Jeopardy clarifies its rules after fans find contestant's answer style annoying

·3 min read

Long-running quiz show Jeopardy is clarifying its rules after questions surfaced around current champion Matt Amodio's style of answering.

On Monday, the Jeopardy Twitter account stepped in to tweet "What's up with Matt Amodio? A lot of 'what's' in his response — and that's totally acceptable!" alongside a link to its rules after viewers got mad about Amodio answering each of his questions with "what is," even when the answer involved a person not an object.

Fans of the beloved show know that on Jeopardy contestants are required to answer clues in the form of a question, so Amodio wasn't breaking any rules, but some purists out there were perturbed by his lack of variation.

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An explanation of the show's official rules, posted on the website, reads: "Over the many years that Jeopardy has been on the air, we've experienced some rare scenarios that require us to refer back to the official rules of the game.

"Streaking champ Matt Amodio has received a lot of attention lately for his unorthodox use of 'What's...?' as a template for all responses — be they animal, vegetable or mineral. Viewers and grammar police alike have a lot of questions about what's acceptable. We've got some answers."

Jeopardy Productions, Inc. Matt Amodio on 'Jeopardy'

The rules go on to explain that "all contestant responses to an answer must be phrased in the form of a question," but there aren't any grammar specificities. Adding, "Jeopardy doesn't require that the response is grammatically correct," continues the statement. "Further, the three-letter name of a British Invasion rock band can be a correct response all by itself ('The Who?'), and even 'Is it...?' has been accepted. So, Matt Amodio's no-frills approach is unique but well [within] guidelines."

Responding to the Jeopardy tweet, Amodio wrote: "Diehard #jeopardy fans like me carry a copy of the official rules at all times, anyway."

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The winner previously told EW about the controversy that he didn't "necessarily want to say too much about." Adding, "I guess I just want to say that I hope nobody's offended by it."

"I do hear some people say that it's disrespectful to the game, and I would counter that if there was a Jeopardy fan club ranking, I think I would have a strong case to be No. 1 Jeopardy fan," he continued. "I live and breathe the show, I love every aspect of it, and so I'm definitely not doing it out of any disrespect or undermining of the show."

Amodio's answering style hasn't hindered his game. He firmly claimed a space in the show's history during LeVar Burton's hosting debut after just seven games, winning a total of $268,800 and earning him a place in the top 10 highest-winning champions ever.

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