Final Jeopardy: Publishing

The Final Jeopardy question (12/21/2015) in the category “Publishing” was:

In 1927 the publishers of the Modern Library widened its scope and took this name, meant as a joke about how it would select titles.

Today’s players are Shoshana Gordon Ginsburg from Washington, D.C.; Jay O’Brien, from Waterford, NY; and Liz Quesnelle, from Pittsburg, PA.

Where’s the champ? After announcing that he just had a full knee replacement, Alex Trebek explained that current champ Claudia Corriere had a conflict with a job offer that she had to accept. He said she will be returning for her next game not long after the New Year.

Round 1: Liz found the Jeopardy! round Daily Double in “Our Bodies” under the $400 clue before the first break. She was the only one with any money, $2,600. Both Jay ($1,000) and Shoshana ($600) were in the hole. She bet $1,000 and she was RIGHT.

The first cervical vertebra is called this after a Greek god because it supports the head. show

Liz finished in the lead with $5,800. Shoshana was second with $4,000 and Jay was last with $3,000.

Round 2: Jay found the first Daily Double in “World War I” under the $1,200 clue. He was now in third place with $3,800, $8,800 less than Liz in the lead. He bet $3,200 and he was RIGHT.

The Zimmerman Note encouraged this nation to ally with Germany which promised to let it annex lost land in the U.S. show

Shoshana found the last Daily Double in “Colorful U.S. Cities” under the $2,000 clue. In second place with $6,000, she had $6,600 less than Liz in the lead. She bet $4,000 and she was RIGHT.

This Alabama college town’s name was inspired by a line from Oliver Goldsmith’s poem “The Deserted Village”. show

Liz finished in the lead with $15,000. Shoshana was next with $10,000 and Jay was in third place with $3,800.

ALL of the contestants got Final Jeopardy! right.


There is a timeline of the history of Penguin Random House on its website, showing how Bennet Cerf and Donald S. Klopfer, purchased the 109 volume Modern Library for $200K in 1925 and changed its name to Random House two years later. also has a lot of info on the company, including a 2002 speech by Henry Toledano. “Cerf and Klopfer decided that, as a sort of hobby, they would publish quality books they liked and at random. Thus Random House was born. The year was 1927.”

Jay bet $3,799 and finished with $7,599.

Shoshana’s $7,500 bet brought her up to $17,500.

Liz bet $5,001 and that gave her $20,001, today’s winning total. She will be returning tomorrow, presumably with her Jeopardy! nails still intact.

FJ Results: 12-21-15

Liz’s nails must have brought her luck today. If you can’t see them well in this image, click on it for a closer look. There’s even a little picture of Alex Trebek on one, done by hand. Liz tactfully told her host that he is far more handsome than the painting.

2 years ago: TWO of the players got this FJ in “Presidents & Films”

Jimmy Carter held 480 screenings at the White House; his first was this film set in 1970s Washington, D.C. show

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11 Responses

  1. Leena says:

    Random House!!! I was so confused in Spoiler Talk: CotD, but the second I saw it was RANDOM House, I totally understood. By the way, where’s Claudia (U no I no y :).

    • EricS says:

      If I confused you, I’m sorry. I really misread the clue to start.

      • VJ says:

        Yeah, LOL, when I first woke up, I saw that “pub.” abbreviation and was like huh? But then I read the category title. At the top of the recap, I spelled out “publishers” the way they showed it on the screen while the players were writing down their responses.

        • EricS says:

          That would have helped.
          When I would feel like simulating the game, I would look at the category and ponder for a minute before giving myself 22 seconds to solve.

    • SG says:

      Leena, Alex said at the beginning of the show that Claudia received a job offer that was way too good to turn down, so she had to leave. Alex did say they would bring her back at some point in the future.

  2. jacob ska says:

    VJ, it did not become Penguin Random House until the 2 companies merged in 2013. Prior to that it was just Random House and traded on the stock market under the R. H. name only. I don’t know why they have on their website that in 1927 it was Penguin Random House.