"He was an absolute warrior and what he was able to do by getting himself back to the set to tape those final episodes," executive producer Mike Richards said on the Today show. "We didn't know it was going to be his final episodes and neither did he, but it was herculean. He was in enormous pain. He was, you know, 10 days away from passing away and you will not sense any of that in these episodes. He is strong. He sounds great. He's funny and he's amazing." Richards revealed that Trebek was hospitalized the week before taping his final episodes. "This man was unbelievable," said Richards. "He calls me and he said, 'Mike, I'm going to be fine. I'll be in to tape. I was able to eat Jello today.' I went, 'Alex, that's great, but that doesn't mean you're going to be ready to host five episodes of a game show,' which is an enormous amount of effort, and he said, 'Do not cancel. I will be there.'" Trebek's final Jeopardy! episodes air all this week.