The whole Jeopardy! hosting fiasco will not die down anytime soon. And that’s not too much of a surprise, given the beloved status of the late Alex Trebek. The selection promise was bound to upset at least some people, although if LeVar Burton had risen victorious, there would have been a lot of happy people, too. Yet producers’ decision to elevate executive producer, Mike Richards, into full-time host duties (of the syndicated flagship show), well, it hasn’t gone over universally well (and not even close). Even with Mayim Bialik picking up the primetime and spinoff variants, the fuss won’t stop against Richards. John Oliver, too, let everyone know that he also felt the “WTF” factor and couldn’t resist taking a swing on Last Week Tonight.
Granted, the Last Week Tonight host dealt with the subject swiftly and mercilessly and didn’t waste too much time on his take. He sandwiched his judgment in between the show’s deep dive (on ransomware) and the theatrics of antivaxxer GOP lawmakers like Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC). As Oliver discussed anti-masking parents who freaked out after a school board meeting, he noted that these parents threatened those who are pro-mask. “We know who you are,” one furious parent yelled in the face of a health-care expert. “You can leave freely, but we will find you.”
Oliver aired this footage with his own addition. “It is genuinely hard to imagine a five word phrase less welcome than ‘we know who you are,’” the host declared. “Aside from obviously ‘new Jeopardy! host Mike Richards.’”
Simple and effective. And worth noting: Oliver’s facial expression over those ragingly ridiculous parents who apparently wish to keep the Covid pandemic going.
Meanwhile, it’s also worth keeping an eye out for more anti-Richards shade from former Jeopardy! champs. Both James Holzhauer and Ken Jennings roasted the strategy of having two hosts, and it seems like a gift to Jennings from the late Trebek is causing people to wonder what the legend would have thought about this whole mess. Oh boy.