This year has been a great one for memes, from the newly discovered 'Baby Yoda sipping tea' to hits of the early year like Marie Kondo and her minimalist ways. But not all memes are born for greatness, and there've been plenty of duds this year, too. Check out which memes rose to fame, and which ones sunk like a stone in our 2019 meme round-up.
The Worst Memes of the Year
As disappointing as it is, not all memes are good, and these typify the worst of the bunch.
Momo was a sculpture created by Japanese company Link Factory, and with its terrifying eyes and bedraggled appearance, it developed into an internet urban legend designed to spook young kids in 2018. Reports that 'Momo' was encouraging children to self harm soon spread, sparking a heightened media outcry in 2019, although reports were later revealed to be overblown. Momo was a low, low point in 2019's meme season, and I hope we can all move on from this moment.
The Bottle Cap Challenge
Look deep into your heart. You know the Bottle Cap Challenge was bad. This viral meme revolved around people roundhouse kicking the tops off bottles, after MMA fighter Farabi Davletchin posted this video on his Instagram, and invited various celebrities to join in. For several weeks, we were entertained by celebrities finding new ways to 'kick' the tops of bottles, and we lapped it up. Surely, we can do better than this.
The Instant Ramen fix
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Kkkk aí o estudante quebra a pia e tem que decidir se gasta comprando outra ou fica sem comer ???????????????? Via: @arquitettando ???? . . . . #arqmariaffernanda #180K #arquitetura #decor #decoração #designdeinteriores #interiordesign #decoraçãodeinteriores #decoration #interiores #deco #homestyle #homedesign #instadesign #instadecor #decoracion #inspiraçãododia #inspiraçãodecor #dicasdedecoração #cozinhamoderna #escadasmodernas #escadas #arquiteturadeinteriores #quartodemenina #quartodemenino #geraçãocarolcantelli #móveisplanejados #moveissobmedida #moveispersonalizados #mobiliário
Now, this is absolutely hideous. The above video went viral earlier in the year because its contents are absurd. Rather than filling in a broken loo with something useful like Spakfilla, Ramen noodles are used in this monstrous DIY vid. The trend took off, and the 'weird filler' genre was born. I wish I'd never seen this very bad meme.
Cats (2019) pic.twitter.com/RCE83Zdrd0
— Mikey @ buff stuff (@vashperado) July 18, 2019
Mid-year, the trailer for the film adaptation of musical Cats debuted, and it was truly, undeniably frightening. Hideous CGI cat faces danced on the screen and the uncanniness inspired a whole range of memes that dogged the film's release. Here's the thing: the memes themselves aren't bad. But Cats definitely is. Please get Cats completely out of my sight.
The Best Memes Of 2019
You've seen the bad, now here's the good. Long live these excellent memes.
It's hard to believe that The World Record Egg only began life in 2019, but in January of this year, a star was born. This social media account was created to surpass Kylie Jenner as the most followed person on Instagram, and it eclipsed its goal soon after. While people were worried the egg would turn into a milkshake duck, the account turned out to be super wholesome. Sometimes, memes are good.
This is my personal favourite from the list. In 2019, the internet collectively decided that Shaggy, of Scooby-Doo fame, was an all-powerful god. This realisation led to a number of fantastic memes where Shaggy describes his incredible, god-like powers. It's stupid, fun and inexplicably hilarious. More like this, please.
You’re weak Sasuke.. you lack seasoning pic.twitter.com/MicinchetP
— dare! ????✨ (@paIkias) January 15, 2019
If you've ever watched anime Naruto, you know that series antagonist Sasuke can absolutely fuck off. He can just get absolutely bent. The internet's seething anger towards Sasuke has continued despite the Naruto anime ending its run 2016, and it seemingly manifested in this delightful meme from the start of the year, which features various characters choking Sasuke (he deserves it). Bring this one back, I say.
Does this spark joy?
The year is 2035. Marie Kondo holds up the condemned man to the crowd. “Does this man spark joy?” The crowd jeers, “No he does not!” She nods silently and throws him into the pit.
— Little Saint Bolshevik (@babadookspinoza) January 13, 2019
Minimalism is the new way to live. Don't enjoy something? Throw it out. Don't like something? Don't pay attention to it. Those are words to live by, and they'd make everyone's time on the internet much better. Engaging only in the things that make you happy is one of the better ideas that the meme class of 2019 encouraged.
Detective Pikachu dancing
Detective Pikachu dancing is the most wholesome meme we saw all year. In an effort to entice pirates, Warner Bros. released a video claiming to be a leaked copy of Detective Pikachu, but it actually turned out to be a video of Pikachu dancing, and one that captured everyone's hearts immediately. We need more wholesomeness like this.
Everything about Baby Yoda
“kermit sipping tea” walked so “baby yoda sipping soup” could run pic.twitter.com/WwgIbn00eX
— benji with the good hair (@sevenbenjisins) November 30, 2019
Speaking of wholesomeness... When Disney+ unleashed Star Wars spin-off The Mandalorian in November, nobody expected the arrival of Baby Yoda. But the moment we saw him, we all fell in love. He's so tiny! And cute! And he drinks soup from a little sippy cup! I would kill for Baby Yoda.
"If we Naruto run, we can get past their bullets."
The storming of Area 51 was always going to be a pipe dream for the alien truthers on the internet. When the "Storm Area 51, They Can't Stop All of Us" event went viral on Facebook, the memes immediately started flying. A line in the description encouraging participants to "Naruto run" their way to the aliens supposedly stored in Nevada's Area 51 took new life, leading to this wonderful and ridiculous 2019 meme.
Fish tube. That is all.
There've been highs and lows in this year's meme season, but as they say, the cream always rises to the top. The memes of 2020 are sure to be bigger and better than the last.
It sure has been a decade. And as we all know, the best way to deal with issues like crippling climate anxiety, political corruption and a dying planet is memes.
In the last decade, there have been good memes, bad memes and everything in between. Here are some of our absolute favourites - the memes that have stood the test of time and proved their worth on the world stage.