By now, Jeopardy! fans and the general public have had a couple weeks to get used to the idea of the game show’s executive producer Mike Richards filling the late Alex Terbek’s seat to become the new host. But time, instead of bringing with it a mellowed acceptance or at least resignation, has not rendered this outcome ripe on the vine. Actually, time has only made the prospect more putrid, as it turns out this guy is an even bigger asshole than everyone originally thought, according to a new report by the Ringer.
In summary, the report reveals, employees don’t like him, previous contestants don’t like him, and fans don’t like him. Seeing as how he somehow is still holding onto the most sought-after game show host gig in the country, the real question is: What kind of dirt does he have on the Sony executives who just will not fire him?
To go into more detail, Richards’s character flaws are not just that he is not really a trivia guy, as he confessed to longest-running Jeopardy! champ Ken Jennings in 2013. Although Richards was said to have “moved aside” from the search to find a new Jeopardy! host after he became a candidate for the role, he had ample opportunities to influence the search process as the guy who ultimately controlled almost every aspect of the most recent season of the show, including what direction and air time was given to guest hosts — like fan favorites Jennings and LeVar Burton — who were ostensibly competing with him for the same job.
Current and former staff also suggested to the Ringer that Richards is a shit boss “who could be exclusionary and dismissive of longtime show employees.” During his time as EP on The Price Is Right, he was also a boss who was involved in multiple lawsuits related to alleged discrimination against women by the show’s male leadership.
Richards recently said those complaints do not “reflect the reality of who” he is, but now-removed episodes of his old podcast — never a good sign when those words come up — may reflect a little more than he would like. That would be a man who in 2013 to 2014 allegedly:
- Used descriptors like “booth slut” and “booth ho” to talk about women
- Used descriptors like “so giant that she wouldn’t be able to fit out the door” and “huskadoo” and “fat and not good” to talk about larger women
- Used the R-word and a derogatory term for people with dwarfism
- Suggested that people with big noses are Jewish
- Complained about people being on food stamps and unemployment benefits
- Equated giving a dollar to an unhoused person with “America going down the toilet” and suggested that the person might use that money to buy drugs
As if that wasn’t bad enough, Richards is also evidently a father-of-a-daughter guy, as he stated in an apology following the Ringer’s review of comments that include saying women “dress like a hooker” on Halloween.
In conclusion: this guy is not it. Get rid of him!