We'll take game show embarrassment for $200, Alex.
"Jeopardy!" fans are buzzing in outrage over the show's treatment of an 8th-grade contestant who got the Final Jeopardy! question right Wednesday night but spelled it slightly wrong.
The show's Facebook fan page was flooded with support for player Thomas Hurley of Newtown, Conn., and brickbats for host Alex Trebek and the judges. "Shame on you Jeopardy & Alex!!" wrote one visitor.
Watch above as Thomas and his opponents in the Kids Week episode field the Final Jeopardy! answer: "Abraham Lincoln called this document, which took effect in 1863, 'a fit and necessary war measure.'"
Thomas writes, "What is the Emanciptation Proclamation," adding an extra "t" after the "p." But his intent is abundantly clear.
Trebek lets Thomas know the judges are ruling against him because he "misspelled it badly." "...That's unfortunate," says Trebek.
When eventual champ and record-setter Skyler Hornback reveals that he has the correct question, Trebek notes, "It is spelled correctly also."
The video shows Thomas trying to keep his composure. It should be noted that giving him credit would not have changed the outcome. But that didn't stop watchers from lambasting the host and producers for shaming the kid and for being persnickety. "Come on Jeopardy, this is a quiz show NOT! a SPELLING BEE," wrote another on the Facebook page.
In an interview posted before the broadcast, Thomas, who attends Newtown Middle School, told the Newtown Bee that playing "Jeopardy!" had been a "neat experience."
At the time, however, he was sworn not to reveal what happened.
UPDATE: The producers of "Jeopardy!" emailed the following statement to The Huffington Post:
If Jeopardy! were to give credit for an incorrect response (however minor), the show would effectively penalize the other players. We love presenting young people as contestants on our show, and make every effort to be fair and consistent in their treatment.