There was no way tonight was going to feel anything but weird and sad. However, Ken Jennings did a hell of a job keeping it together there in the first Jeopardy since Alex Trebek's death.
I don't know if it was the change in voice, the pacing, or just the general vibe of everything. But Jeopardy just feels like a completely different gameshow now. A bit colder or hollower. I guess that's what happens when you have the same host for 36 years who just so happens to be the perfect mix of funny and classy while never taking himself seriously, which made him one of the most beloved celebrities on the planet. It's like going from warm fleece sheets in your childhood bed to a new bed with new sheets straight from Bed Bath And Beyond without washing them once. Everything feels cold and new and strange. To be fair to Ken, that would've been the case for literally every other human on the planet trying to fill Trebek's size one million shoes. The fact is Jeopardy will probably never be the same show again. And that's okay, even if it's sad and weird.
Back to Ken, I will say he did just fine for his first show, he clearly has the trivia chops to get the respect of the Jeopardy diehards, and he showed off his clear admiration for the titan of industry that was behind that podium before him when he stuck the landing with his perfectly short and sweet sign off.
I may not be a Ken Jennings diehard because he stole Jeopardy James' rightful throne as the GOAT with an assist to Braindead Brad. But I always liked watching his big bran do damage to the board and appreciated how much he loves both Jeopardy and Trebek. I truly wish him the best as host and hope he can find a way to make the show not only as entertaining but even close to as fun as Alex did every year since 1984.
Damn I'm gonna miss that guy. #ThankYouAlex #FuckCancer