The Biggest Stars on TV #2: Oprah Winfrey
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TV has always created stars. But it takes a legend to burn bright enough to form a constellation.
That's the queen of daytime TV's legacy: We believe in Oprah Winfrey so much that her people became our people, from Dr. Phil to Dr. Oz, from Iyanla Vanzant to Suze Orman. It was a galaxy so large that an entire network, OWN, was birthed just to contain it. But it all started with the simple power of words.
Over its 25-year run, Winfrey's eponymous talk show made her both an icon and a down-to-earth friend we welcomed into our living rooms every weekday. Her struggles (with weight, with family) were ours, and so were her joys ("You get a car!").
She gave us the space and the language to talk about them all, no matter how dark or personal, showing how simple but passionate conversations — about race, about abuse, about relationships or even just the books we love — could help us live our best lives.
This is an abbreviated version of TV Guide Magazine's latest cover story. For more, pick up the issue, on newsstands now.