JEOPARDY! champion Stephen Webb has broken his silence after Ken Jennings was accused of “mocking” him.
ABCJeopardy! champion Stephen Webb has broken his silence after Ken Jennings was accused of ‘mocking’ him[/caption]
ABCKen made fun of Stephen for struggling to find the Daily Doubles[/caption]
During last Friday’s episode of the game show, Ken said: “Stephen, once again, four days in a row, not a single Daily Double.
“Are you now avoiding them on purpose?”
Stephen burst out laughing and replied: “I seem to be!
“It feels like I’m trying play Jeopardy! with one leg up and, you know, an arm tied behind my back.”
Ken quipped: “Yeah, if you ever find a Daily Double, we’re going to be in trouble, I think.
“But so far it’s working for you. So well done. We’ll see tomorrow.”
The jokey exchange was shared on Instagram, where viewers slammed Ken’s “tasteless” behavior.
However, Stephen has insisted he doesn’t mind Ken’s jokes and was more “rattled” that he couldn’t find the Daily Doubles.
During a Q&A session on Reddit, one fan asked: “Did it rattle you that Ken kept talking about you not getting the Daily Doubles?”
Stephen replied: “No, not really. Not getting the Daily Doubles rattled me.
“Ken has to comment on it like it’s been happening over the course of a week, but due to the magic of television it had happened twenty minutes ago.
“But no, it was fine, it’s hard to complain too much when you’re still winning somehow. I’m very, very glad I’m not in last year’s ToC field.”
He added: “Chris&Co. are scary enough. I really liked Ken as a host. A lot of playing Jeopardy is about flow, and Ken is like a good referee crew in a football game.
“The format could lend itself to grinding everything to a crawl while you wait on the referee, but Ken moves at a very steady, even clip, which makes it easier to get the buzzer timing down I would imagine (having experienced precisely 1 Jeopardy host in my career, maybe ask Matt Amodio his thoughts?).”
STEPHEN SPEAKS OUT
Stephen went on: “He understands what standing up there is like, at one point he told us about the ‘Jeopardy fugue’ you get into when you’re playing, which is very real.
“He was very nice after the run was over, but we didn’t talk a whole lot.
“I think there’s a lot of ‘wall of pleasantness’ between contestants and Jeopardy employees, to avoid accusations of favoritism or whatnot. I would not mind seeing Ken again at the ToC.”
While Stephen seemed unbothered by Ken’s behavior, critics slammed the host’s “cocky” comments.
One commented: “In very poor taste, Ken. Alex never would have done that. He was the epitome of class.”
Alex – who hosted Jeopardy! for 37 seasons – died in 2020 at 80 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.
Another posted: “Not necessary Ken Jennings to give the other contestants any strategy on playing and how Stephen fails to find the DD’s.”
A third added, “Less cocky Ken and more Mayim!” referring to presenter Mayim Bialik.
Stephen lost during Friday’s episode after eight victories and $184,000 in total.
NBCStephen insisted he doesn’t mind Ken’s jokes[/caption]
GettyHowever, critics said late host Alex Trebek would ‘never have said that’[/caption]
ABCStephen lost during Friday’s episode of the game show[/caption]