It’s a big day for Ellen DeGeneres.
Back in the ’90s, the comedian and talk show host starred in the sitcom Ellen. Twenty years ago today, 42 million people tuned into the “The Puppy Episode,” which showed her character (and herself) coming to terms with her sexuality and, eventually, coming out on air. To celebrate the historic moment, DeGeneres brought a host of familiar faces to The Ellen DeGeneres Show, including Oprah Winfrey.
An emotional DeGeneres kicked off the 20th anniversary of her coming out with a simple statement: “I’m Ellen and I’m gay.” But in case you weren’t tuned into the show, she re-shared the infamous TIME magazine cover, only with a slightly more relevant caption for today: “Yep, I’m still gay.”
DeGeneres also brought aboard long-time supporter and friend Oprah, who played a therapist in the episode. Oprah told Ellen that she got a lot of flack from viewers about appearing on the show, but it gave her important perspective.
“Twenty years ago, people kept things to themselves … you were pretending to be who you weren’t in a way … and you are responsible for so much of that changing. You are the bravest woman ever,” Oprah exclaimed before Michelle Obama could get a word in via video message.
In addition to the heartwarming interview with Oprah, Ellen brought back the cast of Ellenfor the first time since the show ended, including Laura Dernwho didn’t work for a year because she appeared on the episode.
“I have to say, just watching the clip makes me so emotional. Of all the things i feel privileged to experience in my life as a human and also as an actor, there is no greater gift than being the person that was with you and looking in your eyes as you said those words,” Dern said, describing the charged moments on set.
Don’t worrywe’re chopping onions in here, too, it’s not just you.
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