Jeopardy! Fans Fans React to Mike Richards’ First Show as Host

Welcome to the Mike Richards era of Jeopardy!, friends. Oh, you thought the summer’s cascade of scandals meant that the last we’d see of Richards was his hasty retreat? I’m afraid you thought wrong.

Last night, Richards hosted the Season 38 premiere of the beleaguered game show, making for a supremely strange half hour of television. You may remember how, following a bombshell report from The Ringer laying out disturbing revelations about Richards’ past usage of offense and discriminatory language, Richards stepped down as Alex Trebek’s replacement. Richards stepped down on August 20, but by then, he’d already taped the first five episodes of Season 38. Sony Pictures Television couldn’t re-tape the episodes, as the games can’t simply be replayed, so for the Jeopardy! television audience, the show must go on.

At the top of the episode, after a clip showing Trebek’s widow and children dedicating the Jeopardy! stage as the newly christened Alex Trebek Stage, announcer Johnny Gilbert introduced Richards as the executive producer of the show, not the host. This introduction, like Richards’ speech, seems to have been altered and truncated in the editing room. There wasn’t much to the speech, with Richards simply saying, “Let’s play Jeopardy! on the Alex Trebek stage.”

Trebek always said that he wasn’t the star of Jeopardy!—the players were. But last night, even as Matt Amodio increased his historic winning streak to 19 games (and $642,601 in prize money), Richards was the star of Jeopardy! Nation, with fans taking to Twitter to register the strangeness of seeing the now-villain step up to the lectern. Below, we rounded up some of the best reactions.

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This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.


Assistant Editor
Adrienne Westenfeld is a writer and editor at Esquire, where she covers books and culture.

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