‘Jeopardy!’s Mayim Bialik Just Blew Up the Internet After Being Replaced as Host

Credit: Jeopardy!, YouTube

The popular American game show Jeopardy! is in turmoil. And as the Season 40 proceedings get underway, it has been revealed that Mayim Bialik is out.

'Jeopardy!' host Mayim Bialik holding the Final Jeopardy! card
Credit: ABC, YouTube

Jeopardy! recently wrapped its 39th season. The beloved American classic, created by Merv Griffin in 1964, has been running on a syndicated basis at various points throughout its run. Alex Trebek played host from its 1984 launch and did so until his death in November 2020. Trebek died after an almost two-year battle with pancreatic cancer; he was 80 years old.

Due to Trebek’s passing, various individuals stepped in to host Jeopardy! including Katie Couric, Anderson Cooper, Robin Roberts, and LeVar Burton, but in the end, it was decided by Jeopardy! Productions that Mike Richards would take over as full-time host. However, his stint would be short-lived after past controversial behavior came to light, and he was eventually replaced by former Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings and writer, actress, and neuroscientist Mayim Bialik.

Ken Jennings (L) and Mayim Bialik (R) on the 'Jeopardy!' set
Credit: NBC

Bialik, best known for her role as Amy Farrah Fowler on The Big Bang Theory, has often been contested over her position as host, with fans calling out her presenting and judging style. At one point, producers asked the Call Me Kat star to “tone it down.” Jennings, on the other hand, is seemingly more well-received. That was until recent news shook the fandom.

Back in May, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) began its strike action, and in solidarity with those striking, Jeopardy! host Mayim Bialik stepped away from the show and refused to tape her remaining episodes for Season 39. Instead, Ken Jennings stepped in to host.

Mayim Bialik on Jeopardy
Credit: CBS

While many seem to prefer Jennings over Bialik, his choice to “cross the picket line” has caused controversy, with some even calling the former Jeopardy! champion a “scab.” Following the WGA strike, SAG-AFTRA also began strike action, with issues around the use of AI in the entertainment industry, residual pay, and streaming being the main focuses of the walkouts.

With Bialik out until at least 2024, according to reports, Jennings will open Season 40 with a Second Chance tournament. This came after the backlash that Jeopardy! Productions planned to use recycled material plus clues written by WGA writers pre-strike in their usual Tournament of Champions game show. The Tournament of Champions was eventually postponed.

Mayim Bialik on 'Jeopardy!' set
Credit: ABC

Executive producer and showrunner Michael Davies shared that Season 40 will commence on September 11, 2023, with contestants from Season 37 returning for the Second Chance tournament. A Champions Wild Card tournament will follow, where the winners of the second chance game will go against Season 38 winners.

And now Mayim Bialik has blown up the internet after stepping away from another Jeopardy! game show.

This image released by JEOPARDY! shows the new set for the popular quiz show.
Credit: ABC

Related: ‘Jeopardy!’ Host Invokes the Late Alex Trebek to Defend Controversial Behavior

Alongside their shared hosting duties on the syndicated TV series, both Jennings and Bialik host primetime specials on ABC. Jennings recently presented the new Jeopardy! Masters show, which saw contestant James Holzhauer crowned as winner, while Bialik hosts Celebrity Jeopardy! and Jeopardy! National College Championship.

But as strike action continues, Bialik will not return to host the second season of Celebrity Jeopardy!, leaving Jennings to step in and replace her. Upon the news dropping of Bialik’s exit, fans quickly took to social media to call out the host.

Alex Trebek (left) with Ken Jennings (right) holding 'Jeopardy!' trophy
Credit: ABC

R.C. Barrows (@RRRRComposer) said:

@KenJennings I enjoy Jeopardy, but some things are bigger than that. I’m disappointed that you’re not in solidarity with the unions. How are you not part of the union?

Kristin (@KHarrisPhD) offered support for Mayim Bialik. saying:

I grew up in a [United Auto Workers] family. I remember once I wanted to go to a store, but mom refused.. saying the workers were striking and she would not cross their picket line.. even though it wasn’t UAW affiliated…. @missmayim you rock #SagAftraStrike #jeopardy #kenjennings

@the_szabo tweeted:

Ken Jennings getting the full time host job at Jeopardy for being a scab was not on my 2023 Bingo Card

Another tweet from @SCRIBEMOON was also in support of Bialik when the news dropped:

I will never watch Jeopardy again. Really like Mayim Bialik and Aaron Rodgers. CAN NOT STAND Jennings.

Related: ‘Jeopardy!’ Officials Speak out on “Painful” Episode, Fans Say It’s “One of the Worst Ever”

Celebrity Jeopardy! will begin on September 27, 2023. The first season of the show saw Ike Barinholtz (Neighbors) crowned winner, earning $1,000,000 for his chosen charity, Pacific Clinics. Other contestants included Simu Liu (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings), Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next Generation), and Patton Oswalt (The Kings of Queens).

What are your thoughts on Mayim Bialik being replaced on Celebrity Jeopardy!? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!


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