A picture is worth a thousand words. A moving, repeating picture, however? Well, that’s worth infinitely more. That’s also why GIFs are the viral communication tool the internet can’t get enough of. GIPHY collected the most zeitgeisty looping clips of 2016, from President Obama’s mic drop moment to the friendly waving brown bear that Tinder users apparently love to send and receive in their search for romantic connection. To come up with the ten below, GIPHY’s editorial team surveyed several different factors, including “popularity, views and curation that best reflect the zeitgeist of 2016 in GIF form.”
Take a spin through GIPHY’s top ten here:
- TIME's Top 100 Photos of 2022
- I Tested Positive for COVID-19 Right Before the Holidays. What Should I Do?
- Column: How To Create a Sense of Belonging In a Divided America
- How to Survive the Holidays if You're a Scrooge
- Life Expectancy Provides Evidence of How Far Black Americans Have Come
- The 10 Best Albums of 2022
- Iran Has a Long History of Protest and Activism
- 6 Ways to Give Better Gifts—Based on Science
Obama Mic Drop
In a politically explosive year, it’s only fitting that GIPHY’s top GIF is the iconic mic drop from the departing president. Originally an actual thing that happened at the White House Correspondents’ dinner, this animated illustration of the moment by GIPHY artist Julie Winegard outpaced the real-life video to score the honor of being GIPHY’s top GIF of the year.
2. Crying Jordan
3. Sloth from Zootopia
4. Unamused Lady
5. Chris Christie
This clip of a random moment of Chris Christie applauding from the Republican National Convention turned out to be the most popular GIF of the whole year’s election cycle, thanks to the New Jersey governor’s lackluster expression. (No word on who exactly was speaking at the moment of this recording.)
6. Broad City
7. Leo and Lady Gaga at the Golden Globes
8. Hello Bear
9. People vs. O.J. Simpson
Sarah Paulson’s Emmy-Award-winning turn as lead prosecutor Marcia Clark in the acclaimed TV series The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story also generated this powerful GIF.