Life without Oprah

Thank goodness the reigning queen of talk show television, Oprah Winfrey, has given her audience almost two years to prepare for her departure from daytime television. With her relentless drive  for perfection Oprah’s daily talk show blended her quasi-religious blending of self-reliance, inspiration and mysticism with hard core topics such as child safety; pornography; personal finance; dysfunctional relationships; and mental health issues of every spectrum.  On daily for more than 23 years, Oprah, has redefined popular culture. She became a star-maker as she selected authors for her Oprah Book Club; endorsed products she loved on “Her Favorite Things”; and anointed the next generation of talk show hosts including Dr. Phil (please save us from him); Suze Orman; Dr. Oz and others.  What will life like without Oprah daily when she “retires” from day-time television on September 23, 2011? Well, different.  Oprah goes on to guide the Oprah Winfrey Network in partnership with the Discovery Channel and I’m sure she will bring us in-depth programs on topics which she is passionate about and lead her audience into new directions.   And who is the late afternoon successor? The jockeying has begun as Dr. Phil; Suze Orman; Ellen DeGeneres; Tyra Banks; Bonnie Hunt; and others position themselves to be the successor to Oprah’s 5 p.m. EST time-slot.  Oprah’s departure could negatively impact the lead-in to CBS News, which hasn’t had out of the park success with Katie Couric as their 5 p.m anchor. Ah, it will be a brave new world on September 23, 2011 and I for one can’t wait to see what the next two years will bring in daytime talk show programming.  There’s only one Oprah.  The others are just pretenders.

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