Monday, February 3, 2014

Television Corner: "Alex, I’ll take Classic Episodes for $400"

Jeopardy! Host Alex Trebek wearing a deerstalker cap, as a clue
to a Daily Double question on Sherlock Holmes (from 1987).
Now that the “big game” is over, here’s another “big game” that is one of America’s favorite quiz shows. Merv Griffin (1925-2007) launched his third incarnation of Jeopardy! in 1984, with Alex Trebek as host.

We've seen various contestants over the years, we've seen the hilarious Saturday Night Live skits (featuring Will Ferrell as Trebek- with “nemesis” celebrity contestant Sean Connery, portrayed by Darrell Hammond), and the technological transformations to the show over the years. Several contestants from the Walkersville area (where this blog originates from) have appeared on the program.

To commemorate the show’s thirtieth anniversary in syndication, Sony’s Crackle streaming video service has select episodes (under the title “Jeopardy! Flashback”, from 1985-1993). You’ll see the practical and unusual constellation prizes for second and third-place contestants, Trebek’s semi-testy reaction to contestants’ incorrect responses for questions related to his homeland of Canada, and one episode’s Daily Double clue in relation with another popular Merv Griffin game show.

This is in honor of the current edition of Jeopardy! for the week, “Battle of the Decades: 1980’s”. Top contestants from the decade will reunite for the chance to play again (including current director of the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Richard Cordray- who was a five-time champion on the show in 1987).

So sit back, relax, and relive some classic moments from Jeopardy!  (through Crackle).

FUN FACT: The original NBC version, which ran from 1964 to 1975, (including a brief Metromedia-syndicated run) and again from 1978-79, was hosted by Art Fleming.

YET ANOTHER FUN FACT: Around the same time as the 1984 revival of Jeopardy!, the show's syndicator- King World, acquired the broadcast rights to the classic Basil Rathbone/Nigel Bruce Sherlock Holmes features (in relation to the picture on this post).

ON ANOTHER NOTE: Speaking of Sony, they have launched a new classic movie network titled getTV- which will showcase classic Columbia features. According to TV News Check, it is being carried on the adjacent channel of Univision-owned affiliates from coast-to-coast (broadcast in English). No word if the channel will be carried on cable soon (in the Washington area, getTV will be on the third subchannel of Univision’s WFDC-TV).

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