Six Degrees of Francis Bacon

Apr 19, 2013
Originally published on January 2, 2014 3:21 pm

Was Francis Bacon a 16th-century pioneer of the scientific method, or a 20th-century painter known for his raw graphic imagery? The answer is: both! In this game, Ophira Eisenberg quizzes contestants about famous people who share the same first and last name. Extra credit if you can link the two celebrities in six degrees or less. After the game, hear house musician Jonathan Coulton get sassy with a cover of the Destiny's Child hit "Bills Bills Bills."

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And we're off to the puzzles with our first two fabulous contestants: Dakkan Abbe and Christy O'Neill.


EISENBERG: Dakkan, am I saying your name right?

DAKKAN ABBE: Close enough.

EISENBERG: Close enough, I like that you have sort of a range.

ABBE: I'm sure you're used to that.

EISENBERG: You have a range...

ABBE: You accept a range as well, right.

EISENBERG: Yes. And Christy, I hear that you are a voracious reader.


EISENBERG: How many books on average do you read each year?

O'NEILL: About 160.

EISENBERG: What? Wow, that's amazing.


EISENBERG: I like that you just took a look around and went, yeah, no, it's true, people. It's true.

O'NEILL: Well, they're not like all "War and Peace" or anything.

EISENBERG: Oh really?


EISENBERG: Like "Sweet Valley High" and stuff like that?

O'NEILL: Yeah, sometimes.


EISENBERG: Well, our first game is called Six Degrees of Francis Bacon. Not Kevin Bacon, Francis Bacon. Francis Bacon, as you know, was a 16th century pioneer of the scientific method. Or, was he a 20th century painter known for his raw, graphic imagery? Or, was he both? Yes, he was both.

That's what this game is about: famous people who share the same first and last name. So we're going to give you clues to both individuals and you have to give us their shared name. And the winner of this round, of course, goes on to our Ask Me One More final round at the end of the show.

Here's your first question. This country singer knew when to hold them, when to fold them and when to pitch a perfect game.



O'NEILL: Kenny Rogers.

EISENBERG: Kenny Rogers is correct.


EISENBERG: You had a brief moment, right, you had a moment where you're like, I know it...

O'NEILL: Yeah, I almost said Willie Nelson.

EISENBERG: Willie Nelson, right, but he...

O'NEILL: Someone with a beard.

EISENBERG: Yeah, he didn't know how to fold them.


EISENBERG: This comedian might have been a hoser on the sketch show "SCTV" - hello, Canada - but at least he knows where's the beef.



O'NEILL: Dave Thomas.

EISENBERG: Dave Thomas.


EISENBERG: When this English musician is stepping out, he likes to look sharp, which is only right, because he's the father of the king of pop.



O'NEILL: Joe Jackson.

ABBE: Joe Jackson is correct.


EISENBERG: This actor suffered from shrinkage on "Seinfeld," but he still got his childhood friend Britney Spears to marry him for at least 55 hours.



O'NEILL: Jason Alexander.

EISENBERG: That is correct.


EISENBERG: Now, did you know that answer from the first side of the clue or the second side of the clue? The shrinkage...

O'NEILL: The first side of the clue.

EISENBERG: Did you know the Britney Spears one?


EISENBERG: No, you didn't know that? Now you do. Aren't you glad?

O'NEILL: I'm excited.


EISENBERG: A little bit of extra, yeah, exactly.

O'NEILL: I can take that home with me.

EISENBERG: See, 170 books and now you got something else. This actress not only sang in the movie version of "Guys and Dolls," but as a man, she did it in full demon makeup with a long, bloody tongue.

ABBE: I don't know why you looked at me when you said that.


O'NEILL: Gene Simmons.



EISENBERG: One of Hollywood's greatest actors, he would later start a company selling breakfast sausage patties.



ABBE: Jimmy Dean.

EISENBERG: You got it, Jimmy Dean is correct.


JONATHAN COULTON: He's on the board.

ABBE: Thanks for the love.

EISENBERG: This pop singer is a survivor of an R&B trio, alongside Beyonce, before she got her heart broken by a cowboy on "Brokeback Mountain."



O'NEILL: Michelle Williams.

EISENBERG: Michelle Williams is correct.


EISENBERG: All right, it was a close match, but Christy, you are moving on to our Ask Me One More final round at the end of the show.


EISENBERG: Dakkan, thank you so much for being a fabulous contestant. I wonder if there's other Jonathan Coultons out there?

COULTON: I'm sure there must be.

EISENBERG: But I bet none of them could sing as beautifully as you.

COULTON: No, I'm sure they're all lesser singers than me.


EISENBERG: Do you want to play a fabulous song?

COULTON: Yeah, sure. We were just talking about Destiny's Child. This is a Destiny's Child song called "Bills Bills Bills."



COULTON: First we started out real cool, taking me places I ain't never been. But now you're getting comfortable, ain't doing the things that you did no more. Slowly making me pay for things your money should be handling.

Now you ask to use my car, drive it all day and don't fill up the tank. Then you have the audacity to even come and step to me, ask to hold some money from me until you get your check next week.

Trifling, good for nothing type of brother. Silly me, why haven't I found another? A baller, when times get hard, he's the one to help me out, instead of a scrub like you who don't know what a man's about.

Do you pay my bills? Do you pay my telephone bills? Do you pay my automo' bills? If you did then maybe we could chill, but I don't think you do, so you and me are through.


COULTON: Thank you. Take that, other Jonathan Coultons.

EISENBERG: Yeah, Jonathan Coultons. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.