This season of Celebrity Jeopardy! has been a pinnacle of endless critique for Jeopardy! fans. From the change in format to Mayim Bialik’s hosting to controversial celebrity guests, the internet has been abuzz about the show all season. However, fans are declaring that the show crossed a line with a recent clue.
Fans Declare ‘Too Soon’ For Controversial Clue
On Sunday, Celebrity Jeopardy! returned with yet another star-studded episode. However, after the show, fans weren’t chatting about Wil Wheaton’s surprising trivia prowess. Instead, they were up in arms over a controversial clue that the show decided to use despite its obviously sensitive nature.
A $200 clue on Sunday’s first board read, “In 2021 fugitive Brian Laundrie ended his days in Fla.’s Myakkahatchee Creek area, home to these long & toothy critters.” Of course, the answer was, “What are alligators?”
Fans were understandably shocked by the clue. Brian Laundrie became a nationally recognized name last year after he returned home from a cross-country road trip without his girlfriend Gabby Petito. What followed was a national search for Petito which unfortunately ended with authorities finding her remains in a national park in October of 2021.
Laundrie was immediately considered the prime suspect in her murder given the suspicious circumstances of his return. Laundrie took his own life by a self-inflicted gunshot in November of last year.
Brian Laundrie’s Family Responds
So, what part of that tragedy was so important to a clue about alligators? Was there no better way to reference the common reptile? Given the tone of the popular game show, it just didn’t feel like the right time or place to remind anyone of Petito and Laundrie’s deaths.
Fans flamed the choice online, insisting there was no justification for the tasteless clue. It was a bitter note to leave the show on, as Celebrity Jeopardy! won’t resume until the new year.
The inappropriate clue wasn’t missed by Laundrie’s family, either. Speaking to TMZ, the family’s lawyer cast shame on the show’s decision. “The entire Laundrie family is appalled and concurs with all of the comments on social media on how distasteful this was. I believe an apology is due,” attorney Steven Bertolino stated.
Celebrity Jeopardy! hasn’t responded to the criticism, and it seems unlikely that it will. All we can hope is that the show’s clue writers learned their lesson and they’ll tread more carefully around these sensitive topics in the future. The third round of Celebrity Jeopardy! commences on January 5, 2023.