Fans praise Drew Barry more for emotional interviews

After a string of emotionally intimate and empathetic interviews this week by Drew Barrymore on her show, fans are wondering if she’s the next queen of daytime talk shows.

#DrewBarrymore is becoming the millennial #Oprah,” @pastelon15 tweeted. “She’s so encouraging, positive, wants people to share their story. It’s refreshing.”

The comparison to Oprah Winfrey came in response to a clip from Wednesday’s episode of the “The Drew Barrymore Show,” where singer and actor Chloe Bailey and Barrymore were talking about imposter syndrome. Winfrey, who wears multiple hats as a billionaire media magnate, is known for her sharp interviewing skills and ability to allow her high-profile guests to open up about intimate topics from their lives.

Bailey, who recently starred in the Amazon Prime series “Swarm,” had just shared how she “released this idea of ​​needing to be perfect onscreen” and how it’s helped her love acting.

“What did you have to tell yourself?” Barrymore asked. “Because we can fall prey to our worst insecurities, our demons, like, I wonder if anyone can say anything worse than I say to myself, I’m working on it.”

“Me too. I’m working on it too,” Bailey said.

And in classic fashion, Barrymore closed the gap between the two by getting down on one knee to hold Bailey’s hand as she asked how the “Ungodly Hour” singer had overcome her imposter syndrome.

The “Have Mercy” performer went on to share how she “cried it out first,” in prayer and in phone calls with her godmother and her siblings, including her sister and bandmate Halle Bailey. She then mentioned how difficult it was to accept the achievement of releasing her first studio album, “In Pieces,” which dropped two weeks ago.

“I keep reciting to myself, ‘I deserve it, I deserve it, I deserve it, I deserve it,’” Bailey said as Barrymore continued holding her hands. “And I think we owe it to ourselves. We have to give ourselves flowers before we expect anyone else to.”

The audience burst into applause.

“Drew Barrymore is such an incredible interviewer,” tweeted Claire Thomas, a director and former food show host. “She understands that creating a small, intimate space with the guest causes the audience to lean forward. And she seems genuinely lovely/authentic/kind.”

“In a way it’s like Oprah plus Graham Norton? Like, loose but I’m crying?” she added.

Fans also gave Barrymore her flowers for her sit-down Tuesday with Brooke Shields, who — like Barrymore — also got her start as a successful child actor.

Shields is the subject of the new Hulu documentary “Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields,” during which the model and actor looks back at her childhood spent in the spotlight, exposing the harsh reality of a young Hollywood star who’s sexualized and exploited. Both she and Barrymore also had complicated relationships with their mothers, who also worked as their managers.

As Barrymore greeted Shields, the two held hands. “Don’t start,” Shields warned with a smile, holding back tears.

The two then sat on a couch, where Barrymore sat close to Shields, cross-legged, and discussed their childhoods. Then, in Oprah-esque fashion, Barrymore pivoted to a difficult question about the #MeToo movement and its complex impact.

“This is gonna seem like a very weird turn, but how did you feel about the #MeToo movement?” Barrymore asked, before sharing how she felt elements where the very “gray area” exploitation from her childhood fit into the movement. “We were children. How did that movement affect you? Did you feel like you could speak to it?”

“No, because I don’t know where I fell on the spectrum of it,” Shields said as Barrymore nodded and held her hand. “I didn’t know where to interpret my experiences, because I was made to feel culpable, and at the same time, you victim-shame yourself.

“But we were so young, and it was so appropriate that … I couldn’t feel sorry, I didn’t know what it was. And when it was called out to me as such, I was like ‘No, no. Not going there.’”

Barrymore and Shields then connected with how being mothers helped them find perspective on their tough childhoods. Barrymore has two daughters — Olive, 10, and Frankie, 8, — and Shields is the mother of Rowan Francis, 19, and Grier Hammond, 16.

“talk shows have come such a long way in the last decade,” tweeted @thicmystic, responding to the Shields interview. “This conversation was so important for both of these ladies & thousands of watching.. thank you”

Writer @AGramuglia said he didn’t realize “how cold so many talk shows are until i saw Drew Barrymore be so intimate with her interviews.”

“The sincerity radiates from her,” he added.

“Remarkable how Drew is facilitating so many open conversations,” agreed @carolineframke“that only ever happens behind closed doors, if at all.”

“The Drew Barrymore Show” premiered on CBS in September 2020 amid the pandemic in an audience-less studio. The show struggled early on with ratings, but viewership has improved over the last year, hitting 1.2 million viewers. Barrymore’s program is the fourth most-viewed syndicated talk show, just behind “The Kelly Clarkson Show” (1.4 million). “Dr. Phil” is at No. 2 (2.2 million) and “Live With Kelly and Ryan” sits at No. 1 (2.3 million).

Winfrey was a guest on Barrymore’s show in April 2021. She credited Barrymore and the show’s producers for continuing to put out compelling interviews despite the challenges of the pandemic and influencing her own talk show, the now-defunct AppleTV+ production, “The Oprah Conversation. ”

“You have changed my life. You certainly have changed my work life,” Oprah said in the virtual interview, commenting on the show’s ability to have guests join from remote locations, but making it seem as if they were in the same room together. “I watched that and said, ‘Hey, why can’t we do what Drew did?’”

In an interview with The Times’ Amy Kaufman, Barrymore called the show her “life’s work put in a productive way, where I don’t have to ignore everything I’ve done in my life.”

“This show for me is not playing a character — I’m learning how to live a life,” Barrymore added. “The friendships, the feeling aa part of this great unit of people, there’s no toxicity, we’re laughing all day long, we’re pushing ourselves to learn, we’re getting better, we’re growing, and I love it . I love it.”

Times staff writers Amy Kaufman and Emily St. Martin contributed to this report.

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