What ought to happen next?

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Kingrat47
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What ought to happen next?

Post by Kingrat47 »

Like everyone else, I was heartbroken to hear of Alex Trevek’s death. He was an icon, and it’s impossible to imagine anyone being as good at him in the role of host for a long time - it will take a lot of reps for anyone to even approach his skill in a very difficult job.

In that light, I think the producers of the show, assuming they intend to try and keep going for another 36 years, should take their time in trying to settle on their next host. There are, as has become apparent, any number of people who would like to take a try at the job, and you’d have to think that a smaller but still large number of them would be good at it. I’d been kicking around this idea since before Alex got sick - why not take some time and try out a variety of people as host? Give Ken Jennings a shot, and Levar Burton, and Anderson Cooper and Brooke Burns and Jimmy Maguire and Aisha Tyler and Jeff Probst and Mike Richards and anyone else who you think might be any good. You could also give people who wouldn’t want the job full time but would be interesting a game or two - maybe Pat Sajak wants to do it one more time. Maybe Will Farrell does it for real once. Maybe you decide to have a game with twelve revealed clues total and have Oprah host.

I realize this might seem insensitive, but I mean it as, in part, a compliment to Alex’s memory - you can’t replicate his specialness, so why not set it in relief against a wide array of styles? I also think it would give the eventual permanent host a leg up in the job - any successor to Alex is going to suffer initially by comparison, but if you’ve seen them contrasted to other possibilities they’re going to come across better.

In any event, this is what I think ought to happen next, even if there’s no chance it does. What do you think should happen?

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JayK33
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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by JayK33 »

Not sure how busy Dan Patrick is but he's one I had in mind. He was good on Sports Jeopardy.

Also what does this mean for returning contestants? Would they now be allowed to go on again?

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by LucarioSnooperVixey »

JayK33 wrote:
Thu Nov 12, 2020 11:36 pm
Also what does this mean for returning contestants? Would they now be allowed to go on again?
Probably not. Many other shows had multiple hosts. Eligibility rules of only being on there once have always applied.
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Rackme32
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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by Rackme32 »

I like that idea of trying out a number of hosts over the remaining portion of the season. Then the powers that be could take the summer to look things over and choose the best one from there. Hopefully, taking their time with long looks at their top candidates would make it more likely they get it right.

On the other point, I have no idea why having a new host would somehow wipe the contestant slate clean and allow returnees.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by floridagator »

Jeopardy does not exist as a hagiography of Alex. Jeopardy is a business. They will have to make a business decision as to who will best front for their company.

When Bob Barker retired after 36 years on The Price is Right, the producers did not have unending weeks of auditions for various replacements. They rolled out Drew Carey and he has now been hosting for 13 seasons. And so it will be with Jeopardy. They will pick a new host and within a year that person will seem like they've always been hosting Jeopardy.

The only supremely bad job picking a new host in the recent era was picking Conan O'Brien to take over the Tonight Show.
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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by jeffwolfe »

I think Jeopardy is a bad show for rotating hosts. A key part of hosting the show is establishing a good cadence so contestants know when to signal and the person who operates the light/lockout mechanism knows when to activate it. With a succession of hosts, you'd have all sorts of rhythms from host to host, and each individual host wouldn't really have time to develop anything consistent.

I'd like to see them hire a temporary host for the remainder of the season, and then a permanent host for future seasons. Ideally, it's the same person, but they should take the time to make sure they have the right person. They might not have that time right now, considering they're already in the middle of the season.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by alietr »

Rackme32 wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 12:25 am
On the other point, I have no idea why having a new host would somehow wipe the contestant slate clean and allow returnees.
I have no idea if they'll do that, but the paperwork specifically said you're not eligible to go on again while Trebek is hosting the show.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by mas3cf »

alietr wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 6:47 am
Rackme32 wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 12:25 am
On the other point, I have no idea why having a new host would somehow wipe the contestant slate clean and allow returnees.
I have no idea if they'll do that, but the paperwork specifically said you're not eligible to go on again while Trebek is hosting the show.
There was a significant gap between the Fleming and Jeopardy years, plus now that the Fleming era is 45 years in the past there is probably not too much reason to consider it for eligibility purposes. I would be stunned if someone who appeared on the show this week was suddenly eligible again just because there was a new host.

My interpretation of that language was not that they are indexing off of the host per se, but just stating that Teen/College/Teachers contestants are not eligible for future regular gameplay.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by opusthepenguin »

1. Declare a National Day of Mourning for Alex Trebek. In tribute, all questions that day must be phrased as answers and all answers as questions. French words and phrases must be pronounced with excruciating correctness. Any mistake which ends up costing two or more people the same amount of money will be described as "No harm, no foul." Foolish wagers that work out will be pronounced "savvy" and savvy wagers will be pronounced "interesting" or "gutsy". All regrets will be expressed by the phrase, "Ooooh, sohrry."

2. For the remainder of this season, run one new prospective host per week.

3. Hold a continent-wide poll so people can vote for their favorite new host.

4. I will convene a secret cabal of boardies. We will take into consideration the results of that poll and our own preferences before I unilaterally decide and announce who the new host will be.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by Robert K S »

opusthepenguin wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 10:02 am
2. For the remainder of this season, run one new prospective host per week.
I'd be fine with one host per two weeks, which would probably be more convenient from a production perspective.
opusthepenguin wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 10:02 am
3. Hold a continent-wide poll so people can vote for their favorite new host.

4. I will convene a secret cabal of boardies. We will take into consideration the results of that poll and our own preferences before I unilaterally decide and announce who the new host will be.
Good thinking. These three things in combination eliminate any effect of poll fraud.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by econgator »

opusthepenguin wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 10:02 am
3. Hold a continent-wide poll so people can vote for their favorite new host.
I assume that the continent would be Antarctica?

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Re: What ought to happen next?

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Kingrat47 wrote:
Thu Nov 12, 2020 10:03 pm
Maybe you decide to have a game with twelve revealed clues total and have Oprah host.
This was a funny line. Kudos.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by triviawayne »

floridagator wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 12:57 am
Jeopardy does not exist as a hagiography of Alex. Jeopardy is a business. They will have to make a business decision as to who will best front for their company.

When Bob Barker retired after 36 years on The Price is Right, the producers did not have unending weeks of auditions for various replacements. They rolled out Drew Carey and he has now been hosting for 13 seasons. And so it will be with Jeopardy. They will pick a new host and within a year that person will seem like they've always been hosting Jeopardy.

The only supremely bad job picking a new host in the recent era was picking Conan O'Brien to take over the Tonight Show.
The producers had a HUGE amount of time before and after Bob Barker's retirement, and had several auditions, including Todd Newton, George Hamilton, John O'Hurley, and Mike Richards.

Not only did TPIR know of the retirement about 8 months prior to the season ender, they had a good portion of the summer to decide as well.

Jeopardy has had plenty of lead time to deal with this, and for all we know they've had secret auditions (I doubt it, but it's not impossible). There is no real reason to think they don't have a short-list of people they want.

Jeopardy is also in mid-season, and needs to resume production soon for continuity, so if they haven't already decided, having Jimmy step in makes plenty of sense.

Someone can not just show up one day and begin taping. Among other things, they have to find their rhythm, and the person off stage activating the buzzers needs to get in sync with that person.


As for Conan being the "only supremely bad job picking a new host in the recent era", have you forgot Cedric the Entertainer and Terry Crews?
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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by talkingaway »

I have no problem with picking an interim host, but that host should be the one to round out the remainder of the season. While a rotating cast of stunt-hosts would be an easy way to attempt to grab ratings, one of the hallmarks of Jeopardy! is its consistency. There have been very few rule changes, rule changes, or new ideas throughout the 37 years. Just some behind-the-scenes stuff (ie pre-writing "Who/What is" for Final) that only a few on the lunatic fringe would notice. A few one-off ideas (the team tournament 4-5 years ago, Watson), and one wacky rule (double-or-nothing clues that had two responses - you could give one, and then had the option to give the second - they did 4-5 shows with that and dropped it).

Jeopardy is the grilled cheese sandwich of TV - a comfort food that's familiar. Changing it up with a new host EVERY week would cause a little bit of whiplash to viewers. Plus, if a viewer sees a host that they don't like, they may be tempted just to tune out. Pick one, sign him/her to at least the end of the season, and then maybe see if you want a new, permanent host.

Jimmy would be familiar to fans, but maybe not to others outside the J!sphere. I think he'd do a pretty good job - although I can't say if he'd have the ability to "judge on his feet" as the very first judge. Alex has developed that ability over 37 years, so he knew when to accept X instead of Y. Jimmy would do well in terms of delivery, as he's had lots of time doing practice rounds with contestants (I think?), and doing J! on auditions, but those games aren't required to be accurate.

Probst and Kimmel are adept at handling hosting gigs, but I wonder about the knowledge-on-the-fly aspect. And they both already have gigs that take up a significant amount of time.

Anderson Cooper could be interesting. I think he's hosted a trivia show before - I know he hosted that reality game show in the early 2000s that was a masshup of Mafia and The Amazing Race. I think he has the knowledge base to be able to judge on the fly, too.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by opusthepenguin »

Oh, the other thing that needs to happen: They need to provide a reasonably priced streaming option for cord cutters who don't get TV reception. There are a LOT of people who are saddened by Alex's death but who truthfully haven't seen him in years. They like him, but not enough to take on a ridiculous cable bill just to watch the one show. Make a deal with Netflix or Hulu to stream current shows. Not old shows. Not shows on a one-day delay (though that would be better than the current situation). Make them available by 7:30 on game day at the latest.

I don't know what their current contracts will allow them to do. But if they can legally make this streaming arrangement, they need to do it NOW. Fire the Sony exec's nephew who got put in charge of Crackle and turn that into a legitimate option if you want. Many many many people will want to see Alex's last games, but they're not going to take on a cable bill to do so. Get those viewers now and you might hang on to some when the new host shows up.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by Woof »

I don’t see why host auditions have to be publicly aired, unless they do some sort of audience polling (doubtful) or want to rely on Nielsen numbers. I’d empanel three local J! Champs such as Brad, Pam and Buzzy and being them in to audition hosts. Tape 10 shows over 2 days, maybe get feedback from the champs, bring in as many candidates as you’ve got enthusiasm for and put em through the paces. You could probably do it all between now and the New Year.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by MattKnowles »

I hope they increase the prize money. I read somewhere online that Alex was making more than the contestants every show but I don’t know the details or if that’s even true. As a cultural icon with more than 30 years as the face of the show he was worth more to the show than anybody they can bring on now.

I think the next host should be a hologram of Alex Trebek. When the deceased Tupac performed at Coachella a few years ago I believe there was somebody else offscreen backstage who was performing and driving the hologram. So the hologram Alex Trebek would still be able to interact with the guests.

This would also hit the sweet spot in the difficult task of finding a middle ground between “do something new” and “don’t change anything.”

This would also prevent the potential issue of a new host leaving after a couple years and having a revolving door. The upfront cost might be substantial but then you’d save on hosting costs afterwards.

I feel like this is completely feasible but I haven’t heard any other support for it. It also brings up a weird question about whether Sony has the perpetual rights to use his likeness.
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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by Robert K S »

MattKnowles wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 3:57 pm
I think the next host should be a hologram of Alex Trebek.
If human-Alex had lasted another 50 years as host, we might have the AI technology in place to robustly handle the variety of inputs that the show would potentially present. As it stands, I don't think Trebektron 5000 is in the cards from a technological feasibility standpoint, irrespective of publicity rights under California law.

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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by triviawayne »

opusthepenguin wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 2:37 pm


I don't know what their current contracts will allow them to do. But if they can legally make this streaming arrangement, they need to do it NOW. Fire the Sony exec's nephew who got put in charge of Crackle and turn that into a legitimate option if you want. Many many many people will want to see Alex's last games, but they're not going to take on a cable bill to do so. Get those viewers now and you might hang on to some when the new host shows up.
I'm sure it's just an oral contract, so there should be no problem...
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Re: What ought to happen next?

Post by trainman »

opusthepenguin wrote:
Fri Nov 13, 2020 2:37 pm
But if they can legally make this streaming arrangement, they need to do it NOW.
They can't, due to their contracts with the various local stations that air the show.

(Most, if not all, first-run syndicated shows are in the same situation.)

(Why not renegotiate the contracts to allow a streaming option? Because the accountants believe that amount they make by selling the show to local stations with complete exclusivity is a higher number than amount they make by selling to local stations on a non-exclusive basis plus selling to a streaming service to air the same day. One big part of the equation is that the local stations get to keep most of the advertising time to sell locally, so it's in their interest to make sure they have as many viewers as possible.)

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