The one who was a great adolescent icon of the nineties thanks to the series Blossom, then a neurobiologist and again a television figure with The Big Bang Theory, has become one of the most controversial figures in American society. Despite herself, Mayim Bialik is witness these days of how her professional future and skills are debated in the pages of newspapers such as The New York Times with a vehemence more worthy of an NBA star or the tenant of the White House. Also in social networks, which try to elucidate whether the actress deserves to hold a position that, due to influence and prestige, has little to envy those previously named. The presenter’s lectern of the most popular game show on American television, Jeopardy!, is vacant, and the public scrutiny to know if the – numerous – past sins of the actress are serious enough to prevent her candidacy already make up the great media soap opera in the country.
On November 8, the United States cried as if it had lost one of the 50 stars that make up its flag. Alex Trebek, host of Jeopardy!, died at the age of 80 due to pancreatic cancer. Owner of Joaquín Prat’s charisma and Jordi Hurtado’s longevity after 36 years at the helm of the program, the host had become an indelible and undisputed myth of his pop culture. As Tom C. Avendaño pointed out in EL PAÍS, something like “the favorite teacher in the class, the one who knows that the question is difficult, but wants the student to get it right and who does not judge when someone fails.” But so brilliant was his legacy, and so pure his resume, that filling the gap left by the Canadian has become an impossible task for the producers of the contest. The search for his replacement has mutated into a serial increasingly close to ending at a stroke the prestige forged over more than three decades.
Journalists, actresses and even elite athletes have been running throughout 2021 to take over the most coveted position on international television. When his official replacement, Mike Richards, was finally named last August, it seemed the grueling search was over. Five shows later, Richards was forced to resign when comments of a macho and racist nature made by him came to light in a podcast Several years ago. It was then that Bialik, who has become acting presenter of Jeopardy! Following the scandal, he has once again volunteered to take the reins of the format full time. A wish that the newspaper library and his verbal incontinence can deny him.
If Alex Trebek made a name for himself for his discreet personal career and his position of absolute political neutrality, which made him equally beloved by viewers of all stripes, Bialik’s chronic verbiage makes it impossible to take over without controversy. Back in 2012, the actress published a book in which she shared her advice on attachment motherhood and her experience with her sons, Miles (15) and Fred (12). On Beyond the sling, said that she had breastfed her offspring until they were four and two years old, respectively, defended the benefits of co-sleeping (that is, sleeping with them every night), of dispensing with diapers and of replacing strollers with baby slings. But in addition, he admitted that he had not received a vaccine in 30 years and that his children were not vaccinated either. Her anti-vaccine skepticism was so criticized that she has been forced to publicly confirm that both she and her children do have the prick against covid-19. Today the media and the networks are shamelessly debating whether this record is the necessary discredit for him to lose his position. “Is it neutral enough?” The New York Times. “Are your controversial views bad enough to get fired?” Decider. “I just want them to let me give the clues,” she alleges.
The actress became one of the most famous young women of the 1990s thanks to Blossom, the series that he starred in when he was just 15 years old and for five seasons. The fiction narrated the day-to-day life of a teenage girl who faced the challenges of maturity while living with a musician father and two older brothers after her mother left for Europe to fulfill her dream of being a singer. In addition to her catchy tune and her taste for floral-print dungarees, vests, legwarmers and hats, which made her a style icon, the series was an anomaly on television at the time for its dramatic finds. Not only for placing an adolescent female character –intelligent, funny and somewhat extravagant– as the narrative epicenter (the rest of sitcoms of the time they were betting on men), also for daring to tackle taboo topics such as drug addiction and subsequent reintegration (personified in his brother Tony), divorce, menstruation or the objectification of women. An article published in 1991 by EW tells how Bialik, despite his youth, did not hesitate to protest to the executive producer of the series for a joke in the script about the small chest size of his character. The article is titled Mayim Bialik: the young feminist.
But after the end of Blossom In 1995, the interpreter said goodbye to Hollywood and restricted her appearances in the industry to different jobs as a voice actor in animated series. She became a doctor in neuroscience, married, had two children, and in her spare time she gave private lessons in Hebrew and piano. In search of a job that would give her access to health insurance after the completion of her university scholarship, the Californian applied to the casting of a series, of which he did not even know its name, for what was supposed to be an episodic role. But the success of her character, Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler in The Big Bang Theory, ended up being translated into more than 200 episodes and up to four consecutive Emmy Award nominations. Bialik once again savored the honeys of fame and his popularity guaranteed him an opportunity to try to get what he says is his “dream job”, the presenter of Jeopardy!.
At 45, he has made headlines for issues as different as donating money to the Israeli army, rejecting any type of hair removal, critics to Ariana Grande for being too sexual in promoting her album or her bet for dressing modestly and avoiding flirting with men to avoid cases of sexual harassment like Harvey Weinstein. The most recent controversy responds to her position as an ambassador of a vitamin complex to improve brain capacity, described as pseudoscience by scientists and whose lack of evidence on its effectiveness has even been corroborated in court. However, Bialik turns a deaf ear on the ad television of the product: “Neuriva is the brain supplement that neuroscientists trust … Me!” Her string of statements of rectification or clarification is almost as numerous as her filmography, and even she herself thanks her publicist that her career today is not completely amortized. Comedian John Oliver summarized the general feeling about his figure in his satirical news report Last week tonight: “I think Mayim Bialik is a great person because I don’t have Google.”
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The little bitch ‘Blossom’ is now a polemicist: how Mayim Bialik has become her worst enemy | Celebrities, Vips | S Fashion EL PAÍS