Even Burton admits he had a rough start to filming his one-week stint as guest-host. "The trick," says Melanie McFarland, "is in finding a way to pay homage to (Alex) Trebek's style without trying to replicate it entirely, which may have contributed to Burton's shaky first appearance. His level comportment and steady emotionality were clues that he'd done his homework for this role, in the way of any great actor. But live-to-tape television calls upon a different skill set than other productions – a hint of natural liveliness and the ability to recover quickly and Aikido-roll out of any verbal stumbles. When we're in the flow of the game, Jeopardy! doesn't offer multiple takes. Hopefuls who work in news or sports excelled in this respect because they're used to live TV's less forgiving nature. That said many couldn't adjust their one-take effusiveness to suit this production. (Anderson Cooper, Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Savannah Guthrie, I'm looking at you.) Burton held his own, but toning down his natural charisma to approximate neutrality made him come across as stiffer than usual. His "no" replies to incorrect answers were curt. Then again, that reaction could be because "Good Morning America" co-anchor Robin Roberts' tryout aired the week before Burton's time on the show, and she nailed it. Roberts' easy bonhomie with contestants worked well, although initially her enthusiastic felt a touch too loud for this venue. However, and this crucial to remember as it pertains to Burton, Roberts' demeanor in her Friday Jeopardy! was much smoother than in her premiere. Every live TV host takes a few rounds to find their rhythm, whether they're helming a daytime game show or late-night talker. That's something I'm hoping Jeopardy! producers bear in mind when evaluating these auditions, along with the fact Roberts, Burton, their predecessor George Stephanopoulos and the remaining entrants (CNBC's David Faber and Fox sportscaster Joe Buck) each received one-week tryouts. Other guest hosts benefitted from at least two, save for Ken Jennings, who opened this pageant with a whopping seven-week run." ALSO: George Stephanopoulos ties with Savannah Guthrie and Dr. Sanjay Gupta for the worst ratings of the Jeopardy! guest-hosts.