The former “Big Bang Theory” star is the latest in a long list of celebrity guest hosts on the latest season of the popular game show following the death of longtime host Alex Trebek, who died in November of 2020 following a lengthy battle with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. On Memorial Day, Bialik became the second woman to host the show following a stint by Katie Couric earlier this year. The actress and neuroscientist called the opportunity an “immense honor” for an academic like herself in the lead-up to her debut Monday, a sentiment she doubled down on during her first night.
“It is an incredible honor to guest host Jeopardy!,” Bialik said at the top of the show (via Yahoo Entertainment). “I was raised in a very creative and academic family, but it wasn’t until high school that I fell in love with science, and that love led me to a Ph.D. in neuroscience. I so appreciate that ‘Jeopardy!’ is a show that tests all aspects of intellect and allows the brightest minds to shine.”
It didn’t take long before viewers took to Twitter to praise her on her first night behind the infamous podium.
“Oh, I definitely like Mayim Bialik as a Jeopardy host,” one user wrote.
“Mayim Bialik being great as a Jeopardy! host should surprise pretty much no one,” another added.
“Mayim Bialik is doing great! Smart, controlled and confident. One of the best cohosts by far. #Jeopardy,” a third wrote.
“Awww! I love Mayim Bialik as the host of #Jeopardy. Of course she’d be great. She’s sweet, personable & very smart,” another added.
Bialik, who rarely watches her own performances, took to Twitter herself following the episode to share her thoughts on the experience.
“I watched myself and had all sorts of criticisms,” she joked. “My kids were like ‘what’s with your voice?’ and, first of all, that was me trying to put on my best ‘Jeopardy!’ voice. I was trying to sound friendly and cerebral.”
She went on to note that she filmed her “Jeopardy!” episodes right after wrapping her sitcom “Call Me Kat” and jokingly apologized to her doctor for exacerbating her “vocal burnout.”
“Anyway, my kids didn’t tease me too badly. I liked my blazer, I wish my waist was smaller, but I was pretty happy,” she concluded. “It was so surreal, it was very surreal to see myself there and I don’t know if I’ll get to watch every night, but I’d say it’s the only thing I’ve ever enjoyed watching myself in, mostly because I’m barely on camera.”
Bialik will continue as guest host of “Jeopardy!” for the next two weeks, wrapping up on June 11. Yahoo Entertainment reports that the show will match the contestant’s daily winning with a donation to The National Alliance for Mental Illness, a charity that Bialik herself chose.
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