I have never been a huge fan of Oprah Winfrey. It's not that I dislike her, I just have never seen the huge attraction in her or her television program. I find her show mildly amusing, and I will watch it if I should happen to be home in the afternooon, and there is nothing else to watch. She seems like a nice lady, she's charming, she is usually polite and respectful to her guests, but one could never call her groundbreaking or edgy. Her guests and topics usually reflect "pop-culture lite".
Last week, amidst a flood of tears, Oprah announced she would be retiring from her television show in September 2011 -- which is almost two years from now. When I first saw the news clip, I thought someone had died. But no, it was simply Oprah announcing her "retirement" from her afternoon program. Have her ratings been slipping lately? Because this was a brilliant publicity stunt. The best way to make people want something is to tell them they can't have it anymore. So for the next two years, her fans will be in a "death watch". And, just watch her ratings and her fortune sky-rocket during that time.
Oh, goodness, don't I sounded jaded? Well, there's no business like show business -- and Oprah is a savvy business woman.
The next question is, who will take Oprah's place? I rather like Tyra Banks. To use Tyra's word, she's "fierce". She has an edge to her, and she's smart, dynamic and funny. I hope Tyra continues to have fun with her show, keeps her own personality and doesn't step into Oprah's footsteps but instead keeps her own identity. But, whoever fills the vacant spot left by Oprah, I hope they recognize the fact that it’s just entertainment. Does anyone remember the ending of the Truman show? As soon as Truman walked off the set, folks immediately picked up their remotes and looked for something else to watch.
So, Oprah, "In case I don't see you ... good afternoon, good evening, and good night."