Decisive, divisive Vermont champ Jake DeArruda goes down to defeat on 'Jeopardy!'
The former Ludlow resident who introduces himself on Twitter as “Vermont's favorite least favorite Jeopardy! contestant” lost on the TV quiz show Wednesday following three decisive and divisive victories.
Jake DeArruda, a 2017 graduate of Black River High School in Ludlow who now lives in Massachusetts, lost Wednesday to challenger Patti Palmer of Oklahoma. He led going into Final Jeopardy, but Palmer was the only one of the three contestants to give the correct response in the literature category.
The answer was, “Published in 2011, P.D. James’ final novel, ‘Death Comes to Pemberley,’ was a sequel to this novel from 200 years earlier.” Palmer, a bookseller and retired teacher from Tulsa, gave the correct response, “What is ‘Pride and Prejudice?” Based on her wager she was able to overtake DeArruda and win the game.
DeArruda had written in his blog about “Jeopardy!” prior to his first appearance Friday that he hoped to win at least four games, which would likely clinch a spot in the game show’s annual Tournament of Champions. Though he fell short of four wins by one game, he did earn about $70,000 in his three victories and one defeat.
Most annoying Jeopardy! contestant ever
He didn’t exactly win in the public eye, however. A headline Wednesday on the website TV Insider reads “‘Jeopardy!’ Fans Call Jake DeArruda ‘Most Annoying Contestant Ever.’” Successful players on the show usually show little emotion when they respond correctly or win games, but the intense DeArruda marked his successes with fist pumps and other celebratory gestures.
A Twitter user named Patti LaHue, cited in the TV Insider article, posted “Is it just me or does anyone else think Jake is the most annoying contestant ever?” Twitter user Lorne Murphy responded “I won’t be able to watch him much longer. I’m normally pretty tolerant of the quirkier champs, but OMG this guy. Ugh.”
Others came to DeArruda’s defense. On his Twitter account, DeArruda retweeted a comment from ESPN sports reporter Sarah Spain that begins, “Jake might be the coolest person ever to be on Jeopardy.”
DeArruda responded to the criticism on Twitter by posting a photo of himself in a shower being doused with champagne, accompanied by text reading “Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to drown out the haters.” His Twitter handle reads @threearruda, an apparent reference to his number of “Jeopardy!” victories.
The blog on his website, in which he meticulously detailed his preparations for the game show, was down for maintenance following Wednesday’s loss. On Thursday, a visit to his website revealed a page saying, “A New WordPress Site Coming Soon!”
Contact Brent Hallenbeck at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Brent on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BrentHallenbeck.
This article originally appeared on Burlington Free Press: 'Jeopardy' champ Jake DeArruda of Vermont goes down to defeat