Oprah's Half-Sister Reveal Gives Birth to a Whole Lotta Laughs

The Oprah Winfrey Show installment in which the queen of daytime revealed that she had discovered a long-lost half-sister not only reaped big ratings, it also spawned much comedic fodder for the entertainment community.

“The rumors are true, I’m Oprah’s half sister,” Joel McHale (of Community and The Soup) tweeted on Monday, getting the ball rolling. “Believe me, I’m more shocked than you. To know that I’m related to Oprah & find out I’m a woman [is] almost too much.”

Disputing McHale’s claimed birthright was the husband-and-wife team of Annette O’Toole and Michael McKean, each of whom also tweeted dibs on being O’s secret sib.

Working with a bit more lead time, late-night hosts Jimmy Kimmel and Craig Ferguson both poked fun at Winfrey’s much-hyped revelation by unveiling their own “long-lost” relatives.

As seen in the first video posted below, Kimmel’s kin came in the form of Barbara, whom he quickly and early embraced (at the 3:40 mark)… only to then shoo her away.

Kimmel also had fun with the topic in his monologue, saying that the half-sister of the über-rich Winfrey now “has to decide if she’s going to go with the lump sum, or annual payments.”

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Ferguson, meanwhile, introduced viewers to “Pat” Ferguson, played by a man in drag.

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But as noted at the top of this story, Oprah’s the one laughing… all the way to the ratings bank, seeing as Monday’s “very special” episode netted the talker its best household rating since a February 2005, aprés-Oscars outing.

Did you tune in for Oprah’s big news? Was it worth the headlines?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Jaime says:

    Guess I’m not as cynical as the rest of the world. I think it’s pretty amazing to find out this late in life you have a half sister and oh by the way, it’s OPRAH. The story began with the new sister (Patricia) talking about working two jobs to give her kids a better life. Those days are over Patricia….good for you! P.S. doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy a good joke, but I think Ferguson and McHale could have done better, perhaps saying they were Patricia’s long lost brothers, and therefore connnected to the Oprah gravytrain.

  2. not_me says:

    I think if I found out I was Oprah’s half-sister, I wouldn’t tell a soul. I think Oprah’s horrible and I wouldn’t want to admit to being related to her.

    • Sue says:

      Good thing you’re not related to her, then, isn’t it?

    • sadtroll says:

      Horrible? Try horriblest! I mean, who doesn’t just absolutely hate Oprah. If only this comment field allowed me to list all of her horrible, terrible attributes and accomplishments/crimes against humanity.

      I suppose being related to not_me would be worse though.

  3. sara says:

    There is much debate about what Oprah is like as a person. But, you have to admit, those close to her do keep her secrets. The sister was discovered over Thanksgiving and no one said a peep. So whatever the motivation (great pay, they love her, they are afraid of her, and many other personal (even though you don’t know her) views about her you might have)you have to admit – that is pretty amazing. There proven scary people whose secrets make it to TMZ the minute they happen.

  4. Jinxy says:

    I don’t know Oprah or what she’s like as a person. Why is it a big deal that she found a half-sister? It’s not like this is first time in history this has ever happened to someone. We don’t put them on TV and in the news and fawn all over them. Oprah is not like you and me, my friends. She has multiple homes and people who work for her. She has her own freakin’ TV network!! Glad she found a sister, but why does she have to drag her out for ratings?

  5. TV Gord says:

    Jinxy, if Oprah didn’t do a show on it, other media would have eventually found out and told the story the way they wanted to (and possibly gotten it wrong). The great thing about this story is that this sister has the same name as a now-deceased sister who betrayed Oprah by going to the tabloids, and she resembles that sister greatly. It’s almost like finding a non-evil twin!

  6. nlee1 says:

    This is not so unheard in the black community. There are lots of families that discover another sibling. More times than not, these revelations come after the death of a parent. That is what happened in our family. We discovered we had a brother after our Father died.
    He knew about us, but we did not know about him. THe shame in this was not with our father for not telling us…the shame was in our newly found brother not being integrated in our lives sooner. You can imgine how happy we were to meet him and see how errily he looked, walked, talked, and had the very presence of our Dad. He even wore the same style haircut and moustache as our Father. There was no denying him. In finding our brother this late in life was a blessing to us. The more family you have as you get older is very good. To have our brother come into our lives helped him a lot as well. We were able to talk about a lot of things that he had wondered about all of his life. Plus, we now have a 16 year old nephew that we can spoil rotten. Our newly found nephew now has 3 aunts and 2 uncles that he never knew before. We were not able to tell our brother the reason Dad never mentioned him as our Father took whatever reason for that to his grave. However, our parents raised us well and we extended that to our brother. So, while this is not a true Oprah story, considering who she is, this is a story that happens more than you could imagine. So ladies and gentlemen, you have to tell your children if there may be another sibling out there. The world is very small in comparision to what it use to be when people did not travel very far from home. I have traveled to the other side of the world and ran into a person I knew…..You or one of your kids may someone run into a person and form a relationship never knowing if the person is not a close relative. So good for Oprah for finding out she has a sister, as she thought she was alone without any sibling left. This can only be a blessing. That’s the way I see it. Guilt and shame is a horrible thing. Oprah’s Mother had a heavy burden on her. I am not saying that her Mother was right in not telling Oprah sooner. I am saying you have to walk in her shoes and see how you would have handled it. Having Oprah as a daughter would make you think twice. I for one will not judge Oprah Mother, she made the best choice she could make under the circumstances. It is a good thing Oprah and her sister met….so let’s just wish them well.