Mark McDermott, from Park Forest, Illinois, was a contestant on season 1 of the U.S. version of the show on January 12-13, 2000. He walked away with $32,000 after incorrectly answering his $500,000 question, becoming the first contestant to do so.


Fastest Finger QuestionEdit

Fastest Finger Question
Put these famous sculptures in the order they were created, starting with the earliest.
• A: Rodin's the Thinker • B: Venus De Milo
• C: Michelangelo's David • D: Calder's UNESCO mobile

From the 8 remaining contestants, 7 got it right, but Mark (with a time of 3.42 seconds) was the fastest to correctly answer B-C-A-D, making it into the Hot Seat.

Mark's Run to the MillionEdit

$100 (1 of 15) - Not Timed
According to America Online's trademark phrase, 'you've got' what?
• A: Some nerve • B: A friend
• C: Mail • D: Time Warner

$200 (2 of 15) - Not Timed
The Grim Reaper is normally depicted carrying what object in its hand?
• A: Scythe • B: Book
• C: Sword • D: Puppy

$300 (3 of 15) - Not Timed
According to the fairy tale, what did Rapunzel 'let down' from her window?
• A: Her leg • B: Her arm
• C: Her hair • D: Her entire family

$500 (4 of 15) - Not Timed
A crocus is which of the following?
• A: Bird • B: Plant
• C: Insect • D: Frog song

$1,000 (5 of 15) - Not Timed
In which of these sports do the main characters of the film 'Chariots of Fire' compete?
• A: Autoracing • B: Hockey
• C: Running • D: Basketball

$2,000 (6 of 15) - Not Timed
When shown the red card by the referee, what does a soccer player have to do?
• A: Change teams • B: Score a goal
• C: Leave the field • D: Tackle an opponent

$4,000 (7 of 15) - Not Timed
In the opening sequence to the sitcom 'The Brady Bunch', what character occupies the center square?
• A: Mrs. Brady • B: Mr. Brady
• C: Marcia • D: Alice

$8,000 (8 of 15) - Not Timed
In what U.S. city did protests at a 1999 World Trade Organization meeting turn violent?
• A: Seattle • B: San Diego
• C: Miami • D: Las Vegas

$16,000 (9 of 15) - Not Timed
In 1959, what continent was deemed an international preserve for scientific research?
• A: Europe • B: Australia
• C: Antarctica • D: South America

$32,000 (10 of 15) - Not Timed
What Shakespearean character was assassinated on the 'ides of March'?
• A: Hamlet • B: Macbeth
• C: Richard II • D: Julius Caesar

$64,000 (11 of 15) - Not Timed
What image is pictured on the current flag of the European Union?
'Ask the Audience' lifeline used
• A: Circle of stars - 44% • B: Sun and rays - 13%
• C: Stripes woven together - 21% • D: Concentric Circles - 22%
The klaxon called time and Mark would return on $64,000 with 2 lifelines still available.

$125,000 (12 of 15) - Not Timed
In the Botticelli painting 'The Birth of Venus', what is Venus standing on?
• A: Cloud • B: Shell
• C: Tapestry • D: Pedestal

$250,000 (13 of 15) - Not Timed
Dry ice is the solid form of which gas?
• A: Nitrogen • B: Carbon monoxide
• C: Hydrogen • D: Carbon dioxide

$500,000 (14 of 15) - Not Timed
What ship is believed to have passed by the Titanic, ignoring her distress signals?
'50:50' lifeline used
• A: Sirius • B: Californian
• C: Carpathia • D: Ann McKay


  • Mark became the first contestant to ever answer incorrectly the penultimate question, which was worth $500,000, where he lost $218,000 and still had a Phone a Friend lifeline intact when he answered the question.


Preceded by
Shannon McGehee
U.S. Contestant (Season 1)
Mark McDermott
Succeeded by
Kevin Connors

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