The 13 Most Embarrassing "Wheel of Fortune" Answers of All Time

These failures are notorious.

As the iconic game show Wheel of Fortune bids farewell to its beloved host, Pat Sajak, it's time to reflect on the countless memorable moments, none more memorable than the epic fails. While contestants have showcased their wit and knowledge, there have also been moments of unexpected hilarity when their answers took a detour down the road of embarrassment. From mispronunciations to baffling guesses, these 13 cringe-worthy answers have left viewers in stitches. Join us on a journey through the most unforgettable blunders in Wheel of Fortune history, ranked from very embarrassing to the absolute most embarrassing.

"Flamenco Dance Lessons"


Facing a puzzle in the "Fun & Games" category, contestant Johnny enjoyed the applause as he kept guessing the letters correctly—and eventually, he had the entire clue spelled out for him: FLAMENCO DANCE LESSONS, it read on Vanna White's iconic board. Just one problem: Johnny solved the puzzle by saying "Flamingo Dance Lessons." 

"Sorry," said Sajak, after a long pause. Next, contestant Ashley got it right, pronouncing "flamenco" correctly. 

"You gave us a G instead of a C," he said to Johnny, who looked confused, if not angry. "That's the way it's been heard everywhere." The man lost a chance at $7,100.

"An Only Child"


When faced with a "Person" puzzle, AN __LY CHILD, one female contestant guessed…"An Ugly Child." The audience shifted uncomfortably and laughed. "Now…you are a school counselor," said Sajak, as she shook her head knowingly. The correct answer: An Only Child!

"Wish List"


In a speed round, contestant Edgar revealed something about himself when faced with this "Thing" puzzle: _ISH L___. "Fish love," he guessed, as the audience tittered awkwardly. Fish love!?! Maybe Edgar just loves sushi. "Wish List," guessed his competitor Jenny correctly.

"Cell Phone Charger"


Contest Sam had $3,500 on the line when he had before him this "Thing" puzzle" _ELL _H_NE _HAR_ER. To his credit he got the first two words right. "Cell Phone Charter," he guessed, not-so-confidently. (The answer was "charger.") "You sound like English is a second language," joked Sajak.

"Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa"


In one "Proper Names" puzzle the contestant faced this stumper: REG _ S _ _ _ L _ _ N & _ ELL _ R _ _ _

One enterprising contestant named George thought he had it in hand, guessing: "Regis Philburn and Kelly Ripa."

"No, I'm sorry," Sajak said. "We can't accept that."

Contestant Shane tried his best: "Regis Philman and Kelly Ripa." Nope.

Contestant Lee was ready to win: "Regis Philbin"—he got that part right—"and Kelly Ripe-a."

No. It's pronounced "Rippa." George snuck in for the win, finally pronouncing the hosts' names correctly.

"Well, we had a Philbrin. We had a Philman. We had a Ripe-a, and you guys think you are so hot in the morning. Why do I have a feeling this is going to be played a lot?" Sajak said as the round finished.

"Taking a Quick Jog"


Stuck with a tough one in the bonus round, in the category of "Fun & Games," contestant Ben had TA__N_ A ___C_ ___.

"Taunt a Chuck Guy, Chance Guy. No, there's no C. Taunt a Wacky Guy." Nope. He ran out of time. 

"That was so…unclose," said Sajak. The answer was "Taking a Quick Jog."

"On, well, see, I don't consider jogging fun and games," said Ben, as the audience didn't know whether to laugh or not at the dig at Sajak.

"Oh, well there you go," said Sajak, seemingly impressed with Ben's moxie. "That wasn't bad."

"Another Feather in Your Cap"


One "Phrase" puzzle had audiences at home howling: ANOTHER FEATHER _N YO_R _A_. Can you guess it? "Another Feather in Your Hat," thought contestant Laura. Wrong.

Contestant Christopher then guessed a G. "No G," said Sajak. 

When the third contestant Thomas lost his turn, it ended up back with Laura, who was ready to solve: "Another Feather in Your Lap." "No," said Sajak. "Although the feather is moving around."

Christopher then guessed a D! No D. 

After Thomas again loses his turn, it's back to Laura. She spins because she doesn't know the answer—and asks for a P. "Yes, there's a P." ANOTHER FEATHER _N YO_R _AP. "I will solve," she says. "Another Feather in Your…Map?" Nope.

Thomas eventually gets it right, sorry Laura: "Another Feather in Your Cap."

"Magic Wand"


In a final puzzle during the bonus round, a young man named Zach guessed D, C, M, A and G, in addition to the R, S, T, L, N, E you get automatically. It helped: MAG_C _AND is what he had to work with. Easy right? Not exactly. "Magic hand. Magic band," he guessed, before going through the alphabet. "Yand, sand, vand, cand, jand"—jand!?!—"pand, fand, band"—and right after the buzzer, he gets it right: "wand!" Too late. Yet it was still a magical night for the guy: He took home $19,950 from previous rounds.

"Gleaming White Sand Beach"

A contestant named Becki lost her turn but cashed in her free spin and worked her way up to a chance to win $33,450 if only she could solve this "Place" puzzle: GLEA_ING WHITE SAND BEACH. Her guess? "Gleaming White Sand Beaches." "I'm sorry, that's not right," says Sajak. Becki has mistakenly pluralized "beach"! "Stephen, it's your turn," said the host. Stephen guessed an M. "I know you almost feel badly about solving it but go ahead," said Sajak. He did, correctly.

"Mythological Hero Achilles"


Contest Julian, from Indiana, became infamous for his bad pronunciation. He filled in every letter of MYTHOLOGICAL HERO ACHILLES—but, when guessing, pronounced the hero's name "h-ellis" instead of uh-ki-leez. "Can't accept that," said Sajak sorrowfully. Julian then had a chance to win a car. Guessing a "person" puzzle, THE WORLD'S FASTEST _A_, he spat out: "The World's Fastest Car." Nope. That's not a person. The next contestant got it right: It's the World's Fastest Man. 

"Fresh Tropical Fruit"


Just this year, contestant Khushi stared down a no-brainer of a "Food and Drink" puzzle: FRE_H TROPICAL FRUIT. Her guess for the win: G!?! Contestant Juliana solved the puzzle, by guessing an S. "You know when that happens, and you're sitting at home, you're saying 'How in the world?'" said Sajak. "But sometimes there's a word that just doesn't want to come into focus for you."

"Superman and Wonder Woman"


With today's glut of superhero action movies, it's understandable to get the caped crusaders mixed up. But that's no excuse for this next fail. A male and female duo had before them a "Fictional Characters" puzzle: S__ER_AN AND W_NDER W__AN. "We'd like to solve the puzzle," says the man excitedly. "Superman and Spider-Woman." "Nooo, that is not it," said Sajak, as the man blurted out "Wonder Woman" too late.

"A Streetcar Named Desire"


In 2013, a contestant named Kevin had gotten as far as A STREETCAR NA_ED DESIRE but, instead of nailing the name of the famous Tennessee Williams play "A Streetcar Named Desire," he guessed the letter K. "Nnnnno," said Sajak. Contestant Lisa earned $650 on the next spin by guessing it correctly. "Although you got the right answer, I'd rather see Kevin's play," said Sajak, to laughs. "But that's just me"

Alek Korab
Alek Korab is Founding Editor of Body Network Read more
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