Final Jeopardy: 20th Century History

The Final Jeopardy question (1/16/2017) in the category “20th Century History” was:

Villages like Zalesye, Kopachi & Lubyanka remain abandoned 3 decades after this event.

New champ Eli Nehus won $6,227 last Friday. Today he tries for a second win against these two players: Mary Caruso, from Cherry Hill, NJ; and John Avila, from Arlington, VA.

Round 1 Categories: It’s the Geneva Convention – Got Your Name Tag? – Around the House – Out of Con Text – Lotsa “Luck” – A Movie to Die for

John found the Jeopardy! round Daily Double in “Geneva Convention” under the $800 clue with only 2 picks left after it. He was in second place with $2,200, $2,600 behind Eli’s lead. He bet $1,600 and thought it was Zurich. That was WRONG.

The 1906 convention called for ratifications to be filed in this nearby national capital. show

That ended the round. Eli finished in the lead with $4,800. Mary was second with $1,400 and John was last with $700.

Round 2 Categories: Civil Rights Leaders – Geometric Shape Rhyme Time – The Emmys 1967 – Tech Talk – Rooms Full of Culture – “C”ounties

John found the first Daily Double in “‘C’ounties” under the $1,200 clue on the 6th pick. He was in second place with $2,300 at this point, $3,300 less than Eli’s lead. He bet $1,300 and he was RIGHT.

Southwest Texas county named for a man who died in San Antonio. show

John found the last Daily Double in “Room Full of Culture” under the $800 clue with only one clue still to go. In the lead with $12,000, he had $3,600 more than Eli in second place. He bet $4,500 and guessed the British Museum. That was WRONG.

For over a century Room 12 has been the center of the Velazquez Collection at this museum. show

That finished this round off and, now, Eli was in the lead with $8,400. John was second with $7,500 and Mary was in third place with $7,000.

TWO of the contestants got Final Jeopardy! right.


“Some tragedies never end. Ask people to name a nuclear disaster and most will probably point to Fukushima in Japan three years ago. The nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl in Ukraine was 30 years ago, but the crisis is still with us today. That’s because radiation virtually never dies.” That’s the intro to a “60 Minutes Overtime” video from 2014, online here (accompanied by a transcript). A former resident of Pripyat, the most well-known abandoned town, recalls the disaster, often referred to as “26,” the date it happened in April of 1986. They talked about the Exclusion Zone (see maps) and continuing efforts to seal the damaged reactor. reported on how the “giant safety dome” was completed in November 2016: It is “taller than New York’s Statue of Liberty… [and] three times heavier than the Eiffel Tower in Paris.”

Mary got it right. She bet $6,950 and that brought her up to $13,950.

John also got it. He bet $6,501 and finished with $14,001.

Eli thought it was the Rwandan genocide. That cost him $7,000. He was left with $1,400 and John Avila became the new Jeopardy! champ, despite that ill-advised DD bet.

So the “leader curse” strikes another day through the fluke of John overbetting on the last Daily Double. Otherwise, he would have been in the lead before FJ.

Final Jeopardy (1/16/2017) Eli Nehus, Mary Caruso, John Avila

A triple stumper from each round:

OUT OF CON TEXT ($800) Dantes crossed the awful threshold and the door closed noisily behind him… he was in prison”

THE EMMYS 1967 ($1600) An award for daytime shows went to this beastly series sponsored by Mutual of Omaha Insurance

2 years ago: NONE of the players got this FJ in “British Business Names”

Still around, these 2 rival companies began with a 1744 sale of “scarce and valuable books” and a 1766 sale of chamber pots.

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13 Responses

  1. Robert Anderson says:

    Haiti is a country, not an island. Jeopardy FAIL

  2. Villages were abandoned not due to danger but due to government orders. Wildlife in the Chernobyl area is thriving today like never before. See the PBS nature program titled Chernobyl.

    Nuclear power has the ability to stop our carbon emissions. That could save mankind and all life on earth. Nuclear power actually saves lives every year by replacing fossil fuel power production. Put that in your final Jeopardy answer some day – if you dare come down on the side of helping humans Instead of profit for the fossil fuel industry.

  3. EricS says:

    I actually would have suggested a larger wager for John on the last DD. By betting 4900, he would give himself a chance at a lock, with the downside of a probable 2nd place spot into FJ. Is it more likely that he knows FJ than a DD in a category he has already played?

  4. Lou says:

    The Rwanda Genocide was april 7th 1994 and chernobyl was 1986. So I don’t think the leader knows anything about 20th century history. This should not have been that tough because those villages are from russia and not africa. Eli misread the clue again. Still though this leader curse is just like from late november 2016 into mid january 2016 don’t you think VJ?

    • Dalton Higbee says:

      You mean late December.

    • VJ says:

      @Lou, I think what we were waiting for at that time was a 4x winner. The “curse” at that time was the 4th game. I’m looking at the list of 3x champs after the 2015 ToC and up til Fred Vaughn. they were Kyle Webb, Amelia Hershberger, Steve Belding, Alex Maggio and Joyce Hshieh (between 12/1/15 and 1/22/16).

      Even if I missed one, that’s some string waiting for a 4x champ. Kyle Webb lost to Fred Vaughn on 1/22/16. Fred won his 4th game on 1/27/16.

      Those 3x champs are not in the Top 15 anymore but links to their last games are still on the current ToC list.

  5. Dalton Higbee says:

    A leader going into FJ! today missed the clue today makes me SO ANGRY!!!!!

  6. Kaye says:

    Where did Rwanda come from??? I do not think it has been abandoned at all.

  7. jacob ska says:

    A weird coincidence that Congressman John Lewis was one of the clues tonight. I bet the clue writers did not anticipate he would be big news the day the show aired for locking horns with Trump. 🙁 Not surprised that clue was a ts. I didn’t know it either even though he is in the news. Shame on me. Brain freeze!

  8. TR says:

    Rwanda?!?! See why I stay away from 3/3 predictions? Of course, the leader curse continues, so my other prediction failed.

  9. VJ says:

    Mighty unexpected ending to that match! John sure lucked out in the end. I could not believe that he risked his lead like that.

    LINK: 10 more clues from the match