Sam Buttrey on Jeopardy! | YouTube

‘Jeopardy!’ Fans Angry After Controversial Biblical Question

Game Shows, Jeopardy!, News

This week, the Tournament of Champions continued on Jeopardy! However, one episode caused quite a controversy among fans. The question was biblical in nature, and many people dispute the answer. It ended up costing Sam Buttrey the win, and fans want something done about it.

Here is a look at the question, and why it was so controversial.

Jeopardy! question costs Sam Buttrey the win

Sam Buttrey on Jeopardy! | YouTube

This week, Andrew moved on to Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions with his second win. However, it was Sam Buttrey that fans are concerned about. He ended up losing thanks to missing a question that viewers said was not technically wrong. The question came from the Bible and scholars disputed the answer even before the clue appeared on the game show.

Heading into Final Jeopardy!, Sam led with $14,800. He had $13,200 and Amy Schneider had $2,400. The clue was under the category “New Testament.” The clue was, “Paul’s letter to them is the New Testament epistle with the most Old Testament quotations.” Amy answered, “Who are The Hebrews,” which was the correct answer. Sam answered, “Who are The Romans,” which was considered wrong. Andrew answered, “Who are the Philippiaes,” which was also wrong.

However, when the moment arrived, many fans were not happy. On a Jeopardy! fan site, some mentioned that there are conflicting sources for the answer. One person said there are conflicting sources about which book – Romans or Hebrews – has more quotations. “Secondly, there’s the more pressing question of authorship—specifically of Hebrews,” they wrote. St. Paul wrote Romans. However, while the LDS church (of which Ken Jennings is a member) says Paul wrote Hebrews, that is disputed.

Whatever the truth is, fans are not happy that a question with a disputed answer would ever appear on Jeopardy!

Sam Buttrey on Jeopardy! | YouTube

What could Jeopardy! do after this question?

There seems to be little Jeopardy! can do after a controversy like this. In the past, the show invited certain people back for second chances in future tournaments, but that wouldn’t help Sam. The show could try to course correct during the tournament and have him return, but that is also not likely.

Jeopardy! could avoid the entire situation by ensuring that the questions asked are always non-disputable. If there is even a slight chance that an answer could be wrong, it shouldn’t exist on a show like this. As one commenter on the fan site wrote, “It’s been awhile since we’ve had a FJ this egregiously misleading or outright wrong,” wrote another user. “It’s sad to see a tournament affected by something like this.”

What are your thoughts on this Jeopardy! question? Should the show have even included such a controversial question in the lineup? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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  1. the error should be corrected and Sam gets the win not Amy. They have always corrected wrong answers given by contestants. There is no proof Paul wrote Hebrews.

  2. There should never be a question about any answer on jeopardy! The answer should always be the ONLY answer to the question! On this show there can only be one indisputable answer!’

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