Ranking the ‘Jeopardy!’ guest hosts: How high do Aaron Rodgers, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Ken Jennings rank?

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Since “Jeopardy!” misplaced long-time beloved host Alex Trebek to his battle with pancreatic most cancers final yr, America’s hottest answer-and-question quiz present has gone to a sequence of movie star visitor hosts with hundreds of {dollars} going to their charities of alternative — matching the winnings of the contestants.

Earlier than a everlasting alternative for Trebek is called forward of Season 38 in September, 16 hosts may have taken to the legendary lectern for a complete of 160 new episodes over seven months. With 11 down and 5 extra to go (so as: George Stephanopoulos, Robin Roberts, LeVar Burton, David Faber and Joe Buck), here is how Sporting Information ranks all of them, from worst to greatest as all of them labored to honor the late, nice Trebek:

The Jeopardy! movie star visitor hosts, ranked 

11. Dr. Mehmet Oz

10 reveals, March 22 to April 2

Strengths: Expertise and enthusiasm. Oz is a daily on this personal tv and radio reveals. so there was no challenge of consolation degree in entrance of the digital camera. He has pure ardour for the sport and confirmed his giddyness in every of his episodes.

Weaknesses. Supply and diction. For individuals who aren’t followers of his medical programming, they need to remember that Oz is a bit everywhere along with his presentation. That will work high quality when speaking about sure bodily features, but it surely did not translate nicely to quizmastering.

Backside line: Trebek as soon as hosted a present referred to as “The Wizard of Odds.” The nice physician did not present a worthy sequel.

10. Savannah Guthrie

10 reveals, June 14 to June 25

Strengths: Smarts and congeniality. Guthrie, whose credentials embody a legislation diploma from Georgetown, is shiny and he or she matched that with a cheery persona. She proved to be very welcoming with the contestants, offering a heat house for the tremendous clever.

Weaknesses: Voice and circulation. Guthrie has a great conversational tone made for the morning newsreading and chat on “The TODAY Present.” That very same power led to some choppiness in getting by way of the solutions and offering the proper questions. The flavour textual content usually slowed down the tempo of her video games.

Backside line: Guthrie handed for a short-term stint, however she should not take into consideration quitting her TODAY job.

9. Invoice Whitaker

10 reveals, Might 3 to Might 14

Strengths: Expertise and flexibility. Whitaker, a CBS information veteran, was the least-known alternative for most of the people. However he confirmed his love of the sport and respect for Trebek whereas taking the lectern.

Weaknesses: Rhythm and slowness. Whitaker’s contestants usually did not get by way of the entire board. His newsreading type with the solutions did not permit for the standard snappy degree of responses. He additionally was subdued and did not present any of that Trebek charisma.

Backside line: Whitaker offered one other case of a robust broadcast journalist not made for the full-time transition to academic leisure.

8. Buzzy Cohen

10 reveals, Might 17 to Might 28 (Match of Champions)

Strengths: Data and connectiveness. Buzzy is aware of what is going on on behind the buzzer in addition to anybody, having received the Match of Champions as a contestant. His spectacled sartorial splendor gave him a mix of tv aptitude and one other method to relate to the geek stylish of the gamers.

Weaknesses: Inexperience and extra inexperience. Though there weren’t any true nerves with Cohen, it was clear he was out of his ingredient a bit of presenting vs. competing.

Backside line: Cohen was a great get within the contestant realm behind Ken Jennings, as different high gamers equivalent to Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer would not have been as easy on the opposite aspect of the lectern. However Buzzy is greatest as a short-term visitor solely.

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7. Anderson Cooper

10 reveals, April 19 to April 30

Strengths: Command and supply. Cooper had earlier actuality competitors expertise from the movie star version of “The Mole” and has proved to be entertaining in his New 12 months’s Eve gigs with Andy Cohen. His voice, intelligence and polish as a long-time CNN persona had been main property with Trebek-like familiarity to many of the viewers.

Weaknesses: Inconsistency and inaccuracy. Cooper dealt with many of the clues and was stable within the introduction and interview parts of the sport. However the huge shock was a few of his stumbles disseminating the supply materal.

Backside line: Cooper’s presentation was stable for what the present wanted, however he wasn’t easy sufficient total to face out as a lot as he ought to have.

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6. Katie Couric

10 reveals, March 8 to March 19

Strengths: Disposition and distribuition. There was little doubt Couric, combining all the perfect parts of Guthrie, Whitaker and Cooper, was the perfect of the information personalities. Her constructive vitality carried over into the contestants. She excelled at studying the clues with the right diction.

Weak spot: Extra substance, much less type. What made Trebek so superior was that he may mix the professorial with all-out foolish — together with self-deprecation — when wanted. He was critical in regards to the recreation and did not take it too significantly. Couric may deal with the sport high quality, however the hard-to-replace aptitude wasn’t there.

Backside line: Couric could be a good alternative for permanency, however the present ought to need a bit of extra in passing the mantle from Trebek.

(Jeopardy Productions, Inc.)

5. Aaron Rodgers

10 reveals: April 5 to April 16

Strengths: Preparation and enthusiasm. Rodgers was prepared for the gig from the get-go. Identical to he may research for a recreation because the reigning NFL MVP quarterback of the Packers, it was noticeable he watched a whole lot of what Trebek did and that he had plastered the lectern with ideas to assist him succeed. One may inform Rodgers had a blast internet hosting and the gamers fed off that. As soon as comfy, his dry humor and persona shined by way of.

Weak spot: Lack of expertise. Rodgers seems to be like he has a shiny future presenting on tv, a la Michael Strahan, Peyton Manning and different notable NFL gamers. However Rodgers’ first such gig was a troublesome one, beginning along with his nerves and the aggressive strain he placed on himself to be the perfect with Trebek in thoughts. By the tip of the second week, nevertheless, Rodgers discovered his actual rhythm.

Backside line: Rodgers’ appearances revved up the eye on the present submit Trebek, in addition to the rankings. He appealed to each the hard-core and informal audiences. If he was the selection, making it work along with his QB job or not, there could be extra pleasure than disapproval.

MORE: Aaron Rodgers handed “Jeopardy!” take a look at, however is he able to go full time?

4. Dr. Sanjay Gupta

10 reveals: June 28 to July 9

Strengths: Effectivity and cordiality. Gupta was a shock with how nicely he saved the sport shifting, ensuring to get by way of all of the solutions and questions but in addition bringing a way of heat in attending to know the gamers. He began each recreation with a smile and maintained the real pleasure for the chance. He used his intelligence and CNN expertise to his full benefit, proved by his cool consolation.

Weak spot: Substance over type. The physician wasn’t flashy and was restricted in his taste textual content. There have been a few messy factors in his response to his reponses. His stint as soon as once more reminded everybody how laborious it’s to switch Trebek’s full presence. 

Backside line: Gupta has a terrific gig at CNN and is established in Atlanta, so it might be stunning if he made the complete transition away from medical evaluation. However he used his time properly to show he was significantly better for Jeopardy! than his colleague Cooper.

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3. Mayim Bialik

10 reveals: Might 31 to June 11

Strengths: Savvy and magnificence. As Bialik stated herself whereas on the present, “Jeopardy!” was an ideal alternative to mix her professorial persona as a neuroscientist and presentation abilities as an actor. Though greatest identified to fashionable, youthful audiences as Amy Farrah Folwer on “The Massive Bang Concept,” Bialik’s excessive degree of on-screen expertise dates all the way in which again to age 12 when she performed a youthful model of Bette Midler in “Seashores.” Bialik’s altering wardrobe, together with her glasses, took Cohen’s nerdy aptitude to an entire different degree. She additionally hosted with a smile or amusing on her face, creating heat for the contestants and viewers alike.

Weak spot: Unconventionality. For “Jeopardy!” diehards (like this text’s creator), Biaylik’s quirkiness and presentation have nice attraction submit Trebek. Extra informal viewers will not be into her proud nerdiness as a lot, which is unhappy for them.

Backside line: Borrowing from the underrated theme music to “Blossom” carried out by the late New Orleans legend Dr. John, in my “opinionation”, the solar did certainly shine for Bialik behind the lectern. when it comes to the true celebrities to host the present thus far, Bialik will get the narrowest edge over Rodgers.

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2. Mike Richards

10 reveals: Feb. 22 to March 5

Strengths: Expertise and insiderness. Richards has a uncommon background, being a robust presenter on reveals various from “Magnificence and the Geek” to “Pyramid” earlier than transitioning to be the savvy govt producer of “Jeopardy!”. He is aware of the sport inside and outside and has a good suggestion of how Trebek would need the custom to proceed. He has behind-the-scenes information of how the solutions ought to be learn. He is also a pure with the contestant banter.

Weak spot: Restricted star energy. Richards is not identified to many who did not watch his earlier hosted reveals. However he makes for his unusual identify with an outstanding all-around strategy to the sport.

Backside line: Richards’ run may need gotten misplaced a bit of in between the celebrities. He’s unlikely to change Emmy-winning roles on the present, however he’ll proceed to make it higher, irrespective of who takes over the lectern for the long run.

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1. Ken Jennings

30 reveals: Jan. 11 to Feb. 19

Strengths: Experience and wit. Earlier than he hosted the primary 30 episodes submit Trebek, Jennings received 74 video games on the common version of the present earlier than his numerous appearances on tournaments and all-star editions. He has remained a premier persona within the trivia scene, together with his “Kennections” puzzles for “Psychological Floss.” and “Jeopardy!” parlay into “The Chase” reboot. Jennings has a terrific mix of endearing nerdiness with the suitable dose of confidence, one thing Trebek additionally had.

Weak spot: Lack of polish. Jennings, for not being a TV host, actor or newsperson, has grown to be a power in entrance of the digital camera.  As a small knock, it is clear he isn’t as refined because the slew of trade veterans who guest-hosted. 

Backside line: The primary is the perfect and ought to be the final (for now). Jennings ought to be thought-about the worthy front-runner for everlasting host, with Richards having an enormous say within the alternative.



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