Alex Trebek was one of the most beloved figures in daytime television as the long-running host of the game show “Jeopardy!,” and he won seven Daytime Emmys for Best Game Show Host during his life. Now he’s nominated one last time in that category following his death last November at age 80. Will he win for an eighth time as a posthumous tribute from the television academy?
Trebek is the most nominated game show host in Daytime Emmys history with more than 30 bids over the course of his career, but his wins were actually pretty sporadic. His first two victories were back-to-back in 1989 and 1990 (the latter of which was a tie with Bob Barker for “The Price is Right”). Barker then dominated the category for much of the 1990s and early 2000s, so Trebek didn’t win again until 2003. His fourth and fifth trophies came shortly thereafter in 2006 and 2008.
There was another decade-long drought for Trebek after that; perhaps the academy started taking him for granted as such a reliable institution in daytime television. But in March 2019 he announced that he had been diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer, so there was a renewed appreciation for his work and legacy, leading to his sixth and seventh Emmy wins in 2019 and 2020.
Since Trebek’s final episodes of “Jeopardy!” finished airing in early January, there has been a rotating group of guest hosts filling in, ranging from football player Aaron Rodgers to actress/neuroscientist Mayim Bialik. Most of them have been admirable stewards of the show (though count me among those who wish Dr. Oz had never been invited), but they’re also daily reminders of Trebek’s impact and influence. Now he’s the odds-on favorite to win one last Emmy according to the combined predictions of Gold Derby users, and if we’re right, it will likely make for one of the most memorable moments of the ceremony on June 25.
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