The Oprah Winfrey Show (TV Series 1986–2011) Poster


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An Original Show in an Era of Talk Show Trash
merrywhether31 January 2002
Let's look at our talk show options: Jerry Springer, Riki Lake, and Jenny Jones. In an age were lover's quarrels and paternity tests are dominating daytime talk, Oprah Winfrey takes the high road by promoting books, self-help, and education. Granted, quite a few of the Oprah books are graphic and involve abuse, and sometimes her therapist of-the-month gets a bit too preachy. But Oprah generally wants to help society by presenting all sides of controversial issues and letting us decide. It is clear Oprah values liberty and freedom, and has done several shows on human rights abuses in other countries. I applaud her efforts. This show gets an 8 out of 10.
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A Positive Force In Televison
GazPac2 February 2003
I'm quite surprised by the number of negative comments here. By no means is The Oprah Winfrey Show perfect, but let's face it in this day and age with so much demeaning trashy crud on daytime TV, Oprah shines like a beacon. The Oprah show has had such an amazing effect on so many people's lives, and has provided information on so many varied topics in a concise, intelligent, positive manner we should be applauding her. Her post 9/11 shows were the perfect example of how TV should react to such devastating events. No scare mongering, but a forum for reaction and information in a loving, healing way.
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Please cancel this crap...
jbradshaw13 January 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Oprah Winfrey.

Celebrities have a tendency to become wrapped up in their own world. Entertainment shows (Extra! for example), fashion magazines, and other mediums are the catalyst. Oprah is no exception. Oprah caters to the high brow soccer mom society whilst catering to the glamorous image that Hollywood tries to convey. The result is a putrid one hour mess of self glorification (who really cares about what books she likes?).

Oprah does not appeal to the common person.

If you want to watch a REAL talk show hosted by a REAL person with REAL feelings, tune into the Montel Williams show.

Oprah... just take your billions and marry Stedman. Go away.
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Has there EVER been a more self-infatuated celebrity?
andrewwastie23 January 2003
Apart from the question posed in this summary, the other significant question here must be, "How has this drivel remained on air for 17 years?" Whilst quality shows have come and gone, this thinly disguised piece of self-ego-buffing has remained in tact. The shows generally fall into 3 categories:

The Celebrity piece. Oprah should take a look at real interviewers (eg. Michael Parkinson) to learn how to do these properly. Firstly, the viewer wants to hear from the guest - not the interviewer. I don't care if Oprah loved so-and-so's last movie or that Oprah thinks so-and-so is just gorgeous - just ask some questions! Oprah goes fishing for praise by going, "I think you're wonderful!" Inevitable reply: "Gee thanks Oprah, I think you're wonderful too...."

The Self-help show. I'm sorry, when did Oprah get a PhD in anything related to therapy?

The you-should-be-interested-in-this-because-I'm-Oprah show. Oprah was in A Color Purple. Who cares? Oprah was in a magazine. Who cares. Orah had a tough childhood. Who cares? Oprah went to a Celine Dion concert. Who cares? Oprah has a friend who has raised 6 boys. Who cares? Oprah's floor manager has suffered depression. Who cares? Oprah has dropped a dress size. Who cares? Oprah has gained a dress size. Who cares? Oprah is getting married to some guy. Who cares? Oprah isn't getting married after all. Who cares? Oprah had an egg salad for lunch and has made her get my drift.

However, just reviewing my own classification of this show, something has dawned on me.. If it ran just as a celebrity interview show, The Oprah Winfrey Show would be dreadful. If it was just a self-help show it would be dreadful. But in actual fact, these 2 heading are actually just SUB-heading to the third. The "You-should-be-interested-in-this-because-I'm-Oprah show" is REALLY what it's all about. And ya know what??

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I don't get the thrill of this show
london_1734 August 2005
How anybody can like this show is beyond me. Her guests (with the exception of Dr. Phil, who is completely annoying) are whiny and her audience is full of middle-aged women who think she is somehow a queen of television. It's like they've been brainwashed.

She is not funny, she is dull and dry and she has no personality. I did watch her show when she managed to have good guests on (Paul McCartney, Elton John, Jane Seymour). The only problem was that she couldn't keep her big mouth shut long enough to let the guests talk.

My mother went to high school with her. She was rude even then. She refuses to have anything to do with the alumni of her class and she even let her father go bankrupt and he lost everything he had.

I thought she was about to give up her show. When is this going to happen? I'll be the first to say good-bye.
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Fringe fan base enough to keep overrated gab fest on in afternoon.
SanDiego5 April 2002
Once hyped for mainstream America, this overrated talk show has developed into a vanity piece for the host with its fan base described by some akin to a mindless religious cult and it's guests representing the ultra left fringe. She has built entire shows around her friends and co-workers who have nothing to offer except that they are friends or co-workers of Oprah. Other shows have centered on her film production interests, and self-titled magazine. Often political Oprah tends to give positive support pieces to liberal politicians and has gained some influence in return. Perhaps the most telling event is her snubbing of the President of the United States (and ultimate slap to those who have fought and died to bring peace to that region) when asked for her support to visit schools in Afghanistan and her subsequent `non-denial' denial: The White House said they were told she was `too busy,' Oprah denied this saying she was `Too busy.' (As it turned out she was asked not to assist the American effort by members of the Democratic National Committee who in return offered her a hosting post at a fund raiser.) Note to David Letterman: Don't lower your standards by wanting to be on the Oprah show, if so, what next? The Iowa pig report?
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A remarkably influential show
paperandglue26 August 2001
It's amazing media empire that Winfrey has built - including print, film, and television - starting from this show. While the quality has varied over the years, and some might not be a fan of the "touchy-feely" bent many of the shows have taken over the past few years, Oprah is a remarkably likeable, real, and charismatic figure. She has appealed to a wide audience, and has often chosen the hight road when making programming decisions. The show has definitely been a positive force in North America - the effect of "Oprah's Book Club" on book sales alone is proof of that - and hopefully will continue to be for years to come.
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Oprah should have been gone 20 years ago
catielady111025 February 2006
I don't know how anyone can watch this show without seeing right through her self-righteousness. The only talent Oprah has is brainwashing her target audience into thinking she is some kind of saint. The fact that she recently spent a huge chunk of an episode on how hard it is to get tickets to her show should tell you something. I watched the Oprah after show once (because the Desperate Housewives were on it) & they were talking about their wildest dreams & Oprah pulls out the biggest beauty pageant contestant answer ever (most of their dreams were to be some sort of music star & hers was this big elaborate "I don't want to leave this earth until I know I've done everything I could have done...etc...blah blah blah). She exploits the guests she brings on her show but then makes sure that they don't take the attention away from her. The only compliment I have on this show is that she brings good celebrities on it (which is pretty much the only time I ever watch the show), but then again she makes sure that they don't steal her spotlight. Even if she repeats the exact words that a guest star says (ahem...recent interview with Reese Witherspoon who was owning her show) she has to make it sound like it was her idea & she has to get a word in all the time. She is so full of herself it's disgusting. Basically Oprah needs to wipe that fake "I've been immortalized by the mind-numb America" look off of her face & stop wasting perfectly good airtime that could be spent on someone way more interesting...honestly, I'd rather watch infomercials.
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Opah Winfrey Show
crunchii_conchii9327 October 2005
Oprah is such a wonderful lady, it doesn't matter that she has all the billions of dollars, she helps people with her money. To all the people who wish she wasn't on air, don't watch it when she is on.

I live in Australia and i have been watching Oprah with my mum since i was only a little girl. Oprah has been my choice to watch for ages. Christmas specials are the best! Seeing all the cool prizes that she gives away just blows me away! She is such a nice lady to do all the tings to help people. Like when the Tsunami Came she helped people in that, and when hurricane Katrina came she helped them also.

Also she has really cool guests on like, Gwen Stefani, Chris Rock etc. I will be watching Oprah for years to come!
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Oprah SHOW... Just a show... Like the Scribes and Pharisees.
wildmanchris200030 December 2015
Warning: Spoilers

I explain in the video.

I was supposed to catch my connection flight in Chicago, but my flight got there one hour after my flight home from Chicago left for my home town.

I thought why not take public transportation to HARPO on 110 N. Carpenter Street and leave my story idea.

I walked inside,trembling with excitement. The receptionist did not even say hi. I told her I was in Chicago for only 12 day, and could I leave my story idea for Oprah.

"No! You have to email it to us like everybody else."

I begged and pleaded, until the janitor came out and asked if he could help me. I pled my case, telling him this was my only chance.

"Why did you not call up here ahead of time? We could have scheduled you an appointment to speak to Oprah."

"To Oprah HERSELF!" I asked, flabbergasted.

"Yeeeeeah," he answered.

"It ain't too late to still do it,is it?"


So I asked if I could schedule it for 11:30, and was told to call back AT 11:30. I asked for his first and LAST NAME, SO I COULD TELL THEM WHO TOLD ME THIS.


I took public transportation back to the O'Hare Airport's hotel and called back at 11:30 sharp.

The woman on the phone spat on, "Look! Who do you think you are! You can't just call up here and ask to speak to Oprah!"

"But an employee there named ... said scheduled me an appointment to..."

"We don't have anybody who works here by that name!" Again, watch the video:

Thank you.
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She is & always will be da' bomb!
dgordon-131 March 2003
I started watching "Oprah" back in 1987 about a year after her talk show went national. At the time, her show was set up like Phil Donahue's, where she would have different topics, and go out into the audience to get their opinions on whatever the topic was. Her subjects ranged from weight loss to racial disharmony in America and everything in between. Whatever the subject, I always looked forward to tuning into her show. It offered thought provoking subjects, and was always entertaining to watch. Whether she was pleasantly plump or skinny, she was always "large & in charge" in my books! Oprah has always had a style about her that has not been matched by any other talk show hosts, back then and now. Her show changed in the mid '90s to be more of a hybrid of the classic talk shows like "The Dinah Shore Show", and "Merv Griffin", but with the flare of Oprah thrown in for good measure. At the time, there were something like 14 other talk shows with the "Phil Donahue format", so I don't blame her for wanting to change the direction of her show. I remember Oprah stating in an interview that she wanted to get away from the sensationalism of the other talk shows and offer something truly unique and inspiring. In true Oprah fashion, she pulled it off and has not suffered from a loss in ratings like what was predicted. Another point that makes Oprah stand out from the rest of the pack is her undying generosity. She was instrumental in starting up "Habitat for Humanity", and is involved with many other charities. Along with this, she helps writers to get their work known to the public by choosing them for Oprah's Book Club & she will do special things for her audience like invite them back for her Christmas special where they get lots of good stuff! In conclusion, I have always admired Oprah Winfrey, not only for what she has done for herself, but how she helps other people achieve their hopes and dreams as well. Whether she is on her talk show or in a movie, Oprah has won an emmy & academy award in my heart a long time ago!
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When will it end!!!
swat61121 May 2003
I thought she was quiting in 2006, now she's signed until 2008! When will Oprah's rein of terror end! At least she doesn't have show like, "i want to find my baby's mama's daddy's lover" or something like that. But please she already has over a billion dollars, its time to walk away, its bad enough she's created Dr.Phil.
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How is this show still on the air?
yenlo1 May 2001
How this show has managed to stay on all these years is a true mystery. With all the talk that has gone on on this show nothing has ever been accomplished by it. The host of this show is either getting engaged or breaking it off or losing weight or putting it back on. She makes it seem that everyone should care if her wedding is off or she can't squeeze her rump into those designer jeans anymore. It's good to see that game shows which were pushed out by the talk shows are starting to make a comeback.
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What you see is what you get...
charity-181 September 2006
It's funny how someone can do so many amazing things for so many people and yet can still be viewed so negatively. The things we hate about others say a lot about what kind of people we are.

You hate Oprah because she always makes the show all about her? How do people view you? Do you really listen to people around you or do you always make the conversation about you? Do you feel you are surrounded by people who don't really hear what YOU have to say?

Nine times out of ten the more fame or fortune a person has the more they contribute to society. You may hate her show because it's not your cup-of-tea, but if you hate Oprah as a person you may want to ask yourself what you do to contribute. Do you actually seek out areas in which you can make contributions? Or does belittling someone who is a better person than you just make you feel better about yourself?

What would you do if you had her net worth or fame? Your net worth is measured by your life's contributions. If you always feel broke or even live pay-check to pay-check you may want to re-evaluate your ego.

Doesn't it get tiring thinking about all the bad things in life? What a waste of time! I could think of a million things I'd rather be doing with my time than gossiping about others.
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Best TV show ever
ahmpit24 June 2004
I started watching the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1996, when the show was first aired on South African TV. I remember watching everyday after school. The show was interesting, thought provoking. However its been 8 years since and Oprah's personality and natural ability is still as vibrant as when I first watched the show.

I love how she uses her platform to address issues close to her heart. Her angel network inspired the world to become better people. Her interview with Nelson Mandela was amazing for all South Africans.

Besides she is a beautiful person inside and out. I love what she does for the kids here in South Africa and her involvement in humanitarian work in Africa. Oprah, you are a true inspiration to everyone and please keep on doing what you doing. You are truly a legend!
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"Yer' like a shoe without a foot!" - Dr. Phil
MovieAddict201629 February 2004
What is there to say about a show like this?

Nothing. I'm just trying to build up my comments index.

"The Oprah Winfrey Show" is just one of those well-known television shows that has impacted America in a very serious way. It's a daytime talk show with actress/personality Oprah Winfrey. She interviews people. Dr. Phil offers strange Southern counseling to bickering couples.

I've seen it referenced in many films, including Danny Devito's dark comedy "Throw Momma from the Train." There's not much to say about it that hasn't already been said. It's the show everybody loves to hate. Ever seen it spoofed on SNL? Yeah, they do it pretty well...
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SC2083713 September 2019
The most overrated celebrity in modern times. She interviews people for a living, but people act as though she has a PhD in psychology, dieting, parenting and now politics. She's a liberal version of Donald Trump, overrated and unqualified. She has a college degree in Communications & Entertainment. How does that qualify her to be anything but a talk show host? Her "favorite things" that appear in the holiday issue of her magazine promotes materialism to the extreme. Who can afford to pay $120 for a box of 23-karat gold-leafed chocolates? She gives platforms to anti-vaxxers like Jenny McCarthy and grifters like Dr. Phil. She promoted a scam book called "The Secret." Kim Tinkham appeared on Oprah's show after she had been diagnosed with breast cancer and decided to not have chemo in favor of "positive thinking" as promoted in "The Secret." Sadly, Kim lost her battle to cancer. Oprah is a scam artist and a fraud.
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The good and the bad
BlueSkies7659 March 2019
When I started watching Oprah in the 90s it was a great talkshow in that era. There wasn't Internet and the other competitors like Ricki Lake, Jenny Jones and Jerry Springer were also great but in their own way. Oprahs show felt like it had a bigger budget and therefore could switch things up more than the other shows where it was mostly talking in the studio. Oprah showed a lot of the world. What I liked was how it appeared that she had a genuine interest in the topic she was covering and asked intelligent questions and was a good conversationalist. It's no wonder she would be labeled the queen of all media.

The quality of the show took a huge dive in the 2000s. Oprah became full of herself when they started putting her on the cover of magazines as the most powerful woman. The show became highly politicized. Frequently dealing with highly polarized topics Oprah had a fixed opinion on presenting it as fact. It felt a lot more commercial and more of a significance was placed on certain recurring topics that felt insignificant to ordinary people. It was also in this era that her show occasionally became the subject of controversies/backlash. For me my opinion of Oprah shifted to the negative when she would sneak in jabs at Michael Jackson during his 2005 child molestation trial. It was mean-spirited and showed that she's not as nice as she presents herself. I still continued to watch the show (but less frequently) because the quality of guests and topics still remained good at times.

I give it an even 5. Liked it in the 90s where it felt genuine and approached ordinary, real life situations with honest intellectual curiosity and respect but hated how it had devolved into an artificial, political spectacle after the millennium.
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Ok show with lot's of interesting guests
hunnam5519 April 2004
Okay, our dear Oprah is famous over the wide world now with her own TV-show "The Oprah Winfrey Show". I have watched it since -98 and I find it kind a fun. The guests she has is (almost) always interesting, she ALWAYS talks about topics that really are relevant. I met her for the first time in Chicago and I talked to her for about 15 minutes. I liked her very much, but in the end she acted like she was a very important person, and I mean a VERY Important person, which I disliked. But that doesn't have anything to do with her show. That's great and will always be. I remember when Nelson Mandela and Madonna were visiting the show, so interesting and so exciting! No TV-host have never had that kind of guest before. But if you find these guests kind of a boring thing, u can always listen to her own stories about her different diets for example. So, if I am going to rate this show I guess I'll have to give it a 4 out of 5. Yep!

Keep up, Oprah!
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I like The Oprah Winfrey Show. Great topics and great stories
Petra_Huber12 July 2019
I like The Oprah Winfrey Show. Great topics and great stories. Too bad she did not talk anymore.
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Very mediocre talk show
Catherine_Grace_Zeh14 August 2008
First off, I must say that this is a very mediocre talk show. Also, I haven't seen every episode. However, I enjoy watching it when some celebrities appear. If you ask me, that's the best thing about it. I don't enjoy most of the topics that Oprah does. Still, I enjoy watching Oprah talk about some controversial topics. It would be a lot more fun to watch if her topics were really juicy. Before I wrap this up, I'd like to say that I'll always remember this show in my memory forever after it's gone, even though I haven't seen every episode. Now, in conclusion, for all you die-hard fans of this show, if it gets aired in reruns, I hope that you catch it one day before it goes off the air for good.
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The Queen of Talk Shows!!!
Sylviastel10 September 2007
Let's face it, England has Queen Elizabeth II and America has Oprah Winfrey. While she might be only a talk show hostess, she already commands a billion dollar empire which includes her show, magazine, radio station, television channel, etc. She is the first African American woman to be a billionaire but also represents those of us who strive to achieve as well. Oprah's show is expected to run it's course in 2011 and please say it isn't show. Can we imagine life without her show? Probably not, it wouldn't be same. I knew she was going to be big but as a success story when I first saw her after Color Purple and her academy award nomination. I never imagined her to be so successful beyond her wildest dreams. Oprah's show is always first rate most of the time. You may like her or dislike her but you can't avoid her show's influence and hers as well. Too bad, her film version of Beloved didn't win her an Academy Award because she deserved it. Oprah's book choices become best-sellers even though I disagree with some of her choices as too feminine and emotional. She chooses books that will make us better people. Enjoy her now while you still can because when she retires from her show, television would never be the same.
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get a life
cometsbabe_615 August 2003
All of you need to get a life. Oprah is a great person. her show has helped people and she gets celebritys on it which is cool and not to mention this is her JOB!!!! get a life!!! this is like saying John Travolta should not be able to play in any movies!!!! he loves to act and Oprah loves her job!!! i might only be 13 but i no that if they love doing it they should keep at it and no one should tell them otherwise like some of you people who put that stuff up!! so get a life and let her do what she is good at and let her help the people she is trying to help. she is making a diffrence and u should see that!!
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The Oprah Winfrey Show used to be AM Chicago
beatfarmer668 June 2003
I was among the people who watched Oprah before she went national. AM Chicago was a morning show that followed Good Morning America on WLS-TV in Chicago. It was pretty much like other local morning shows.

Oprah took over the show after Rob Weller left the show to become co-host of the "new" show Entertainment Tonight. I still have memories of Oprah at the Rosemont Horizon to do a piece on the popularity of pro wrestling. The highlight of the piece was Hulk Hogan picking her up over his shoulder during the interview. It took a while for the show to become more of a talk show, but when it did, everyone took notice. The rest is history.
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The Oprah Show
Kirpianuscus7 July 2018
For me - one of the most bizarre shows. because it is fascinating the force of a woman to create her power not only for impeccable virtues as showman/guest but for a force of persuasion escaping to explanations, exploring domains so far by the ordinary interest of public. creating a sort of legend and not only for TV circle.creating a model of powerful woman. not for succes or money or glamour but for the courage to remind the need to be yourself.. a show about life, imposing trends, giving answers and suggestions. and, more important, proposing a huge character.
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