Will new temporary Jeopardy! host Mayim Bialik face the same fate as the previous, short-lived Jeopardy! host, Mike Richards? Richards only lasted about a week as Jeopardy!‘s replacement host following the death of Alex Trebek before he stepped down from the job, and now Bialik is facing backlash for comments she has made, as well..
After a months-long search and a string of high-profile guest hosts filling in on the show, it was announced that Richards would take over the host role permanently, until past comments he made about women, Jewish people, and the disabled on a 2013 podcast came to light. Bialik is currently under fire herself for controversial remarks she has made in the past over topics like vaccinations, birth control, and Harvey Weinstein’s victims.
In her 2012 book, Beyond The Sling, the Big Bang Theory actress wrote that she and her husband “made an informed decision not to vaccinate our children, but this is a very personal decision that should be made only after sufficient research, which today is within reach of every parent who seeks to learn about their child’s health regardless of their medical knowledge or educational status.” Bialik’s comments have circulated in the years since, positioning her as an anti-vaxxer, a label she rejects, as she has since vaccinated her children and has publicly announced that she has also received the Covid vaccine. Bialik, who is a proponent of attachment parenting and holistic birthing, is also a critic of the birth control pill.
Bialik also ruffled feathers in 2017 when she wrote in a New York Times op-ed about Harvey Weinstein’s victims, wherein she made comments that seemed to blame Weinstein’s victims. She stated, “I dress modestly. I don’t act flirtatiously with men as a policy,” which some saw as insinuating that other women in Hollywood courted Weinstein’s affection. She also wrote, “Those of us in Hollywood who don’t represent an impossible standard of beauty have the ‘luxury’ of being overlooked and, in many cases, ignored by men in power unless we can make them money.” She later apologized for the way her remarks were construed.
Bialik is opinionated, and not even she will deny that. When the news broke that she would be one of the new Jeopardy! hosts, she commented, “If you don’t like me as the new host of Jeopardy!, I’m sorry.” The question is, will her publicly-held opinions get her canceled from the show, or will they be deemed less offensive that Richards’ comments? Only time, and perhaps ratings, will tell.
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