Even though fans overwhelming preferred Burton to become the next host, including “Deadpool” actor Ryan Reynolds, the position was ultimately given to executive producer Mike Richards. Former “The Big Bang Theory” star Mayim Bialik was selected to host “Jeopardy!” tournaments and specials.
However, fans who opposed Richards’ new position were quick to take to social media to remind others of the multiple lawsuits of discrimination and harassment that Richards was involved in.
Less than a week after he was selected to be the new host, Richards stepped down as host and Sony announced a new round of guest hosting would begin.
Richards was quietly let go as executive producer of both “Jeopardy!” and “Wheel of Fortune” as Sony changed their tune, announcing that, instead of reintroducing more guests hosts, Mayim Bialik would take over as host – for now – and “The Chase” trivia master Ken Jennings would fill in when Bialik was off filming season 2 of her sitcom, “Call Me Kat.”
Still, Bialik’s comments about victim-blaming and her controversial stance on vaccines are causing some fans to call for her to step down and give Burton another shot.
Although Burton had low ratings during his guest host audition, his run aired at the same time as the Tokyo Olympics, which meant that many households were not able to tune in to watch.
Although Bialik has spoken at length about how she wants to provide the “Jeopardy!” staff, contestants, and fans with a sense of “stability,” it seems not everyone is ready to let the controversy go, as a recent “Saturday Night Live” sketch recently called out the hosting controversy and Bialik by name.
The ‘SNL’ Sketch
In the sketch, “SNL” took aim at the NFL and the decision to fire Raiders coach Jon Gruden after racist, homophobic, and misogynistic comments surfaced from past emails and statements.
Near the end of the 8-minute long sketch, comedian Alex Moffat, who portrayed Raiders owner Mark Davis, jokes, “Good news! I think we might have found a solution that makes everyone happy, someone even Twitter can get behind. Introducing our new head coach, LeVar Burton.”
As LeVar Burton, played by Kenan Thompson, walks out, he yells, “Suck on that, Mayim Bialik!”
However, it seems that Bialik was able to have a sense of humor about the “Jeopardy!” jab.
On Sunday, Bialik responded by tweeting a clip of the skit and writing, “One of the highest honors – being mentioned on @nbcsnl !!!! Love this !!!! #SNL.”
— Mayim Bialik (@missmayim) October 17, 2021
Previous Contestant Response
Bialik wasn’t the only “Jeopardy!” name to comment on the skit. Recent “Jeopardy!” contestant Matt Amodio commented, “Kenan probably has spot-on impressions of all the guest hosts, the man is hilarious!”
Amodio recently took over the “Jeopardy!” Hall of Fame leaderboard as he scored 38 consecutive wins, coming in just behind the seemingly insurmountable 74 consecutive win streak set by Jennings in 2004.
Amodio’s win streak was overthrown by Jonathan Fisher last week, who is now setting some records of his own. The actor from Florida has won over $100,000 in only six games and is showing no signs of slowing down.
Both Amodio and Fisher will appear in the 2022 “Jeopardy!” Tournament of Champions.