While Bialik is confident in her game show hosting abilities, starring as a contestant on Jeopardy! is another story.
While it’s easy for viewers to assume Bialik could knock out the competition as a contestant, she humbly disagrees. “The knowledge I have is not necessarily ‘Jeopardy!’ knowledge,” she explained on the Club Random with Bill Maher podcast.
The co-host has received a doctorate-level education, but said the knowledge to excel on the game show is “different.”
Bialik continued, “There are categories, like, obviously I’m trained in science. I can feel pretty confident about the science categories. I am a crossword puzzle person, so there’s crossword categories. I have a minor in Hebrew and Jewish studies, so anything in that realm.”
Bialik revealed to Maher how people often ask her if she knows the answers to all of the questions she asks contestants on Jeopardy! The surprising answer? “No.”
“No. First of all, answering things like that under pressure with a timer is not gonna happen for me,” she said to Maher. “It’s hard!”
The co-host then explained the psychological aspect of the game, telling Maher about the “rhythm” winners fall into. “If you get something wrong, it can be debilitating. I would cry, I think,” Bialik said.
The Future Of Jeopardy!
Much has changed since Bialik and Ken Jennings took over the game show’s hosting duties in 2020—most notably, the pause in the game’s production amid the recent WGA strike.
As reported by executive producer Michael Davies on the Inside Jeopardy! podcast, during the strikes, the show was forced to recycle both old materials and contestants.
Bialik, an active participant in the strikes, explained to Vanity Fair, “There’s a lot of complexity to this, but my general statement is always that I come from a union family. My grandparents were immigrants who worked in sweatshops, and my parents were public school teachers.”
“While it’s not for me to personally judge anyone else’s decision, for me, I am a union supporter—pretty much all unions and what they fight for. I believe in that system even if it’s not perfect. I believe in getting educated about why people strike and what they’re striking for,” she added.
A new season of Jeopardy! is set to kick off on January 1, 2024.