I auditioned for Jeopardy in November of last year, and still haven't heard back. Right now, I'm hoping it's just because they haven't even begun taping the next season yet, and the friendly audition folks did say I could expect to hear back any time over the next 12 months. That said, it may not have been the best audition.

To get to the audition stage, you have to pass the online test first. The widely-rumored [among people on the Internet who seem to care way too much about this sort of thing] threshold is 35 questions right. But getting 48 questions out of 50 is no guarantee you'll get to do an in-person audition. From there, you're selected randomly. Then, you do an in-person test [which I did fine on], and then a mock game.

I came in having read only a little about the whole process, because I am not one of those sad people who have auditioned 20 times and never gotten on [and there are internet communities for these people. They are some of the most tragicomic things on the web. Guys wistfully talk about audition 18 and whatever little thing they did that meant they wouldn't get on the show, without ever considering that they're just really, really fucking weird. Even sadder are the people who have taken the test 20 times and never passed.] What I didn't realize was that the mock game isn't even remotely like a real game. You buzz in, the coordinators see who is trying to buzz, and then pick someone to give an answer, to see how they would be on television. This offended my deep sense of justice, in that I buzzed in first, goddamn it, so let me answer the question, shit fuck shit. This may have harmed my audition.

Advertisement

After a few categories, they have you take a seat and bring up 3 new people. One thing I noticed fairly quickly was that I was, by far, the youngest guy there. It was mostly a meeting of retirees who had nothing to do, rather than college kids who had nothing to do. The guy sitting next to me was a retired lawyer who groused about not knowing "any of that pop culture nonsense." Also, the local news was there to cover the thrilling Jeopardy auditions. I was interviewed [probably because of the fact that I'm young and relatively normal looking], but the only footage of me that aired was of me cockily twitching my head while preparing to answer a question. Don't do that. It looks silly.

Anyway, this is a fairly comprehensive walkthrough of how to badly audition for Jeopardy. I'll take questions in the comments.