PAT SAJAK threw a tantrum because a Wheel of Fortune contestant was better dressed than him in Wednesday’s episode.
Pat, 76, took the stage without Vanna for the third time this week.
Since the October 2 episode, Vanna has been absent from the game show’s annual “Teachers’ Week” special, which was taped in July.
Vanna was replaced by 2023 California Teacher of the Year Bridgette Donald-Blue.
Pat assured fans that Vanna is “doing well” and will be back on Monday.
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“WE SENT THE MEMO!”
He then interviewed each teacher, including Christopher, a special education teacher who wore a dark blue tuxedo.
“Christopher!” Pat shouted from the other side of the steering wheel.
“Hello, Pat,” he replied.
In his trademark suit, Pat snapped: “We sent the memo to the players; Don’t dress better than the host!”
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“I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” Christopher said.
Then Pat returned his comment, “You look great.”
Sam, a music teacher from New Jersey who “sings every day” and plays the ukelele for his students, ended up trumping his opponents.
Sam edged out the third teacher, Jenni, with $21,000 to $19,000, so it was close, but he moved on to the bonus puzzle and got it right as a “practice joke.” He won a new Nissan worth a total of $59,000.
“The symptoms are mild”
On Tuesday, the longtime host gave fans a more detailed update on what happened to Vanna.
He told the audience: “The bad news, as you noticed, is that Vanna is not here.
“She’s out this week – she has Covid.”
“The good news is that although she tested positive for it, the symptoms are very mild; she has a bit of a cold.
“So we talked and she’s fine. And she’ll be back next week.”
The camera then cuts to Bridgette, giving a big smile from Vanna’s favorite spot at the puzzle board.
Wheel of Fortune fans were shocked when Vanna was noticeably absent this week.
“Who represents Vanna and why?” A comment was read on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Another fan wrote: “Where the f*** is Vanna White?!?!”
“Vanna White MIA,” another person wrote.
“Where is Vanna…” wrote a fourth.
“I hope Vanna gets better soon!” wrote a fifth, as others wished her a speedy recovery.
When is Vanna coming back?
Bridgette Donald-Blue will be Vanna’s replacement for the week of October 2-6.
Vanna will be back on Monday October 9th.
As announced in August, Vanna missed Teachers’ Week after testing positive for COVID-19 (rescheduling was not possible due to teachers’ schedules).
Wheel rescheduled the next day’s recording to accommodate Vanna’s absence, so she is only replaced for a week.
Bridget teaches math from kindergarten through fifth grade and is the mother of two children.
“When I got the call to participate in Wheel of Fortune for Teachers Week, I was incredibly excited,” she said in one Video from the show.
“It was a great opportunity to champion the cause of education, the work that teachers do every day.
Wheel of Fortune, you are the best. Thank you very much.”
FOURTH TIME IN HISTORY…
Vanna has only been away from the show three other times since 1982, when she began flipping letters.
In 1986, her predecessor Susan Stafford returned while Vanna mourned the death of her boyfriend John Gibson after a tragic plane crash People.
Tricia Gist took over in 1991 during Vanna’s two-week honeymoon with her ex-husband George San Pietro, with whom Vanna shares her two children.
When Vanna caught a cold this year, Tricia stepped in again.
Meanwhile, Vanna’s absence came at a sensitive time as she finally got executives to extend her contract last month after a long pay battle.
However, her demands for a raise had nothing to do with why she was out.
Vanna, who earns $3 million per season, had reportedly demanded a raise from the show’s producers, claiming she hadn’t received a raise in 18 years.
She reportedly contacted a lawyer and demanded half of current host Pat Sajak’s $15 million annual salary.
Accordingly TMZWhite received a “significant raise” with the deal, but the exact figure is not being disclosed.
Vanna came to the table when it was announced that Pat was retiring.
Ryan Seacrest will take over for Pat at the end of Season 41 in June 2024 after his amazing 40 years as host.
Vanna’s new contract runs through the 2026 season and she will co-host with Pat’s successor Ryan for at least two years.