For months now, Jeopardy! has been using guest hosts to fill the sizable legacy left by Alex Trebek. The reviews have been mixed, with some stars, like Aaron Rogers, getting praised by critics and fans alike, while others, like Dr. Oz, took a beating from both fans and critics. One of the first guest hosts was Ken Jennings and he remains one of the favorites, it seems, to replace the iconic Trebek. Does the Jeopardy! GOAT want the job? He’s made his answer clear.
Fierce Competition For the Hosting Duties
Nine celebrities and people associated with the game show have hosted now, with a handful more still to come, including LeVar Burton. The first guest host was long-time Jeopardy! producer Mike Richards, and the second was Jennings. Jennings was, of course, warmly received. He’s always been very popular with the show’s viewers, and that was reflected both in the ratings and gauging from viewer response on social media.
Almost immediately, many speculated that he could very well be the next full-time host. As a known quantity to viewers, the one question was how the inexperienced Jennings would do as a host, rather than as a player. Comparing his TV resume to seasoned presenters like Anderson Cooper and Katie Couric, it’s pretty thin. Frankly, we weren’t even sure if Jennings wanted the job. Speculation started long before Trebek passed away last year from cancer, but the ever-humble Ken Jennings often demurred and dodged the question. Now we have an answer.
In an interview with WGN radio in Chicago to promote his other game show, The Chase, host Bob Sirott asked Jennings about the gig. He responded with a nervous laugh and replied, “I have no idea. Someone needs to decide this summer because I’ve heard they want to have a new permanent host lined up for next year and of course they start shooting those shows during the summer.” As for his competition, “I think one thing we’ve seen with the different guest host rotation is that everyone has a different spin on it and the show still works.”
When it comes to Ken Jennings being the next host, he’s still playing coy, but he finally did reveal that he wants the job. He says he has his “fingers crossed.” Jennings has managed to keep very busy outside of Jeopardy!, including authoring multiple books about trivia and hosting the twice-weekly podcast Omnibus with co-host John Roderick. It sure sounds like he’d jump at the chance to take over for his close friend Alex Trebek, should the producers ask.
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