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This Saturday, Jeopardy! will be in town to tape episodes for “Power Players” week. What’s a power player, you ask? Judging by the slate of contestants selected to play, it’s someone with smarts and critical recognition among their peers — or an absolutely unstoppable sky hook and some Rec Specs.
This year’s Power Players feature some of the country’s most influential media personalities, including political figures, authors, journalists and newsmakers. Collectively, they have earned 21 Emmys, eight Peabodys, four Pulitzer Prizes and a Grammy Award; served under three White House administrations; and include the NBA’s all-time leading scorer.
Um, one of those things is not like the other. The big names who will join Kareem Abdul-Jabbar—-who, by the way, is totally going to need a custom-made podium—-are Anderson Cooper, Thomas Friedman, Chris Matthews, and former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs.
And that’s not all! Since this “Power Players” thing lasts a whole week, Chuck Todd, Kelly O’Donnell, Dana Perino, Chris Wallace, David Faber, Katty Kay, Clarence Page, and Lizzie O’Leary got invites to represent D.C.’s journo-crowd, while medical concern troll Dr. Mehmet Oz and stand-up comedian Lewis Black round out the list.
Will there be an impromptu ‘stache-off between Friedman and Alex Trebek? Will O’Leary stay true to her word and get Kareem to spout off an Airplane! quote? Stay tuned to find out.
The match-ups, and our predictions:
Chris Matthews v. Lizzie O’Leary v. Robert Gibbs: Gibbs wins in a landslide, but only because he bribes the judges with Super PAC money. (Totally legal!)
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar v. Dana Perino v. David Faber: Kareem. He’s got a lot to prove.
Dr. Mehmet Oz v. Katty Kay v. Chris Wallace: Oz wins by default, after urging Kay and Wallace to drink an anti-oxidant rich slurpee that he laced with Ambien.
Anderson Cooper v. Kelly O’Donnell v. Thomas Friedman: O’Donnell pulls off the upset against Cooper during Final Jeopardy. Friedman won’t do any research, rely on facts he’s been told from Bengalese taxi drivers, and finish in last place.
Chuck Todd v. Clarence Page v. Lewis Black: Beats me, but Lewis Black will be angry.