Vanna White hosted her first full episode of “Wheel of Fortune” in her more than 35 years on the show.
Vanna White, the longtime “Wheel of Fortune” mainstay, was shown Monday hosting her first entire episode of the popular game show sans Pat Sajak.
White, 62, took over for Sajak for the show’s two-week “Secret Santa Holiday Giveaway” promotion. In her more than 35 years on the show, it was her first time stepping into the hosting role. White has long turned the letters on-screen as the players make guesses.
The episodes were filmed in November while Sajak, 73, was recovering from emergency surgery for a blocked intestine. He’s since thanked fans for their support, announcing the “worst has passed” and he expects to return to work shortly.
Meanwhile, while White crossed over to stand with contestants, another entertainment icon filled in for her: Minnie Mouse, dressed in her holiday best.
“That wheel is heavy!” White remarked as she gave the wheel a final spin, before worrying she had read the wrong number. “Oh no, I’m looking at the wrong arrow!
“How do you do this show?” she joked to laughter from the crowd.
‘Wheel of Fortune’ host Pat Sajak says the ‘worst has passed’ after emergency surgery
White will also host a third week of “Wheel” in early January, after the show announced on Nov. 8 that a taping had been canceled due to Sajak’s illness.
“Wheel of Fortune” has been Sajak’s hosting home for the last 36 years, a Guinness World Record for the longest career as host of the same game show. White previously described the show without Sajak as “a word without vowels.”
“I’ll fill in the blanks until you return,” White tweeted at the time, alongside a picture of the duo. “Rest up and we’ll be solving puzzles in no time. (Don’t worry, your job is safe! Well, pretty safe.)”
She filled in once before for one segment of the show, when Sajak had laryngitis in 1996.
In May, Sajak and White celebrated their 7,000th episode of “Wheel.” The dynamic duo renewed their contracts through 2022.
Contributing: Erin Jensen, Cydney Henderson, The Associated Press
Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/entertainment/tv/2019/12/10/vanna-white-subs-pat-sajak-wheel-fortune-after-his-surgery/4382604002/