Ken Jennings Wraps Up Jeopardy Guest-Hosting, Hints at Future Hosts
Whether you’re a casual fan, a loyal sofa-contestant, or in the “I just like the theme song” camp, you know how much the world of Jeopardy was rocked when long-time host, Alex Trebek, started talking about potentially retiring in 2020. We all wondered: what would Jeopardy be without Alex? We didn’t have much time to wonder at this prospect, before the heartbreaking news of his passing away shook us all again in November of 2020.
Trebek had been hosting the show since its revival in the 1980s and he gave us all so much entertainment and joy during that time. He was and is so intrinsically linked with the show that whenever someone makes a Jeopardy joke, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll tack “Alex,” onto the end to bring the reference home (I’ll take, “Gameshow References in Casual Conversation for $500, Alex”).
Finding a replacement, even in the interim, was always going to be a difficult task. I’m not sure you can even really call a new Jeopardy host a “replacement,” because there simply is no replacing Alex Trebek. Yet, for his legacy to continue, we had to have a new host. There were plenty of mixed feelings about the choice of Ken Jennings as interim host, even being the “GOAT” Jeopardy contestant that he is. Cue the Jeopardy theme music, as we all tried to puzzle out how we felt about it. Thanks to a little “game show magic,” we all got a little bit more time with Alex, while we processed our goodbyes and waited for Jennings to take up the torch.
Now, six weeks later, it’s time for Jennings to step down and for another guest host to take his place. In a Tweet last Friday, Jennings expressed his gratitude, both to the viewers/contestants of the show and to Alex Trebek himself. This touching acknowledgement (it’s the little heart at the end that gets me) was immediately followed by a teaser of future Jeopardy guest hosts for the remainder of Season 37. Among the folks slated to guest host are Katie Couric, Dr. Oz, Aaron Rodgers, Anderson Cooper, Mayim Bialik, and more. You can check out the current schedule and full list of guest hosts here. Though it will never be the same show that it was with Alex, I am happy that this legacy continues and I am excited to watch it grow and change with new hosts and, perhaps, new viewers following those hosts.
Do you have a favorite Alex Trebek moment? Did you enjoy Ken Jennings’ run as host? Is there anyone you’re particularly excited about seeing as host? Let us know!