Listen Live
Praise Featured Video

Oprah Winfrey’s last season hosting her iconic talk show might inspire a stroll down memory lane to reminisce about favorite ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ episodes of yore, but that’s nothing compared to the flashback some of her staffers have been experiencing over the past few months.

Winfrey told TV Guide that, for the past nine months, teams of employees have been examining more than 5,000 hours of footage the show has filmed over the past 25 years to pick out some memorable moments to return to.

“They have reviewed and documented every single show, so we know what to revisit,” Winfrey told TV Guide. “I plan on going back to Forsyth County [in Georgia]. That’s the town where there were no black people allowed and a guy was using the N-word with me. I’m going to do a tour of the new Forsyth County with him. I’m also going to go back to Williamson, West Virginia, where the town wouldn’t allow a young man who had AIDS in the grocery store. His name was Michael Sisco. He’s since died.”

Creating meaningful moments is important to Winfrey in her final season, and she can trace that inspirational streak back to a single 1988 episode. “Yesterday I was looking at a skinhead show [we did in 1988], and I said to my staff, ‘That’s the show that caused me to do television differently.’ What I learned from that is you cannot allow yourself to be a vehicle that promotes the energy of hatred in any form. That was life-changing for me.”

To keep the final season as memorable as possible, Winfrey isn’t allowing any frivolous segments. “This year is about creating moments,” she said. “So I can assure you we’re saying to all of our celebrity friends, ‘This is not the year you can come on and just promote your book or promote your song. You have to create moments.’ So the team is looking at ways of pairing different celebrities to create unexpected moments.”

Even President Obama won’t be stopping by, but that doesn’t mean he won’t appear at all. “No, I did not ask him to come on this year,” Winfrey said. “But I did say, ‘I’m sure you will hear from somebody on my team before this year is over.’ [Laughs] I’m sure that at some point I will see a taped message or something.”


Leave a Reply