'Jeopardy!' Makes 'Inexcusable' Mistake That Turned Spoiler in Recent Episode

Even Jeopardy! can have a Starbucks cup moment. Unlike the awkwardly placed coffee cup in Game of Thrones though, Jeopardy!'s big mistake was a spoiler. During a recent episode, the show's editors accidentally revealed the contestants' final scores during host Mayim Bialik's introduction.

At the beginning of the March 8 episode, Bialik congratulated students Justin Bolsen, Maya Wright, and Jackson Jones for making it to the final episode of the High School Reunion Tournament. The show then cut to a shot of the three contestants behind the podiums, with their scores on display. Those scores matched their totals at the end of the episode!

So what happened? A longtime Jeopardy! fan who attended a taping last year suggests that producers needed an extra shot of the contestants during Bialik's introduction. So, they filmed a shot at the end of the episode without resetting the contestants' podium screens. The editors may not have noticed this when they cut it into the broadcast.

The mistake was only onscreen for less than a second, but it was up long enough for fans to notice. "I was so confused!! I thought I missed a day and this was day two of a TWO-DAY TOTAL POINT AFFAIR," one fan tweeted. "I found that super confusing and wondered if I'd missed the first day of the finals," another wrote. "Wow, given that this was taped months or weeks ago, you'd think they'd actually proof-view it first before putting on air," another tweeted.

It's also possible that the editors did not think it was that big a deal because the March 8 episode was the first half of a two-day total. At the end of the March 9 episode, one of the three contestants will come out on top. The champion automatically wins $100,000, while the second-place finisher wins $50,000. The third-place contestant wins $25,000.

Jeopardy! producers have not commented on the snafu, but it could come up during the next episode of their Inside Jeopardy! podcast. They have shown a willingness to listen to fans, even responding to some show tweaks suggested on Reddit. In a February episode, producers Michael Davies and Sarah Floss discussed the possibility of including category names above clues when they fill up the screen so viewers at home wouldn't have to struggle to remember a full category name. It can be an issue when the game moves quickly and contestants call out shorthand versions of category names.