Alex Trebek’s final ‘Jeopardy!’ episode is a poignant tribute
“Merely one of the best.”
“Jeopardy!” honored late host Alex Trebek on his last episode internet hosting the present with a 90-second video montage showcasing his finest classic moments, notorious contestant quips and that megawatt smile via the years, set to Peter Allen’s “As soon as Earlier than I Go.”
The present launched the tribute, which is about to air on TV proper after the episode, early on Twitter and YouTube for followers to savor the second.
Friday marked the day followers have been dreading: the end result of the final week of episodes Trebek filmed earlier than he died on Nov. 8 at age 80 after a battle with pancreatic most cancers. On Twitter main as much as the ultimate episode, “Jeopardy!” loyalists have tweeted a flurry of crying emojis, noting they weren’t ready for his or her last time with the beloved, witty and snarky however polished host who has been the sport present’s shining mild since 1984. The ultimate week of episodes was scheduled to air through the week of Christmas, however Sony pushed them again so followers might have extra time to get pleasure from their last moments with Trebek.
However for the beloved host of “America’s Favourite Quiz Present” gone too quickly, there actually is rarely a superb time to say goodbye — though his reminiscence lives on endlessly in his many epic moments.
“Jeopardy!” producer Sony Photos Tv mentioned the particular tribute would honor “the life and work of the person who captained [‘Jeopardy!’] with talent, type, and class for 36+ years,” in keeping with an announcement launched by the corporate.
The tribute was slated to air on the finish of the present, earlier than the credit, however was launched early. It included humorous moments from the present, together with Trebek dressed as Kiss’ Gene Simmons and the Statue of Liberty, a few of his most infamous quips with contestants and even classic footage from his earliest days — with a mustache — on “Jeopardy!” 37 years in the past. The tribute concluded with Trebek saying, “So lengthy,” many instances through the years — as he at all times did — and a dedication to Trebek: “Without end in our Hearts, All the time our Inspiration.”
Paying their respects
Well-known contestants additionally paid their respects to Trebek forward of his last episode.
“After greater than thirty-six years and eight,200+ exhibits, Alex Trebek’s final recreation of ‘Jeopardy!’ airs at this time. That’s extra Tonight Exhibits than Carson did, 3 times as many Each day Exhibits as Jon Stewart,” wrote all-time winner and new interim visitor host Ken Jennings. “Alex was at all times a well-known TV face, however it was so gratifying over the last years of his life to see him universally acknowledged because the nationwide treasure (or bi-national treasure!) that he was. We’re at all times going to overlook him. Thanks for every little thing, Alex.”
“I’m nonetheless not able to say goodbye to Alex Trebek, however I’ll strive,” James Holzhauer, the third-highest-earning contestant, wrote on Twitter. “It’s simple to overlook that ‘Jeopardy!’ is mainly ‘Let’s watch these three strangers take a GED take a look at, besides they should fake THEY’RE asking US the questions as a result of causes’. Alex made that idea into the largest factor on TV, right into a lifelong dream for potential contestants. Just one particular person might have pulled that off, and he did it via illness and well being each weekday for my whole life. I really feel very grateful for the time we had collectively — not simply within the studio but additionally in my lounge, the place he’s felt like a member of the household for 30+ years.”
He concluded: “So lengthy, previous pal. The ‘Jeopardy!’ music will at all times carry a tear to my eye.”
In a prolonged op-ed on CNN.com, contestant Albert Thakur — who informed Trebek he “discovered English due to” him in a viral show moment stuffed with tears — known as the host a “miracle.”
“I acquired to inform a person I’d by no means met how a lot of an affect he had on my life, and acquired to thank him,” Thakur wrote.
His last goodbye
Trebek has mentioned he would wish however a mere 30 seconds to present his last sign-off message to followers, who’ve watched him grace the display as a relaxing however witty pressure on the fast-paced recreation present in over 8,200 episodes.
“I’ll say my goodbyes and I’ll inform individuals, ‘Don’t ask me who’s going to exchange me as a result of I’ve no say by any means. However I’m certain that when you give them the identical love and a spotlight and respect that you’ve proven me … then they are going to be successful and the present will proceed being successful,’ ” he mentioned in January 2020. “And till we meet once more, God bless you and goodbye.”
Nonetheless, Trebek by no means acquired to document his goodbye, in keeping with The Wrap, since his “passing was so sudden that he by no means had an opportunity to say what he had ready.”
Monday’s message served as his last goodbye.
In that episode — the primary to air from his last week of filming in late October — Trebek delivered his personal highly effective message about togetherness.
“You’ll recall that a few month in the past, I requested all of you to take a second to present thanks for the entire blessings that you simply get pleasure from in your lives,” the host — who’s survived by his spouse, Jean Currivan Trebek, and two youngsters — mentioned. “Now, at this time, a special sort of message. That is the season of giving. I do know you wish to be beneficiant with your loved ones, your pals, your family members.”
He continued: “However at this time, I’d such as you to go one step additional. I’d such as you to open up your palms and open up your hearts to those that are nonetheless struggling due to COVID-19. People who find themselves struggling via no fault of their very own. We’re attempting to construct a gentler, kinder society, and if all of us pitch in — just a bit bit — we’re gonna get there.”
Mike Richards, the sport present’s govt producer, told NBC’s “Today” present that the impromptu monologue viewers watched Monday evening gave the crew chills — and so they instantly erupted into applause behind-the-scenes on the set.
“On this very particular, unbelievable last week, he comes out and provides a chat in regards to the significance of togetherness and sticking collectively and that the world is struggling however that we now have to get via it collectively,” mentioned Richards. “We had chills. There are particular moments in ‘Jeopardy!’ once you clap, after which there are moments when you find yourself quiet. There’s not that many individuals within the studio due to COVID, and all of us burst into applause. We had been so moved that we needed to applaud.”
‘He was in huge ache’
In the identical “At present” interview, Richards additionally revealed that Trebek, who first introduced his most cancers analysis in March 2019, was hospitalized the week earlier than the final batch of episodes had been filmed. His final day of filming was Oct. 29, 2020 — simply 10 days earlier than he handed.
“He was an absolute warrior,” Richards informed “At present.” “And what he was in a position to do by getting himself again to the set to tape these last episodes … it was Herculean. He was in huge ache, he was 10 days away from passing away, and you’ll not sense any of that in these episodes.”
Trebek additionally insisted that the ultimate week of tapings not be canceled, Richards mentioned, regardless of his hospitalization.
OSTRAVA, Czech Republic — All three cremation chambers are working…
“He calls me and he says, ‘Mike, I’m going to be nice. I’ll be in to tape. I used to be in a position to eat Jell-O at this time,’ ” Richards recalled. “And I went, ‘Alex, that’s nice, however that doesn’t imply you’re going to be able to host 5 episodes of a recreation present, which is a gigantic quantity of effort.’ And he mentioned, ‘Don’t cancel. I can be there.’ ”
And there he was. Trebek, who mentioned he would perform his internet hosting duties “so long as my expertise don’t diminish,” didn’t falter Friday, with the present working like enterprise as traditional.
A everlasting alternative has not been put forth by distributor CBS Tv and producer Sony Tv, however there was loads of hypothesis as to who will take over the job. For now, there can be interim hosts on a rotating foundation, together with the likes of champ Ken Jennings and even Katie Couric. Followers have lengthy anticipated Jennings, 46, to be the pure successor, even going as far as to say he’s been groomed for the job through the years. He even lately pre-apologized for “insensitive” tweets in his previous, fueling rumors even additional.
Trebek, although, has solely given producers some mild strategies as to who he thinks can host the present after him — a tricky act to observe. Whereas he’s been mum about his mild suggestions, his cheekiness — no, not the time he confirmed up on set with out pants — that followers have lengthy adored was on full show when he put forth one identify specifically.
“When individuals ask me who I’d wish to see substitute me, I say, ‘Effectively, it’s most likely going to be a girl, and he or she’ll should be vibrant, she’ll should have a superb humorousness…’,” he as soon as informed TVLine. “Uhhhh, let’s see…. Betty White! Betty White is my selection.”
“I joke with the viewers on a regular basis,” he as soon as mentioned, “and I say, ‘Betty White,’ as a result of they need any individual youthful, any individual funnier.”
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