‘Wheel of Fortune’: Pat Sajak Explained Moments That Show Vanna White is ‘Genuine’

by John Jamison

In her nearly 40 years on “Wheel of Fortune,” Vanna White has done more than reveal letters and maintain a rapport with co-host Pat Sajak. But try as they have, critics fail in convincing audiences that Vanna is undeserving or untalented at every turn.

Why? Well, according to Pat Sajak, it’s because she’s so genuine.

A Columbian article from 2013 reports something Pat Sajak once said, “Vanna’s genuine. There’s very little she does other than touch letters and point at lovely prizes. But at the end of the show, we spend 20 or 30 seconds chatting … those things add up. People get the sense that she’s a nice person.”

People love a nice person. It really is as simple as that. Add to Vanna’s genuineness her stylishness and philanthropic work, and you’d be hard-pressed finding anyone who could justify a bad word about her.

‘Wheel of Fortune’ Star Didn’t Think She Had a Chance at Landing Job

Vanna White has no interest in making her “Wheel of Fortune” job out to be anything more than it is. The longtime co-host knows full-well how easily someone else could have landed the role.

“I didn’t think I had a chance. The girl I was competing against was the complete opposite of me: poised and brunette and perfect,” she told the Columbian in 2013. “I felt like I was just this girl from North Myrtle Beach that was … I don’t know. I had no confidence.”

But in 1982, right before Thanksgiving, Vanna White got the call that would change her life. Fast forward a few decades, and an older Vanna knew why she was still there.

“Loyalty. Our viewers are loyal. They’ve seen Pat and me together for 30 years. It’s like Ken and Barbie. How do you break them up?” She said in 2013.

Whatever it is that “Wheel of Fortune” and “Jeopardy!” creator Merv Griffin saw in Vanna has come to fruition. Merv knew it before she discovered it herself. And before Pat Sajak to boot. Apparently, the longtime host’s first impression of Vanna was that she was too inexperienced and nervous.

Sajak has clearly come around on the idea, owing some of the success he has found “Wheel of Fortune” to Vanna White’s appeal.