‘Jeopardy!’ Takes Fans ‘Beyond the Clue’ for 90th Anniversary of New York City Landmark

by Will Shepard

Celebrate this New York Landmark’s 90th anniversary the Jeopardy! way. On May 7, the game show posted a clue for their fans to solve. They asked about a very famous building in New York City.

In particular, the game show wanted to know whether people could figure out what building is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. Jeopardy! said, “already the world’s tallest [building] in 1950 when it added a 220 foot TV tower.”

For architects and people who know the history of New York City buildings, it was a fairly obvious answer. People almost immediately figured out that the game show was referring to the Empire State building.

In the caption of the Jeopardy! Instagram post, the game show wrote that, “On May 1, 1931, the @empirestatebldg formally opened in Manhattan, New York, becoming the world’s tallest building—a title it would keep for 40 years—at 1,250 feet.”

Always trying to enlighten their fans, the caption continued, “Construction on the 102-story building, which features an upper tower originally designed to serve as a mooring station for airships, was completed in a record 410 days.”

“During its initial years of operation, the skyscraper struggled to keep commercial space occupied due to the onset of the Great Depression,” Jeopardy! wrote. “However, tourists from all over flocked to the city, just as they do today, to admire the building’s unique design.”

Alex Trebek hosted Jeopardy! for 37 years before he passed away last November. But, in 1994, he gave an interview where he talked about why the show was so popular in America. Trebek said that “there are bright people in every part of the country.” As it turns out, in his mind, smart people like to watch intellectually challenging shows.

“Bright people love showing off their skills,” Trebek said in the interview, “If you know something, you want other people to know that you know that.”

The message stands alone as a reason why Jeopardy! became so popular in America. It speaks to the engagement levels of how fun it can be to learn new things. It doesn’t matter where in the U.S. you call home, rather that you have a curious mind.

Trebek knew that there was likely a lot more that went into the show’s success. He also talked about how the ability to win a lot of money on the game show was another prominent feature of success. That certainly translated to more viewership across all demographics.

However, since Trebek passed away, the show is struggling to maintain the viewership he had. Hopefully, Jeopardy! will find a way to right the course and get viewers interested again.