The announcement last week that Mike Richards, executive producer of daytime game show Jeopardy!, would take on hosting duties from the late Alex Trebek, was met with a rather lukewarm response from viewers. While Richards’ stint as a guest host was inoffensive, many viewers didn’t feel any particular attachment to him, and for some, the executive producer becoming the host of his own show felt somewhat like bad taste. As it turns out, that’s not the only spot of bad taste Richards has going for him.
An investigation published by The Ringer earlier in the week revealed several instances of Richards making disparaging comments about women and minority groups during his time as the host of podcast The Randumb Show. These comments have quickly circulated online, casting Richards in a rather unpleasant light. In light of this, Richards has decided to back down from the Jeopardy! hosting position.
“It pains me that these past incidents and comments have cast such a shadow on Jeopardy! as we look to start a new chapter,” he wrote in a memo obtained by People Magazine.
“As I mentioned last week, I was deeply honored to be asked to host the syndicated show and was thrilled by the opportunity to expand my role. However, over the last several days it has become clear that moving forward as host would be too much of a distraction for our fans and not the right move for the show,” he continued. “As such, I will be stepping down as host effective immediately. As a result, we will be canceling production today.”
Mike Richards, the new host of “Jeopardy!”, says he has stepped down after controversial remarks he made about women and others resurfaced https://t.co/tZZMHPTtcd
— CNN (@CNN) August 20, 2021
“I want to apologize to each of you for the unwanted negative attention that has come to Jeopardy! over the last few weeks and for the confusion and delays this is now causing. I know I have a lot of work to do to regain your trust and confidence,” Richards concluded.
For the time being, Jeopardy! will return to rotating guest hosts.