Mayim Bialik Accused Of Making Controversial Change To Jeopardy!

By Michileen Martin | 3 months ago

mayim bialik

Ever since Mayim Bialik assumed co-hosting duties of the iconic game show Jeopardy!, the former Big Bang Theory actress hasn’t seemed able to escape controversy. Whether it’s because of things that happened long before her current gig as co-host, or because of an offhand remark about how important the host job is to some viewers, fans have been taking Bialik to task ever since she said yes to the job. Now, to many fans, she’s crossed a line — she’s changed the game show by officially making “Single Jeopardy” a thing.

As reported by MSN and others, starting with Jeopardy!‘s return to new episodes on Monday, January 31, Mayim Bialik started saying something new when announcing commercial breaks. The co-host calls the round that precedes the commercials as a round of “Single Jeopardy!” as opposed to “Double Jeopardy!” You can watch an example of this below.

What are fans saying about Mayim Bialik’s “Single Jeopardy?” Well, they seem to fall into two camps. The first camp is not only not happy, but they’re so angry about it they make Star Wars fans enraged over Daisy Ridley calling herself “Skywalker” seem reasonable and detached in comparison.

Then there’s the second camp of Jeopardy! fans. The second camp doesn’t necessarily seem to think that Mayim Bialik is right for calling it “Single Jeopardy!” But, at the same time, they want her to keep doing it, precisely because of how much it annoys the first camp.

Long before she was even tapped to co-host Jeopardy!, Mayim Bialik proved controversial enough of a figure that it’s honestly a bit surprising that she got the gig. The actress has a history making controversial statements about vaccines, for example. Bialik has said in the past that her family is a “non-vaccinating” family, though apparently this is not the case when it comes to the COVID vaccine. She’s still on record supporting alternative medications to replace vaccines, something that many like Slate‘s Phil Plait call a dangerous stance to promote.

Nor have fans forgotten a 2017 op-ed she wrote for the New York Times. Mayim Bialik criticized Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault victims in the piece. Among other things, she implied the victims wouldn’t have been assaulted if they dressed modestly and didn’t act flirtatiously. She wrote that to do otherwise was to be “naive.” She later apologized, but for many fans it was too little, too late.

At the same time, Jeopardy! seems to struggle with one controversy after another, even when neither Mayim Bialik nor co-host Ken Jennings are involved. In January, former Jeopardy! champion Tom Nichols called on the show to reinstitute the old 5-win ceiling for each champion, arguing that players with long win streaks like Amy Schneider have an advantage over new players because they’ve long-since figured out the mechanics of the show. Not long before, it was reported that CNN analyst Laura Coates couldn’t get Jeopardy! producers to return her calls, even though it was apparently the late Alex Trebek’s wish that she be considered his replacement.