New ‘Jeopardy!’ Host Quits Following Racist And Sexist History
TV personality Mike Richards has stepped down as the new host of Jeopardy! after making racist and sexist comments on his podcast.
Richards, who was supposed to be replacing Alex Trebek as the host of the hit game show, has received criticism in recent days in light of his controversial comments.
He made the remarks on his podcast The Randumb Show where, in one episode, he referred to his co-host, Beth Triffon, as a ‘booth ho’ and ‘booth slut’ because she had worked as a trade show model.
Along with a handful of other sexist and racist comments, on two separate occasions Richards praised white male hosts apparently just for being white and male.
While the comments were made during the time the podcast was aired between 2013 and 2014, they’ve resurfaced in the wake of Richards bagging the role as host of Jeopardy!.
Following the backlash, Richards issued an apology and branded his previous remarks as a ‘terribly embarrassing moment of misjudgement, thoughtlessness, and insensitivity from nearly a decade ago’.
His apology continued:
The podcast was intended to be a series of irreverent conversations between long-time friends who had a history of joking around. Even with the passage of time, it’s more than clear that my attempts to be funny and provocative were not acceptable, and I have removed the episodes.
Despite Richards’ apology, it appears as if the controversy couldn’t be moved on from as he has now stepped down as the host.
In a letter to the show’s team issued today, August 20, obtained by USA TODAY, the 46-year-old said he would be ‘stepping down effective immediately’. Richards will remain as Jeopardy!’s executive producer, however.
Following the news, Sony Pictures Television is now looking for a permanent syndicated host and will bring back guest hosts in the meantime.
Sony has said it supports Richards’ decision, but were ‘surprised’ to learn of the comments he made on his podcast.
The statement continued, ‘Mike has been with us for the last two years and has led the Jeopardy! team through the most challenging time the show has ever experienced. It is our hope that as EP he will continue to do so with professionalism and respect.’
In light of the controversy, all episodes of The Randumb Show were taken down on Tuesday, August 17.
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