Friday, 27 March 2015

Ep 290: Anthony Kendall, Jonathan Prout (March 27, 2015; originally aired October 7, 2011)

Rounds: Here.

Disclaimer: I watched this episode when it first aired, and although I did not recall any of it I cannot rule out memory being a factor.

Anthony returns for his last night until the finals.  Richard goes with a variation of the technique question, asking whether any of Anthony's training techniques for the half-marathons have helped him develop the mental stamina that has been on display here.  The answer, more-or-less, is that there is no connection.

Standing in the way of Anthony's successful retirement is Jonathan Prout, a mathematics and science teacher who also conducts historical walking tours of Melbourne.  Richard rather bizarrely says that we'll probably get to hear about those walking tours at some stage, which would only be true if Jonathan wins.  In any case, Richard takes tonight's chat in another direction by noting that Jonathan is a big karaoke fan.  Jonathan enthuses that he loves karaoke; a couple of years ago he was on a cruise and entered a karaoke competition that they held.  He made the top five and had to sing in front of 650 passengers.  His competition was an NFL anthem singer, a Russian opera singer, a Canadian jazz singer, and an Albury music teacher.  As Richard observes, that's some tough competition!  Jonathan is a little embarrassed to reveal that the song he sang was I'm Just a Gigolo.

The contestants shared points in the first two rounds, but then it was all Anthony.  He took unanswered points in the next four rounds, and his last six rounds were all maximal.  Jonathan recovered a little late in the piece to share the last two main rounds, and was only just a little slower at the conundrum, but the result was Anthony's best game so far and a 72 to 29 victory.  Anthony successfully retired, and will be back in a week or so for the finals.

As usual, details after the jump.

Round 1: R S T D O E A I P

I had DOTS, STORED, TORSADE ("a twisted cord"), ASTEROID, and PAROTIDS (PAROTID: "either of two saliva-producing glands situated one at the base of each ear").  After time I noted some other eights of PARODIES / DIASPORE ("a natural hydrated aluminium oxide [...]") and DIOPTRES (DIOPTRE: "a unit of the refractive power of a lens [...]") / DIOPTERS (American spelling of DIOPTRES) / PERIDOTS.

The contestants start off with a pair of sevens; Jonathan has STRIPED while Anthony has DOPIEST.  I wonder if he realised how risky the -IEST words are, in general?  David checks up on it, and fortunately it was listed.  David has played the extension game, going from STRODE to ROASTED to ASTEROID.

The other eights are RIPOSTED, TRAIPSED, ADOPTERS, PARODIST, and DIOPTASE (a mineral).

Anthony: DOPIEST
Jonathan: STRIPED

Scores: Anthony 0 (7), Jonathan 0 (7), me 8

Round 2: U R O I M C E W T

I had CERIUM, EROTIC, CORIUM ("the sensitive vascular layer of the skin, beneath the epidermis"), and after throwing away the uncooperative W and U found MORTICE for seven.

The contestants are matched again, this time with five-letter words.  Anthony found CRIME while Jonathan had COMET.  David has also found MORTICE.

The other seven in this mix is CUTWORM (any of a few types of caterpillar).  There's a few other sixes, of which I'll just mention METRIC.

Anthony: CRIME
Jonathan: COMET

Scores: Anthony 0 (12), Jonathan 0 (12), me 15

Round 3: Target 409 from 75 6 2 3 9 10

The target is 41 away from 6*75, and the nearest useful tweak seemed to be with 6*9.  The remaining 13 was manageable, giving me the solution 409 = 6*(75 - 9) + 10 + 3.

Jonathan is two off with 411, but Anthony has managed to get one closer with 408 = (75 - (10 - 3))*6.  I'm not sure how Jonathan would have reached 411; it feels like he must have worked down from 450, but the best match I can find that way is 6*75 - 3*10 - 9... in which case he could have simply subtracted the remaining 2 for a solution.  Lily has found another option: 409 = 75*6 - (2 + 3)*10 + 9.

Anthony: 408
Jonathan: 411
Me: 409
Lily: 409

Scores: Anthony 0 (19), Jonathan 0 (12), me 25

First break: SLUNG FOR ("Ironically, one of these is a short distance")

The clue clearly indicates a plural, and strongly suggests LONG as part of it.  With that base, it is easy enough to find the answer of FURLONGS.  (Although since that is 220 yards -- a bit over 200 metres -- it depends on one's definition of short.)

David's talk is about various terms that couple a metal with part of the body: 'silver tongue', 'platinum-blonde hair', 'iron fist', 'tin ear', 'leadfoot', 'cast-iron stomach', 'steelhead' (a type of rainbow trout), 'goldeneye' (a type of duck), 'Nickelback', 'Lead Belly', 'silvereye' (a type of bird), 'silverback' (a type of gorilla), and 'silver belly' (also known as silver biddy, a type of fish).

Round 4: U S G B D A N E A

I had BUGS, BANDS, and stalled for a while until that final A brought BANDAGES into play.  After time I noted some sixes: NAUSEA, BUDGES, BADGES, and BANGED, and then realised that I had neglected to note BANDAGE for seven.

Jonathan declares a five of BEGAN, and does not seem happy about it.  Indeed, he winces when Anthony declares the eight of BANDAGES.  That puts Anthony more than a conundrum ahead, and it is not looking good for Jonathan.  David points out that SANDBAG is a seven, and that BANDAGES was the best he could do also.

BANDAGES is the only eight.  The other sevens are AGENDAS, SUBDEAN, ABUSAGE, AUGENDS (AUGEND: "a number to which another number, the addend, is added"), AUBADES (AUBADE: "a piece of music or a poem suited to the dawn"), GUANASE ("an enzyme found in thymus, adrenals, and pancreas that converts guanine into xanthine"), and BANDEAU ("a strapless brassiere or top, usually made from elastic material").  The plural form is explicitly listed as BANDEAUX, so BANDEAUS is not valid.

Jonathan: BEGAN

Scores: Anthony 8 (27), Jonathan 0 (12), me 33

Round 5: M L P C O I E T D

Anthony gives into suasion from the hosts, and varies his usual pattern slightly to only take three vowels this time.  I had CLOMP, COMPEL, POLICE, COMPILE, COMPILED, and IMPLODE.

Jonathan has DEPICT for six, but Anthony has found the eight of COMPILED to jump to 23 points ahead.  David notes that COMPLIED is another eight here.

Those are the only eights.  The other sevens are POLICED, CLOMPED, MELODIC, PILOTED, POLEMIC, DEMOTIC ("of or relating to the common people; popular"), METOPIC (adjective derived from METOPE: "Architecture one of the square spaces, either decorated or plain, between triglyphs in the Doric frieze"), and PICOTED (PICOT as a verb: "to make or ornament with picots", where PICOT as a noun is "one of a number of ornamental loops in embroidery, or along the edge of lace, ribbon, etc.").

Jonathan: DEPICT

Scores: Anthony 16 (35), Jonathan 0 (12), me 41

Round 6: Target 208 from 100 75 4 9 8 9

Jonathan opts for the family mix, and it's surprisingly tricky despite the low target.  The obvious option is to make it as 200 + 8, but I also wanted to use the 8 to make the 200.  I ended up switching tactics and trying addition: The target is 33 away from 175, and that was just feasible: 208 = 100 + 75 + 4*8 + 9/9.  Whew!

After time I found several options which should have been easier: Firstly, the offset of 8 is also an offset of 17, leading to 208 = 9*(100 - 75) - 9 - 8.  Then going via 300 worked with 208 = 4*75 - 100 + 8.  And finally, tweaking would have resolved my issue with not enough eights: 208 = (100 - 75 + 9/9)*8.

Jonathan is two off with 206.  I'm drawing a bit of a blank about how he might have done that, as none of the options look particularly plausible.  (As an aside, simply adding all the numbers gets to 205, only three away.)  But Anthony has solved this with 208 = (8 + 4)*9 + 100.  Oh, very nice!  Lily has gone with the tweaked solution that was the last of those that I listed.

Anthony: 208
Jonathan: 206
Me: 208
Lily: 208

Scores: Anthony 26 (45), Jonathan 0 (12), me 51

Second break: PIANO TIC ("If you can see them, they've done their job")

For a moment I thought the answer was CAPTION, but that is missing an I.  Thinking about the clue a bit more led me to the intended answer of OPTICIAN.

Round 7: H A G O R E T U H

Given that it is his very last pick, Anthony again decides to give in to the host's blandishments and varies his pattern, going for a straight alternation.  I still think it's a bad idea to take the fourth vowel without seeing what the fifth consonant is, and in this case the pair of H's is not promising -- I'd have definitely wanted another consonant, hoping for an S for SHORTAGE.  (I'll note that the mix was nearly capable of producing HAUGHTIER, but that O needed to be an I.)  On the other hand, only a full monty can save Jonathan, it doesn't really matter much.

Anyway, I had HOAR, GATHER, wondered about OUTHEAR (not valid), HEARTH, TOUGHER, TROUGH, and THROUGH.

Both contestants have found OUTRAGE for seven, and Anthony is now guaranteed a successful retirement.  It also pushes him over the 50 mark, so he has scored 50 points in every one of his games -- impressive stuff!  David points out THROUGH as another seven.

That's all the sevens listed, and the best to be done.

Anthony: OUTRAGE
Jonathan: OUTRAGE

Scores: Anthony 33 (52), Jonathan 7 (19), me 58

Round 8: Target 991 from 25 100 10 2 7 3

With the target so near 1000, it was not hard to find 991 = 10*100 - 7 - 2.  It came as no surprise that everyone else has found that solution also.  (A bit later I noticed the minor variation of 991 = 10*100 - (25 + 2)/3.)

Anthony: 991
Jonathan: 991
Me: 991
Lily: 991

Scores: Anthony 43 (62), Jonathan 17 (29), me 68


The vowel pattern somehow stood out, and I found the answer of BEAUTIFUL almost exactly a second in.  Athony got there just one second afterwards, and Jonathan's hand was also in the air to press the buzzer.  Looks like everyone saw this quickly.  I'm not having flashbacks over that, not at all.

Anthony: BEAUTIFUL (2s)
Jonathan: [no answer]

Scores: Anthony 43 (72), Jonathan 17 (29), me 78

So Anthony successfully retires, and with a very healthy average of over 57.  I wonder where that would have put him in the full rankings?  It's odd that SBS started these re-runs mid-season, as it means I'm still missing the first half of it.  Oh, well.  This was certainly Anthony's best game of his run -- the last six rounds were all maximal, and included some good finds.  Jonathan was comprehensively outplayed in the middle stretch and there was just no recovery from that.

Monday will bring two new contestants.  We'll only have three new games before we hit the finals, which have already been covered here.  According to their TV guide they will keep going with the re-runs, so it will not be too many more weeks before I make my brief appearance.


Mike Backhouse said...

Geoff, I think you've used the previous night's clues for tonight.

x TOWIER I was hoping TOWIE or TOWY meaning 'annoyed' might be ok but not in my second edition other than a noun)
6*(75-10+3)=408 (1 off)
TROUGH then TOUGHER just after time. THROUGH must have been in my blind spot.
x too quick for me

Mike Backhouse said...

P.S. I did wonder about RIPOSTED in round one but was not confident. It was in my second edition. Grrr....

Geoff Bailey said...

Argh, so I did. Apologies, Mike. Fixed now, and yes, RIPOSTED is valid. Or PERIDOTS for that matter. TOWY is listed as an adjective in the fifth edition, so TOWIER* would get the nod under my revised rules (but not the show).

Sam G said...

Good game Geoff, genuine maximum.

3. 409 = 6*(75 - 9) + 10 + 3 or (100-75)*(10+6)+9. Anthony is probably one of the best number players that has been on the show, I get surprised when he misses gettable ones.
6. 208 = (100-75+9/9)*8, then 4*75 - 100 + 8.
7. THROUGH. If the last letter was A, I would have declared AUTHORAGE, which is not actually a word.
8. 991 = 100*10 - 7 - 2
9. BEAUTIFUL - 1.85s. I have managed to just beat the contestants for Anthony's whole run.