Think You’re Smarter Than Slate’s New TV Critic? Find Out With This Week’s News Quiz.

Test your knowledge of the week’s news.
July 26 2013 5:15 AM

Play the Slate News Quiz

With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.

Welcome back to Slate’s weekly news quiz. I’m your host, 74-time Jeopardy! winner Ken Jennings.

Every Friday I’ll be testing your knowledge with 12 challenging questions on the week’s news events, big and small, including happenings in science, sports, politics, and culture both high and low. The questions are multiple-choice, and time is of the essence: You have 30 seconds to answer, and as the seconds tick away, the question’s point value drops from 50 all the way down to zero, so you’ll want to click on your answer as fast as you possibly can. There’s no penalty for an incorrect answer, so feel free to take a guess if your puny human brain fails you.

At the end of the quiz, you’ll be able to compare your score with that of the average contestant, as well as to the score of a Slate-ster whom I’ve talked into taking the quiz on the record. This week’s contestant is Slate’s new TV critic, Willa Paskin.

Think you can ace my quiz and beat Paskin? Good luck!

It was reported this week that a French snail farmer has invented an industrial process for extracting 15 tons of slime from his prize gastropods—and even that won't be enough to keep up with the demand from Japan, where beauty salons are charging patrons $250 to have snails crawl all over their faces. By contrast, taking the Slate News Quiz is much less expensive and 100 percent mucus-free.

Question 1 of 12

Which of these countries has not offered asylum to NSA leaker Edward Snowden?

As Russia continues to weigh Snowden's request, his lawyer says he remains in a Moscow airport wearing "the same shirt and jeans that he wore when he arrived."

Question 2 of 12

Robert McDonnell publicly apologized for the first time this week, returning a controversial $120,000 loan from a nutritional supplement company. What is McDonnell's elected office?

The beleaguered McDonnell was once considered a possible presidential contender for Republicans in 2016.

Question 3 of 12

A new study from the London School of Economics has reported that 23 and 69 are the two what?

The findings suggest that 23-year-olds are most hopeful about the future, while 69-year-olds have bounced back from their various midlife crises.

Question 4 of 12

Departing for Brazil from Rome's Ciampino Airport on Monday, Pope Francis was lauded for his "common touch" in doing what?

The pope doesn't have his own plane, but he does charter a special Alitalia jet for international travel.

Question 5 of 12

What hard-to-believe fate reportedly befell Norwegian interior designer Marte Deborah Dalelv in Dubai after she claimed that a colleague had raped her?

This week, Dalelv was pardoned by the sheikh of Dubai and released after an international outcry over her 16-month jail sentence.

Question 6 of 12

The real-life title object of what film is currently on sale on eBay for $3 million?

The seller, a California collector, says there are only four copies of the historic document in existence.

Question 7 of 12

On Monday, militants armed with car bombs and rocket-powered grenades freed 500 prison inmates, some from death row, where?

An al-Qaida-linked group has claimed responsibility for the attack on the Baghdad prison, which followed 10 days of violence there.

Question 8 of 12

Of these four names in the news this week, which is the only one that's previously belonged to a British monarch?

There have been six kings of Great Britain named George, most recently George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth.

Question 9 of 12

Researchers at England's University of Bristol have unveiled a new type of fuel cell that can power a cellphone using what?

As bacteria in the fuel cell break down the pee, they produce enough electrical charge for brief phone calls. "One product that we can be sure of an unending supply is our own urine," said one engineer.

Question 10 of 12

Which of these controversial figures was unexpectedly back in the news this week after rescuing a family of four from a rollover SUV accident?

Zimmerman happened to be driving by the accident, which took place less than a mile from the street where he shot Trayvon Martin.

Question 11 of 12

Researchers in Belgium were able to raise bookstore sales by up to 40 percent using what tactic?

The study, from the new Journal of Environmental Psychology, found that chocolate-fueled sales of romance novels and cookbooks were especially strong.

Question 12 of 12

There are now three direct-descendant heirs to the British throne for the first time since 1894, but what other European country swore in a new king on Sunday while the previous king was still living?

Albert II officially abdicated his throne in favor of his son, who is now King Philippe I of Belgium.

You got 8 out of 12 answers correct in 20 minutes 30 seconds.

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Willa Paskin

Slate's TV critic

Bolivia

Nicaragua

Russia

Venezuela

Mayor of San Diego

Congressman from Utah

Senator from Michigan

Governor of Virginia

Funniest numbers

Happiest ages

Most-watched TV channels

Likeliest lottery numbers

Flying commercial

Carrying his own luggage

Agreeing to swap to a middle seat

Removing his shoes and travel-sized liquids at security

She was sentenced to jail for extramarital sex

Her company fired her

Her alleged attacker was pardoned

All of the above

Schindler's List

A Streetcar Named Desire

The Guns of Navarone

Sharknado

Damascus

Mali

Abu Ghraib

Detroit

George

Alexander

Louis

Carlos Danger

Gummi Bears

Body heat

Junk mail

Urine

George Zimmerman

Paula Deen

Ryan Braun

Rod Blagojevich

Playing loud techno music

Bad-mouthing public libraries in TV ads

Piping in the smell of chocolate

Hiring topless baristas

Monaco

Belgium

Sweden

Denmark

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Slate's TV critic

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Ken Jennings is a 74-time Jeopardy! winner and is the author of six books, most recently the Junior Genius Guides.