Ever since Oprah Winfrey signed up to Apple TV+, its never been quite clear, save from being a big name, what her role on the platform is. The first thing she did was bring her famous Book Club to Apple’s new service and then responded to the COVID-19 outbreak with a series discussing that, as part of Apple’s general response to the pandemic. However, it was fair to assume that the queen of talk shows would eventually launch one at her new home, and so it is. The Oprah Conversation looks set to tackle some of the biggest issues of the day.
An Uncomfortable Conversation With Oprah
The Oprah Conversation starts with a two-part discussion about racism with NFL star Emmanuel Acho. Mr. Acho recently launched a series on YouTube called Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man, in which he aims to help educate white people in a bid to tackle racial inequality and racism. Those uncomfortable conversations continue with Oprah and a variety of members of the public on Apple TV+. It is, as it should be, a hard watch. Mr. Acho is a smart and eloquent speaker, cutting through to the core of any issue that arises. It’s an endorsement of his skill and intelligence that Oprah, comparatively, says little, allowing him to take the lead.
Perhaps because the participants are separated, all on different screens, the tone of the conversation, however difficult, is largely conciliatory, not confrontational. It is also true that no ‘dissent’ really exists. Participants may disagree with Mr. Acho on specific issues at certain moments, although that’s rare, but those moments are navigated respectfully. There is no doubt that the participants came away from the conversation better informed – you can see ‘lightbulb’ moments throughout. The same is true for the viewer.
Apple TV+ Provides Space to Tackle Big Topics
These first two episodes of The Oprah Conversation are a hard watch, but a worthwhile one. You may or may not agree with everything that is said during the course of this conversation or those that follow, but Apple is undoubtedly right to use its foray into media to provide the space for people to have them.