One would think Brian Henegar was having a pretty good week, as his three-day run as a Jeopardy! champion has amassed him over $68,000 going into the April 7 episode. However, rather than basking in his tens of thousands of dollars, the guest services agent from Tennessee has been battling Twitter trolls — or “jerkolas,” as Henegar called them — who say he resembles Adolf Hitler. The contestant even took a break from social media, before returning to the platform with a new look and a pledge to a good cause.
Brian Henegar made his Jeopardy! debut on Tuesday, April 4 — with Ken Jennings back as host — winning $23,201. However, his shining moment was tainted by “jerks on Twitter,” whose comments compared his hair style and mustache to that of the former German dictator. Henegar returned to social media the next day to announce that he was making a change, tweeting:
While the Jeopardy! champ cited the work involved to keep his stache “tight” as the reason for the change, his multiple tweets on the subject made it obvious just how much he was affected by the negative feedback. It’s a shame that people mentioning Hitler made the contestant feel the need to shave, but his second point revealed that some good will come out of this experience, as he tweeted directly to the trolls:
It’s uplifting to hear that Brian Henegar has found a way to turn the negative aspect of his experience into a positive by pledging to donate some of his winnings to fight anti-Semitism. He also provided fans with a selfie featuring his new look:
And…here it is. Ignore the lighting it’s seven here in Tennessee and I am about to drive to work. pic.twitter.com/XcMvcmzY6CApril 6, 2023
Lookin’ good! His actions this week won’t change his appearance on the already-recorded episodes of his Jeopardy! run, but hopefully he’ll get some relief from the tweets that caused him to “lose all faith in humanity,” because I’m going to be rooting for him to stick around for a while.
Jeopardy!’s fans are known for being outspoken, but often the negativity happens when they think a “horrible error” has been made, or when contestants are thought to have disrespected the quiz show in some way. Mayim Bialik, meanwhile, has spoken out about “feedback” she gets regarding her wardrobe, noting that Alex Trebek and Ken Jennings were never subjected to such criticism.
Hopefully Brian Henegar’s new appearance will lead to fewer unsavory comparisons for the remainder of his Jeopardy! run, however long that may be. Check your local listings to see how to watch the game show in your area, and also take a peek at our 2023 TV schedule to see what premieres are coming soon.