There’s a classic episode of Cheers in which U.S. Postal Service employee Cliff Clavin finally finds the opportunity to make the most of his trivial knowledge as a contestant on Jeopardy!, only to blow it all up by giving what he feels is a correct question to a vague answer clue.
Remember to give your answers in the form of a question.
Perhaps comedy writer and improviser Ari Voukydis was thinking of this TV comedy moment and paying ultimate tribute to it. Perhaps Voukydis wanted his fellow improvisers to get a jump-start on their celebrations for last weekend’s 16th annual Del Close Marathon at the Upright Citizens Brigade. Or perhaps he just knew that a funny answer always wins out over a wrong answer on a game show. Especially when the outcome was no longer in doubt.
As he told Esquire.com on Friday: “Ultimately, my primary goal was to win enough money to pay for a year of preschool for my kids. But once that didn’t happen, once it got to that point where mathematically you can’t win no matter how you do on the last one, then I was like, I might as well do something funny. Because if you can’t succeed, you might as well try to make your wife laugh.”
With that, here is Voukydis on Thursday night’s episode of Jeopardy! Host Alex Trebek is not as amused as Will Ferrell would have been, that’s for certain.
Roll the clip!
For the record: Voukydis also co-stars in one of my all-time favorite running gags of the UCB’s DCM, an all-Boston sports drunken mess of an improv collective: WFQ.
And here’s a reel of some of his past appearances on those VH1 clip shows.