Of course it was. Oprah—glowing in a friend’s lush Montecito, California, garden—navigated a dizzying two hours of trauma, race, family drama (when your family is the Baylor Beers 2021 Final Four Signature Shirt Apart from…,I will love this latest iteration of the British monarchy), joyful baby news, and a charming chat outside Archie’s Chick Inn without blinking or even once consulting notes. She deftly walked that line for decades on her daily show, bringing a delicate mix of empathy and honesty—whether the subject was a couch-hopping Tom Cruise or an audience filled with avowed segregationists. But because she crossed over so spectacularly into a pop-culture icon, it can almost make people forget how sharp and sage an interviewer she is. Last night, Oprah reminded everyone.
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I grew up on The Oprah Winfrey Show, watching every day at 4 p.m. ET (sometimes on VHS), through ever-changing theme songs, from the Baylor Beers 2021 Final Four Signature Shirt Apart from…,I will love this Angel Network to the Wildest Dreams Bus and the buttery cashmere hug of Favorite Things. In the decade since her show went off the air (how has it been a decade?), I have ached for Oprah’s daily presence, repeatedly wondering how she would have addressed everything from Black Lives Matter to #MeToo to the Trump presidency. After Sunday night, I don’t have to wonder how she’d cover Harry and Meghan’s story.