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Jeopardy host Mayim Bialik talks about what she loves about hosting the show and reflects on her "Single Jeopardy" line that inspired such backlash.
MAYIM BIALIK: That's Shirley MacLaine, and that was in "The Pajama Game." That's the end of single Jeopardy! Double Jeopardy! Is up right after this.
ETHAN ALTER: One change that viewers have noticed is that you've been referring to the opening round as single Jeopardy!
MAYIM BIALIK: I did it once! I did it once. There are, like, if it wasn't right, they would have had me redo it. Meaning, there's nothing I do-- like, I barely act alone. I promise. Like, there's so many things that we retape, we go back. I mean, I flub things. Like, you know, you're seeing an edited version.
So it's funny. When I saw that, I was like, but if it was like literally not kosher, there's like a million producers and writers and researchers. Like they're all listening to me. So I was like, I know it may not be the norm, but when I saw that Alex had referred to it, it was not out of the norm. It is definitely not normative. I will never do it again, even if it's in the script. I will not say it. People care a lot! I get it, and I'm sorry, and I'm doing my best.
ETHAN ALTER: Right, right. But it is good to know. It's part of-- if Alex did it, then you're in good company.
MAYIM BIALIK: And the fact is, like I said, I mean, I say things all the time where they'll be like, what? That doesn't-- no, do it again. You know? So it's not like Mayim's going rogue. Like everything is very carefully monitored, calculated. There's like a thing in my ear, I promise.
- Amy Schneider, congratulations. What a run. Thank you for the two months you spent with us. It was very special. It was remarkable.
ETHAN ALTER: You were recently part of Amy Schneider's historic run on the show. Was that great to watch, seeing that kind of representation and seeing Amy triumph?
MAYIM BIALIK: You know, it was phenomenal for so many reasons and groundbreaking for so many reasons. I did not get to actually host any of her episodes, which was really disappointing. And because of the secrecy and how seriously we take it, I actually didn't even know when she lost until it aired. So when I go back to work, she's either going to be there or she's not because I'm off every three weeks. So it was like I just missed her. Representation does matter. It matters. And this is, you know, a historic, historic moment. And also, just such a fun personality for everyone to get to experience. So we're very, very proud.
ETHAN ALTER: And now that you've sort of been settling into the role, I mean, what's your favorite part of it? What's that? As you've been doing more and more, what's your favorite part of those things?
MAYIM BIALIK: I love meeting all the contestants. I really do. I love to hear their stories, you know? Some of them are academics, and some of them are housewives, and some of them are teachers. It's just like all different kinds of people who can hold information in a way that most of us can not. And just like hearing all the factoids about them. I usually ask them all the things that are on their card. You know, we pick one, but on the breaks, I get to ask all the other things. So, yeah.