The Final Round

Dec 20, 2019

Just like the 1989 Fred Savage movie The Wizard, Ask Me Another's 2019 Tournament of Champions ends with the debut of a completely new game. In this final round format, the two remaining champions must use smarts and strategy to win.

Heard on Kal Penn And Dan Soder: The Tournament Of Champions.

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OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

OK, it's time to crown the big winner of our first Tournament of Champions. Let's bring back our finalists - Shreyas Vangala, who says your energy bill is probably correct...

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: ...And Leah Berkowitz, who uses Rubik's Cubes to teach about Moses.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: As returning champions, you are the first to try our new final round format, where you'll need smarts and strategy to win. The first contestant to bank eight points wins. There are multiple categories. Each has four clues. Each clue is worth 1 point.

So your first category is 2010's Hip-hop, Name The Artist. The first clue is always a toss-up, so ring into answer. 2016, "Good As Hell."

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Leah.

LEAH BERKOWITZ: Lizzo.

EISENBERG: That is correct.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Leah, you have 1 point and control of the category. To keep going and earn up to 3 more points, you just say ASK ME ANOTHER. But the risk is if you miss a clue, your opponent will get a chance to steal control of the category and the points you haven't banked. So what will it be?

BERKOWITZ: ASK ME ANOTHER.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: 2014, "Anaconda."

BERKOWITZ: I don't know.

EISENBERG: OK.

JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: Shreyas, if you know the answer, you will steal that point and take control of the category.

SHREYAS VANGALA: Nicki Minaj.

EISENBERG: That is correct.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

COULTON: All right. So you stole that point. You got a point for that question. You now have 2 points.

VANGALA: ASK ME ANOTHER.

(CHEERING)

EISENBERG: 2014, "Trap Queen."

VANGALA: Fetty Wap.

EISENBERG: That is correct. There's one more clue in this category. What would you like to do?

VANGALA: I'm good.

COULTON: All right. That 3 points go into your bank. Shreyas is in the lead, 3-0.

EISENBERG: All right. Your next category is Name That National Park. Where would you find these things - mud pots and the geyser Old Faithful?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Leah.

BERKOWITZ: Yellowstone.

EISENBERG: That is correct. What would you like to do?

BERKOWITZ: ASK ME ANOTHER.

EISENBERG: Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes and Devils Golf Course.

BERKOWITZ: Yosemite.

EISENBERG: Sorry, that is incorrect. Shreyas, can you steal?

VANGALA: The Everglades.

EISENBERG: Oh, I'm sorry. Both of you don't know anything about national parks.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: It's OK. That was Death Valley.

COULTON: All right. So, Shreyas, you were unable to steal, so that point stays with Leah. The score is now 3-1.

EISENBERG: Your next category is Horses. Ring in to answer. The Triple Crown consists of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and this.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Shreyas.

EISENBERG: The Belmont Stakes.

EISENBERG: That is correct. What would you like to do?

VANGALA: Let's skip it. Not a horsekateer (ph).

EISENBERG: OK.

(LAUGHTER)

BERKOWITZ: I'm impressed you knew that one.

COULTON: All right. That 1 point goes into your bank. You are now in the lead, 4-1.

EISENBERG: Your next category is Who Played These Rom Com Moms?

BERKOWITZ: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Sophie's mom in 2008's "Mamma Mia!"?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Leah.

BERKOWITZ: Meryl Streep.

EISENBERG: That is correct. What would you like to do, Leah?

BERKOWITZ: ASK ME ANOTHER.

EISENBERG: Nick's mom in "Crazy Rich Asians."

BERKOWITZ: Oh, what is her name? I don't know her name.

EISENBERG: OK. Shreyas, can you steal?

VANGALA: I, too, do not know her name.

EISENBERG: OK.

COULTON: All right. That point stays with Leah. Shreyas is in the lead, 4-2.

EISENBERG: The answer was Michelle Yeoh. Your next category is Bad Smells.

BERKOWITZ: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Ring in to answer. Limburger is a stinky example of this food product.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Shreyas.

VANGALA: What is cheese?

EISENBERG: You don't have to say what is, but cheese is correct.

(LAUGHTER, APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Happens all the time.

VANGALA: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: What would you like to do?

VANGALA: I'm good. I'm good. Sorry.

EISENBERG: OK.

VANGALA: Next category.

EISENBERG: No problem.

COULTON: Not feeling confident about smells.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: You get that one point and you keep it. Shreyas, you're in the lead, 5-2.

EISENBERG: Your next category is Spell That App. Ring in to answer. Spell the video app TikTok.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Shreyas.

VANGALA: T-I-K-T-O-K.

EISENBERG: That is correct.

VANGALA: ASK ME ANOTHER.

EISENBERG: Spell the communication app Skype.

VANGALA: S-K-Y-P-E.

EISENBERG: That is correct.

COULTON: All right. Shreyas, if you get this next question correct, you win the game.

VANGALA: ASK ME ANOTHER.

EISENBERG: Spell the battle royale game Fortnite.

VANGALA: F-O-R-T-N-I-T-E.

EISENBERG: That is correct.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Congratulations, Shreyas, our big winner. And now it's time for the traditional Tournament of Champions medal ceremony, dating back to right now.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

EISENBERG: Tied for third place - Lance and Danielle.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Here are your bronze medals. Each is inscribed with the affirmation, you're simply the best - technically can't be true.

EISENBERG: Our runner up is Leah.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Your silver medal declares you better than all the rest.

COULTON: And finally, the big winner of the ASK ME ANOTHER Tournament of Champions, Shreyas.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: And your gold medal proclaims your better than anyone I ever met. Congratulations to all of our winners.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

EISENBERG: Our podcast drops each Friday. Listen and subscribe. ASK ME ANOTHER's house musician is Jonathan Coulton.

COULTON: Hey. My name anagrams to thou jolt a cannon.

EISENBERG: Our puzzles were written by Wana Escalante (ph), Andrew Kane, Ruth Morrison (ph) and Karen Lurie, with additional material by Cara Weinberger. ASK ME ANOTHER is produced by Mike Katzif, Travis Larchuk, Kiara Powell (ph), Nancy Saechao, Rommel Wood and our intern Natalie Hatayen (ph).

COULTON: Ah-ha. Any neat Italy.

EISENBERG: We are recorded by Damon Whittemore and Jay Russo (ph). Our senior supervising producer is Rachel Neel. And our boss's bosses are Steve Nelson and Anya Grundmann. We'd like to think our home in Brooklyn, N.Y., The Bell House...

COULTON: Hot heel blues.

EISENBERG: ...And our production partner, WNYC. I'm her ripe begonias.

COULTON: Ophira Eisenberg.

EISENBERG: And this was ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.