Why the love for Oprah?

Okay, so maybe it is the heat of the office making me unusually cranky on this Friday afternoon but I just have to write and ask, what is the deal with the Oprah phenomena, and particularly the magazine?

Now I know these may not be popluar thoughts to have these days, but I've got two questions (among many) that have been burning a hole on my mind that makes this whole love fest just not add up for me. 

#1. WTF is up with The O List? $185 beach blankets and Hancock mailorder lobster salad are "must-haves"? Funny, I always assumed must-haves were reserved for things like, I don't know, a roof over ones head and toilet paper, to name a few?

#2. Really? The cover of EVERY issue?

I can still recall the old days when The Oprah Winfrey Show was just like any other daytime talk show: b-list celebrity interviews, watching marriages crumble and families overcoming hardships all in one hour. But slowly an evolution occurred and morphed Oprah into a media conglomerate where we've got magazines, reality tv shows, book clubs, and something called the angel network.

When Oprah is enough, well....enough? And really is it Oprah? Or rather the millions of viewers and readers who are loving (or hating?) every minute of it?



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9 Comments Have Been Posted

How ever would anyone make

How ever would anyone make the important choices of their life if not for the guidance of 'Mother Oprah'?

And don't forget

<p>And don't forget about Dr. Phil. He is a product of this madness too.</p><p>&nbsp;</p>

The problem I have with Oprah ...

... Is her hypocricy and unfortunate zest for materialism. It's all well and good for her to be charitable with her "Angel Network" and the countless other causes she donates to (Are they REALLY helping out anyone? I wonder). But when it comes to her "O List" and her annual "Oprah's Favorite Things" show which, while giving her studio audience the free goodies they can spend the rest of their lives enjoying (The REAL purpose of that show is to sell those same things to a TV audience that cannot really afford to buy them) ... then my stomach turns. She should focus more on the societal problems at-hand and less on the over-exposed A-list guests and "free stuff" that's free to no one else.

...or how about the reverse sexism???

She's all offended about Female Genital Mutilation, but still hawks skin cream made from foreskins.

Unconsenting underage circumcision is mutilation, no matter what sex or gender of the person.

I Definitely think that her

I Definitely think that her opinions are one dimensional. I saw a show about male-female couples with children where one or two of the people in the relationship had decided he or she wanted to have relationships with someone of his or her same sex. Oprah was expressing her disbelief that a person's sexual preferences could change throughout his or her life. Instead of viewing sexuality as something fluid, Oprah kept portraying it as rigid.


i always expect to see the next issue with her covering her face in rejection of the attacking cameras.
i was thinking about how i grew up watching Donahue and how she's definitely taken things to the next level both in terms of a seemingly sincere commitment to change people's lives through some of her shows, but also in her deep ties to commercialism which have ultimately corrupted her.
and how does she jive the hardcore promotion of new age, buddhist-like spirituality (the New Earth) with some shows that are basically thinly-disguised, hour-long commercials?

Definitely cringeworthy but...

Yeah, there's a lot about the Oprah movement that leaves me wondering if I'm the only one that doesn't get it (the material objects in the magazine I assumed would be geared towards everyone yet I was/am shocked at how expensive these "must have" items are). It unnerves me when an audience member with deer-in-the-headlights-syndrome appears unable to think for themselves, instead favouring to follow Oprah's every move.

However...there are a few things she does really well: O Magazine is one of the few I can open up and see women of colour in the advertisements. That's really important to me because whether we like them or not, whether we buy into their seduction or not, advertisements hold up to us as a society what our society values as beautiful/successful/enviable and its a damned nice change to see women of colour in this space.

I don't watch a lot of tv at the moment, but if I do find myself at home during the day and switch on the box I can't watch any other talk show without feeling dirty afterwards. And at the end of the day, she extols following one's heart, belief in oneself and listening to your intuition. That's a message I can survive my daughter hearing.

And lastly...at first I thought it terribly narcissistic that she insisted on having a picture of herself on the cover of each magazine. But, in fairness, is it so wrong that at least one magazine a month gives us an alternative to the young, white, excessively gaunt model which stereotypically stares at us from the magazine rack?

That's hardly the case with

That's hardly the case with other magazines, unless you're only speaking of the chubby O face as opposed to the gaunt white OR black faces on others. Stick with your gut! It IS terribly, nausiatingly narcissistic!

Someone would ask me what

Someone would ask me what for shall I love this women? You know, there were shows when she defended people I don't appreciate or offended people I really love. But I do respect people who can change their mind and admit a mistake in front of millions, like Oprah did several times, and this is one more reason to love her and admire.

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