The biggest moments in popular culture in 2020

Year in Review: Pop Culture

It goes without saying 2020 was a year most of us would like to forget. We spent a lot more time at home, and we had to find new ways to entertain ourselves. Even though we were stuck at home, that doesn't mean popular culture was stuck. 2020 was so crazy that murder hornets, strange silver monoliths and the Pope liking a racy photo on Instagram didn't even crack this list. A few things will be omitted from this list, since including everything that happened in 2020 would turn this article into a full-length novel. So sit back and take a walk down memory lane into one of the strangest years in recent memory.

Gwyneth Paltrow's Candle Line

We're just going to dive right into things and start with Gwyneth Paltrow's interesting line of candles. All the way back in January, Paltrow's company Goop released a candle called "This Smells Like My Vagina". And in true 2020 fashion, it ended up selling out within days. It is now back in stock, and it is currently retailing for a whopping US$75. Goop later released a candle called "This Smells Like My Orgasm" in June, which is also selling for US$75.

R.I.P. Mr. Peanut

In case you missed it, Mr. Peanut is dead. The 104-year-old Planters mascot was killed when the Nutmobile plunged off a cliff while he saved movie stars Wesley Snipes and Matt Walsh. A "funeral" was held for Mr. Peanut in a commercial during Super Bowl LIV, featuring a wide range of guests like Mr. Clean and the Kool-Aid Man. The Kool-Aid Man shed a tear on Peanut's grave, which then promptly sprouted Planters' new mascot called Baby Nut. Baby Nut must have some kind of fast-action regenerative abilities, because in the summer, Planters announced Baby Nut is now 21 years old. This level of ridiculousness should have been an indicator of what 2020 had in store for us.

Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness

One of Netflix's most bizarre and insane programs shot to the top of the world's streaming charts just days after the pandemic began. According to Neilsen, Tiger King had 34.3 million viewers in the US within the first 10 days of its release. Social media could not stop talking about the big cat owners of the American south, sparking conspiracy theories about what really happened to Carole Baskin's ex-husband. The show was so popular, a bonus episode was filmed, which was a where-are-they-now episode hosted by Joel McHale. Tiger King's reign as the most popular documentary was short-lived, as it was passed by Michael Jordan's Netflix documentary series The Last Dance a month later.

Britney Spears' Crazy Claim

In one of the weirdest moments of the year, pop star Britney Spears claimed in March that she beat Usain Bolt's 100-metre dash world record. In a since-deleted Instagram post, she said she had run 100 metres in a mere 5.97 seconds, which would have absolutely shattered Bolt's record of 9.58 seconds. She took a screenshot of her timer, with the caption reading "Ran my first 5! Usually I run 6 or 7, and now I did it". She admitted it was a joke a few days later, but social media was sent into a frenzy when the picture was first posted.

Elon Musk's Baby Name

Billionaire Elon Musk and Vancouver-born singer Grimes welcomed a baby boy into the world in May, and they settled on one of the weirdest baby names you've ever heard. The child was officially named "X Æ A-12 Musk", which sparked waves of parody and memes across social media. Musk and Grimes later modified the child's name slightly, changing it to "X Æ A-Xii". The couple did not provide a reason for the change, but it was likely to conform with California state law, which only allows the 26 letters of the English alphabet.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High Zoom Table Read

Shia LaBeouf certainly put the "high" in Fast Times at Ridgemont High. In a celebrity-filled charity table read of the classic 80s stoner-comedy, Shia LaBeouf, who was reading for the main character Jeff Spicoli, smoked a joint for quite a long time while the read was happening. LaBeouf was seen laughing uncontrollably, donned a pair of neon sunglasses, and even removed his shirt at one point. Social media had a field day of memes and conversations about LaBeouf's hilarious performance, and the other celebrities seemed to enjoy it as well. LaBeouf, who is a known method actor, must have just been getting into character, as Jeff Spicoli is one of the most famous stoner characters in film history.

Fleetwood Mac Longboarder

Who would have thought that a video of a man longboarding to Fleetwood Mac would be one of the most viral videos of the year? Nathan Apodaca took a video of himself longboarding to Fleetwood Mac's 'Dreams' while drinking a jug of cranberry juice, which ended up going viral and garnering millions of views. According to TikTok, Apodaca's car broke down on his way to work, so he just decided to break out his longboard, bring along his juice and jam out. TikTok users and others on social media fell in love with the video, noting how carefree Apodaca was in such a strange year. The video sparked thousands of imitations, and he even received a new car from Ocean Spray after their sales soared when the video went viral. The younger population seemed to enjoy Fleetwood Mac's song, as 'Dreams' went on to land the #21 spot on the Billboard charts shortly after the video was released.

Mike Tyson's Return Overshadowed

In one of the strangest fight nights in history, Mike Tyson returned to the ring after 15 years to take on Roy Jones Jr. in an exhibition match. Tyson, 54, and Jones Jr., 51, went the distance in their main card fight, but it ultimately ended in a draw. But somehow, Iron Mike making his return was not the biggest story to come out of the night. Jake Paul, a notorious YouTuber, took on former NBA Slam Dunk Champion Nate Robinson in the undercard fight. Paul knocked out Robinson with a heavy right hand in the second round, knocking him out flat on the canvas. Paul then went on to challenge Conor McGregor in his post-fight interview. Jake's brother Logan, also a YouTuber, will be fighting Floyd Mayweather in February, who has a 50-0 professional boxing record.

More Entertainment News



Castanet Proud Member of RTNDA Canada