JEOPARDY! contestant Jackson Jones left Mayim Bialik and the audience gasping for breath before winning Friday’s High School Reunion Tournament episode.
In a misdirect for the books, he announced “I’ve always wanted to say this” on a Daily Double and only bet $200.
ABCJackson Jones had a huge lead and found the last Daily Double[/caption]
ABCHe said: ‘I’ve always wanted to say this’ and the audience sounded worried -‘$200’ he added, as everyone lost it[/caption]
Jackson, a junior at Vanderbilt University from Louisville, Kentucky, faced Avi Gupta, a senior at Stanford University from Portland, Oregon, and Lucas Miner, a junior at Yale University from Miami, Florida.
Mayim, 47, is hosting the 14-episode High School Reunion Tournament featuring 27 former Teen Tournament contestants who first duked it out in 2018 and 2019.
Tonight marked the first semi-finals game, the eventual winner will get $100,000 and a slot in the 2023 Tournament of Champions.
2019 Teen Tournament winner Avi was, on paper, the front-runner since he won his original event.
Avi also defeated both Lucas and Jackson originally – and their first bout was settled by a rare tiebreaker.
Jackson not only got poetic justice in this episode but had a gut-busting moment along the way.
Avi got off to a rough start, missing three $1000 responses and barely getting out of the red by the end of the first round.
Meanwhile, Jackson picked up such a solid lead that when he landed on the last Daily Double of the game – he had $19K and some fun with it.
‘I’VE ALWAYS WANTED TO SAY THIS’
He told Mayim: “I’ve always wanted to say this…” as the crowd paused in anticipation.
Gasps and “No’s” could be heard as it seemed people were worried he was going to bet the farm.
“$200,” he announced after quite the pause, and the actress doubled over at her podium and the audience just lost it as well.
Jackson was correct, and by the end of Double Jeopardy, he had a runaway at $21,000, Avi at $8,600, and Lucas $3,600.
Final Jeopardy under “Nonfiction” read: “Letters, pocket knives, C rations & steel helmets are among the tangible items referred to in the title of this modern war classic.”
Only Lucas was correct with “The Things They Carried” but it was a closed book and Jackson will advance to the finals with $19,780.
One Reddit user applauded: “Jackson did the thing I’ve always wanted someone to say on Jeopardy. Bless them.”
“I’ve always wanted someone to do it. Granted I wanted to be the one myself but Jackson is a legend for doing it,” another wrote.
“Love the collective audience ‘OMG’ when Jackson was faking out the true Daily Double” wrote a third.
A fourth wrote on the underdog’s sweet revenge: “Jackson avenges his loss to Avi, the last time they played against each other in season 35!”
CLASS IS IN SESSION
The other semi-finalists of Mayim’s tournament will begin duking it out on Monday to join Jackson in the finals.
They are Caleb Richmond – who had a huge first outing in his quarterfinals game – Tim Cho, 2018 Teen Tournament winner Claire Sattler, Stephanie Pierson, Justin Bolsen, and Maya Wright.
There will be two more semi-finals until four of the remaining students are dismissed, then there will be a two-day total point affair finals ending on March 9th.
On Monday, longtime producer Sarah Foss cleared the board on the hosting schedule for the rest of the season on the show’s podcast.
It was announced that Ken Jennings, 48, will be back after Mayim’s three-week tournament, but not for very long.
“Ken Jennings will be back on March 10th and then he will continue the rest of his syndicated run which will take us through April 28th.
“Then Mayim will take over on May 1st and she’ll take us all the way through the summer.”
Ken-leaning fans were left in a frenzy since after May 1st, we won’t see Ken on the regular game show until Season 40, or September 2023.
The special tournament, meanwhile, has seen a few other funny Daily Double moments.
Earlier on, a contestant bet “a whopping $5” on one, which is the minimum amount allowed on the randomly placed clues – he then lost.
Another was when Avi landed on one during his first game, got it correct, and talked some smack telling second-placer Jack Izzo: “You’re not gonna get rid of me that easy.”
ABCFans called Jackson Jones a ‘legend’ for his ‘fake out’ Daily Double move[/caption]
ABCHe beat his former foe Avi Gupta and will advance to the special’s finals[/caption]
ABCTwo semi-finals games remain before the finals – after which Ken Jennings will return on March 10[/caption]