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November 20th, 2009
04:55 PM ET

Oprah: Who Wins? Who Loses? And Is She Really Quitting?

Oprah Winfrey will pull the plug on the talk show on Sept. 9, 2011

Oprah Winfrey will pull the plug on the talk show on Sept. 9, 2011

James Poniewozik
Time

Oprah Winfrey made it official on air today: on Sept. 9, 2011, she pulls the plug on the talk show that has dominated daytime TV for two decades. Says the Queen: "Twenty-five years feels right in my bones and feels right in my spirit." Mo Ryan has the full statement. (In related news, Discovery announced a launch date of January 2011 for Oprah's cable channel, OWN.)

Is Oprah actually done as a daytime host, though? The assessments of Oprah's career have been rolling in as if she had died. But we have to at least consider her history of making huge decisions and later changing them. Remember her founding Oxygen, the channel for women? She was going to be heavily involved in it—maybe even move her show there—and then she wasn't. She was going to end her show in 2006, and then she didn't. She canceled Oprah's Book Club and then she un-canceled it.

I am not saying that Oprah is going to change her mind. I'm just saying that if she does change her mind, I will claim to have totally called it. Until it is actually buried, I consider Oprah's talkshow career as dead as a major character on 24.

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