It’s especially tough to swallow for those hoping Star Trek actor LeVar Burton would get the gig. Burton, who guest-hosted last week, had been passionately campaigning to take the reins and had amassed quite a following of loyal supporters.
Following Variety‘s report that Sony Pictures is in “advanced negotiations” with Richards to take over from the late great Alex Trebek, fans took to social media to share their reactions, many of them shocked or disappointed.
“YALL COULD HAVE A WHOLE ICONIC LEVAR BURTON BUT YOU PICKING CHAD MCWHITERSON FOR… WHAT???” tweeted author Luvvie Ajayi Jones. Many agreed with Jones’ assessment, with activist and writer Charlotte Clymer stating, “LeVar Burton should be the next host of “Jeopardy!” I can’t believe we’re even having this discussion. He’s the obvious choice.”
Check out more reactions below.
YALL COULD HAVE A WHOLE ICONIC LEVAR BURTON BUT YOU PICKING CHAD MCWHITERSON FOR… WHAT???https://t.co/Ks2I7ymhYi
— Luvvie is the #ProfessionalTroublemaker (@Luvvie) August 4, 2021
LeVar Burton should be the next host of “Jeopardy!” I can’t believe we’re even having this discussion. He’s the obvious choice.
— Charlotte Clymer ️ (@cmclymer) August 4, 2021
Can you hear the direction the fans are leaning? @levarburton is the only choice for host. You’re about to lose viewers in droves.
— Frankie Daniels (@TheDeviantSaint) August 5, 2021
TFW you hear Jeopardy is in negotiations to make Mike Richards the permanent host and NOT LeVar Burton. pic.twitter.com/Mj0XXxHOXK
— Humble Canuck DM #EveryChildMatters (@Nestene) August 4, 2021
Everyone: We would love to have Levar Burton host of Jeopardy.
Levar Burton: Yes please.
Jeopardy: We will give the job to the guy who hosted Beauty and the Geek, Mike Richards.
— Danny Deraney (@DannyDeraney) August 4, 2021
I know zilch about Mike Richards, so nothing against him – but if the permanent host isn’t Levar Burton, then I don’t want it https://t.co/xzQ24A3nbY
— Patrick Pittis (@StumbleJohnson) August 4, 2021
While Burton might be the overwhelming fan favorite, there was plenty of support for other previous guest hosts, too, including The Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik, former Jeopardy! champion Buzzy Cohen, and current guest host David Faber.
I LOVE LeVar and was rooting for him–but I thought he was pretty bad in his audition. Thought Mayim was best, with Aaron Rodgers and David Faber close seconds. But Richards? Please. Meh.
— Bullmoose Fan (@BullmooseF) August 5, 2021
All these folks saying ‘pick LeVar’ or ‘Alex woulda picked LeVar’ — at least half, maybe more, rarely even watch the show. Sorry, LeVar came off like he was doing Shakespeare-in-the-Park all week.
Although I feel Buzzy would have been the best choice, Mike will do a great job.
— Merrick (@broddybounce) August 5, 2021
I personally like David Faber for permanent host but ok with Mike Richards, JUST PLEASE NOT LEVAR BURTON.
— Barbara Vaden (@BarbVaden) August 4, 2021
— (@SotoWE1) August 5, 2021
David Faber is doing an awesome job. Great energy, pacing and player interviews. The only one who comes close is @buzztronics
— Hilo Greg (@HiloGreg) August 5, 2021
On the contrary, Dr. Mayim Bialik should be the next hostess of “Jeopardy!” She is the obvious choice.
— Robert E. Juliano (@julianorobertrj) August 4, 2021
Not everyone is opposed to Richards becoming the permanent host, however. “I don’t understand why everyone is so against Mike Richards as the new permanent host. He was affable, humorous, & would make a fine replacement for Alex,” wrote one viewer. And there were others that felt similarly.
I don’t understand why everyone is so against Mike Richards as the new permanent host. He was affable, humorous, & would make a fine replacement for Alex. Same goes for David Faber. And btw, I absolutely love LeVar Burton as an actor and human being.
— FDV (@DelVecchioF) August 4, 2021
Mike Richards was wonderful… and why wouldn’t he be? He’s been developing Jeopardy for years. Intelligent, interesting, and no annoying habits.
— Pat Vitatoe (@PatVitatoelp) August 5, 2021
While negotiations are said to be in advanced stages, an official decision has yet to be made regarding the new host. A Sony Pictures spokesperson told Variety that talks are still ongoing with other potential candidates still in the race, though the word “frontrunner” was used to describe Richards.
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