Last Night's HQ Trivia Was Kind Of A Mess

Illustration for article titled Last Night's HQ Trivia Was Kind Of A Mess
Photo: Complex

John Mayer joined regular host Scott Rogowsky on HQ last night for a special Father’s Day game. Things got a little wild.


Over one million players tuned in to Sunday’s HQ, a live trivia game show app, for a shot at the $25,000 prize and to see musician John Mayer just kind of shoot the shit with beloved host Scott Rogowsky. It was a Father’s Day bonanza, with Rogowsky introducing Mayer as his actual biological father. “I just wish you were more outgoing,” Mayer replied.

In between each question, the pair sang a riff on different Grateful Dead songs, given that Mayer is currently playing shows with the band. When it came time to read off the questions, things didn’t always go smoothly and the pair would sometimes stumble over each others’ lines. Notably, in a question about the definition of “onomatopoeia,” Mayer pronounced it as “onomato-paella.”

The game ended with Mayer and Rogowsky bringing out Scott’s actual father, Marty, and the three of them all sang “Old Man” by Neil Young. Though plenty of HQ players were starstruck by seeing Mayer on their favorite quiz app, and a few are still arguing about whether or not Greenland is a nation, some HQties on Reddit are just curious about whether or not Mayer and Rogowsky were lit af for the show.

When one Reddit user posed that the two may have been “fried out of their minds” throughout the show, another replied, “This was totally my thought. Mayer just stared creepily right at the camera and into my soul for the entire round.” Mayer did indeed stare straight at the camera, unblinking, though he could also have been trying to read a teleprompter.

When I asked Rogowsky over email about the fans’ reactions to his performance on last night’s HQ, he said that while he doesn’t get stoned before HQ, he can’t speak for Mayer. “He did just come off two shows at CitiField with Dead & Co.,” Rogowsky said.

“In almost every game I’ve hosted, there is a stumble or two. It’s simply the nature of being HUMAN,” he said. “I think what endears HQ to our millions of viewers is that we’re not a slickly packaged Hollywood product. We’re an authentic, unfiltered live experience that can be slightly awkward or unpolished—but always entertaining.”

I was an early adopter of HQ, back when the $500 jackpot seemed like a huge prize. Now that the game has celebrities like Mayer to drop in and guest host, I feel like the game has kind of passed me by. One thing will never change, however: stoned or not, Scott Rogowsky is always going to be endearingly awkward on camera.


Jack Napier

1: Rogowsky is really annoying (to me) but other people like him. I’ve felt he’s the budget Chris Hardwick (similarly annoying), but there might be some openings for him now.

2: While I’ve never been a fan of John Mayer, I met him at a party about a decade ago and he was a nice and funny guy. A couple of us were talking to him and his producer/friend when a girl came over to the group under the auspices to talk to her friend only to be “suprised” that John Mayer was there. She actually did the “Oh hey, Angela, I wanted to ask you - Oh my god, you’re John Mayer!” He cut her off and laughingly called her out for using her friend as an excuse to come over. He let her sit in the embarrasment for about 5 seconds and then said he was joking and started talking to her. So yeah, nice guy.