A four-year-old clip of Alex Trebek jokingly referring to a Jeopardy! contestant as a "loser" resurfaced on Twitter this week. The clip highlights Trebeck's talent for coming up with jokes about the contestants when they introduce themselves after the first Jeopardy! round each night. However, the clip sparked a debate about Trebek's joke.
During an October 2016 Jeopardy! episode, Susan Cole of Bowie, Maryland told Trebek she is a fan of "nerdcore hip-hop." Trebek was confused, so he asked her to explain. "(The music features) rapping about the things they love,'' she replied. "Video games, science-fiction, having a hard time meeting romantic partners. It's really catchy and fun."
Trebek paused for a moment to think of the perfect response. "Losers, in other words," he said. The audience laughed, as did Cole. At that point, the viral video of the clips end. However, as Today.com pointed out back in 2016, Trebek later said, "I'm teasing."
Cole also got her revenge by winning the game that night. She took home $20,600 and went on a three-game winning streak. By the end, she earned $67,800. Still, the true legacy of her time on the show was the debate Trebek's comments caused, even four years later.
Jeopardy! fans will be stuck reliving classic moments for the forseeable future. The last original episode shot before the coronavirus pandemic shut down production will air on Friday, May 1. On May 4, Jeopardy! will start re-runs, beginning with the Greatest of All Time tournament, which originally aired in primetime on ABC in January.
Trebek is now batting stage four pancreatic cancer. He is working on his memoir, The Answer Is...: Reflections on My Life, which covers his battle with cancer, his marriage to Jean Currivan Trebek, his success and spirituality. The book delves into "what prompted him to shave his signature mustache, his insights on legendary players like Ken Jennings and James Holzhauer, and his opinion of Will Ferrell's Saturday Night Live impersonation." The book is scheduled for release on July 21.
'Absolutely owned by Alex Trebek'
She got absolutely owned by Alex Trebek and deserved it pic.twitter.com/WTYvFueLPo— 🥺😈 (@olivia_vault) April 22, 2020
That's AWEFUL! Shame on him. God knows enough people who watch a quiz show are pretty damn nerdy.— Paula Mine (@Lasttoletyoudwn) April 23, 2020
'Calling someone a 'loser' based on nerdy activities seems mean-spirited'
I'm sorry Alex is sick, but calling someone a "loser" based on nerdy activities seems mean-spirited.— Shawn Marshall (@WShawnM) April 23, 2020
Apparently throwing a middle school insult at someone who’s probably a thousand times more talented than you counts as “owning” now.— Chip Hollingsworth (@cholling13) April 23, 2020
'Alex Trebek destroyed this woman'
Wow Alex Trebek destroyed this woman 💀 pic.twitter.com/PUSENSVehi— Daniel Newmaη (@DanielNewman) April 23, 2020
And completely unnecessary. How derogatory & demeaning. For the lady & those she was describing. pic.twitter.com/mNxykvKva8— Connie Redlich (@RedlichConnie) April 23, 2020
LMAO, its Alex so he's forgiven. He's a national treasure in my book...like Betty White— Jovian Ford (@AfterMidNiteJov) April 23, 2020
Petition to get Pitchfork to take on Alex Trebek as a freelancer so he can just savagely dunk on nerdy music— Ashley Naftule (@ashleynaftule) April 23, 2020
'Surprised Alex Trebek was that rude'
🧐 I'm surprised Alex trebek was that rude.. But damn was that a burn https://t.co/IVdLCl328x— Moira, social distancing since 2005🖤🖤🦇🦇🕸️🕷️ (@moira_leisy) April 23, 2020
I thought Alex Trebek was trending because he died, thankfully he didn't but there was a death involved. https://t.co/WtlWIJqaO4— Refined Flamboyance (@refinedflamboy1) April 23, 2020