Oprah Winfrey to appear on an episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians(CP)

Close your eyes and try and imagine a world in which Oprah Winfrey, media mogul extraordinaire and one of the most powerful women in the free world, needs Kim Kardashian, sex tape star turned nail polish pimp. Having a hard time? Well you'd better get used to it, because we're living in that world.

Once a revered talk show host, Winfrey has been pulling out all the stops lately to save her struggling cable network, laying off staffers in March and even taking to Twitter to beg viewers to watch OWN, but her latest act of desperation may have left a permanent stain on a reputation that took decades to build.

After interviewing the Kardashian clan for a two-part episode of Oprah's Next Chapter this month (and by interviewing we mean sucking up to,) the 58-year-old will now be making a cameo on the family's reality show.

"The talk show mogul was so enamored with the clan that she agreed to appear on Keeping Up With the Kardashians," a source tells US Weekly.

The announcement, which is sure to raise more than a few eyebrows from Winfrey's A-list pals, follows her sad excuse of an interview with Kim, in which she behaved more like a sycophant than a journalist. After the reality TV starlet explained how much she'd learned from her 72 day marriage to NBA player Kris Humphries, Winfrey gushed: "That is so perfect I could weep."

After decades at the top, it's incredibly uncomfortable to watch someone who once commanded so much respect, claw at anything to get back up.

It's obvious Winfrey thinks cozying up to the fan-favourite Kardashians will help boost ratings and make her relevant with a younger demographic and she's willing to push aside her pride in the process. It's surely why she spent two episodes interviewing rapper 50 Cent, who she labelled "charming!" despite the fact he famously named his dog Oprah and spoke out about his dislike for the talk show host.

There's no doubt Winfrey's recent professional struggles have been a huge blow to her ego and she's doing anything to get back atop her pedestal, but how much is she willing to sacrifice to get there? What's the point of being on top if you have nobody's respect once you get there?

If she really wants a good old fashioned ratings boost, perhaps it's time to convince good pal John Travolta to address the rumours about his sexuality once and for all. Now that would be must-see TV!

Related: Did Kim Kardashian's mom orchestrate her sex tape?