The 20 Best Viral Videos of 2012

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The 20 Best Viral Videos of 2012

With seven years of YouTube behind us, it’s almost impossible to gauge what might become the next big thing in viral videos. This year, whether it was Korean rapper PSY poking fun at the lavish lifestyle of those in the Gangnam District of Seoul or a group of young rappers sharing their favorite snacks, almost every video couldn’t have been predicted—or formulated naturally. We’ve listed our 20 favorite below, where you can also comment with your own.

20. Pete Weber, “God Dammit I Did It Who Do You Think You Are”

In 2008, the storied Boston Celtics won yet another NBA Championship title, thanks in part to a stellar performance from power forward Kevin Garnett. In the immediate aftermath of the final buzzer sounding off, Garnett launched into one of the most legendary and iconic post-game celebrations of all time, reminding us all that “anything is,” in fact, “possible.” Not to be outdone by these so-called “athletes” who dribble a ball up and down a court (child’s play, really), Pete Weber and the rest of the Professional Bowler’s Association decided to reclaim the glory their sport so rightfully deserves. Sure, Weber goes slightly over-the-top with his use of profanity, but then again, he is a goddamn champion, and nobody can take that away from him. So don’t ever mistake yourself for Pete Weber, because, as he reminds us, Pete Weber is Pete Weber, and no one else.—Brian Tremml

19. It’s Thanksgiving

Love Rebecca Black’s “Friday” but wish it involved more lip-syncing into turkey legs? You’re in luck. The people behind “Friday” brought us their latest hilariously bad video, “Thanksgiving,” this year. Featuring lyrical gems like “December was Christmas, January was New Year’s, April was Easter and the Fourth of July, but now it’s Thanksgiving” and posing deep existential questions like “why is a grown man dressed as a turkey and eating Thanksgiving dinner in a mansion with a table full of tweens?”, “Thanksgiving” has already garnered millions of YouTube views as people flock to gawk at how abysmal it is—it’s exactly what the Internet is for, and that’s something we can all be thankful for.—Bonnie Stiernberg

18. Liam Neeson drops the S-bomb on Sportscenter

Professional actors recognize their occupation often requires a pleasant relationship with the media. In order to promote their upcoming films or television shows, they must put on a smile and put up with whatever situation their publicist puts them into. Liam Neeson doesn’t have time for this. Without even pretending to claim he knows anything about American football (or live television), the man who depicted Zeus goes the honest route and still manages to salvage the interview through his appreciation of “great athleticism.”—Brian Tremml

17. Young Ryan Gosling

In case you were wondering, Ryan Gosling was always that charming. Even as a 9-year-old boy at a school talent show, even in the baggiest pants this side of MC Hammer, Gosling proves he always had dynamo charisma. Very few of us could pull off belting “When a Man Loves a Woman” and then busting moves to “Everybody Dance Now.” You wish your childhood home movies were this awesome.—Jessica Gentile

16. Ryan Lochte Is Terrible At Interviews

Anyone who has ever been friends with a competitive swimmer knows that they are unbearably socially awkward. I myself swam for 15 years and am just now beginning to understand the complicated nature of sentence structure and interpersonal communication. So, please take it from me when I say, the world of human interaction can be difficult for athletes who spend extended hours staring at a line on the bottom of a pool. That being said, I have no explanation for Ryan Lochte. The man is simply trying to be remembered for something other than being one of the greatest swimmers of all time. To his credit, Lochte embraces himself with little to no shame. What defines a swimmer? When they lose, Lochte says. Fair enough. What defines Ryan Lochte? Let’s quit while we’re ahead, shall we?—Brian Tremml

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