If you look up “savage” on Dictionary.com it’ll just be a photo of their homepage. The website recently dropped a harsh tweet criticizing Jeopardy! executive producer Mike Richards after he stepped down as host because of controversial comments he made in the past.
Sony executives named Richards as Alex Trebek’s replacement for the popular game show last week, but he quit the job on Friday. It came after The Ringer went through his former podcast, Randumb, and found several instances of misogynistic and hateful comments. He hosted the podcast in 2013-2014.
Shortly before Richards announced he was stepping down, Dictionary.com took a shot at the Jeopardy! executive producer for the remarks.
Richards’ former assistant, Beth Triffon was the target of most of the 46-year-old’s controversial remarks, the New York Post said. In one episode he called her a “booth slut” because she worked as a model for a Consumer Electronics Convention. The Jeopardy! maestro called her friends “really frumpy and overweight.”
He also mocked the poor and disabled. He said people who receive unemployment or food stamps should “feel a little dirty.”
Shortly after The Ringer released its story, Richards announced he was stepping down as host.
“It pains me that these incidents and comments have cast such a shadow on Jeopardy! as we look to start a new chapter,” Richards said in a letter to the show’s staff.
“As I mentioned last week, I was deeply honored to be asked to host the syndicated show and was thrilled by the opportunity to expand my role. However, over the last several days it has become clear that moving forward as host would be too much of a distraction for our fans and not the right move for the show.”
LeVar Burton Say He Should Take Over ‘Jeopardy!’
And Burton has some seriously famous friends in his corner. Ryan Reynolds, who was close friends with Alex Trebek, threw his support behind Burton. The Free Guy star tweeted he understands how Burton feels.
“Pretty consistently from 2013 to 2015 Deadpool would explode on Twitter with fans wanting me to play him. It was awkward because I agreed with them but the studio didn’t see it. Ultimately the fans won and the rest is glorious history. I’m forever grateful.” He ended the tweet with a cheeky nod to Burton’s similar position with Jeopardy! by saying, “Hi @levarburton.”
Burton made it clear almost a decade ago that he wanted to host Jeopardy! after Alex Trebek was done with the show. The former Reading Rainbow and Star Trek star got a chance to live out that dream for a week when he guest-hosted the show this summer.
But fans want to see him back behind the lectern after Mike Richards stepped down. Sony executives said they’ll continue to employ guest hosts until they can settle on a permanent replacement. So, once again, Burton’s fate is unknown. But until Jeopardy! picks its new host, expect his fans to make sure he remains part of the conversation.