Back in July, long-time “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek stunned regular viewers of the legendary game show when he announced his intention to retire from hosting the program in the year 2020, when his contract runs out. He even mentioned some suggestions as to who might be a great replacement for his host spot on the syndicated show from Jeopardy Productions, Sony Pictures TV and CBS TV Distrbution. Still, that is some years off, so for now he remains on “Jeopardy!” as it goes into its 35th season. But there is a significant new change coming, particularly on Trebek’s familiar face.
USA Today has it that upon the start of the latest syndicated season for the “Jeopardy!” game show, viewers were taken by surprise at a new feature with host Alex Trebek. In the past he is recognizable in the show as either his younger curly-haired mustachioed look or the older grey-haired clean-shaven mien. Now, to mix things up visually Trebek is now going to rock a beard in this new series of episodes, asking of contestants the right questions to his board of answers. The host first previewed his new look on social media and reactions were, as expected, divided.
“No need to inquire how I spent my summer vacation,” Trebek started off at the beginning of the first episode of “Jeopardy!” season 35. “Things got a little out of hand. Hopefully it won’t be a distraction for our players.” But that is a vain hope, as already viewers of the game show have begun hashing out the pros and cons of Trebek’s new facial hair, now known by the hash-tag descriptor #Trebeard. A poll was even started on Twitter to gauge support or opposition to the “Jeopardy!” host’s new style; of over 7,000 votes, 67% were okay, 33% not.
Alex Trebek first appeared as host of “Jeopardy!” in 1989 sporting a familiar eighties mustache, which began to gray with the passing of years until he eventually shaved it, barring a brief return in 2014. This season in syndication is the first time Trebek sported a full, if not bushy, beard while hosting the game show, and there is no telling just how long he is going to keep that. Whatever the case, this little furore over a little facial hair is a fair indicator that “Jeopardy!” still has an engaged audience, never mind the prospect of Trebek retiring 2020.
Image courtesy of E! Online