Thoughts on the George Zimmerman verdict. Meditation techniques. Free cars. Big breasts. Such is the buffet of delights served on an Oprah Winfrey press tour.
It’s been two years since the media messiah has been on television every afternoon, an absence tragic enough for a lifetime of ugly cries. But all those dream boards must have worked because, for these blessed last two weeks, the patron saint of finding our best selves has been on a press tour promoting her role in Lee Daniels’ The Butler, popping by Today, the Late Show, and even Bravo’s wacky nightly gigglefest Watch What Happens Live to talk about the film and her performance.
Oprah being Oprah, discussions were not limited to her role in the movie. They also included the history of civil rights in America, Whitney Houston’s death, koalas having sex, ‘90s hair, Lindsay Lohan, the history of the civil rights movement, lesbians, the Oprah Winfrey Network, smoking weed, marrying Stedman, Paula Deen, and “breasteses.” It’s been a miraculous week, a reminder that, as wonderful as Oprah Winfrey is when talking to other people, nothing compares to Oprah talking about Oprah.
Because a press tour as blissful as this demands immortalization, here are the highlights from the past two weeks. Contain your excitement.
She Makes Dreams Come True
There are some things that everyone wants. More money. World peace. And to have Oprah bellow their name. Andy Cohen, hosting Watch What Happens Live, is blessed to see at least one of those things come to fruition when Winfrey obliges, screaming his name. As if that’s not enough, she later tells him that he “carries the light, man,” and it was basically the equivalent of being canonized as a saint. For a brief moment, there’s genuine concern that his head will in fact explode.
She’s In on the Joke
The brilliance of Oprah is that she totally gets the things about her that everyone loves to laugh at and parody and she just could not care less. In this joyous walk down memory lane, Cohen ribs her about how she’d sing along with musical guests on her show but mouth the wrong words, elongate every vowel of her guests’ names when introducing them, don hideous hairdos, and histrionically react to any surprise. Her response? Belly laughs heartier than our own.
You Really Do Get a Car
Oprah has given so many free things over the years—the pinnacle, of course, being the notorious “you get a car!” episode of her show—that some might have diagnosed her with an affliction, the unshakable addiction to surprising people with free things. Well, Winfrey (jokingly) revealed to Jimmy Kimmel that she really may have such a disorder. In fact, she was struck with an episode during her interview, gifting an unsuspecting audience member with, yep, a free car.
Talking Meditation with Dave Letterman
In a rare know-your-audience misfire, Oprah begins chatting with Dave Letterman, of all people, about meditation. Letterman, of course, spins the conversation into comedy gold by trying to one-up Oprah’s humble brags about meditating with Deepak Chopra. Turns out Letterman’s got a meditation guy, too. His name is “Meditation Bob.”
Weighing In on Trayvon Martin
It wasn’t all levity during Oprah’s media assault. During her Today show appearance, she offered her two cents (who are we kidding, this is Oprah—her two billion dollars) on the George Zimmerman verdict. Unsurprisingly, she was impeccably insightful. “Trayvon Martin, parallel to Emmett Till,” she said. “Let me just tell you, in my mind, same thing. But you can get stuck in that and not allow yourself to move forward and to see how far we’ve come.”
The Interview of Our Dreams
Oprah told omg! Insider’s Kevin Frazier that she would love to interview Paula Deen, which, omg! make that happen yesterday. Of course, Deen would have been wise to seek advice from our nation’s sage spirit guide before boarding that PR trainwreck that took place earlier this summer. “You know, I think when you’re caught in the middle of all the media stuff it, it throws you off course and you really need to settle with yourself,” Winfrey said. “Like when she did that interview on the Today show she probably needed to wait a few days, you know, to settle down.”
She Settles One of Jay Z’s Most Controversial Feuds
Got a problem? Go to Oprah. She’ll assess the situation, quote some Maya Angelou at you, and then offer spot-on insight that will solve anything. Case in point: her analysis of the ongoing intergenerational feud between Jay Z and Harry Belafonte about social responsibility. “There are multiple ways to protest,” she says. “Jay uses his music, he uses his life, he uses his artfulness … Harry Belafonte’s might have been going to Congress or marching, or so forth. Not everybody has the same way. That’s why this movie is so powerful because the father’s way was not the son’s way. Which way is right? Both are right.”
You can stop sticking pins in that voodoo doll you made of Terrence Howard because Oprah told Andy Cohen that she was not offended by the crack the actor made about her “tig ol’ bitties.” Call it what it is, Oprah says: “It really is okay because they are really big. The other day, I went, ‘God are y’all getting bigger?’ These are my grandmother’s—she’s with me.” Cohen later joked, “Not only does she have a bountiful garden, she has bountiful …” to which Oprah jubilantly interrupted, “Breasteses!” Sadly, there’s no video available. But that was the time Oprah spent 30 seconds talking about her boobies.