How Ken Jennings did as host

Kelly Lawler



It’s tough to tune into “Jeopardy!” and not seeAlex Trebek

The venerated game show host’s final episode aired Friday (however was taped on Oct. 29, simply 10 days prior to his November  death Nov. 8 at 80, of pancreatic cancer). Filled with the difficult concerns, clever gamers and Trebek’s own quips, it was both an amazing and typical episode of the long-running test program. It ended with a 90-second montage of Trebek’s clips from the series.

On Monday, “Jeopardy!” went on without Trebek as champ. Rather, consulting producer and “Greatest of All Time” winner, Ken Jennings stepped up to the podium as the very first in a series of interim hosts. (He taped 30 episodes, so will command the program for a minimum of 6 weeks.)

Fans fretted what ” Jeopardy!” would appear like without its patriarch need not anguish over Jennings’ efficiency. A long time pal of the video game program, Jennings, 46, understands the tics and rhythms of an episode, and liked Trebek as much as (or more than) the rest people. He might not be Trebek, however he is a deserving replacement.

” Sharing this phase with Alex Trebek was among the best honors of my life,” Jennings stated after he was presented as visitor host by commentator Johnny Gilbert. ” Few things in life are best, however Alex did this task practically completely for more than 36 years. And it was even much better up close. We were impressed by his intelligence, his beauty, his grace — actually, there’s no other word for it.”

Jennings’ voice broke as he continued, commemorating the host who managed his lots of wins on the series.

” Like all ‘Jeopardy!’ fans, I miss out on Alex, quite,” he stated. “And I thank him for what he provided for everybody. Let’s be absolutely clear, nobody will ever change the excellent Alex Trebek, however we can honor him by playing the video game he liked.”

Even after seeing Jennings stroll onto the set, it was disconcerting to hear his mellow voice read out the “Jeopardy” and “Double Jeopardy” classifications and ideas. Trebek’s voice was calming and neutral, yet had a tip of naughty passion. He checked out countless ideas to the participants (61 daily), however audiences and participants might never ever error his tone for among monotony.

Jennings has actually nearly mastered the method Trebek utilized inflection to make the ideas sound both intriguing and a bit like concerns. His boylike beauty bubbled over as a candidate won a huge “Daily Double” and real frustration when another, who discussed her singing pastime, lost out on an idea with the proper reaction, “What is choir?”

As a host, Jennings has actually studied at the altar of Trebek and plainly attempted to make as couple of waves as possible. A bit scripted and tense to begin, he chilled out near completion of the episode. And as soon as audiences get utilized to hearing a brand-new voice checked out the ideas, it’s possible to simply delight in the traditional video game program. The ideas are the exact same, the “Daily Doubles” are still concealed and “Last Jeopardy” is as tough as ever.

The winner will “be joining us tomorrow, and I hope you join us also,” Jennings stated as he concluded the program. ” Thank you, Alex.”

As strong as his launching was, Jennings might not be at this task permanently. In an interview with U.S.A. TODAY, he minimized the concept that he might host completely, and the Los Angeles Times reported that Katie Couric taped a minimum of a week’s worth of episodes, in what seems a long-lasting strategy to audition long-term hosts on-air. (Sony, which produces “Jeopardy!” decreased remark.)

” I do not wish to have it since it suggests we do not get Alex,” Jennings states. “It’s simply unfortunate for me to head out there, in such a way, since I understand that, like the audience, I want it was Alex going out at the top of the program.”

Still, the program should go on, Jennings states. “‘ Jeopardy!’ (is) a routine for individuals,” he states. “Individuals depend on it.”

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Contributing: Erin Jensen

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