Ouch. Maybe she is attempting to keep from making a 102nd mistake, which might explain her controversial interview with America’s most-hated clan, the Kardashians and her decision to bestow the new NBA champions with an hour of airtime. Oh, and let’s not forget her decision to interview 50 Cent, who purposely disrespected her by naming his dog Oprah and the re-introduction of O’s Book Club, which has been known to launch miniscule novels into bestsellers and movies.
But it seems that the public is reluctant to take the bait.
Still, Oprah is determined to push forward. “You know, because a thing appears to not be doing well, and I’d like to say this to everybody: because you failed at something — which we haven’t failed — but just because you fail doesn’t make you a failure.”
I tend to agree. Call me naïve, an Oprah band wagoner, or whatever label suits me for this occasion, but I refuse to believe OWN can’t be spared from cable death.
Oprah is too much of a superhero to allow that to happen. The marketing, advertising, and branding departments are pulling all-nighters in the OWN offices, but somehow, puzzle pieces are beginning to fit together.
The Twitterverse might have disagreed with Oprah’s decision to interview the Houstons a month after Whitney’s death, but we were super-glued to our television sets to watch the ultimate interviewer showcase her craft. We rant and complain on social media, but it hasn’t stopped us from tuning in week after week to “Oprah’s Next Chapter,” watching as she navigates Lady Gaga’s eccentric world and asks Kim Kardashian about her sex tape. Each week, we are reminded of what started our love affair with Queen O to begin with. Being able to reinvent herself and her network to suit our needs is pure talent.
And Oprah’s brand is talent that built from concrete. Need we forget that the Queen started out as an impoverished black child from Mississippi, who dropped out of college before taking over the world. She was molested, neglected, and abused – and still she rose.
The fabulous Zora Neale Hurston once said that black women are the mules of the world. We are resilient. We fight. Oprah is fighting. And because she is Oprah, her network will survive. Slowly, OWN is becoming independent of its life support; the network is introducing six summer programs and ratings are up 14 percent among women 25 to 54.
OWN has a few steps to take before it reaches a mega milestone, but all masterpieces take time to create. Don’t doubt the power of the brand. Oprah will save OWN.