‘Jeopardy!’ producers explain clue relating to Russia and Ukraine


Fans of Jeopardy! were surprised on Friday when the long-running game show used a clue about Ukraine in the Double Jeopardy! category,“Bordering Russia”. However, the team behind the series has already issued an explanation in an effort to get ahead of any potential controversy.

“The Kerch Strait — along with serious border issues — separates Russia from this country on the Black Sea” was the clue offered by host Ken Jennings, to which contestant Adrian Alcalá correctly responded by asking, “What is Ukraine?”.

As you can imagine, viewers were left feeling perplexed as to why Jeopardy! had incorporated such a clue given current events, but as you can see below, the show’s Twitter account noted before it hit the airwaves that the episode was originally shot back in January.

The border between the countries is at the center of Russian president Vladimir Putin’s invasion, which has prompted international outrage and a humanitarian crisis since military action commenced on February 24.

While it seemed like it may have been in poor taste for producers to include a question about Russia and Ukraine in light of world events, the truth is that the show was taped six weeks before it aired. A graphic reading, “Recorded on January 11, 2022,” was overlaid in the upper left-hand corner of the screen, but a lot of people will nonetheless be wondering why it wasn’t edited out of the broadcast altogether.

The Hollywood Reporter, in its account of the episode, tried in vain to get comments from the producers. That story did note, however, that even though contestant Margaret Shelton wasn’t up on her Russian and Ukrainian geography, getting the answer wrong, that didn’t slow her from notching her fourth straight win and extending her run as champion.