By Meredith Schneider
Though it sounds like a phrase struck right out of the pages of Infinite Jest, 2012 may very well go down in history books as “the Year of the Meme.” Behind the popularity for many of these trinkets of internet humor were long standing celebrity feuds and great dramas in current events, the most captivating (if that’s what you want to call it) of which we bring to you today. Here are the 12 best meme rivalries of 2012.
1. Rick Santorum vs. Dan Savage
In 2003, Rick Santorum made a very public statement essentially comparing homosexuality to bestiality. In other statements, he blamed church issues on political liberalism and further denounced homosexuality. Dan Savage, a renowned sex advice columnist, had readers define Santorum. Since then, the feud has been going strong and—not surprisingly—Savage is ahead of the game. Every time.
2. Madonna vs. Lady Gaga
The Queen of Pop has publicly shown disdain over Lady Gaga’s “evolution” in the music world. The cattiness snowballed in several statements from both parties, but has been rather quiet since Gaga dismissed it in September. We just “Can’t Stop” “Causing a Commotion” can we, girls?
3. Rosie O’Donnell vs. Donald Trump
In 2006, Rosie O’Donnell made a very public statement on The View claiming that The Donald was a “snake-oil salesman” because of the Miss USA scandal of that year. Donald fired back shortly after during a television interview. The feud (may have?) subsided earlier this year, since the Donald sent Rosie a ‘get well’ tweet after her heart attack in August.
4. Mariah Carey vs. Nicki Minaj
It is no secret that Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey are two very sought after divas. But setting them at the same table as judges on American Idol might have been a huge mistake. TMZ released footage of the two threatening each other in early October. Looks like it’s not all fun and games anymore on the Idol stage.
5. Michael Scott vs. Toby Flenderson
6. Pussy Riot vs. Putin
This year, Russian punk-rock feminist band Pussy Riot fell into the spotlight when their protest against Putin on the steps of an Orthodox Church in Moscow. Three of them were arrested in March and denied bail on charges of hooliganism, and have been sentenced to two years in jail. For updates, check in here.
7. Team Jacob vs. Team Edward
Since the dawn of time (or since the genesis of the Twilight series), Team Jacob has fought Team Edward in a war of the wits—or, more importantly, the war of the scantily clad men playing werewolves and vampires. This issue may never be resolved, but we should be looking past their faces, right ladies?
8. Obama vs. Romney
If you didn’t hear anything about the heated 2012 Presidential Election, then have probably been hiding out in a storm cellar. For years. The would has been graced with two upstanding young gentlemen who provided us with one-liners such as “Binders full of women” and “It’s not a game of Battleship.” We weren’t aware that a new pre-req for the Presidency was being a meme generator.
9. Lindsay Lohan vs. Hilary Duff
Remember in 2005 when Nick Carter’s (Backstreet Boys) silly little brother, Aaron, thought it would be fun to date two teenage stars at the same time? Well, we do. And it looks like everyone in this twisted love triangle is better off alone. Except Lindsay, who finds comfort in the company of drugs. “It’s Aaron’s party, come get it!”
10. Chelsea Handler vs. Kathie Lee Gifford
On November 12 of this year, Chelsea Handler called in sick to her appearance on The Today Show. On the same day, she appeared on Jimmy Fallon and admitted that she did not have food poisoning and had simply run into a shower door. Don’t worry, there are no ill feelings and the feud has been resolved. Kind of.
11. Chelsea Handler vs. Hoda Kotb
See: above reference to The Today Show. She also mispronounced Hoda Kotb’s name on Jimmy Fallon.
12. Chris Brown vs. Every Woman Ever
In early 2009, Chris Brown was arrested for assaulting then-girlfriend Rihanna. After extensive community service, fines, and anger management classes, it looks like he is back in Rihanna’s good graces. But his Twitter feed and public disputes keep women around the world yielding pitchforks. As of press time, Brown’s Twitter account had been deleted, but maybe this is it?
All photos courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.