Alex Trebek Is Still Very Much the Host of ‘Jeopardy!’

Jeopardy! just premiered its new season, to the delight of its fans.

Even more exciting for fans was the return of host Alex Trebek. Since his 2019 announcement of a pancreatic cancer diagnosis, the show’s followers have been concerned, vigilant, and simply relieved to have Trebek at the helm of the game show.

This week, with the classic quiz show starting its 37th season, Trebek proved he basically is Jeopardy!

Alex Trebek
Alex Trebek | Paul Morigi/Getty Images

Alex Trebek just kicked off 37th season

This week, Alex Trebek, now 80, proved he’s still firmly at the helm of the long-running quiz show. Although COVID-19 guidelines keep him from approaching contestants’ podiums as he’s done throughout the years, it’s clear he’s delighted to be back doing what he does best.

“I feel good, and I feel excited because once again Jeopardy! has demonstrated that it’s at the forefront of television programming,” Trebek said on the show’s website. “I believe we are the first quiz show to come
back on the air in the COVID-19 era. On a personal level, I’m excited because it gets me out of the house. It gives me something to do on a regular basis, and I was missing that.”

Fans chimed in on the show’s Instagram page, saying “So great that Alex and the show are back,” “So happy you are back Alex!!!! America loves you and needs you!!!,” and “Almost more exciting than football being back.”

Ken Jennings will be reading category clues

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Now part of the Jeopardy! staff, former show champ Ken Jennings’ duties include presenting video clues for various categories on the show, much like the Clue Crew in the past has done.

As a consulting producer on the show, Jennings will also be conducting contestant outreach, and will serve as an ambassador for the show.

As Jennings told Good Morning America in Sept. 2020, “I probably know as much or think as much about ‘Jeopardy!’ as anybody in the world who’s not on the payroll, so I’m happy to be on the team.”

“It’s a great gig being a goodwill ambassador for a show that has so much goodwill,” Jennings concluded.

Trebek has been working through pain of cancer treatment

Alex Trebek has been honest about the ups and agonizing downs he’s endured throughout his cancer treatments. He’s talked of being on the ground writhing in pain in his dressing room leaving his staff to wonder if he would be able to do the show. As he wrote in his 2020 book, The Answer Is…, being Jeopardy!‘s host gives him purpose.

“It’s not like I trudge to work every week and say, ‘Oh, gosh, I’ve gotta do Jeopardy! again.’ It invigorates me,” Trebek wrote. “It’s the strangest thing now with cancer: there are days when I’m just a basket case before we tape. I can barely walk to the production meeting. But when Johnny introduces me and I get out onstage, it all changes suddenly. I’m myself again.”