It’s that time once again, people. Time to look back at the awesomest and shittiest things of 2016. As always, it remains a struggle to find things for the awesome category, and to keep the shitty category to a minimum. Check it out:
- Safety Nation – My book! OK, well, technically, it’s not being released until January 2017 (later this month), but it was completed in 2016, as was the cover art, and the big ramp up for promotion was done then, too. Besides, I needed something else good to keep this list from being too unbalanced.
- Chicago Cubs Win the World Series – I’m not a huge baseball fan, and I’m not a Cubs fan at all. But I’m happy that the long-suffering fans of the team could finally have a moment of glory. Going over 100 years without winning a title is a very long time, longer than any of the fans have been alive. So, this win, for them, was legendary. Even a curmudgeon like me can appreciate that.
- Deadpool, Stranger Things, and Arrival – Hollywood can be a strange place. It will regurgitate shitty reboots and remakes, and at the same time produce incredible original content. The three examples I listed above were the standouts for me this year. Deadpool was crass and hilarious, and took many shots at Hollywood’s coveted superhero franchises. Stranger Things was an X-Files/Goonies mash-up on Netflix that kept me glued to the edge of my seat. Arrival was a cerebral alien/linguistics movie that has no right being made by mainstream Hollywood, yet it was, and it was incredible. Despite the constant dumps Hollywood takes on us all year long, it is still capable of producing great content.
- Donald Trump – I don’t even know where to begin with this one. The U.S. elected a demagogue; a fascist, racist, misogynist moron with no political experience to the highest office in the land. What’s worse, he’s already flip-flopped on all of his campaign promises, and stacked his cabinet with people who are poised to make the entire country come crashing down. Why else would he appoint a climate change denier the head of the EPA, or someone who wants to abolish the Department of Education as the head of said department? He’s got baby-sized hands and a Twitter addiction, so he seems like presidential material, right?
- Brexit – I’m not up on all my European politics, but even I know this was a total disaster. The British equivalents of the U.S. citizens who voted for Trump supported this measure. By leaving the EU, Britain can single-handedly tank the entire European economy. What is it with old fucks trying to take everyone down with them, with one final regressive vote before they all die and leave us in the shitter?
- Harambe – They executed a gorilla for being a gorilla.
- Zika Virus – Oh, great, a super virus spread by the common mosquito that attacks fetuses. And said fetuses are born with tiny heads so that they can’t develop normal brains. And, to make matters worse, no politicians can seem to be bothered to spend any money trying to protect us from it. Why should they? The tax money needs to go to something more useful, like redistricting, voter suppression, defunding Planned Parenthood, and other admirable endeavors.
- Fake News – Fake news was everywhere this year. It’s always been a thing, I mean, haven’t you ever heard of Fox News? But this year it went out of control. Virtually every article posted to Facebook by your dumbass relatives was fake or largely fake. Sometimes, they would take something true and spin it so hard it no longer resembled the original story. All this did was further cement a Republican victory in the U.S. After all, poorly educated people love to vote against their own interests, and who better to target with fake news than those who have the critical thinking skills of ten year-olds?
- More Terrorism – It seems like there are more and more mass shootings, stabbings, and suicide bombings. Every time you turn on the damn news, there it is. It doesn’t seem like it’s ever going to end. But, hey, Donald Trump has a fool-proof plan to defeat ISIS. He hasn’t told anyone yet. But he’s going to be the President now, so come on Drumpf, what’s the plan? Oh, that’s right, you never had one, did you, you fucking windbag?
- Celebrity Apocalypse – A lot of our favorite celebrities died this year. Alan Rickman, David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Garry Shandling, Merle Haggard, Doris Roberts, Prince, Muhammad Ali, Anton Yelchin, Gene Wilder, Alan Thicke, George Michael, Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds, and a hell of a lot more. I couldn’t even list them all. It’s hard to believe that any celebrities would make it out of 2016 alive. Then again, if 2016 wanted to take out Drumpf as a final farewell, I wouldn’t be sad.
Well, another year has come and gone. 2017 is just getting started. I’m sure there will be many more awesome and shitty things happening during the Earth’s long trek around the sun. Let’s hope, no matter what happens, we can ridicule them with reckless abandon.