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February 27, 2014

Last night, Jeopardy! champ Arthur Chu — whose disorienting, relatively unconventional strategies have led a number of jealous killjoys to dub him a "Jeopardy! villain" — won his seventh consecutive game for a grand total of $180,000. The last time a Jeopardy! contestant got this much mainstream press was in 2004, when Ken Jennings went on his unprecedented 74-game streak. But the buzz around Chu has reached such a fever pitch that Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek accepted a rare invitation to appear on Fox News program The Five to discuss Chu's playing style:

"He's a good player, and I think the accusations against his style of play have no merit to them. When you guys watch the show, you watch it because you're competitive.You want to see how well you do compared to the contestants. But also, as a minor side to that, you watch because you want to see... You'll pick a favorite. You want to see if this guy succeeds, or she does better than him. And if you don't like a contestant — and obviously there are a number of people who have taken a dislike to Arthur Chu — then it's going to come out. And in this day and age of 'twitters,' and everybody's got a cell phone, and everybody's communicating immediately — then the story gets blown all out of proportion."

But the interview doesn't end at Arthur Chu. Watch the whole thing, and cringe as Trebek explains why female contestants make wagers because they're afraid of losing 'the grocery money.' Scott Meslow

11:29 p.m. ET

The two civilian victims killed Friday during the shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs have been identified by their families as Jennifer Markovsky, 36, and Ke'Arre Stewart, 29.

Markovsky was a mother of two, The Denver Post reports, and Stewart, an Army veteran who served in Iraq, was a father of two. Family members told Hawaii News Now that Markovsky accompanied a friend to an appointment at the clinic; the friend was shot in the hand. Authorities in Colorado Springs said they are waiting until the autopsies are completed before formally identifying the two victims.

Also killed in the shooting was Garrett Swasey, 44, a University of Colorado-Colorado Springs police officer who responded to the scene after the shooting began Friday morning. Nine people were injured, and all are expected to recover, The Guardian reports. Catherine Garcia

10:21 p.m. ET

Citing "recent tragic events at other campuses across the country," University of Chicago President Robert J. Zimmer announced Sunday that after receiving information from the FBI about an online threat, the school was canceling all Monday classes and activities on its Hyde Park campus.

In a statement, Zimmer wrote that counterterrorism officials informed the university that "an unknown individual posted an online threat of gun violence against the University of Chicago, specifically mentioning 'the campus quad' on Monday morning at 10 a.m." Students, non-essential staff, and non-medical faculty are being asked to stay off campus, and there will be an "increased police and security presence on and around campus, including police personnel with visible weapons and other additional measures." The FBI is continuing to investigate the threat, Zimmer said. Catherine Garcia

9:44 p.m. ET
Rob Stothard/Getty Images

Instead of fighting crowds for doorbuster deals, more people shopped for bargains this Thanksgiving and Black Friday weekend from the comfort of their own home.

The National Retail Federation estimates that more than 103 million Americans shopped online, and almost 102 million shopped in brick-and-mortar stores. Adobe Systems Inc. says consumers spent around $4.45 billion online during Black Friday, up 14 percent from 2014. Adobe also estimates that more than 50 percent of those shoppers used mobile devices to make purchases. "This holiday may be a wake-up call for store-based retailers to recognize they are going to have to transform their store models to compete with online retailers," Steve Barr, a retail consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers, told The Wall Street Journal.

Several retailers offered the same promotions online and in store, and some, like Walmart, put major deals up online hours before they were available in stores. It's not just big box stores trying to woo shoppers online; companies like Expedia are also offering special deals for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. "Ultimately, retailers are in a race to capture their share of consumer spending," Barr said. Catherine Garcia

time to say goodbye
8:31 p.m. ET
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

In an open letter posted online Sunday, Lakers guard Kobe Bryant announced that the current NBA season will be his last.

"My heart can take the pounding, my mind can handle the grind, but my body knows it's time to say goodbye," the 37-year-old wrote on The Players Tribune. Bryant, now in his 20th season, has been with the Lakers since 1996, when he was a 17-year-old brought to the team after Vlade Divac was sent to the Charlotte Hornets. He has won five NBA championships and two Olympic gold medals, and was an NBA All-Star pick 17 times and an NBA MVP. In a statement, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver called Bryant "one of the greatest players in the history of our game." Catherine Garcia

keeping up with the republicans
2:15 p.m. ET

Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) hasn't really succeeded yet in standing out in a large pool of Republican presidential hopefuls. His polling numbers are no great shakes, and they even caused him to miss out on one recent primetime debate.

But the governor got some good news in Sunday's newspaper — an endorsement from the New Hampshire Union Leader, a big conservative outlet in an early voting state:

Chris Christie is a solid, pro-life conservative who has managed to govern in liberal New Jersey, face down the big public unions, and win a second term. Gov. Christie can work across the aisle, but he won't get rolled by the bureaucrats. We don't need as President some well-meaning person from the private sector who has no public experience.

Gov. Christie is right for these dangerous times. He has prosecuted terrorists and dealt admirably with major disasters. But the one reason he may be best-suited to lead during these times is because he tells it like it is and isn't shy about it. [Union Leader]

It would appear the Union Leader is a paper Christie actually reads, unlike, say, The New York Times. Julie Kliegman

Legal battles
1:30 p.m. ET

Philip Williams, a 69-year-old U.S. Navy veteran, said he returned to West Hempstead, New York, in August after recovering from a knee replacement and ensuing complications to find that his home had been demolished.

Williams has filed a notice of claim, the first step in filing a lawsuit against the town, The Associated Press reported Saturday. The veteran is seeking reimbursement for the house itself and for his belongings, which include his clothing, photos of his children, and his late wife's engagement ring. He has also asked police for a criminal inquiry.

"I'm angry and I'm upset. It's just wrong on so many levels," Williams told AP. "My mortgage was up to date, my property taxes were up to date...everything was current and fine."

Town officials said they held a public hearing before demolishing the house, which they considered a "dilapidated dwelling," after looking into neighbors' complaints. They also said they made attempts to notify Williams of the decision while he was recovering in Florida, a claim the veteran has disputed.

"You see people who went through a tornado or a flood and they say they lost everything, but that's not preventable," Williams said. "This was preventable." Julie Kliegman

we'll never be royals
12:42 p.m. ET

Not only is baby Princess Charlotte fourth in line for the British throne, but she also continues to be unfairly cute. Kensington Palace tweeted out two new photos of the 6-month-old Sunday that were captured by her mother Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge. Brace yourself for the adorableness of the baby and her stuffed animal below:

"The Duke and Duchess continue to receive warm messages about Princess Charlotte from all around the world and they hope that everyone enjoys these lovely photos as much as they do," USA Today reports the palace said in a statement. Julie Kliegman

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