Jeopardy Guest Hosts Reviewed

My Continuing Look At those Who Sit In For Alex Trebek

She’s not Mayim or Buzzy, but she’s good for Today

Savannah Guthrie: All right, clearly current Today Show hosts are better than past ones, at least when it comes to Jeopardy.

Continuing a trend of having bubbly and cheerful guest hosts, Guthrie has a better spirit for the series than so many of the other journalists that have done so over the past few months. Much like Bialik she comments appropriately when each clue calls for it. She is charming in all of the interview segments and she is light-hearted in her approach. It has also helped matter that during her first week, there have also some really competitive matches and some very good champions. (I’m not certain whether inserting commentary for certain clues is the correct approach so far, but both Bialik and Guthrie have really made it enjoyable) It also helps that she takes thing lightly when they should be, and seriously in Final Jeopardy.

I thought that anyone who followed just brilliant work that Buzzy and Bialik gave in their stints would inevitably be a disappointment. But while Guthrie is not quite at their level, she is heads above so many of those that have come before. I don’t if she’s going to have time to do this, but maybe she could keep her options when her next negotiation with NBC comes up?

My score: 4.5 stars.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta: Maybe it’s his CNN credentials or the fact that he’s a more reputable doctor than Dr. Oz, but I think this doctor better suited than the previous medical professional who held this job.

Admittedly he’s not nearly as bubbly as Guthrie or Bialik have been or with the right measure of enthusiasm than Buzzy Cohen delivered. Indeed, the matter-of –fact way he delivers a lot of his clues is reminiscent of the monotone approach that far too many of his fellow journalists have demonstrated. But in his case being an expert on medicine may have actually helped more than some of the others — he knows how to deliver facts more clearly than so many of his previous hosts. He also seems to smile more than most of them, a not inconsiderable difference. He’s also been helped immensely by having some good games in his first week and for the first time in a very long time this year, a five time champion in Courtney Shah. He’s admitted that its been nice seeing her in all of his games this week — even admitted to being surprised at her being in third place for the first time prior to Final Jeopardy — but has never done anything like playing favorites

He’s still fairly diminished in comparison to his predecessors, but I do prefer him to so many of his fellow journalists as guest host. In this case, I’m fine as long as this doctor is in. (Sorry.)

My score: 4 stars.



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David B Morris

After years of laboring for love in my blog on TV, I have decided to expand my horizons by blogging about my great love to a new and hopefully wider field.