Rating the Jeopardy! hosts (so far)...
OK, I fibbed a bit.
The day got away from us a bit last night, and noting the runtime of “In The Heights” on D+ (145 minutes!), an executive decision was made to watch the Raya movie on Disney instead, which was quite fun. I’ll review it at some point, and we’ll move the promised musical review back a day
In the meantime, we need to address a pressing issue of American life in 2021, (other than the big lie, climate change, pending and past coup attempts of the Capitol, record droughts, vaccine skepticism, inflation, trillions in debt, Chinese dominance, social media balkanizing our society to the brink of collapse, etc.)
Those problems are all fine and dandy, I guess, but we’ll table them for now. I’m talking about the next Jeopardy! host.
Originally, I was going to do a “listicle” with rankings from worst to first. However, I did not see the episodes with Mike Richards, Katie Couric, or Dr. Oz, so can’t do a complete rundown. I am quite certain, based on the backlash, that the Doc’s chances are nil at this point, based on the generally poor reception to his appearances. On the contrary, Richards, who might end up getting the assignment by default, (ie Bill Guthrie at Carolina taking over for Dean Smith), was apparently excellent.
It’s also important to note that we are not editing these shows. Apparently, there were some instances of clue re-reads in post, for what it’s worth. I would imagine that plays a crucial part in the selection process, considering the truncated taping schedule (5 shows in a day, 2 days a week back-to-back). Regardless, my thoughts…
Maybe it’s recency bias, but Mayim Bialik’s 2 week run last night was terrific. She’s a few weeks younger than me (Kate Winslet falls into this category also!), and I always found a superbly impressive woman. She brought the full package to her hosting duties…. she’s brilliant, has excellent pronunciation and projection skills as an actress, portrays a charming demeanor with contestants, and is obviously thrilled to be there. It also helps, frankly, that she’s not a man. I would think she has to be a frontrunner, if she actually wants the job full time.
I initially predicted this was Ken Jennings’ job to lose, now I’m not so sure. He was a more than competent host and has the pedigree. He also took a production role in the show prior to Alex’ death. That said, I’m not 100% sure he’s secured the gig. Is there something missing there? A bit too smug? A “tad” too controversial on social media? I wonder.
My wife’s favorite host of any show on television, and this is not revealing a state secret of Haile Plantation, is Cat Deeley of Fox’s “SYTYCDance,” mainly because she is a classic British “Presenter,” a total pro who balances all aspects of the hosting duties with utmost precision, preparation, with appropriate empathy for the contestants. Anderson Cooper is the closest thing we have here in the States, and his two weeks hosting delivered in all aspects. He was awesome. Two years ago, I picked him as the most likely non-Jennings successor to Alex, but my guess is his plate is full at this point, and him taking the job permanently would be a stretch.
Aaron Rodgers made it clear he wants the job. I thought he overperformed and was exemplary in his preparation. Still, he the reigning NFL MVP and probably playing another 5 years, at least. The show is not altering its production schedule at this point to accommodate.
Bill Whittaker was…. fine. Nothing more or less.
Buzzy Cohen is an interesting one, he had the toughest run having the ToC weeks. Like ARodg, he CLEARLY is gunning for the gig. Simply the fact they gave him those prime shows is telling, I thought he was really strong, but maybe a bit too flamboyant for the role?
I know Lavar Burton is coming up in July, I imagine he’s going to be a much buzzed-about candidate assuming he performs well. We will see what happens.
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