Best of the Web 2013
How the Internet won 2013 (Hint: Bat Kid and otters)
For the past 20 years (give or take), the Internet has been blessing us with a multitude of gifts. Some we love, and some will never leave us, no matter how hard we try. (I’m looking at you, Rickrolling.)
Thankfully, 2013 didn’t disappoint online; from Blurred Lines to Duck Dynasty, it was a real mixed bag. But what were the biggest moments? We combed the Interwebs for the cyber hits and misses of the past year so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.
It’s an inarguable fact that cuteness supersedes most things on the web. Yes, there is still an abundance of cat videos. But plenty of other squeal-worthy mammals got some face time in ’13.
Theo and Beau
It’s hard to really imagine anything cuter than a puppy, except for maybe a sleepy toddler. Throw the two together, and it’s an ovary-exploding combination just yearning for a daily click.
Mom Jessica Shyba now uploads photos of the drowsy duo daily on her Instagram account, so count on this to scoop you out of the afternoon sads well into 2014.
Jezebel readers are no doubt familiar with editor Tracie Egan Morrissey, who gave birth to a 10-plus-pound baby girl two years ago. Well, baby Oona has grown, and her parents aren’t shy about documenting her childhood online.
Her Tumblr page, billed as “the most photographed baby in Brooklyn,” boasts photos of baby side-eye, amazing hand-knit sweaters and much more.
Sloths are so 2012. This year, everyone’s favorite hand-holding sea cuddlers are on top, thanks mostly to Buzzfeed. As Denis Leary once put it: “They lie on their backs and do cute little human things with their hands.” What’s not to like?
Oh, Bat Kid, star of the video that caused all of the feelings. Miles got the day of a lifetime when the Make-a-Wish Foundation granted the boy, now in remission, a chance to be his hero: Batman.
His whole hometown seemed to get involved in transforming itself into Gotham City, complete with a special edition of the San Francisco Chronicle.
Is there anything this woman can’t do? On December 13, Queen Bey quietly released a brand-new album exclusively on iTunes. The Internet, naturally, went nuts. Plus, she has the most elusive child around, and she wears pizza outfits while acting as a vegan.
Some things we just can’t forget. Even if we want to.
The Harlem Shake
Early February was dominated by this earworm that spawned a thousand memes. It seems everyone got in on the trend, including Justin Timberlake. We’ll forgive you, JT, but only because you’re you.
“What Does the Fox Say?”
What does the fox say? It says get this damn song out of my head. Seriously, it was funny for a minute, but it’s hard to imagine a song more likely to have you humming it in a business meeting than this Ylvis “gem.”
Oh, Miley. What will the Internet do without you? From your ever-parodied “Wrecking Ball” video to that VMA performance, you gave us a lot to talk about in 2013. Plus, we all got to explain to our grandmother the concept of twerking. Never change, girl.
Sometimes, things just don’t go as intended. And thanks to the World Wide Web, they don’t go away, either.
It’s too bad that spell check doesn’t include a stupidity filter. New York City PR executive Justine Sacco got herself into a real tidal wave of hot water after tweeting, "Going to Africa. Hope I don't get AIDS. Just kidding. I'm white!" from the air of her South Africa-bound flight.
Her employer, InterActive Corp, issued a public apology and promptly terminated Sacco — but not before the #hasjustinelandedyet hashtag caught fire.
2013 wasn’t just the birth year of the spawn of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West — the unfortunately named and ever meme-able North West. It was also the year that gave us the incredibly enjoyable video for “Bound 2” and the Seth Rogen/James Franco parody that resulted.
You stay classy, Kanye. Or should we say, “YOU STAY CLASSYYYYYYYYY!!!!!”
You win some, you lose some, right? Well President Obama’s overwhelmingly talked-about and highly anticipated healthcare rollout came with a whimper, thanks to a bug-plagued website, which allowed a measly six people to sign up on its first day live.
Jon Stewart said it best on his October 31 show: “HealthCare.gov is 1 month old. And like most 1-month-olds, it is still just lying there pooping its pants ... and angering anyone that it is not related to.”