Oprah Winfrey is the most powerful woman in entertainment, but watching her Barbara Walters interview, she almost seems accessible, like a person you might want to be your best friend. And for 25 years, for many women, she was just that. Next spring that all ends.
It's impossible (unless you are a male) to really dislike Oprah. You can dislike her influence over women or think her new age power is weird, but watching her, it's impossible to deny her sincerity and her heart.
As a person who has watched her show only a handful of times, I still find her fascinating. Here is a woman who was born in a home in Mississippi where she had no running water who is now worth $2.7 billion.
Her topics were often female-centric over the years, the books she chose for her book club were mostly the kind of books women wanted to read more than men, and sometimes that got her ridiculed. But to those snobs one might say: $2.7 billion, in your faces!
The Babs interview didn't reveal any major secrets, but it did give insight into Oprah's own thoughts on leaving and the future.
- Her most popular episodes were always the Oprah's Favorite Things episodes where she gave away all of her expensive, favorite things to her audience members.
"I love to see 40-year-old women behave like 7-year-olds," she told Walters.
- She has interviewed over 29,000 guests:
"Celebrities are fine, but usually they have an agenda .... That's fine in its place, but for me, the heart, the soul, the depth, and the richness of this show has been ordinary people who do extraordinary things."
- She made the careers of Dr. Phil, Nate Berkus, Dr. Mehmet Oz, and many other former guests of hers.
- She has had two guests she considers her "favorites":
- Mattie Stepanek: a young boy who was on her show six times and became a close friend. He suffered from terminal muscular dystrophy, but the two were so close that when she was getting ready to retire around year 20, he emailed her and said, "I don't think 20 is the year for you." He is the reason she went five more years.
- Monica George -- a woman who caught an illness in the hospital during her second birth that caused her to lose both arms and legs. But she didn't let it ruin her. "I could still love my girls," she told Oprah.
- She met Gayle King -- her best friend in the world -- when Gayle was a production assistant on a show where Oprah was an anchor in Baltimore. And no, the two are Not Lesbians. Talking about Gayle brought on the tears:
"She has always been happier for me than even I was," Oprah told Walters. "She is the mother I never had; the sister everyone would want; the friend everyone deserves. I don't know a better person."
- And finally, there was Stedman Graham, the infamous boyfriend. She adores him, but is very glad they never married.
"For sure we would have not still been together."
As Oprah moves forward, she has a new television network in the works and plans to keep on working in new and different ways:
"I am seeking the full expression of myself on earth," she told Barbara, referencing the old Bill Withers song, "Use Me." "I just want God to use me up."
Did you watch the interview? What did you think?
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