Handicapping the 2017 Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions

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CREDIT: Jeopardy!

The latest round of Jeopardy!‘s Tournament of Champions is airing November 6-17, and I’m here to rank the contestants in order of how likely I think they are to take the $250,000 grand prize.

(Special mention must be made of Cindy Stowell, who passed away from cancer after winning 6 games. She probably would have been in my top 3 had she survived long enough to make it to the ToC.)

1. Austin Rogers – His personality may rub some viewers the wrong way, but he understands how to play the game better than anyone else in this group, and his resilient attitude goes a long way.
2. Andrew Pau – He survived a gauntlet in his first game (one of the best non-tournament episodes ever) and went on to average nearly $30,000 per win.
3. Tim Aten – A steady competitor with his eyes on the prize.
4. Pranjal Vachaspati – Honestly, after the first two, there’s a huge drop in expectations, but I do remember Pranjal’s friendliness taking him far.
5. Seth Wilson – He won 12 games, which seems crazy in retrospect. But you gotta respect anyone who has a double digit streak.
6. Buzzy Cohen – Outside of Austin, this Simpsons lawyer lookalike is the most divisive player, but (even though he won 9 games) he’s nowhere near as impressive.
7. Sam Deutsch – Sam’s a strong College Tournament champ, but his presence mostly makes me sad that we won’t see College runner-up Niki Peters here.
8. Lilly Chin – Lilly’s also a strong College champ who I do not think will be intimidated by her adult competition.
9. Hunter Appler – At this point, we’re getting into the territory of, “Oh, I kind of remember him winning a lot.”
10. Lisa Schlitt – Lisa always looked shocked when she won. It will serve her best to come in expecting to win this time around.
11. Jason Sterlacci – Outside of Colby Burnett, I’ve never been much impressed by a Teachers Tournament champ, though I wouldn’t be shocked if this Dr. Rich from Community doppelgänger pulls off a run to the final.
12. Justin Vossler – Justin kind of looks like 2015 ToC champ Alex Jacob, but he’s nowhere near as idiosyncratic.
13. Alan Lin – I might be underestimating Alan. Or overestimating. I’m really not sure.
14. Jon Eisenman – I know I watched this guy’s episodes, but I don’t much remember what happened in them.
15. David Clemmons – The level of play in David’s Teachers Tournament was kind of meh.

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What Won TV? – October 8-October 14, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

CREDIT: Bob Mahoney/AMC

This is going to be my last edition of “What Won TV?,” at least for a while. With the super-saturated nature of the television medium, there are just too many times now where I don’t catch all the shows I watch within the week they actually air.

Sunday – A guest star-strong Simpsons
Monday – Jeopardy!
Tuesday – The Middle
Wednesday – Mr. Robot
Thursday – Great News (Honorable Mention to Jeopardy!, even though Trebek claims he knows nothing about a dick tree)
Friday – Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Saturday – Let me end by choosing Halt and Catch Fire.

What Won TV? – October 1-October 7, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

Sunday – Bob’s Burgers
Monday – Austin Rogers securing his place in the Jeopardy! record books
Tuesday – Austin going even further into Jeopardy! history
Wednesday – Full Frontal with Samantha Bee
Thursday – The Good Place
Friday – Jeopardy!
Saturday – Halt and Catch Fire better be careful about being so good about making me so sad.

What Won TV? – September 10-September 16, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

Sunday – We really need Tim and Eric’s Bedtime Stories right now.
Monday – People of Earth
Tuesday – Difficult People wins this Billy Eichner Tuesday.
Wednesday – Broad City
Thursday – The Chris Gethard Show
Friday – Jeopardy!
Saturday – Halt and Catch Fire

What Won TV? – August 20-August 26, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

Sunday – Rick and Morty (and Jerry and the tiny customer service reps)
Monday – American Dad!
Tuesday – Difficult People
Wednesday – Jeopardy! (tournament rerun)
Thursday – The Chris Gethard Show: Extra Sweaty Edition
Friday – VICE
Saturday – Halt and Catch Fire, thanks to genius teenagers

What Won TV? – August 13-August 19, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

Sunday – Rick and Morty
Monday – People of Earth
Tuesday – Difficult People
Wednesday – Jeopardy! (But Honorable Mention to Marlon‘s theme song)
Thursday – Whose Line is it Anyway?
Friday – VICE
Saturday – I’m so ready to Halt and Catch Fire all the time.

What Won TV? – July 30-August 5, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

Sunday – Last Week Tonight is turning the frogs gay, and making a buck off it.
Monday – American Dad!
Tuesday – Jeopardy!
Wednesday – The Carmichael Show
Thursday – The Gong Show, thanks to the variety
Friday – VICE
Saturday – Orphan Black

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