Final Jeopardy: African Animals

The Final Jeopardy question (12/31/2015) in the category “African Animals” was:

This antelope has 2 names, one from Afrikaans describing its looks & one imitating its sound; one is all we need.

New champ Johnny Saunders won $13,000 yesterday. Today he takes on these two players: Ashley Wilson, from Alexandria, VA; and Sandro Marchegiani, from Windber, PA.

Alex opened up the game with an explanation of how Ashley was disadvantaged by the wording in Tuesday’s FJ (Famous Last Names) for anyone who didn’t already know about that situation

Round 1: Ashley found the Jeopardy! round Daily Double in “Also Part of a Book” under the $600 clue on the 8th pick of the round. She was in the lead with $2,000, $400 ahead of Sandro in second place. She made it a true Daily Double and she was RIGHT.

Obligatory as in a contract. show

Ashley finished in the lead with $6,400. Johnny was second with $3,200 and Sandro was last with $2,600.

Round 2: Sandro found the first Daily Double in “1940s Fiction” under the $800 clue on the very first pick of the round. Everybody had the same as above. He bet his whole $2,600 and he was RIGHT.

The discovery of a dead rat starts this 1947 Albert Camus novel; more would follow. show

Ashley found the last Daily Double in “Coinage” under the $1,600 clue. In the lead with $12,400, she had $1,600 more than Sandro in second place. She bet $3,000 and she was RIGHT.

This country’s $1 coin seen here carries the image of its national bird; Queen Elizabeth is on the obverse. 


Ashley finished in the lead with $20,600. Sandro was next with $10,800 and Johnny was in third place with $9,200.

Only ONE of the contestants got Final Jeopardy! right.


“The species that forms the large herds of the Serengetis-Mara ecosystem of Tanzania and Kenya is variously known as the brindled, blue- or white-bearded gnu. Scientists do, however, make a distinction and list the blue as a separate race restricted to southern Tanzania.” Out to Africa: Wildebeest

Johnny had no response. He bet and lost it all.

Sandro thought it was a kudu. He lost $9,801, leaving him with $999.

Ashley got it right. Her $1,001 bet brought her up to $21,601, the winning total for the last match of the year. So when we return next year — uh, tomorrow — Ashley Wilson will be playing her third match as the champ.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! It’s been quite a year of Jeopardy! ups and downs. We had a bleak outlook for the ToC for quite a while, but that eventually turned into quite an event with Matt Jackson, Kerry Greene and Alex Jacob. So while we end the year with no 4x champ as yet, remember there’s always hope! I would like to personally express my heartfelt thanks to all our readers and commenters. I really enjoy and appreciate all your visits and hope each and every one of you has a great New Year’s Eve and a wonderful 2016. ~ VJ

2 years ago:TWO of the players got this FJ in “Actors”

In the 50s he won a Tony for Best Supporting Actor in a musical & a Best Actor Oscar for playing the same role, a monarch. show

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7 Responses

  1. EricS says:

    Most importantly, thank you VJ for your dedication and tolerance this year.

  2. Bruce Keith says:

    In all the years of jeopardy I have never seen a result over turned especially with such a lame explanation. Someone liked Ashley. I liked Johnny lets find a way to bring him back. Loyal follower of jeopardy for a long long time. You lost me on this one. Hope no hanky panky shows up ten years from now. Other than this decision I’ve never really considered quitting Jeopardy. Thanks

    • Joann says:

      I agree Bruce, it was really a lame reason to bring her back, no wonder she was so freakin happy!

    • EricS says:

      I’m sorry that I can’t tell you when (between 10-15 years ago) but it has happened before. I hadn’t seen the contested episode, but I do remember them bringing someone back due to a FJ ruling. I can not attest to the lameness of the ruling then, but to me, this doesn’t seem anymore tilted than Jennings’ credited response of “…Jones”.

    • Tom Clark says:

      It wasn’t lame at all. What most likely happened was she thought, “Hmn, I don’t know the woman’s name, but I know it can’t be Collins, because he didn’t land. So of the other two, I’d guess Aldrin. If the clue referred to the whole crew, I’d guess Collins, since that’s the most common of the three names, but since the clue clearly says ‘landing,’ it can’t be that, so ………………..”

      I’m not saying that’s exactly what happened, but that might be what she claimed, so they were absolutely right to have her return.

  3. VJ says:

    I love Sandro’s name. I know it’s a short form of Alessandro, but just that part sounds like a magician’s name, like Sandro the Magnificent.

    It sure looked like Sandro was going to overtake Ashley in the second round, but Ashley got down to serious business right after he got within $400 of her lead. And I thought he would get FJ for sure when he mentioned living and working in South Africa and Botswana during the chat!!