see what happens if they end up in one game together!” Foss added.
‘IT HAS HAPPENED!’
On Reddit, fans parsed through the archives as one user started a thread: “On yesterday’s Inside Jeopardy!, Sarah said they don’t think they’ve had the situation with people with the same name competing in a tournament before. However, it has happened!”
“In 2008, Rachel Horn and Rachel Cooke both made it to the Teen Tournament final. The latter went by ‘Steve.’ Rachel Horn won and Rachel ‘Steve’ Cooke came in second.”
Another user replied: “There was also the “Battle of the Michaels” 1996 Tournament of Champions final—Mike Dupée vs Michael Daunt.”
A third claimed that any time this has happened in the past, nicknames were agreed upon.
In 1985 Paul Boymel faced Paul Croshier Paul Croshier and in 1988’s Teen Tournament Finals – David Graham faced David Javerbaum.
“Paul was referred to as ‘Staff Sargent Paul’ and David Javerbaum was referred to as ‘DJ’” a fan explained.
There are two Audrey’s in Mayim Bialik’s current tournamentJEOPARDY!Audrey Satchivi is competing on Tuesday’s episode and if she advances Jeoaprdy! would be in a rare scenario they ‘try to avoid’[/caption]
GettyJeopardy! never books two contestants with the same first name and if a nickname isn’t ‘agreed upon’ for the challenger, they have to come back[/caption]