It's only been about a month since Ken Jennings and Mayim Bialik officially took over Jeopardy! hosting duties, and the duo says they are doing their best to keep the spirit of the show alive.
In the pair's first joint interview since they began hosting, the two sat down on Good Morning America and shared what it's been like to try to continue the legacy of the late Alex Trebek, who passed away from cancer in 2020.
"We miss Alex every day. But luckily, it still feels like Jeopardy!" said Jennings. "The people here are so good at their jobs. They kept the continuity." Bialik concurred, adding that the two of them try their best to honor Trebek and also establish themselves as hosts.
"I think for both of us, we feel like we're really ushering in what Alex facilitated so beautifully, which is, again, highlighting contestants and the show that people know and love," Bialik said. "...We do love the purity and the fun Jeopardy! has been and will continue to be."
The duo also said there was no imitating Trebek, even though part of the job is repeating the show's phrases they heard from him for decades. "To this day, I still hear Alex echoing in my head," said Jennings. "I think it's nice, it's very comforting, because you know, well, Alex got this right every day."
Bialik agreed, sharing that there's "no imitating or kind of competing even in your head... I feel like Alex's presence is here, and it is, it's in the words that we heard him say for so many decades." Part of the fun of sharing hosting duties, however, is that the game gets more of a spotlight, Jennings added.
"One of the nice things about having two hosts is the focus is a little less on who is the iconic host of Jeopardy!. And it's really more about Jeopardy! as a game," Jennings said. "Some nights it's gonna be me. Some nights it's gonna be Mayim. But it's always Jeopardy!."
Jeopardy! Season 39 continues this week. To find broadcast times and channels in your area, head to the Jeopardy! website.
People are talking about Jeopardy! in our forums. Join the conversation.
Jade Budowski is a freelance writer with a knack for ruining punchlines and harboring dad-aged celebrity crushes. She was previously a reporter/producer at Decider and is a member of the Television Critics Association. Follow her on Twitter: @jadebudowski.
TOPICS: Jeopardy!, Celebrity Jeopardy, Good Morning America, Alex Trebek, Ken Jennings, Mayim Bialik