David, the current Jeopardy champion, is one of the first to have a run of more than three or so days since Ken Jennings. However, many people, especially those on Television Without Pity, have come to hate him. A lot of this comes from being irritated by personal habits, and by a perception that he’s arrogant or smug. These I can understand; he has a few qualities about him that annoy me a lot too.
There is, however, also dislike of his strategy, which is, instead of starting at the lowest amount question on a category and working downards, of going instead for the second to the highest or middle one immediately, in an evident attempt to find Daily Doubles before his opponents. When he does, he often further infuriates a lot of people by wagering low amounts, no matter what his lead.
Some have called this style of play “mean-spirited” for doing so “just to keep anyone else from getting [the Daily Doubles],” “without honor,” and that he’s “hurting” other people’s play and “making everyone work harder,” since categories often set up a pattern with the earliest question.
My POV is: so the hell what? If it helps him, and it seems to have, why shouldn’t he be doing this, especially since he’s apparently not bothered with it and others are. The only reason he’s not “supposed” to do what he does is because people rarely do it. And how is that his problem? True, it robs some enjoyment from viewers, but that’s the producers’ problem, not his; they could easily add a rule forbidding that strategy if they wanted to (and if they felt it hurt ratings, they would, in a heartbeat). There’s a lot about David that’s annoying, maybe even smug, but I feel this criticism of his strategy is just a case of his personality coloring everything he does badly, deservedly or not.
Whaddya all think?