When local Quiz Challenge winner Burt Key walked into the Mt. Shasta Mall he happened to cross paths with Quiz Challenge runner-up Marvin Feinberg. Within minutes the two were throwing punches, jabs, and anything they could lift until the police broke them up. They were booked into the jail within the hour, separate cells.
The trouble began over twenty years ago during the season finale of the locally produced Quiz Challenge. A local Jeopardy-like gameshow, Quiz Challenge pitted neighbor against neighbor during the late 90s.
Marvin Feinberg was ahead by one point, with one question left. Local historian and host Orville Bumpass read out the question: "What recent blockbuster film stars Will Smith and Bill Paxton?" Marvin quickly buzzed in excited, and then stalled. "Bill Paxton?" He was confused. He couldn't think of any movies starring Will Smith and Bill Paxton. Time ran out, and he lost a point. Burt Key buzzed in and won the season with the answer "Independence Day."
"That's where it all started," Marvin Feinberg tells Redding Jefferson through the glass at the jail. "Everyone knows Independence Day starred Bill Pullman! Not Bill Paxton, Pullman! Will Smith, Jeff Goldblum, Randy Quaid, Harvey Fierstein, Lisa Jakub, Harry Connick Jr. and Bill-freaking-Pullman!" A guard tells Marvin to calm down, and the man sighs audibly. "Quiz Challenge screwed up. They should've thrown out the question. Instead, they took a point from me and gave it to mine enemy."
"Tell him to let it go," Burt Key says from his hot tub, a woman under each arm. He'd made bail, ostensibly from the truckload of money he'd won on Quiz Challenge: "It's not like winning the season's made that much of a difference in my life. Just let the past die is my philosophy. Care for a scotch?" I decline politely and leave.
"I want my rematch," Marvin had growled to me, and I'm inclined to agree. Perhaps this is my underdog nature, or residual intoxicants from tainted ribbon candy that left me bound and gagged in Marion Von Baum's attic for three days, but I say give it to them. If this allows the rivalry to finally die, then it may be time to resurrect Quiz Challenge.
And maybe proofread the questions a little better.