Disgraced Jeopardy! host Mike Richards doesn’t have many supporters these days. Yet one famous co-worker is still standing by the former executive producer, even after his unceremonious exit from the game show.
Richards has been the center of attention in the game show world in recent weeks. Sony Pictures chose the Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune executive producer as longtime host Alex Trebek’s replacement. But the production company ousted him from the position within weeks of his hiring amid controversy over his past inappropriate podcast comments.
However, Richards still has one staunch supporter in his corner. Previous to his work as a producer on Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune, he co-produced another famous game show – The Price Is Right. During his time with the show, he got to know host Drew Carey well. In fact, TMZ spotted the pair out in Los Angeles together recently.
The outlet asked Richards to his face if he thought he got a “raw deal” after being fired for comments he made eight years ago. Yet the former producer and host didn’t bite and simply thanked TMZ for the questions without answering. His friend Drew Carey basically did the same.
Carey told TMZ that the two men didn’t really want to talk to the outlet as he laughed with the interviewer. The Price Is Right host bid farewell to Richards after they visited a local restaurant calling him his “buddy” in the process. So he’s obviously siding with his former co-worker in the ongoing Jeopardy! hosting fiasco that was Mike Richards’ hire.
‘Jeopardy!’ Heavily Edited Mike Richards First Episode as Full-Time Host
Earlier this week on Monday, Season 38 of Jeopardy! began with Mike Richards as host. Previous to his ousting, he recorded only five episodes. The game show aired the first episode on Monday, but showrunners heavily edited his introduction.
As the new season debuted, announcer Johnny Gilbert revealed that the game show dedicated the stage to Alex Trebek.
“Earlier today, with Alex’s wife Jean, son Matt, and daughters Emily and Nicky, we dedicated the stage in his honor,” Johnny Gilbert announced. “It will now forever be known as the Alex Trebek Stage.”
Cameras then cut to what was Mike Richards’ debut as the permanent host. By now though, fans already know his controversial story. They also already know that he’s stepped down as Trebek’s replacement. The normal pomp and circumstance for Richards’ arrival as host was nowhere to be seen though. Therefore Jeopardy! must have made some cuts in the film room, and instead abruptly began the trivia competition.
“Thank you Johnny Gilbert, great to see you. We are in the presence of a champion in the midst of a historic run,” Richards said. “… And now, for the first time from the Alex Trebek stage, let’s play Jeopardy!”