Jeopardy and its beloved host Alex Trebek were parodied and impersonated countless times during its star’s incredible 35 plus year tenure. The affable Canadian American was supportive of most of the laughs, and apparently that support extended to the recent Black Jeopardy SNL sketches with Kenan Thompson. Prior to his tragic passing, Trebek reportedly ran into Thompson at the NHL Awards. They talked about a variety of things including the Black Jeopardy sketches and the Jeopardy host had nothing but positive things to say.
Kenan Thompson made a recent appearance on the popular YouTube show Hot Ones. During the conversation, he was asked if Alex Trebek had feelings on Black Jeopardy, and he told the story of the two meeting and what their conversation was like. You can check out a partial excerpt from that story below…
He actually said, ‘God bless you for figuring out a way to do a Jeopardy! behind the legendary Will Ferrell’s Jeopardy!’... He was patting me on the back about that, but I was patting him on the back for probably being one of the smartest people in the world. Because it seems like he knows the answer to all of those Jeopardy questions. He has a way of responding to each question like, ‘No, of course, it’s this, and that, and the other, because I read this book or I’ve known about this historic town in Rome.’ You know what I’m saying? He was incredible.
You never quite know how celebrities are going to respond to impressions on Saturday Night Live. That’s true when it’s the person themselves getting the treatment, and it’s also true when it’s more of a general commentary on a TV show or movie they’re a part of. Kenan Thompson knows that better than anyone, given his 18 year tenure on the beloved late night show. But then again, it’s not really a surprise to see Alex Trebek took something in stride. He reportedly told SNL head Lorne Michaels that he loved the Will Ferrell Jeopardy sketches, as well.
No one will ever be able to replace Trebek on Jeopardy, but with his blessing, the show will continue. Right now, the plan is to work its way through a series of guest hosts. Popular former winner Ken Jennings went first and did a terrific job. Right now executive producer Mike Richards is getting his chance and also performing admirably. The schedule beyond that is a little unclear, but we know we’ll be getting a deep roster of talent including journalist Katie Couric and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
As for Kenan Thompson, his sitcom, aptly named Kenan, recently premiered on NBC. Right now the plan is for him to continue appearing on Saturday Night Live in addition to his other duties. It’s unclear if that means we’ll get more Black Jeopardy sketches in the future, but if they do happen, it’s good to know they’ll happen with Trebek’s blessing.