Matt Jackson, the paralegal from Washington who’s racked up eight wins and $230,610 on “Jeopardy,” won the Internet’s heart when viewers took note of his rapid-fire answering style, his propensity for punctuating his performance with the catchphrase “boom!” and for a slowly-spreading smile that “The Soup” host Joel McHale noted was perfectly, and strangely, timed with the camera zoom.
But in addition to his online fans, he has an unusual cheering section — many judges on the federal bench in D.C. have been tuning in, we hear. That’s because he’s the son of their colleague, U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, an Obama appointee who’s served on the federal bench since 2011.
In one of his early “Jeopardy” appearances, Matt Jackson made a passing reference to his mom, explaining to host Alex Trebek that his knowledge about a wide variety of subjects came from his eclectic upbringing.
“My mother is white, liberal and Jewish, and my dad is black, Christian and conservative,” he told the host, who seemed a bit surprised.
The 23 year-old contestant’s father is Washington attorney Darryl Jackson, who was a Commerce Department official under former President George W. Bush.
Our colleague Carol Leonnig caught up with Berman Jackson in the courthouse cafeteria on Wednesday. The judge said she’d prefer to keep the focus on her son, who is aiming to keep his streak alive on Wednesday night’s show. “But obviously it’s been an incredible thrill to watch him,” she added.
We’ll take “Proud Moms for $200,” Alex.