Dr. Mehmet Oz's Monday night debut as the guest host of Jeopardy! was met with little fanfafre from viewers. As Monday night kicked off the controversial TV personality's two-week stint in the role, Dr. Oz becoming the latest celeb to stand in place of the late Alex Trebek, outrage sparked on social media, with some even calling to "Boycott Jeopardy."
The controversial TV doctor began his guest hosting duties by reflecting on his relationship with Trebek, telling viewers that he was "so fortunate to become friends with Alex, and I visited him and this show as often as I could." He added that one of his "favorite memories was of Alex showing me, with immense pride, a room full of letters and support for him from you, from his fans. And of all of his achievements he was most proud of his connection with all of you at home." As the show continued, however, social media was not flooded with fondness of Dr. Oz, but was rather upset, and the hashtag "#BoycottJeopardy!" even began trending on Twitter as viewers shared their distaste with the most recent guest host.
For the first time in literally decades I will not be watching #Jeopardy
I never thought Jeopardy would chase me away as a viewer but here we are https://t.co/VhaCVK9Pvz— Jonathan Jewel 🌊 (@jonathanjewel) March 22, 2021
Responding to Dr. Oz's role, one person said it was "a sickening insult to the memory of Alex Trebek" for Jeopardy! to give "his dangerous quack any more visibility." That person went on to state that the game show couldn't have picked "anyone more opposed to everything he stood for. You should be ashamed!" Several people shared that despite being longtime Jeopardy! viewers, they would "[Boycott Jeopardy!] while Dr. Oz is the guest host." Another person wrote that they would be taking "a two week break from watching. I'm not going to watch that charlatan!"
Dr. Oz is the latest guest host to fill the role left by Trebek, the beloved personality who had hosted the quiz show up until his death from pancreatic cancer. Dr. Oz, however, has long waded controversy, with USA Today noting that he has faced criticism for peddling controversial medical advice to his fans and scrutinized by a Senate panel in 2014 for using his talk show to promote dubious weight-loss products. A group of doctors in 2015 even sent a letter to Columbia University asking for Dr. Oz's dismissal from the medical school's faculty, and in April 2020, at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, the TV personality sparked outrage and said he "misspoke" after saying on Fox News that "the opening of schools may only cost us 2% to 3%, in terms of total mortality" which "might be a trade-off some folks would consider."
Dr. Oz is a schizer, a schill and a dangerous snake oil salesman. The biggest slap to the face of Alex Trebek’s memory that I could imagine. I love Jeopardy but, this week? I’ll #BoycottJeopardy— Only Josh (@grove808) March 23, 2021
Despite his past controversies and the fan backlash to his guest hosting role, Dr. Oz, who first appeared on Jeopardy! as a contestant in a celebrity edition in 2012, is set to fill in as guest host for two weeks until April 2. Other upcoming guest hosts include Anderson Cooper, Savannah Guthrie, and Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Other previously revealed guest hosts include Aaron Rodgers, Katie Couric, Bill Whitaker, Mayim Bialik and Jeopardy! executive producer Mike Richards.