Alex Trebek's Jeopardy Retirement Isn't Happening As Soon As We Thought

jeopardy alex trebek

For longtime fans of daytime game shows, Alex Trebek's presence on Jeopardy! is likely as important as air, water and food. (Not hyperbolic in the slightest.) So it was understandably a huge bummer when he recently revealed talked about somewhat seriously contemplating his retirement. Thankfully, though, we don't need to fret about 2019 being his last full year as Jeopardy! host, as Trebek renewed his contract and will continue leading the charge until at least 2022.

Jeopardy! has been one of the most successful game shows in TV history, and Alex Trebek's latest contract negotiations will take the show into its 38th and 39th seasons. Which means we're getting even more of Alex's fashionable ties, more of his hilarious improvisations during contestant stories, and more of his hesitant looks to the judges whenever someone's guess is missing a syllable.

Earlier this year, though, the host's continued presence did not seem quite so set in stone. Alex Trebek spoke earlier this year about his current contract expiring in 2020, and said he felt there was around a 50% chance that he would choose to pack it in and retire from his high-profile TV gig. Considering he's been behind that Jeopardy! podium since 1984, many fans were temporarily disheartened by the sheer possibility that Trebek could leave.

Especially since 2018 in particular has already been quite an interesting year for both Alex Trebek and for Jeopardy! as a whole. On the down side, Trebek started the year off healing up after having blood clots removed from his brain. Aside from that, though, things were mostly on the up and up, and Jeopardy! finally entered the world of streaming for the first time, initially just on Hulu but now also as a part of Netflix.

In 2018, Jeopardy! experienced a rare first with a pretty specific tie-game ending, it had its share of wacky Final Jeopardy rounds, and it was also the setting for a mid-game wedding proposal. As well, Alex Trebek's facial hair became a talking point again, with the host growing out a full beard for a social media-inspired contest. (Spoilers: the beard got voted off.) Perhaps no greater feat was reached, however, than Alex Trebek joining the KISS Army for Halloween.

To be fair, whenever Jeopardy! announced its first ever All-Star Games team tournament, it wasn't hard to conceive the producers pulling out some last hurrahs in the event that Alex Trebek would be retiring. As arguably dorky as it may seem, seeing Austin Rogers, Ken Jennings and Julia Collins in the same tournament together is as historically magical as Jeopardy! gets, so it would have been a fitting way for Alex to bow out. They'll have to come up with something else down the road now, though.

Jeopardy! and Alex Trebek weren't the only ones getting good news out of this deal. Sony Pictures Television also renewed contracts with Pat Sajak and Vanna White, which will also bring Wheel of Fortune into 2022. It's reportedly the most-watched show on television in any given week's time, so Wheel's return was to be expected.

Jeopardy! airs five days a week when it's not in hiatus, so show off your trivia talents by tuning in each day. Check your local listings to see when and where its syndicated airings can be found in your area. And if your question is "What is on TV this fall?" then we've got all the answers with our fall TV schedule.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper.  Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.