Jeopardy! is an American game show created by Merv Griffin. The show is a quiz competition that reverses the traditional question-and-answer format of many quiz shows. Rather than being given questions, contestants are instead given general knowledge clues in the form of answers and they must identify the person, place, thing, or idea that the clue describes, phrasing each response in the form of a question.

“Jeopardy!” has been around in its current format since 1984, with the same host and the same familiar style of gameplay. But its history goes back to the 1960s—it premiered in 1964 and was created by the game show king of that era, Merv Griffin. 

“Jeopardy” is consistently one of the highest-rated shows in syndication across the country. Airing every weeknight on local affiliate networks, the show has gained a cult-like following among trivia buffs and game show fans. The theme song is instantly recognizable and has been used in a wide variety of media from comedy sketches to major motion pictures.

In the 1950s there was growing frustration from the public with quiz shows. Scandals were erupting, and producers were being accused of providing answers to contestants and rigging the results. “Jeopardy!” was an answer to this frustration, attempting to provide a departure from traditional quiz shows by asking contestants to give their answers in the form of a question. The show caught on and enjoyed a successful daytime run from 1964 to 1975.

The original “Jeopardy!” game show was hosted by Art Flemming and aired on NBC. After 11 years on the air, the show was canceled. “Jeopardy!” enjoyed a brief, one-season revival in 1978 and was once again canceled because of poor ratings.

“Jeopardy!” pits three contestants against one another in every episode. Two of these contestants are new, while the third is the returning champion from the previous game. Returning champions can play the game for as long as they keep on winning. The first two rounds of the game allow contestants to answer clues and rack up some money, while the final round in a winner-takes-all, one-question battle. 

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