Jeopardy! contestant Ken Jennings is speaking out after the list of 2021 Grammy nominees was revealed on Tuesday. Jennings earned his first nomination, being recognized in the Best Spoken Word Album field for narrating Alex Trebek's memoir, The Answer Is…Reflections on My Life, which was released in July, though he believes the honor "should 100%" be the longtime game show host's.
Taking to Twitter to react to the news just after the list was revealed, Jennings simply wrote, "Wait, what?" He went on to suggest that the nomination should also posthumously go to Trebek, who died on Sunday, Nov. 8 following a public battle with pancreatic cancer. Jennings said that "this should 100% be Alex's Grammy nomination. He wrote the book and reads much of the audiobook! Who do I speak to about this?"
I want to win this for Alex, but taking down Meryl Streep (& Full Cast) is gonna be sweet. pic.twitter.com/w9ARunPoFD— Ken Jennings (@KenJennings) November 24, 2020
Jennings is currently up against Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea for his memoir Acid For the Children, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow for the reading of her book Blowout: Corrupted Democracy, Rogue State Russia, And The Richest, Most Destructive Industry On Earth, Ronan Farrow for Catch And Kill, and Meryl Streep for a reading of E.B. White's Charlotte's Web. It remains to be seen if Trebek will ultimately be a nominee. According to TMZ, Simon & Schuster had submitted both Jennings and Trebek's names for consideration, as they had each voiced the book. The publisher is reportedly planning to contact the Grammys for answers.
Trebek's memoir was published earlier this year and showcased the game show host reflecting on his legacy and final days following his stage four pancreatic cancer diagnosis. Writing on how he wished to be remembered, Trebek wrote, "I suppose if I had to answer I would say I'd like to be remembered first of all as a good and loving husband and father, and also as a decent man who did his best to help people perform at their best. Because that was my job."
Trebek died earlier this month at the age of 80. He worked up until just 10 days before his death. In total, Trebek hosted more than 8,000 episodes of Jeopardy!, with his final episode set to air on Christmas Day. The game show has since resumed filming, with Jennings currently acting as "interim guest host."