Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak made a fairly major error during Friday's episode of the long-running game show, an uncharacteristic movie for the longtime host. During the show's bonus round, Sajak accidentally opened the envelope the contestant had selected containing the prize they would win should they solve the puzzle at the beginning of the segment rather than the end, which immediately caused him to start laughing.
After the contestant in question chose the card from the "E" spot on the wheel, Sajak struggled to remove the card for a moment before succeeding and immediately opening it before realizing what he did. "Oh, I already looked at it," he said, closing the envelope and leaning on the wheel with a chuckle. "I'm not sure why I did that. But I know what she's playing for, and you don't." To make the moment extra funny, the category for the bonus round's puzzle was "What Are You Doing?" Viewers online immediately caught on to the error and began posting about it, and the show even responded with a meme.
During the show's closing credits, Vanna White told Sajak that she's never seen him make a mistake like that in all the years they have been working on the show together. "There’s a first time for every mistake. Even I’m not perfect," he said, joking, "I know that’s shocking news." He also recalled another mistake he made during one of his many episodes. "The puzzle was ‘quarterback’ and the category was ‘person’ and I said the category was ‘quarterback,’ which kind of was too big a clue," he said.
Who else thought, "What is Pat doing?" 😂 pic.twitter.com/izBO0qSwsq— Wheel of Fortune (@WheelofFortune) February 20, 2021
Wheel of Fortune has been on the air since 1975 and Sajak stepped in as host in 1982, a position he has held for nearly 40 years since. When the show's 2018-2019 season premiered, Sajak became the longest-running host of any game show, passing former The Price Is Right host Bob Barker. He was officially given the honor by the Guinness World Records with the Wheel of Fortune episode taped on March 22, 2019, which aired that May.