Alex Trebek has been one of the world’s most iconic TV personalities for nearly four decades as the host of the wildly successful game show “Jeopardy!” — with some memorable moments along the way.
Here’s a look at some of Trebek’s hosting highlights.
Trebek made quite an appearance to open one show in February 2007 — by walking out without his pants on to kick off the episode.
“I was informed backstage a few minutes ago that our three contestants, Ken, Brad, and Jerome, wanted to relieve some of the tension and they said, ‘We must do the program without trousers,’ ” he said.
“Can we get a camera behind to make sure that they have done the same as I?”
They hadn’t, and Trebek retreated backstage.
What is a hoe?
The clue seemed harmless enough.
“This term for a long-handled gardening tool can also mean an immoral pleasure seeker,” Trebek read.
“What’s a hoe,” contestant Ken Jennings answers.
“No. Whoa,” Trebek answers. “They teach you that in school in Utah, huh?”
The answer was a rake.
Watch me dance
Trebek busted some quick club dance moves in 2006.
“Take a whirl on the dance floor under these lights whose name comes from the Greek for the act of whirling.”
No one guessed the clue.
“And you see them in a lot of bars and nightclubs. Strobe lights,” Trebek said before doing his jerky thing.
It’s a rap
In January 2015 the featured Jeopardy! category was “It’s a Rap” — and Trebek did just that.
With clues featuring famous rap lyrics by Grandmaster Flash, Notorious B.I.G., the Beastie Boys, and Dr. Dre, the host got in the mood by rapping the clues.
“I’m nuthin’ but a G thang/Never let me slip ’cause if I slip then I’m slippin’.”
Loud and clear
In July 2012 Trebek resorted to using a bullhorn for one question.
“Take a look at me,” he told the contestants before pulling out a bullhorn. “Use this device to really get your point across.”
“What is a megaphone,” contestant AJ replies.
“You are right. No, you’re not right,” Trebek said. “I’m just falling in love with it.”
“What is a bullhorn?” another contestant, Brian, said.
“Bullhorn. Yes,” the host said.
Hamming it up with Hamlet
For this episode, Trebek hammed it up with some dramatic flair, using voice inflection to read Shakespeare for guests to guess the characters he was portraying.
“No, no, the drink, the drink,” he reads, raising his voice several octaves. “O my dear Hamlet, the drink, the drink. I am poisoned.”
Trebek autotunes himself
The category was, “Alex Autotunes Himself,” and that’s just what he did.
Contestants on the 2010 show were asked to guess the song Trebek was singing with a digitally altered voice — belting out “Famer in the Dell,” “Oh, Susannah,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “Go Down Moses,” and “Oh, Danny Boy” using the gizmo.
“You know, I sound that way every day when I’m not hosting Jeopardy!” he quipped.
Football is his game
The category was “Talkin’ Football,” but Trebek was the only one in the conversation.
All three contestants came up blank on the first four clues during the February 2018 episode, prompting Trebek to quip, “I can tell you guys are big football fans” after they fumbled the first three.
And again after the fourth clue comes and goes.
“Let’s look at the $1,000 clue, just for the fun of it,” Trebek joked. “If you guys ring in and get this one, I will die.”
No one ventured a guess on that one either.
“We’re gonna at take a break,” Trebek said to the camera. “I have to talk to them.”
‘We Love You, Alex’
In a rare on-camera show of emotion, a contestant’s answer got Trebek choked up during the “Final Jeopardy” round of the show’s “Tournament of Champions on Nov. 11, 2019.
The question was: “In the little of a groundbreaking 1890 expose of poverty in New York City slums, these 3 words follow ‘how the.’”
Contestant Dhruv Gaur, a Brown University student, was first to flip his card — eschewing the correct answer (“what is, ‘other half lives?’”) and instead writing “What is, We love you Alex!”
“That’s very kind of you,” Trebek answered while getting emotional. “Thank you.”
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