You should hear this loving account of the rise of Oprah from WBEZ Chicago. We were skeptical of its motives - does Oprah really need a legacy-polishing podcast at this point? - but quickly won over, both by its warm heart and its pointed reminder that Oprah becoming Oprah was a massive deal. It's easy to forget in hindsight just how omnipresent she was, how evident her charisma, how startling her rise to fame (when she asked one exec if he foresaw any problems with hiring her, and he didn't, she reminded him: "I'm black and overweight."). The story is engrossing, told through nostalgia-inducing clips, interviews with those who worked with and knew her during her formative years in television, and an appearance by the Great One herself. Three hour-long parts are available now.
Gateway episode: Ep 1: No Strategy, No Plan, No Formula (17 Nov 2016)