‘Jeopardy!’: Alex Trebek Reportedly Had 50 Different Suits Ready When Filming Show

by Atlanta Northcutt
(Photo by Ben Hider/Getty Images)

Can you believe Alex Trebek was prepared to rock 50 different suits while filming “Jeopardy!”?

During the duration of over 30 years of “Jeopardy!”, it’s reported that the iconic show’s host, Alex Trebek, prepared the 50 suits in order to film the all-time favorite game show. However, he can’t do it without the help of his long-time trusted stylist.

Alex Trebek’s Signature Look

“He generally comes in jeans and a T-shirt, driving a pickup,” said Phil Wayne, Trebek’s stylist back in 2015. “It’s my job to transform him into the elegant host you see on TV every night.”

Phil Wayne has been an Emmy-nominated stylist for over 40 years. He’s also provided the costumes for General Hospital and Passions.

The stylist chooses from 50 of Trebek’s suits that he describes as being older than Alex’s tenure. Wayne then arranges five suit-to-tie combos.

Trust Your Stylist

“Alex has never said, ‘I won’t wear that shirt,’” says Wayne. “He trusts me to pick the look.”

The stylist describes Trebek’s look as being “simple, elegant, and classic. It’s not about trends or high fashion.”

Trebek has appeared in front of over 11 million people, so his look was important. He always came to the game show stage dressed to the nines.

Wayne explains how Trebek’s fashion must be consistent with the show’s theme. It’s an important aspect of gaining and keeping viewers. Trebek’s suits aren’t too crisp, yet they’re professional enough to keep the attention of those watching the famous TV show, and leaving them feeling close to both the host and its contestants.

Watching “Jeopardy!” is an intimate momentary experience that continues for over 30 years. Needless to say, the suits and overall look matter.

What is Alex Trebek’s Best Look?

“To me, Alex looks best in a rich, dark suit,” says Wayne.

At the moment the stylist and game show host have agreed on Armani suits, along with bringing patterns back into existence.

“The last couple years, I’ve really pushed for bolder, brighter ties,” says Wayne.

Whether it’s worked or not was the question.

Special Times, Special Ties, and Special Squares

One thing that Alex typically represents are the holidays where he can go all out with his ties.

“I watch dates very carefully,” says Wayne. “If it’s Christmas, I’ll make sure he’s in red, and if it’s Saint Patrick’s Day, he needs to be in green.”

Trebek also ensures the fun times are celebrated during episodes like “Kids’ Week “and “Tournament of Champions.”

“We just got a letter recently from a fan who loved a tie so much she wanted to get it for her husband,” says Wayne. 

The letter was so inspiring that the game show host was sure to wear a certain tie in order to make the fan happy.

“Just this past taping, he brought in a tie that someone had mailed from Canada and asked if we could work it into the show,” he adds.

Since TV’s are now high definition, they see an abundance of details that weren’t easily processed by viewers beforehand. A lot of the patterns Trebek loved were cut, along with the pocket squares that were once Alex’s favorite accessory.

“A lot of the patterns didn’t work when we went to high-def. They jump around,” explains Wayne. “They’re kind of back in style with younger guys, but Alex wears them the old-fashioned way.”

What happens when Alex wants to wear a certain pocket styling?

“I’m happy to accommodate,” Wayne says, as he lets the TV veteran still indulge.

Alex Trebek Supported Local Businesses

So where does Trebek like to order suits other than Armani?

“Sometimes he’ll go shopping on his own and come in with a bunch of new suits,” says Wayne. “Alex likes to support local businesses and he doesn’t just want to go to the highest-end stores. And he really likes a sale.”