Answer: Jeopardy’s Alex Trebek. Question: What is professional, kids react, & goodness?

TUNE IN TUESDAY, JANUARY 14 when the top quiz show gladiators on Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time try to extend or offer the final answer to “Who is Jeopardy’s greatest of all time?”

Ken Jennings, James Holzhauer, and Brad Rutter are unequaled with their skills and brain-power. But let’s face it, host Alex Trebek is the real superstar of the ABC primetime Jeopardy! competition.

James Holzhauer, Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter, Alex Trebek and “Jeopardy!” executive producer Harry Friedman talk about “Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time” at the Television Critics Association 2020 winter press tour in Pasadena. (Photo: ABC/Stewart Cook)

At the current Television Critics Association press tour, game show champions Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer were asked by this reporter to play Jeopardy! and answer in the form of a question “the thing you admire most about Alex.” Jeopardy‘s brain-trust troika responded:

Brad Rutter: “’What is his absolute professionalism?’ I know how much work it takes to make it look effortless. And this guy, no matter what he’s going through, just keeps getting better and better. It’s just the most impressive thing I’ve ever seen.”

Ken Jennings: “I would say ‘What is the way kids react to ‘JEOPARDY!’ and Alex?’ Little kids who love the show get excited when they know an answer. And he (Alex) symbolizes learning and knowledge to (three) generations of North Americans. It’s just touching people were sending me pictures of their kids last night watching the ‘Greatest of All Time’ match, and I was getting choked up. This is what Alex has done for millions of us.”

James Holzhauer: “I would say, ‘What is goodness?’ Can you name someone who has been in Hollywood for 60 years and hasn’t ever had any kind of even minor scandal about them? It’s crazy. Nobody has a bad word to say about Mr. Trebek here.”

Everyone is rooting for Trebek, the pop culture icon and inspiration for grace in the face of adversity, as he outshines everyone with his professionalism, courage, and sly humor. Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time launched January 7. It runs at least through Thursday, January 9, maybe more because it is the World Series of game shows and the first player to win three matches is the champ. It airs in primetime over multiple consecutive nights on ABC at 8 p.m.

The three highest money winners in Jeopardy! history—fan-favorites Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer are the powerhouse players competing. The winner earns $1 million and bragging-rights as the game show’s “Greatest Of All Time.” The other two players each receive $250,000. So certainly everyone leaves a winner.

Yet the undisputed winner already is Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek.  Now in his 36th year of hosting, Trebek’s spirit is exemplary as he continues with his Jeopardy! duties while battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

Last week ABC aired the primetime special What is Jeopardy? Alex Trebek and America’s Most Popular Game Show hosted by Michael Strahan who interviewed Trebek. Strahan asked the questions that are on everyone’s mind, and the 79-year-old Trebek answered very honestly. Strahan’s interview revealed how Trebek has dealt with his challenge. “I just thought of it as part of life. Does that mean I’m courageous because I’m dealing with it? No. I could be scared to death and I’d still have to deal with it. But I’m not scared to death, so maybe I am courageous…Way to go, Alex,” he cheered himself.

“Most of us have open-ended lives, we don’t know when we’re going to die. Because of (my) cancer diagnosis, …people all over America and abroad have decided they want to let me know now, while I’m alive, about the impact that I’ve been having on their existence. They have come out and told me, and, my gosh, it feels so good,” Trebek stated.

Trebek has joined forces with the World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition, and noted the signs to watch for— mid back pain, unexplained weight loss, new-onset diabetes. It was severe stomach pain that sent Trebek to the doctor. Alex’s wife of 29 years, Jean reported the toughest part for her is when he’s in pain and she can’t help him.

Trebek told Strahan, “I believe in a supreme being and I don’t expect any special favors. He or she is busy enough looking after a lot of serious problems in the world. But I don’t minimize the power of prayer.”

The cancer diagnose has changed many things, but Trebek has a positive attitude, for the most part, and there are days he wakes up and feels strong. He still has a sense of purpose and will continue hosting Jeopardy! as long as he can. Trebek has enjoyed the build up to the Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time competition, reuniting him with three of the show’s favorite players, Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer.

“Based on their previous performances, these three are already the ‘greatest,’ but you can’t help wondering: Who is the best of the best?” Trebek said in a statement. Ken Jennings became a household name during his record 74-game winning streak, the longest in Jeopardy! history. Brad Rutter is the highest money winner of all time across any television game show. He has never lost Jeopardy! to a human opponent. But he did lose against the IBM computer Watson. James Holzhauer holds the record for all 15 of the top Single-Game Winnings records on Jeopardy!, and he just won the 2019 Tournament of Champions.

“America’s Favorite Quiz Show” Jeopardy!, produced by Sony Pictures Television, with Harry Friedman as executive producer, is a true test of general knowledge and skill guided by the most respected quiz show host in the business, Alex Trebek. Years ago, this reporter asked Alex, what’s the biggest misconception fans have about you? “People think I’m smarter than I am. That’s because they give me the answers,” Trebek modestly told me.

Tune in Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time on ABC, and the regular Jeopardy! syndicated shows airing weeknights.

Margie Barron has written for a wide variety of outlets including Gannett newspapers, Nickelodeon, Tiger Beat and 16 Magazine, Fresh!, Senior Life, Production Update, airline magazines, etc. Margie is also proud to have been half of the husband & wife writing team Frank & Margie Barron, who had written together for various entertainment and travel publications for more than 38 years.