The biggest payouts in game show history

If you’ve only heard of one person on this entire list, it’s probably Ken Jennings, arguably the most famous game show contestant of all time. He holds the record for longest winning streak on Jeopardy, with 74 episodes from June 2, 2004, to November 30, 2004. (Various themed tournaments interrupted his episodes if you were scratching your head at the math there.) He also holds the record for highest average correct answers per game with 35.9 during his original run. For comparison, the second longest winning streak is James Holzhauer’s 32-day run, and Holzhauer nipped at Jenning’s correct answer average with 35.5 per game; no other contestant has an average over 30.

Although he won it more slowly than Holzhauer, Jennings’ original run brought him $2,522,700, which still slightly exceeded Holzhauer’s totals. But to put him way out of reach, Jennings went on to win $500,000 in the Ultimate Tournament of Champions, $300,000 in the 2011 IBM Challenge against Watson (which he…

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