Season 18 of Jeopardy! kicks off on September 3, 2001.
This season is both the last season to feature Alex Trebek's trademark mustache and the first season where Alex is seen without his mustache.
The opening credits have changed to a black background, with pieces of a very pale lavender shooting out to form the background of the set visible within it, and the Jeopardy! logo is formed in silver.
Due to the financial dispute with Sony at the beginning of this season, WebTV interactive has pulled Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune away from Microsoft.
This is the first and only season of Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune to be produced by Columbia TriStar Domestic Television. Starting in Season 19, Sony Pictures Television will be taking over production of Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune.
The contestant intros and Final Jeopardy! winnings appear in a plain font similar to Arial. This would remain in use until the Season 20 finale.
On early episodes of this season:
The dollar values for the first two rounds are still the same as they were on September 10, 1984, episode Greg/Lois/Frank, when Alex Trebek began hosting Jeopardy!.
The second and final Jeopardy! Online logo is still in use after the closing credits.
Later in the season, the second and final Jeopardy! Online logo is dropped.
The Clue Crew is still not present.
Jeopardy! does not air on September 11, 2001, due to the terrorist attacks on New York City, and Washington, D.C.
On the September 21, 2001 episode, it was the first episode where Alex Trebek is seen without his mustache.
On the September 24, 2001 episode, the Clue Crew is introduced and consisted of four members: Cheryl Farrell, Sofia Lidskog, Jimmy McGuire, and Sarah Whitcomb.
A very pale lavender was added to the 1996-2002 set.
The whoosh sound came back to the introduction on the October 10, 2001 episode.
The Tournament of Champions were held on the October 12, 2001 episode.
A split-screen for full credit rolls debuted.
During the quarter-finals week of the Tournament of Champions, Johnny Gilbert introduced, on each episode, three of last year's champions, by announcing the contestants' names and without announcing the total winnings that they earned since their last appearance on the show.
On November 26, 2001, episode, the old dollar amounts are changed to the current amounts: $200 to $1,000 in $200 increments for the Jeopardy! round and $400 to $2,000 in $400 increments for the Double Jeopardy! segment.
At the top of the episode, the old Jeopardy! round clue values of $100 to $500 are already in the monitors; as Alex Trebek mentions the new clue values the monitors make the usual transition: The old Jeopardy! round values are replaced with the Jeopardy! logo as the new Jeopardy! round values pop in.
On the December 20, 2001, episode, the Los Angeles Spirit Chorale with Cheryl Farrell performed "Carol of the Bells" during the closing credits, instead of the 2001-2008 theme.
On the December 21, 2001 episode, the Los Angeles Spirit Chorale with Cheryl performed "Silent Night", which is coming back from the last commercial break, and the rest of the song is heard for 30 seconds, instead of the "Think" music, after Alex Trebek reads the Final Jeopardy! clue.
January 11, 2002, is the real 4,000th episode.
On the 4th quarterfinal game of the Teen Tournament, Alex Trebek announced at the beginning of the show that when the 1st 3 contestants play, the other 12 contestants are locked in a deliberation room. This is so that the contestants won't know what score to beat to be in the semifinals as one of the 4 wildcards spots of high scores among the non-winners.
On the April 29, 2002 episode, Ben Sternberg sets a new one-day record of $38,400.
On the May 10, 2002, episode, the Million Dollars Masters Tournament is held in New York City.
On the May 15, 2002, episode, the 4,000th episode aired on this date. It consisted entirely of clips, with Alex Trebek providing commentary.
Starting on the May 16, 2002, episode, the second-place runner-up receives $2,000 and the third-place runner-up earns $1,000.
During this season, Columbia TriStar Domestic Television took over production for Jeopardy! and its sister show Wheel of Fortune. It looks just like the Columbia TriStar Television logo, expect the logo is a blue tint and the Sony Pictures Entertainment byline is smaller and the "TELEVISION" text is changed to "DOMESTIC TELEVISION".