Looks like Jeopardy! may have to begin a new search for a permanent host—or better yet, offer the spot to LeVar Burton—because fans seem to be increasingly unhappy with Mayim Bialik and Ken Jennings’ performances.
When the iconic Alex Trebek passed away in 2020, the series immediately began to struggle with the responsibility of replacing him. Initially, former producer Mike Richards won the role. But after some drama erupted over comments he made while speaking on his podcast, The Randumb Show, he was swiftly fired. And after, a slew of guest hosts stepped in to keep the game show running, including Levar Burton.
Eventually, Bialik and Jennings took over hosting responsibilities. And while they have been sharing the podium, Jeopardy! has hinted that one of the two would win the job permanently. But as the months plod on, the series has yet to even allude to making a choice, and fans are over it. They say fire them both, and bring back LeVar.
“I missed when LeVar Burton did it but how did he fare? Was he good at it? He was my first choice,” one fan gripped on Reddit.
“Only way I would ever watch that show, LeVar,” a user responded before another chimed in to say that they’re “still solidly on team LeVar.”
LeVar Burton was Snubbed by the Game Show in 2021
However, after a recent interview, it seems that the series may have burned a bridge with the fan-favorite host. So hiring him may not even be an option.
Burton only helmed five episodes of Jeopardy! before the series passed him over for Richards. And during that time, both he and the audience believed he was a top contender for the gig. But the series never even considered him for the full-time position. And unfortunately, the execs never shared that information with him.
“I honestly thought that I was well-suited for it,” Burton told Newsy’s In the Loop in May. “As it turns out, it really wasn’t a competition, after all, the fix was in.”
“I think it was a big lesson for me,” he continued, “and just being willing to sit in the discomfort long enough to find out what was really supposed to happen for me around this game show thing.”
If it Comes Down to Bialik or Jennings, ‘Jeopardy!’ Fans Choose Jennings
So if it ends up coming down to Mayim Bialik or Ken Jennings, fans have made it clear that they choose Jennings.
When the former Jeopardy! champion made his hosting debut, ratings skyrocketed to 9.7M viewers, which was nearly double what they had prior to his episode. Then when Bialik joined, the numbers dropped to 5.9M.
Jennings made history in 2004 by winning 74 straight games, which is the longest run to date. And while on the show, he bonded with Trebek. So with his connection to the series, people think he’s the logical choice.
Ken Jennings has been missing from the show for the past few months, leaving all of the duties to Mayim Bialik. And his absence has made fans’ hearts grow fonder. But unfortunately, it has come with some major backlash for Bialik.
“Why is Mayim STILL hosting? I don’t get it,” one person wrote on Twitter while agreeing with other fuming fans.”I thought she and Ken were trading off? She has had WAY more weeks than he has.”