As Jeopardy! fans around the world learn of the heartbreaking death of legendary host Alex Trebek, many are taking to social media to share their favorite moments from the show. After manning the helm for a mind-blowing 37 seasons and 8,200 episodes, Trebek gave us plenty of memories and moments to choose from. But it's one of the last Jeopardy! episodes to air that has us tearing up.
On November 5th, 2020, the iconic game show aired as usual. But the post-game chat is when things got emotional. Winner Burt Thakur, who earned $20,400 to become the newest champion, was asked by Trebek if he had any family members back home cheering him on.
As the camera panned back to Trebek, he looked almost stunned at the admission, and his impact on his audience young and old was evident.
As many touching moments as Alex Trebek left us with, there are plenty of hilarious moments to remember, too. The Jeopardy! host was known for his dry and witty humor, and in one October 2016 episode he really brought it out. In the episode, contestant Susan Cole explains her love of "nerdcore hip hop," a genre of music that sprung up at the turn of the millennium thanks to artists like MC Frontalot and MC Chris. It's a style Trebek admits he's never heard of, and he even says it, quote, "doesn't sound like fun," but Cole is undeterred.
Alex Trebek also knew how to use a joke to support the show's contestants. In 2005, as the show was taping its Tournament of Champions, tensions were reportedly high. Competitors Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter, and Jerome Vered joked that they were all completely pantsless behind their podiums. Trebek was amused by the concept, and decided to join in on the fun.
As the Tournament of Champions began, Trebek strode out in his usual jacket, tie, dress shirt, and pocket square, with just boxers, shoes, and dress socks on.
Unfortunately for Trebek, the contestants ended up chickening out on their agreement. Trebek demanded the camera reveal all three men wearing pants. Then, ever the good host, he simply strode back offstage while the contestants doubled over with laughter and the audience applauded.
Despite how much Trebek enjoyed gently joking with contestants, he still shared plenty of tender moments with them too. One of the most heart-wrenching Jeopardy! moments happened during a 2019 Tournament of Champions episode, which was shot after Trebek shared his cancer diagnosis.
Normally during Final Jeopardy, contestants are hunched over their podiums, focusing as they write down their answers. However, as the camera panned over contestant Dhruv Gaur, he just grinned at the audience. Trebek called on Gaur first, noting his smile.
Of course, the incorrect answer lost Gaur the remainder of his money, but he earned a place in Jeopardy! lore.
Soon, the "We Love You Alex' hashtag started trending on Twitter as fans shared their affection for the beloved host.
Based on the outpouring of love from fans after Trebek's passing, millions of viewers shared Gaur's sentiments. Trebek's final episode of Jeopardy! will air on Christmas Day, 2020, so get those tissues ready.
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