Podcast | Ken Jennings on winning — then hosting — ‘Jeopardy!’

The Edmonds-born record-breaker muses on the game’s transformation and reveals behind-the-scenes secrets.

Peter Kafka and Ken Jennings at the Crosscut Ideas Festival stage

Peter Kafka, left, speaks with Jeopardy! host Ken Jennings on stage during the Crosscut Ideas Festival in Seattle. (David Ryder for Crosscut)

Jeopardy is an American institution, a television game show that for decades didn't really change all that much. But in recent years the syndicated staple has undergone some relatively seismic shifts. 

For this episode of the Crosscut Talks podcast, we listen in on a conversation with Ken Jennings about the longstanding legacy of the American game show, his fascination with trivia as a child and how he went from computer programmer to 74 consecutive wins on Jeopardy! to being the current co-host.

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In this conversation with journalist Peter Kafka from the 2023 Crosscut Ideas Festival, Jennings also discusses how the show has changed since his time as a contestant.  

Kennings says Jeopardy! now benefits from social media, where there is a thriving community of fans and prospective contestants. But he also says the game show is dealing with present-day challenges in an entertainment world more and more dominated by streaming platforms.

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