Mayim Bialik and Ken Jennings will share “Jeopardy!” host job

By LYNN ELBER
AP Television Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Jeopardy!” gives himself two answers to the question of who can host the quiz show – Mayim Bialik and Ken Jennings.

Bialik and Jennings have served as rotating hosts since Mike Richards left the show amid controversy after a short tenure as the replacement for the late Alex Trebek.

Executive producer Michael Davies said in an announcement posted online Wednesday that deals have been signed with Bialik and Jennings “to host Jeopardy!” to advance.”

“In Mayim and Ken, we have two exceptional hosts at the start of their Jeopardy! hosting careers that connect with their own unique fanbases, new fans, and the traditional Jeopardy! viewership,” Davies said in the release.

Jennings, an all-time “Jeopardy”! The champ and actor Bialik (“Call Me Kat,” “The Big Bang Theory”) were among guest hosts who filled in after Trebek died of cancer in 2020. While the stints were considered tryouts , the job unexpectedly went to then-executive producer Richards last summer.

At the same time, Bialik was given a role by “Jeopardy!” Sony studio as emcee for the show’s primetime and spin-off series, including a new college championship. This was seen in part as an effort to appease fans who complained that the succession of guest hosts felt like a publicity stunt and that the job was Richards’s all along.

But Richards soon quit the show following a report of her past unsupervised and offensive comments on a podcast. Jennings and Bialik stepped in to share hosting duties on their schedules.

Davies went into detail about how the job-sharing plan would work when the show begins its new season in September.

Jennings, who is also a “Jeopardy!” consulting producer, will kick off the season and host the Tournament of Champions with past winners like Amy Schneider, Matt Amodio, Mattea Roach and Ryan Long. During this period, Bialik will host “Celebrity Jeopardy!” on ABC in prime time.

“When she takes over from Ken in January, the current plan is to have her host a few more tournaments as well as the Jeopardy! National College Championship” and whatever her commitment to “Call Me Kat” will allow with “Jeopardy!” Davies said.

“We know you value consistency, so we won’t be constantly switching hosts and we’ll keep you updated on the hosting schedule,” he said.

“Danger!” had enjoyed remarkable stability under Trebek, who hosted the show for 37 seasons. Davies said Bialik and Jennings “love and respect this institution of a television program.”