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Alex Trebek candidly discusses cancer struggles, but remains confident he'll return to Jeopardy!

Photo: Ethan Miller (Getty Images)

Jeopardy! is as popular as ever these days, what with the jaw-dropping winning streak of sports gambler James Holzhauer, and host Alex Trebek is determined to see what the champ’s unprecedented performance means for the future. Trebek revealed he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer back in March, doing so with a candid, optimistic air in line with the host’s trademark levelheadedness, and this morning he returned with a positive, if heartbreaking, update about his progress and struggles.

In an interview with Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts, Trebek leavens his gutting musings on how chemotherapy makes him “feel so weak all the time” with jokes about how he “timed my diagnosis with the end of the season.” Per Trebek, he’ll be doing fine one moment, but then “it turns south on me,” resulting in surges of “deep, deep sadness” that “brings tears to my eyes.” Still, he’s positive he’ll “get strong again,” noting that “my platelets are steady, my blood counts are steady, my weight is steady.”

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“You have to deal with it,” he continues. “What am I going to do? It’s something that I’m afflicted with. We’re dealing with it chemically and spiritually.” Trebek also sounds confident when he says he’ll be “back on the air with original programming come this September,” and let us savor that kind of optimism, which is sadly in short supply these days.

Watch the full interview below.

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About the author

Randall Colburn

Randall Colburn is The A.V. Club's Internet Culture Editor. He lives in Chicago, occasionally writes plays, and was a talking head in Best Worst Movie, the documentary about Troll 2.