Ken Jennings hugs a fellow contestant on the set of Jeopardy!

It’s a well known fact that Jeopardy! fans have one thing they hate more than anything else: factual inaccuracies. There’s nothing that drives fans of the trivia game show crazier than their favorite program getting the facts wrong, not even overly expressive contestants or contestants they’ve deemed sore losers. When a contestant gave an incorrect answer to the clue but still walked away that day’s champion, fans soon took to social media to decry the result. 

An Incorrect Answers Still Leads To Big Win

Good Morning America co-host ​​George Stephanopoulos was hosting Jeopardy! and read out a clue that has fans up in arms after a recent episode. The question, which came from the “Time for Science,” made it through the writers’ room, but fans at home have found a mistake after taking a closer look at it. 

Stephanopoulos read the clue, “Percival Lowell thought he saw these on the surface of Venus — some think it was a reflection of the blood vessels in his eye.” Tyler Vandenberg, a Marine from the Washington D.C. area, and defending champion, was first on the buzzer and called out, “What are canals?” He was told the answer was correct and was awarded $1,600 as a result, which helped him go on to a second win. 

Unfortunately, the usually impeccably researched game show got this clue all wrong. Lowell, according to most history books, is actually famous for discovering and writing about canals on Mars, not Venus. Twitter users went on to point out that Lowell described what he saw on Venus as “spokes,” which he is widely believed to have mistaken for his eye. The clue was technically correct, but the writers had the wrong answer in place, something that fans rushed to note on Twitter. 

No Hate For The Contestant, But A Call Out For ‘Jeopardy!’ Researchers

Happily, no one seemed to blame Vandenberg specifically for the mistakenly correct answer. Rather, most fans understood that it was the show itself that got the planets swapped around in the answer. That didn’t stop the sometimes humorous responses to the flub from pouring in. 

Recently, the show came under fire after using outdated and offensive medical terminology as a clue, which resulted in some viewers calling out the writers. An apology was issued via Jeopardy!’s Twitter page for inadvertently causing offense and hurt by using the outdated term. The show has yet to respond to this latest flub, but since no one was a victim, except perhaps Percival Lowell, there might not be a need for either an apology or acknowledgement. When a show has as many episodes as Jeopardy! does, it’s pretty much a given that there will be a mistake or two. 

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