The first two contestants of the season are both female- Stacie Knock from Springfield, IL and Tenny Avenezian.
Here’s how this game works: To begin, letters in a question and the answer are randomly put on the board. The first one to ring in and say the correct question and answer gets control of the game. On each turn, the player stops a randomizer. Then, a series of letters are shown and a clue is given. One letter in the jumble is a dud. If the player can solve it, he/she gets one point for every time that extra letter appears in the puzzle. Solving a puzzle is worth five points. Point values double in Round 2 and the player with the highest score at the end of two rounds wins and gets their points translated to seconds for the endgame.
Tenny got control by solving NEW YORK WAS ONCE NAMED WHAT? NEW AMSTERDAM. In the first round, the answer to each question is already given. Here’s the first puzzle:
_ _ _ _/_ _ _/_ _ _/_ _ _ _/_ _/_ _ _/_ _ _ _/_ _ _ _ _ _’ _/_ _ _ _ _?
The answer is silver. Let’s start the jumbles.
1. (HILOI2EVBOERASLLY9R)- Maroon 5 was first seen playing at the Peach Pit on what Aaron Spelling TV series? Avenezian said BEVERLY HILLS 90210, which earned her three points and put three A’s into the question, since A was the extra letter.
2. (ESTEEPLH)- What name is given to the tower that forms the super structure of a church? Knock said STEEPLE for four H’s and four points.
3. (POYEHCBASLEEAT)- What group that sings “My Humps” shares its name with a group of edible beans? Avenezian said BLACK EYED PEAS for three T’s and three points, which brought her score to 7.
4. (NSPENYWOIALC)- In 2007, who became the first female Speaker of the House? Knock had….no guess. The answer was NANCY PELOSI, so two W’s are put in, but no points are awarded.
5. (ORAAOMB)- What robotic vaccum cleaner has really cleaned up in terms of sales? Avenezian said ROOMA thanks to having memories using it with her sister! She’s up to 10 points as four A’s are added.
6. (OTFFICHEEE)- If you work at the paper supply company, Dumner-Mifflin Inc., what TV comedy on NBC are you on? Knock has “The Office” to add six E’s to the puzzle and tie the score at 10 apiece. At this point, here’s the board:
WHAT/WAS/THE/_ A _ E/_ _/THE/_ _ _ E/RA_ _ ER’ _/H _ R _ E?
I was able to solve this now. Avenezian did so after knowing about Martin Scorsese with WHAT WAS THE NAME OF THE LONE RANGER’S HORSE?- and she now had 19 to the other’s 13.
The next main question answer was barbers, and here’s the board:
_ _ _ _/_ _ _ _/_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _/_ _ _ _/_ _ _ _/_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _/_ _ _ _/_ _ _?
After Avenezian knew about Bluetooth, here’s the board now:
_ _ A _/_ A _ _/S _ _ _ _ S _ S/_ E _ E/A _ S O/S _ _ G E O N S/_ O N G/AGO?
I wasn’t sure about the first few words. She led 30-24 at this point as Knock got the next question.
(IENYNDOYRRAW)- 60s guru Timothy Leary was the godfather of what actress that picked up a few things at Sach’s? She said Winona Ryder, but that was only good for a point and another Y. (NNUROFBYNE)- What humorous-sounding nerve runs across your humors? Avenezian said FUNNY BONE…correct for three R’s and a new total of 33. All I don’t know now is the third word.
(EEBNARELITITNSI)- What 20th century physicist developed the “Theory of Relativity”? Knock said Albert Einstein for two I’s and a new total of 27.
(RDYRRTROB)- Charlie Brown celebrated what minor nature holiday in 1976? A blank was drawn- it was Arbor Day, so with two T’s going in, you should’ve known what the main question was now.
(BULTET)- What Montana city was the birthplace of Evel Knievel? Knock drew a blank- it was Butte.
(IIBKNUI)- What two-piece bathing suit was named for an atomic bomb testing site? Avenezian got bikini, and then WHAT HAIR STYLISTS WERE ALSO SURGEONS LONG AGO to go to 39!
The next big answer was Batman, and here’s the board:
_ _ _/_ _ _ _ _/_ _/_ _ _ _ _/_ _ _ _ _?
After Avenezian knew about the pitchfork, here’s the board now:
WHO/L I _ _ _/IN/W A Y N _/_ A N O _?
I think I knew this, but I wasn’t sure. She led 47-29 over Knock.
(ALCAHRERMYR)- In the thirty minutes you’re waiting for the pizza guy, what CBS TV cook could make her own meal? Knock said Rachel Ray to add the M for the final word of the puzzle and reach the thirty-point mark. Two turns later, after knowing about Methane, she said WHO LIVED IN WAYNE MANOR…wrong. It was WHO LIVES IN WAYNE MANOR, but after the other lady missed her question, she got a chance to redeem herself on this final question of the round…
(SRRWREGVN)- Understated bridal gowns are the perfect marriage of style to madernity for what designer to the stars? Knock said…NOTHING! It was Vera Wang, so nobody was able to solve the final puzzle of the round. Avenezian still led 49 to 31.
In Round 2, instead of alternating between both players for every question, the player who gets the first question right can keep getting answering questions until he/she misses one. However, the answer to each of the big questions are now hidden. Also, all point values are doubled, but no points are awarded for any letters that appear in the answer. Here’s the first board of the round:
_ _ _ _/’_ _ _ _ _ _ _/_ _ _ _’/_ _/_ _ _ _/_ _/_ _ _/_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _?- _ _ _ _
After Knock got stumped on Kentucky Fried Chicken, here’s the board now:
_ _ A T/’E T E _ N A _/_ _ T _’/_ _/_ O _ E/TO/T _ E/_ O _ O _ _ E _ _?- _ O _ E
Avenezian, despite not getting anything at this point, still led 49-41.
(IMITE)- What magazine is known for naming its “Person of the Year”? She got TIME to place two I’s into the big question and go to 53.
(TTASINALN)- What legendary island is now sleeping with the fishes? She had nothing- it was Atlantis, so control shifted to Knock and an N was added to the mix. All I thought I was stumped on now was just the final word of the big question and the answer to it.
(ACIPEDEAME)- What’s the Latin phrase for “seize the day”? She got “carpe diem” to place two C’s into the puzzle and reach 45. Now, only the answer eluded me.
(TMTYBE)- What woman’s name is found in the name of an ABC sitcom that starts with “Ugly”? She got Betty to put in two M’s into the main question, go to 49 and make the third letter of the answer that letter. I now knew what the puzzle was at this point.
However, Knock missed her next question, allowing Avenezian to get the next two questions right, and she was then able to solve WHAT ‘ETERNAL CITY’ IS HOME TO THE COLOSSEUM?- ROME. That took her to 69 points. Before the time’s up signal sounded, Knock had closed the score to 69-65. This question was for the game. At this point, the remaining letters were put in, and whoever buzzed in with the right solution won the game. Board:
_ _ A T/_ A K E S/A/_ _ _ T E/_ _ S S _ A _/_ _ _ T E?- _ _ E A _
Avenezian said WHAT MAKES A WHITE RUSSIAN WHITE?- CREAM…WINNER!
(BTW, when the winner was announced, the contestant’s first name was shown on the set’s top reader board. Cool!)
Here’s how the endgame works. In the first part, the player had their points translated to seconds (as I said earlier), and had that much time to answer as many questions as possible.
Unlike the main game, the extra letter of each jumble is only added to the question if the player gives a correct answer. The player isn’t able to place any letters into the answer of the puzzle at this point.
After the 79 seconds, the answer has two words. The first word had six letters and the other one had four letters. Here’s the question:
_ _ _/B I _ P I _/”_ A L K/_ _ _/L I N _”/_ A _/A B _ U _/_ _ _ _?
If she said THE BIOPIC “WALK THE LINE” WAS ABOUT WHOM?, and then JOHNNY CASH, she’s won $5,000. If not, she left with $500. Did she get it?…YES, but just barely! She started the right question just as the buzzer sounded, and she was allowed to finish it!
(“$5000” appeared on the top reader board at this point.)