2022: The Biggest “Wow” Moments In Pop Culture

There is a whole lot of unraveling to do when it comes to 2022 pop culture. From the New York Times game Wordle to Jennifer Aniston’s tell-all interview, the year offered little breathing room between each new exciting moment.

Here are some of the biggest pop culture moments of the year.

Taylor Swift monopolies the Hot 100 Top 10

In 2022, Taylor Swift made history and became the first artist to monopolize the entire Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100.

MTV EMAs 2022 - Show
Dave J Hogan/Getty Imges for MTV
Dave J Hogan/Getty Imges for MTV

This feat was in the wake of the release of her new album Midnights on October 21, 2022, with the track “Anti-Hero” finding its place at the number one slot.

Jennifer Aniston gets candid in an exclusive interview

One thing people did not expect in 2022 was Jennifer Aniston getting very candid in an exclusive interview with Allure magazine. The actress discussed her past relationships, including her marriage to Brad Pitt, and the rumors surrounding their divorce.

Celebrity Sightings In New York City - September 26, 2022
James Devaney/GC Images
James Devaney/GC Images

The most interesting topic she discussed was her pregnancy struggles and her experience with IVF.

Rihanna’s pregnancy reveal and birth

Rihanna had something new to reveal in January. And rather than a long-awaited new album, the award-winning singer announced she was expecting her first child.

Marvel Studios'
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Rihanna showed off her baby bump with rapper A$AP Rocky. The two have been dating officially for over a year but have been friends for over a decade. At the time of the reveal, she was four months pregnant and gave birth to a healthy baby boy in May.

Julia Fox pronunciation of “Uncut Gems”

Julia Fox made headlines again in 2022 for her (hilarious) pronunciation of Uncut Gems, the movie in which she plays Julia De Fiore.

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Kevin Mazur/WireImage via Getty Images
Kevin Mazur/WireImage via Getty Images

The actress was explaining in an interview with “Call Her Daddy” host Alexandra Cooper what a muse was, saying she was the muse of director Josh Safdie in “uncah jamz.”

Scam artist television captures audiences

In February, two different Netflix series about scam artists captivated audiences and became the talk for weeks afterward.

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Netflix/MovieStillsDB
Netflix/MovieStillsDB

Inventing Anna was a fictionalized account of pretend New York socialite and heiress Anna Delvey, real name Anna Sorokin, and how she conned the upper echelons of New York society. The Tinder Swindler was a documentary about Israeli conman Simon Leviev and how he swindled women out of thousands of dollars.

Euphoria drama with Cassie and Maddy

When the drama erupted on season 2 of the HBO series Euphoria, the fight between former friends Maddy and Cassie took social media by storm.

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HBO
HBO

Fans created memes on every social media platform, including gifs of the fight after Maddy found out Cassie slept with her ex-boyfriend. Maddy then confronts her head-on (literally) after Cassie interrupts a play written by Cassie’s little sister Lexi.

Westeros returns to television

Fans were thrilled in 2022 because the fictional kingdom of Westeros returned to HBO in House of the Dragon.

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HBO
HBO

et 200 years before Game of Thrones, viewers were brought into the world of House Targaryen and the steps it took for the noble house to eventually fall and lose the iron throne.

Britney Spears gets married

Following the end of her 12-year-long conservatorship, Britney Spears has regained complete control of her life. So what better way to celebrate her freedom than marrying the man she loves?

Sony Pictures'
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Spears and now husband Sam Asghari tied the knot in June, later moving to an $11.8 million mansion in Calabasas, California, which Spears purchased.

Maryanne Oketch wins season 42 of Survivor

On the season 42 finale of Survivor, Maryanne Oketch became the second Canadian to win the show.

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@maryanneoketch/Instagram
@maryanneoketch/Instagram

Oketch, a 24-year-old seminary student, won 1 million dollars after spending 23 days in the wilderness and using clever strategies to secure her win, including using a hidden immunity idol to her advantage.

Wordle

Wordle took the world by storm when it suddenly became the game to play at the beginning of the year. Reddit engineer Josh Wardle launched the online web game in October 2021 with only under a hundred users.

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Nils Huenerfuerst/Unsplash
Nils Huenerfuerst/Unsplash

It wasn’t until the end of January that the game had millions of players, becoming so popular that The New York Times purchased the game for a seven-figure deal.

Multiverse movies take over

Marvel has taken over the multiverse game, with multiple versions of their famous characters interacting with each other. While the concept isn’t anything new, it has never been seen on such a large scale.

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Sony Pictures, Columbia Pictures/MovieStillsDB
Sony Pictures, Columbia Pictures/MovieStillsDB

From the Spiderverse, The Marvel Cinematic Universe Multiverse, and The X-Men multiverse, the multiverse theme allows Marvel to cater to fans by including their favorite characters in the same world. And, of course, it helps them keep making movies.

Tom Cruise reprising his role in Top Gun remake

Tom Cruise reprised his famous role as Captain Pete “Maverick” Mitchell in Top Gun: Maverick, the long-awaited sequel to the hit 1986 film Top Gun.

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Paramount Pictures/MovieStillsDB
Paramount Pictures/MovieStillsDB

In the first movie, Cruise’s character was a rookie pilot trying to earn his spot as the “top gun” of his class. Now a trainer, Maverick must face his past and confront his deepest fears.

Kim Kardashian wears Marilyn Monroe’s dress

The theme of this year’s Met Gala was “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” Kim Kardashian chose to wear the same dress that Marilyn Monroe wore when she sang “happy birthday” to President John F. Kennedy in 1962.

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Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic via Getty Images
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic via Getty Images

The decision was criticized, with some saying she “ruined” the dress, while others praised her for choosing to honor a memorable moment in American entertainment and fashion history.

Kourtney Kardashian gets married

Socialite Kourtney Kardashian and drummer Travis Barker had a formal wedding ceremony in Italy on May 22.

Travis Barker and Kourtney Kardashian Attend the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the Newly Opened Crossroads Kitchen at The Commons at Calabasas...
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for The Commons at Calabasas
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for The Commons at Calabasas

The pair, who have been friends for over a decade, celebrated their relationship after getting married not once but twice to each other, once by an Elvis impersonator in Las Vegas and then legally in a Santa Barbara courthouse a few days before their Italian wedding.

Harry Styles allegedly spitting on Chris Pines

During the premiere of Don’t Worry Darling at the Venice International Film Festival, Harry Styles was seen allegedly spitting on co-star Chris Pine.

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Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images
Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

In a viral video, Pine was already seated to watch the film, with Styles appearing to lean over Pine, who pauses to look at his leg in disbelief before laughing. Both stars knocked down the allegations, saying that nothing happened.

People started questioning true crime TV

In recent years, true crime TV shows and docu-series have been very popular, bringing viewers into the crimes of infamous killers. Well, in 2022, people began to question the genre with the release of Ryan Murphy’s Monster: The Jeffery Dahmer Story.

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Netflix
Netflix

While the mini-series broke some Netflix records, people were not thrilled with how the director and showrunner went about making it, namely in the case of the victims’ families.

Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling rollerblading in L.A. for Barbie movie

Margot Robbie and co-star Ryan Gosling were photographed in their matching skating outfits for the upcoming film, Barbie, directed by Greta Gerwig.

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MEGA/GC Images via Getty Images
MEGA/GC Images via Getty Images

With such a highly anticipated movie, fans were excited to spot the pair, playing Barbie and Ken respectively, in Los Angeles, much to the actors’ mortification. In an interview with Jimmy Fallon, Robbie said, “We look like we’re like laughing and having fun, but we’re dying on the inside. Dying. I was like, ‘This is the most humiliating moment of my life.’ “

Ana de Armas’ performance in Blonde

Another film about the life and career of actress Marilyn Monroe was released on Netflix in September to much acclaim and critique. Ana de Armas took on the famous role, transforming into Monroe in looks and personality.

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Netflix/MovieStillsDB
Netflix/MovieStillsDB

Much of the negative reviews spoke of the hyperfocus on Monroe’s suffering, which some viewers felt took away from de Armas’ performance.

Heidi Klum’s iconic worm Halloween costume

Taking the cliche question “would you still love me if I was a worm?” to a literal level, model Heidi Klum transformed into a worm with her husband Tom Kaulitz as an injured fisherman who caught her on his hook.

Heidi Klum's Hallowe'en Party 2022
Taylor Hill/Getty Images
Taylor Hill/Getty Images

The super realistic costume took 12 hours to put on, including makeup and prosthetics, and cost “a lot more than anyone would think,” according to costume designer Mike Marino.

Pete Davidson’s dating life

The former SNL comedian and his dating life made headlines this year on two occasions. Between October 2021 and August 2022, Davidson was in a relationship with Kim Kardashian following her separation and divorce from her ex-husband.

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Gotham/Getty Images
Gotham/Getty Images

After they broke up, Davidson was spotted in New York with model Emily Ratajkowski in November before a source close to Davidson confirmed the dating rumors.

“The Try Guys” Ned Fulmer drama

In September, “The Try Guys,” known for making videos testing various activities and products, made news, but not for a hilarious video.

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@tryguys/Instagram
@tryguys/Instagram

One of the group members, Ned Fulmer, was caught cheating with coworker and producer Alex Herring. Following the news, the group formally announced that Fulmer would no longer be a part of the group’s future endeavors.

Bennifer 2.0

Almost twenty years after their first engagement, Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez rekindled their romance, finally tying the knot in July.

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Amy Sussman/Getty Images
Amy Sussman/Getty Images

The pair, who dated for three months in 2002 before getting engaged, faced harsh media scrutiny throughout their one-year relationship, causing the relationship to end. Affleck married Jennifer Garner for 13 years, divorcing in 2018, and Lopez married Marc Anthony before finalizing their divorce in 2014.

Stranger Things finally introduced the “Big Bad”

After three seasons of the Upsidedown and trying to actually figure out what is happening in Hawkins in the hit series Stranger Things, fans were finally introduced to the “big bad” in season four.

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Netflix
Netflix

The “big bad” is Vecna, one of Papa’s experiments who literally broke bad after Eleven sends him to the Upsidedown and wants nothing more than to bring the entire town down.

Kendall Jenner attempting to cut a cucumber

Does anyone know how to cut a cucumber? During an episode of The Kardashians, Kendall Jenner made viewers question their ability to cut cucumbers.

Celebrity Sightings In New York City - September 21, 2022
Raymond Hall/GC Images
Raymond Hall/GC Images

In the episode, Jenner prepares a cucumber snack while talking with her mom, making multiple awkward attempts to cut the vegetable. Seeing her daughter struggling, Kris Jenner asks the chef to take over. Jenner made fun of the incident by dressing up as a cucumber for Halloween.

Cara Delevigne’s concerning airport behavior

Cara Delevingne was photographed displaying erratic behavior at Los Angeles’ Van Nuys airport in September, sparking rumors and concern for her well-being.

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Arnold Jerocki/Getty Images for Karl Lagerfeld
Arnold Jerocki/Getty Images for Karl Lagerfeld

The model did not appear for the launch of her collection with Karl Lagerfeld, “Cara Loves Karl,” at New York Fashion Week following the airport incident. However, she did appear at Paris Fashion Week to celebrate the collection, looking stunning as ever.

Lea Michele gets the starring role in Broadway’s Funny Girl

In a weird sense of irony, considering her Glee character was obsessed with the show and would sing “Rain on My Parade” whenever she had the chance, Lea Michele got the lead role of Fanny Brice in Broadway’s Funny Girl.

Lea Michele Joins The Cast Of
Bruce Glikas/WireImage
Bruce Glikas/WireImage

Of course, the news went viral, with fans of the musical series saying things like, “she was made for the role.”

Hailey Bieber and Selena Gomez knocking down rumors

Model Hailey Bieber and singer Selena Gomez shared a moment during the second annual Academy Museum Gala in Los Angeles on October 15.

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@tyrellhampton/Instagram
@tyrellhampton/Instagram

The pictures were posted a few weeks after Bieber finally spoke out about the alleged feud between her and Gomez concerning their relationship with Justin Bieber. The photo confirms that there is no animosity between the two and that they are on friendly terms.

Emma D’Arcy’s Negroni Sbagliato…with Prosecco in it

In an interview between House of the Dragon stars Emma D’Arcy and Olivia Cooke, Cooke asked D’Arcy what their favorite drink was. D’Arcy replied in their signature breathy voice, “negroni sbagliato…with prosecco in it.”

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Jon Kopaloff/WireImage via Getty Images
Jon Kopaloff/WireImage via Getty Images

The mesmerizing delivery of that sentence became a hit among fans, becoming a meme and a sound on TikTok.

It’s been 20 years since Kelly Clarkson won American Idol

Kelly Clarkson has come a long way since she won the first season of American Idol 20 years ago.

2002 MTV Video Music Awards - Arrivals
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

On September 4, Clarkson made a post on Instagram commemorating her historic win, which “forever changed the course of [her] life.” Clarkson, who was only 20 when she won the competition, has had a successful musical career since and continues to release new music.

Obi-Wan Vs. Dark Vader

In 2022, Star Wars fans got to see the re-match of a lifetime between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader, aka Obi-Wan’s former padawan Anakin Skywalker.

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Disney+
Disney+

The fight happened in the first season of the Disney+ series Obi-Wan Kenobi. While fans knew the outcome, considering the movies, it was still a sight to behold.