The long-running successful game show Jeopardy!, in which three contestants battle it out over trivia in order to be crowned the winner and take home the money, might start offering an extra cash incentive for one reason.
In a new episode of the behind-the-scenes podcast, Inside Jeopardy!, executive producer Michael Davies proposed a rule change that would give contests that “run a category” an extra prize.
To run a category is when a Jeopardy! contestant correctly answers all the clues in one column on the board, a feat rarely managed.
In the podcast episode “What is The Debut of Season 39?,” Davies spoke with fellow producer Sarah Foss and past Jeopardy! winner and guest host Buzzy Cohen about the idea.
He said, “I’ve been thinking about trying out, perhaps in one of our other tournament weeks this season, experimenting with giving out a cash bonus for contestants who run a category.”
“It’s a moment in the studio; it’s a great thing,” Davies continued.
Cohen referenced a Twitter discussion about the proposed rules and questioned if the cash prize would be tacked onto the contestants’ average total.
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Davies said “no” and that it would be a “separate bonus.”
The executive producer argued another reason it might be a good idea: “It might also give incentive to people who are trailing to try and go into a category and get something from the game beyond their second or third place prize.”
This idea isn’t new, as this rule was in place early on in the show.
Many fans debated the idea on Twitter, with a common opinion that the prize amount needs to be separate from the regular score.
One fan said, “I think it would work really well if it was, say, a sponsored prize from a show partner—and it was something that didn’t affect the actual outcome of the game itself.”
No official announcement regarding the proposed rule change has been made as of yet, but it would be something that would shift contestants’ strategies if put in place.