Jeopardy! Contestant Speaks On What’s Being Called The Biggest Blunder In The Show’s History

Jeopardy! contestant Karen Miller speaks out after needlessly losing $10,000 on the Daily Double.

By Douglas Helm | Published


Jeopardy! is a game show that has a lot of pressure, with a ticking clock and other smart contestants trying to outpace you to give an answer. This pressure inevitably leads to some massive mistakes, which Karen Miller experienced when she appeared on a Ken Jennings-hosted episode of the popular trivia game show earlier this week. Miller basically had the win in the bag, and she bet $10,000 on a Daily Double wager instead of playing it safe (via The Sun).

This blunder is being called one of the biggest in the show’s history, as Miller had a whopping $21,800 against her opponents’ $7,100 and $6,400 respectively. She could have just waited the game out, bet $0 in Final Jeopardy, and walked away with the win. Instead, she made the massive $10,000 bet on the question “This artist the younger was working on yet another portrait of Henry VIII when he died in 1543,” under the category “Hans, Solo,” to which Miller did not know the answer.

She also did not know the answer to the Final Jeopardy question, costing her the win. Fortunately, Miller seems to be in good spirits following the mistake, and she took to Twitter to post about the episode and explain her thought process. The good-humored thread helped give fans an inside look into how these mistakes sometimes happen.

The first thing Miller did was introduce the thread by mentioning how she would look up Cliff Clavin, which is something everyone was referencing when talking about her performance. Of course, this is referring to the Cheers episode where Cliff Clavin lost all of his winnings on a Final Jeopardy gamble. It’s certainly an apt comparison.

Next, Miller talked about the typical process of wagering on a Jeopardy Daily Double. Since you don’t know what the question will be, you want to bet on your knowledge in whatever category the question is in. Miller admitted that she certainly did not have much knowledge in the category, which essentially amounted to famous people named Hans.

Miller had previously correctly answered a question about composer Hans Zimmer, but she admits that she only really knew the answer because it was the only composer she could think of with the name Hans. Miller then went on to explain why she didn’t try to answer the question at all since it’s best to try to give an answer on Jeopardy! rather than stay silent. She mentioned how when she asked her sister to name an artist named Hans after the show, her sister came up with the answer Hans Picasso.

Hilariously, Miller says how her sister’s answer was actually much better than what she would have offered, as she admits the only artist she could think of at the time was Justin Bieber. Obviously, this would have been wrong. So, the pressure of Jeopardy! got to her and she decided to say nothing at all rather than something so off base.

Miller wrapped up her thoughts on her Jeopardy! experience by saying that she was just trying to have fun and that she wasn’t really thinking overly strategically when she made the bet. Overall, Miller handled the blunder with humor and grace. It’s not every day you can make a big mistake on a game show, but it’s probably safe to say that not many people criticizing her could do much better.