Oprah Winfrey’s final show taping was about as monumental an affair as you might imagine. A crowd of 20,000 in Chicago’s United Center cheered on a never-ending litany of celebrities and Scientologists and celebrity Scientologists. Tom Hanks was there, as was Tom Cruise, keeping off the furniture this time. Josh Groban sang. Madonna made a face. Beyoncé, Halle Berry, Katie Homes, and Queen Latifah were there, too. Along with John Travolta, Will Smith, and Jada Pinkett-Smith.
But the biggest surprise of the taping was probably Maria Shriver’s appearance, just a day after her husband announced that he’d fathered a child with another woman. “Well, Oprah, for more than 30 years, you bestowed the most amazing friendship on me, giving me love, support, wisdom, and most of all truth,” said Shriver, with Oprah holding her tightly. Oprah gave her “ugly-cry” face and said “I’ve never experienced anything like this and I say once again thank you for taking me to a place that’s beyond joyous. I’m going to have to process it and look at it on tape to see what actually happened here. It feels like the rapture, so thank you all for that!” Did she just say “the rapture?”