Ken Jennings and Mayim Bialik have participated in their first joint interview since it was announced that the pair would be officially handling Jeopardy! hosting duties following the passing of Alex Trebek.
Speaking with Good Morning America on Monday, October 10, Bialik and Jennings opened up about transitioning from guest hosts to permanent hosts, trying to fill Trebek’s shoes, and putting the focus back on the game of Jeopardy! rather than the hosts.
As a former Jeopardy! player and champion, Jennings said he thought he would have a “pretty good sense” of what hosting would be like. “But you realize hosting’s even harder because you basically have to do everything the contestants do, plus manage the game for them, plus manage the game for the home viewer,” he explained. “And not make faces,” Bialik quipped.
The hosts also said they hope to keep Trebek’s spirit alive. “I think for both of us, we feel like we’re really ushering in what Alex facilitated so beautifully, which is, again, highlighting contestants and the show that people know and love,” Bialik stated. “I think for me and Ken, we do love the purity and the fun Jeopardy! has been and will continue to be.”
“We miss Alex every day. But luckily, it still feels like Jeopardy!” Jennings added. “The people here are so good at their jobs. They kept the continuity.”
Rather than try to mimic Trebek, both Jennings and Bialik agreed that they hope to keep the focus on the game itself. “One of the nice things about having two hosts is the focus is a little less on who is the iconic host of Jeopardy! And it’s really more about Jeopardy! as a game,” Jennings said. “Some nights it’s gonna be me. Some nights it’s gonna be Mayim. But it’s always Jeopardy!”
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