Final Jeopardy: Novels

Today’s Final Jeopardy question (5/4/2017) in the category “Novels” was:

In a Spanish translation of this novel, Chapter 1 begins, “Era el mejor de los tiempos, era el peor de los tiempos”

New champ Ragavan Ramsubramani won $20,401 yesterday. In his second game, he takes on these two players: Laura Spoelstra, from San Jose, CA; and Erin Wilson, from Baltimore, MD.

Round 1 Categories: A Marriage in Ruins – U.N. Abbrevs. – Classic Children’s Books – Movie & TV Title Characters – Latin Idioms – Spoken Word Grammy Awards

Ragavan found the Jeopardy! round Daily Double in “U.N. Abbrevs.” under the $800 clue on the 12th pick of the round. He was in the lead with $2,400, $600 more than Erin in second place. He made it a true Daily Double and he was RIGHT.

ICJ: meeting in the NLD, not NYC. show

Ragavan finished in the lead with $5,600. Laura was second with $4,600 and Erin was last with $3,800.

Round 2 Categories: Starts With an NBA Team Name – U.S. History – Homeland – The Metropolitan Opera – Electricity – Let There Be “Light”

Ragavan found the first Daily Double in “U.S. History” under the $800 clue on the 8th pick. He was in the lead with $8,000 now. Alex pointed out that the ladies, tied at $6,200, were trying to catch up. He decided to increase that $1,800 lead significantly with a $4,000 bet and he was RIGHT.

In his 1964 State of the Union address, Lyndon Johnson declared an “unconditional war on” this “in America” show

Laura found the last Daily Double in “NBA Team Name” under the $1,200 clue. 11 clues were left after it. In second place with $8,600, she had $2,600 less than Ragavan’s lead. She bet $2,000 but couldn’t come up with anything so she was WRONG.

This lucrative British lottery is also a 1960s James Bond movie title. show

Ragavan finished in the lead with $14,400. Erin was next with $10,600 and Laura was in third place with $9,400.

TWO of the contestants got Final Jeopardy! right.


A Tale of Two Cities has been translated into more languages than you can imagine– it has even been translated into urban slang. Here are some other translations of the opening line “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” besides the Spanish one given in the clue:

French: C’était le meilleur et le pire de tous les temps (Le Conte de deux cités)
Italian: Era il tempo migliore e il tempo peggiore (Racconto di due città)
German: Es war die beste Zeit, es war die schlechteste Zeit. (Eine Geschichte aus zwei Städten)
Yoofspeak: “It was da best of times and, not being funny or nuffing, but it was da worst of times, to be honest” (Da Tale of Two Turfs).

Laura picked Don Quixote. That cost her $5,001. She had $4,399 left.

Erin got it right. She bet it all and finished with $21,200.

Ragavan got it, too. His $6,801 bet brought him up to $21,201. He remains champ with a 2-day total of $41,602.

Final Jeopardy (5/4/2017) Ragavan Ramsubramani, Erin Wilson, Laura Spoelstra

A triple stumper from each round:

CLASSIC CHILDREN’S BOOKS ($600) This 1957 classic was written to see if its author “could rediscover something about Christmas” that he’d lost

STARTS WITH AN NBA TEAM NAME ($800) Thelonious Monk would have loved this musical workout created by Judi Sheppard Missett

2 years ago: NONE of the players got this FJ in “Mascots”

For the first time in almost 100 years, this pro team has an official mascot, a bear named Clark. show

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12 Responses

  1. Jose says:

    I didn’t watch the episode, so was there a further explanation on the “NBA Team Names” category? I’m confused because “Thunderball” is not an NBA team name. It contains an NBA team name, but “Thunderball” itself is not the name of an NBA team.

    • VJ says:

      Hi Jose, the full name of the category was “Starts with an NBA Team Name.” I just shortened it for the DD part because the whole name was already in the Round 2 category list.

  2. Tom Clark says:

    We all have our pet peeves, and I guess Number One on my list is illogic.

    Don Quixote, eh? Why would a novel written in Spanish need a Spanish translation?

    • VJ says:

      Hi Tom, how have you been? I guess she misunderstood the clue, that’s all. I missed a crucial word in a couple of clues today myself

      Anyway, the first line of Don Quixote will probably never show up in an FJ clue because it has “la Mancha” in it.

  3. Lou says:

    A tale of two cities. one of my favorite books. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Character is charles evermont or darnay who keeps trying to do the right thing and gets into trouble. He was tried in court for the crimes he committed against his family but was framed. Still a great book. This was in an episode of wishbone a pbs kids show. Do you remember it, vj?

    • VJ says:

      @Lou, nope, I don’t recall ever seeing that one. I did see Jekyll, Jekyll, Hyde on Arthur though :)

  4. VJ says:

    Props to Jacob on his prediction. omg! didn’t see that possibility!!

    Two more days left to go to the Galapagos with Alex. “You gotta be in it to win it” (an old slogan of the New Jersey lottery but a true one)

    Today’s secret word: WILDLIFE