Google's annual report of what weird stuff people searched for most in the past 12 months is out, revealing outright trumps by Lamar Odom, Donald Trump, Charlie Sheen, and the Kylie Jenner lip challenge. Much more heartening, in this case, are the year's top trending GIFs.
At the top of the list is Shia LaBeouf's mega-viral "JUST DO IT" GIF, originally from the video art piece #Introductions. His screamingly strange performance in front of a green screen for London art school Central Saint Martins was literally engineered for virality, and it's as clear an indicator of success as anything. It's a good year when any video art tops any year-end list.
Perhaps less self-awarely, viral wrestling icon John Cena clocks in at number two—or rather bursts unexpectedly in at number two, probably through a wall or in the middle of a Spongebob clip. His remarkable showmanship has let him go Super Saiyan, become Donkey Kong, and smash opponents with a giant replica of his face, thanks to the internet's true auteurs. Plus, an appearance in Amy Schumer's excellent comedy Trainwreck provided ample opportunities for truly GIF-able moments. If anyone is the opposite of Shia LaBeouf, it's John Cena, but they're both extreme enough to become great GIFs.
Given its Facebook omnipresence, we're honestly surprised that Drake—the living meme—isn't higher on this list, but the "Hotline Bling" music video has secured him the number three spot. Whether it's the beauty of the James Turrell-like lighting, the inexplicable dance moves, or both, it took mere hours for artists to devour that video and produce pure GIF gold.
Finally, classic memes like the "That's Racist" kid, celebrities like Rihanna, and generic terms like "football," and "happy birthday," complete the rest. One term sticks out as interesting from the bottom seven though—Kayne. Read that again, because it doesn't say "Kanye" as in West, but "Kayne" as in an incorrect spelling of Abel's jealous, murderous brother. This is probably a typo (we checked the trends in case there was some Kayne we weren't aware of), in which case it's strange that Google spelled a potential presidential candidate in 2020's name wrong. What's more interesting, though, is the idea that more GIF-seekers spelled West's name wrong than right while searching for him. Also, more spelled it wrong than searched for "Happy Birthday."
Here's the full list of most-searched-for GIFs of 2015.
See more GIFs of Shia LaBeouf, John Cena, and Drake on GIPHY.