Culture

The Best Memes Of 2020, Because All We Can Do Is Laugh At This Point

From dancing pallbearers to creating environments that are so toxic, it's been a good year for laughs.

Best Memes 2020

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You don’t need me to tell you that 2020 sucked. But the memes? The memes were great this year.

Perhaps it’s been the constant cloud of dread that has loomed over us this year that made the memes funnier, or maybe the memes really just were top tier in 2020.

Either way, we’ve found 17 of the best memes that came out of 2020, because really all we can do at this point is laugh:

“I Am Once Again Asking…”

Before Bernie Sanders dropped out of the 2020 presidential race (after losing to Joe Biden at the Super Tuesday primaries), he was once again asking for our financial support in early 2020. And just like that, he was, once again, turned into a meme.

The screenshot actually came from a video where Sanders was asking for campaign contributions to help in his journey to beat Donald Trump. But instead of donations, everyone just meme’ed the hell out of our man.

It’s ok, though. Sanders saw the humour in the meme, and ended up later using it to urge Americans to wear their masks as the pandemic ramped up in July.

Nature Is Healing, We Are The Virus

When the pandemic kicked into overdrive in March, eco-fascists were stuck on this baffling idea that humans were the virus, not COVID-19.

It all stemmed from images of unusually clear canals in Italy going viral, where fish appeared to be “returning” to the murky Venice waterways with less tourists in the area. But despite the Venice mayor’s office clarifying that this wasn’t due to improved water quality at all (it was actually just less boat traffic allowing sediment to settle), eco-fascists still thought nature was “healing” because the pandemic exposed humans are the virus.

Absolutely baffling scenes, but great for a total piss-take on the whole thing.

Gossip Girl Title Remixes

One of the year’s funniest memes popped up in April and really made us lose a couple of brain cells the second it started to circulate.

The Gossip Girl Title Remix meme is simple: Get Serena Van Der Woodsen to ask the question, and then have Blaire Waldorf come up with an anagrammed answer using only the letters in the Gossip Girl title.

Naturally, as the meme continued to grow, it just got more and more chaotic and non-sensical. But, honestly? If you ask me, the more dank, the better.

This Claim Is Disputed By Official Sources

During the recent Presidential election, Twitter applied a number of warnings under Donald Trump’s tweets, which disputed claims of stolen votes and declarations of early wins.

For example, Twitter slapped warning messages like “some or all of the content shared in this tweet is disputed and may be misleading…” and “multiple sources called this election differently”.

However, one of the most common warning messages Twitter dished out was a simple: “This claim is disputed”. And up until even as early as last night, this warning is still being placed on Trump’s tweets — despite the Electoral College confirming that Joe Biden won by 306 electoral votes to Trump’s 232.

Naturally, throughout November, placing variations of “this claim is disputed” on our tweets became its own meme as a way to call out the lies we tell online.

Robert Pattinson In A Tracksuit

2020 really felt like the year for old photos of celebrities to randomly resurface and become memes.

One celeb who was hit the hardest, however, was easily Robert Pattinson, when an image of him standing in a kitchen wearing a brown tracksuit re-emerged, and was edited into iconic Twilight scenes for what felt like forever.

The image itself, as we discovered back in September, was actually a behind-the-scenes pic from the 2017 film Good Time, where Pattinson played a small-time bank robber. The very cursed tracksuit image was shared by Good Time’s director and was basically the early prototype for Pattinson’s character. Thank God, they decided to go in a different direction, right?

I Am Going to Create An Environment That Is So Toxic

The ‘I Am Going To Create An Environment That Is So Toxic’ meme is probably the only meme of 2020 to have its moment twice — once over June and July, then again over November and December.

The screenshot, grabbed from the first season of Glee, shows Sue Sylvester vowing to turn the school’s Glee club against each other by creating a, well, toxic environment.

Now, the screenshot has gone beyond just people creating toxic environments, with people photoshopping certain letters out to create entirely new sentences, much like the anagrammed Gossip Girl meme from earlier in the year.

They Don’t Know I’m…

Despite none of us really being able to party this year, December has been dominated a meme of a lone person in the corner of a party sharing a piece of information the other partygoers don’t know.

But, even stranger than a party meme going viral during a pandemic, ‘They Don’t Know I…” is actually an old meme — originally from 2014 and known as ‘I Wish I Was At Home (Playing video games)’ — that uses ‘That Feel Guy’, who originally appeared in 2009.

While there seem to be a lot of layers to this one, it’s actually quite simple. Feel Guy is the perfect representation of anxiety in social situations, and because that feeling never really quite goes away, it makes sense why this meme is doing the rounds again.

Draw 25

At the start of January, a a side-by-side image of a customisable wild card and a man holding a massive deck of Uno cards was uploaded to Facebook, where it went viral. The original meme (above) implied that the man chose the punishment over going through with the dreaded task of calling his ex.

Almost instantly, people turned this image into a meme where they shared all the little things they flat-out refuse to do. As time went on, edits of the original image went on to include dogs, popular characters from tv shows, and way more than 25 cards.

Wash Your Lyrics

Back in March, the World Health Organisation suggested that people sing a 20-second song (like ‘Happy Birthday’) to help them time themselves washing their hands properly.

Paired with a NHS 13-step graphic showing the proper practice for hand-washing, ‘Wash Your Lyrics’ quickly became the perfect meme to encourage cleanliness. Plus, beyond random people picking out their favourite songs and most iconic speeches, even artists joined in on the fun, too.

So You Agree?

Despite Mean Girls being 14 years old, it wasn’t until July this year that Regina George’s classic line “so you agree, you think you’re really pretty”, went viral.

For the most part, use of this meme focuses on the screenshot of Rachel McAdams’ character leaning in, and is paired with text that reads ‘so you agree…” as a way to call out hypocrisy.

As expected, it’s especially fun to do to right-wingers, who don’t realise half the things they say defy logic.

Mentally, I’m Here

For a lot of us, while we’ve physically been stuck in 2020 for what feels like forever, we’ve mentally been putting ourselves literally anywhere else to get through it.

So it’s no surprise that back in June, we were all sharing where we were at mentally. From being giant cows stand hoof-high in the ocean, to daydreaming a life with the Care Bears, or even as the plastic bag floating in the wind that Katy Perry sang about in ‘Firework’.

Dancing Pallbearers

The dancing pallbearers from Ghana really just perfectly sum up the chaotic energy of 2020.

While the pallbearers originally went viral on YouTube back in 2017 thanks to a BBC report, it wasn’t until March 2020, when footage was paired with EDM track ‘Astronomia’ by Tony Igy, that the Dancing Pallbearers became a meme.

Now, the Dancing Pallbearers are used as the perfect punchline to ‘fail’ clips, in a similar way to how the ‘Ladies & Gentlemen… We Got Him‘ and ‘We’ll Be Right Back‘ memes work.

Everything Is Cake

For a moment there, truly everything was cake.

In July, we were all left racking our brains as we tried to figure out what was real and what was cake, as videos of hyper-realistic cakes in the shape of everyday objects kept popping up online.

But as more of these convincing cakes started to appear, people begun to question their sanity and eyesight. Eventually, this confusion snowballed and everyone joking about everything, and everyone, being cake became its own baffling meme.

How It Started VS. How It’s Going

Like most memes that start off wholesome, the How It Started VS How It’s Going meme was quickly hijacked. Originally started to showcase how relationships started and are currently going, the meme was transformed into a way to talk about personal achievements like weight loss and hitting career goals.

As expected, however, the meme then snowballed into a way to show just how hard 2020 hit us — from breakups, to being left on read, to the need for some Tequila-fuelled blackouts to be able to deal with the year that was.

X Æ A-12

One of the funniest days this year was when Elon Musk and Grimes announced the name of their newborn son, and then just spat out a mash-up of random letters and numbers.

As it turned out, the Tesla CEO and the musician decided that X Æ A-12 would be the perfect name for their bundle of joy — well, at least before Californian law forced the couple to give their son a software update change Elon Musk Jr’s name to X Æ A-Xii.

Naturally, the internet clowned the couple for the terrible baby name, which Grimes later tried to justify as a combination of the “precursor to [the couple’s] favourite aircraft” and to represent “love and/or artificial intelligence”. Totally normal, I guess.

“I Know A Spot”

With 2020 limiting the places we could actually visit, it’s no surprise that we were all reminiscing over our once-favourite spots.

Except instead of actually good places, the ‘I Know A Spot’ meme focused more on the disappointing places we’ve visited by taking the piss out of people who claim to always know the ~perfect spot~.

But while ‘I Know A Spot’ originally focused on bad date spots, it quickly transformed into a way to drag certain people or groups of people for their worst traits and qualities. For example, men not knowing where the clit is, women being really bad a directions, or white people gentrifying all the spots they “find”.

Corona Holidays

In March, while we all still had a glimmer of hope that the pandemic would only last a few weeks, millennials were busy making memes about taking ‘Corona Holidays’ while the Boomers around the world hoarded toilet paper.

At the time, airlines were flinging around cheap flights to make up for the lack of people flying from cancelled events and fear of the virus (which was a smart move).

But as an ever money-conscious generation, millennials noticed these cheap flights and joked about how they may be able to finally afford an overseas holiday or two. And so, the ‘Corona Holiday’ meme was born — and then quickly died as we all realised COVID-19 was actually very serious and not going away anytime soon. RIP to our innocence from nine months ago, honestly.

So there you have it! Seventeen of the best memes from the worst year in recent history. Fingers crossed for a better 2021. Please.


Michelle Rennex is a senior writer at Junkee. You can follow her at @michellerennex.