Ten moments in pop culture we’re totally thankful for this year

Today’s the day we reflect the friends and family that we’re thankful for, but it’s important that we don’t forget to give thanks to pop culture as well. These viral moments made this past year that much more enjoyable, so before you finish up your turkey (and let’s be honest, you’re going to have seconds anyways) take a moment to remember some of these iconic moments that graced our Internets and screens in 2015.

1. When all of Friends became available on Netflix.

Starting the year with a bang, Netflix began streaming all of the iconic series Friends on January 1st, 2015. Back when we heard the news the October before, we had no idea just how much it would change our lives, from crazy deleted scenes to incredible casting changes we never noticed.

2. All the times Zendaya shut down her haters.

Really, though. What would we have done without Zendaya’s wisdom? There was that time she called out her bullies on Twitter, or defended her hair and outfit choices, or, the big one, demanded a magazine take down images of her that they photoshopped without permission. She’s everything a strong, confident woman should be, and we bow down to her every day.

3. When One Direction announced their hiatus.

Not so fast! I know, on the surface, this One Direction hiatus may seem like the worst news in the world. However, not only is this a break the boys really need, but it’s also given us a reason to truly appreciate them while they’re still together, and something to look forward to when they return.

4. Taylor Swift bringing people out onto the stage.

Probably the biggest part of 2015 was Taylor Swift’s 1989 tour. Not only was it a celebration of an amazing album, it also gave us a chance to see the entirety of Taylor Swift’s squad as she brought them out on stage. It also gave us this amazing parody that never, ever (ever) gets old.

5. Viola Davis’ amazing acceptance speech.

Viola Davis was the first black woman to win Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series at this year’s Emmys, and gave a truly incredible speech when she accepted the award. It was inspiring to everyone, but even more so for young women of color who truly don’t see themselves represented in the media as much as they should have. Amazing women like Viola are there to help, and to pave the way for all women after them.

6. Female superheroes getting the spotlight.

With the emergence of shows like Supergirl and Jessica Jones, female superheroes are getting some much-needed time in the spotlight after being neglected in movies and television these past few years. Not only are these shows important, they’re awesome, and show just how much the public wanted this kind of content.

7. Jennifer Lawrence writing about the pay gap.

When Lena Dunham launched Lenny Letter, we knew it would be filled with important female voices, but we had no idea just how much change was in store after Jennifer Lawrence published this game-changing essay on the pay gap in Hollywood. It shows that sexism affects everyone, even superstars, and that it’s not okay under any circumstances.

8. When Emma Watson and Malala interviewed each other about feminism.

Two of our feminist icons in one room? Instant fangirl freakout. The two had a great discussion about what feminism means, and the intricacies around the label, as well as what they do in their own lives to emulate the movement.

9. When we got new emojis.

I mean, how could I not include this one? Emojis are such an important part of our everyday communication and, if I could, I’d put them all over this article. Instead, my texts are filled with unicorns and burritos because, yes, you can do that now.

10. When Adele released her new album.

The most recent pop-culture hit, Adele’s 25 has taken over our earphones and our late night shows. For good reason. The album is heartbreaking, powerful, and empowering all at once, and provided the best background music during Thanksgiving dinner, because if conversations ever got heated…well, you saw the SNL skit.

(Image via NBC.)

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