JEOPARDY’s Mayim Bialik has broken her silence on her fight with Ken Jennings to be named host.
She revealed she’s read “deeply insulting” comments from fans when asked about their battle.
Jeopardy!’s Mayim Bialik revealed she’s read some ‘deeply insulting’ commentsCredit: ABC
The actress was then asked point-blank if she knows many viewers ‘prefer’ Ken JenningsCredit: YouTube/Jeopardy
The permanent hosting slot, however, is said to be decided any day now as Season 38 is ending in July 2022.
Many Ken-leaning viewers are waiting with bated breath for the alum to return and to find out who will host next season.
But Mayim has revealed she’s been reading the comments in the meantime, so to speak, about it all.
She had actor Justin Long on her podcast Bialik Breakdown this month, who shared that he and his family are longtime fans of the show.
Justin then buzzed in on if she has heard comments about viewers preferring Ken.
“Sometimes,” Mayim shockingly replied.
“Sometimes I get ‘We don’t prefer you to Ken.’”
“Isn’t that wild?” Justin replied. “Well, it’s the only profession that I can think of — where people will tell you deeply insulting things but with a big smile?”
But Mayim quickly pivoted to discuss the looks category instead of the gameplay aspect of why that may be happening.
“[Fans will tell you] exactly how they feel Like ‘I saw you in a magazine. I was very confused. You looked pretty.’ I get that a lot.”
“Oh, jeez,” Justin responded. “This sounds like I’m bragging but…”
“You’re better looking in person?” Mayim interjected and moved on with a laugh.
SKIRTING AROUND THE ISSUE?
On Reddit, fans supported the actress feeling a ‘Daily Double’-standard.
“I don’t think anyone has criticized Ken’s suit choices or colors, or even how he styles his hair. That being said though, he is far more superior in hosting in a professional way,” one wrote.
But many also felt like the bigger issue on the board is her hosting chops.
Another wrote, “I don’t think anyone here has been commenting on her appearance and being that low.
“I think everyone here has been criticizing her actual performance as a host.”
A third wrote, “She is ok …… pause ….. but Ken is better and the show is more fun to watch when he hosts.”
A fourth commented, “Unfortunately women are judged for their appearance so much more than men.
As a fifth wrote, “It doesnt seem like she’s talking about insults from Jeopardy fans specifically other than people expressing their preference for Ken.
“It sounds more like she’s talking about weird backhanded comments about her appearance not related to Jeopardy.”
And a sixth, “Pretty sure if a guy dressed poorly people would complain. Remember how we all went wild for how well Buzzy [Cohen] dressed?
It’s not the first time Mayim has shifted the conversation away from if she is well-suited to instead talking about the so-called backlash of her literal suits.
One Jeopardy! book author wrote to Twitter in April, “There is an odd thing happening right now,
“In which Mayim Bialik has complained in multiple interviews about people going after her for reusing an orange blazer in multiple episodes, and making the point that men don’t face the same level of criticism over their wardrobes.”
“But what’s strange is…no one’s been able to find the supposed blazer criticism?
“She mentioned her mom talking about it … but that’s clearly not what she’s referencing.”
Jeopardy! Twitter favorite OneEclecticMom, who steadfastly recaps every single contestant’s clothing choice, and who Jeopardy! has written about, was also confused and claimed Mayim “made up” the wardrobe war.
She wrote, “MAYIM, NOBODY CRITICIZED YOU FOR THIS!!!
“Ken Jennings wore a certain purple tie 3x and I’m keeping track of that too. Stop trying to make “wardrobe controvery” happen!
It all started when Mayim herself tweeted, not citing any source, “That’s right! I repeated a blazer! You caught me! And I’ll do it again!
Indeed, the fan fury is rarely about her looks and more about her gameplay, as dozens of angry fans wrote under that post.
“This is not a good look,” one simply responded.
NOT MAKING A ‘BIG BANG’
The show’s ratings nearly doubled to 9.7M viewers when Ken made his first appearance.
When Mayim took over her hosting duties the headcount dropped to 5.9 million viewers during a college championship and indeed, she hasn’t bested Ken’s ratings since during Season 38.
While fans have found Mayim to be a perfectly plucky presence, hundreds have instead tweeted about her off-putting poise during the typically enjoyable Q&A shares, “slow” response time to contestants and controversially erroneous games compared to Ken.
Mayim has not spoken on any of this on her weekly podcast.
She also faced fan fury when a player’s signature was ruled too sloppy in FJ though she had seemingly written “Harriet Tubman.”
And last week – though not the actress-turned host’s fault – there was ironically a typo in Final Jeopardy just days after the spelling snub which couldn’t have come at a worse time.
Ken recently accepted the show’s Daytime Emmy without Mayim, which many felt was a hint he’d continue carrying the torch.
During the recent installment of his podcast, Omnibus, Ken also revealed he has already been scheduled for tapings in June for Season 39.
It’s been implied by execs that the actress could simply host spinoffs soon, perhaps with Buzzy Cohen – while Ken would host the main show, with “multiple hosts for the franchise” altogether.
Meanwhile, Mayim’s sitcom Call Me Kat was greenlit for another 22 episodes and a Season 3 this week – fans thinking this could be another sign Ken, otherwise commitment-free, could get it.
“I’m handing the keys back to the talented actor-producer-writer-director (!) Mayim Bialik for a few months,” the fan-favorite surprisingly tweeted in May, adding, “We are lucky to have her! I’ll be back before the end of the season.”
The final decision could come any day.
Jeopardy! host Mayim Bialik broke her silence on her battle with Ken JenningsCredit: ABC
She said she has been told fans ‘prefer’ Ken, but then said the ‘deeply insulting’ comments she’s gotten have been about her not being ‘pretty’Credit: Instagram/bialikbreakdown
Fans supported Mayim’s hurt feelings but also called shade on her inability to discuss gameplay instead of ‘blazer backlash’ some have said is ‘made up’Credit: Twitter
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