As we enter into this new year of 2018, we step into a different era of society, meaning a brand new year of trends, controversies, and conflict. With all negative issues that have emerged on an international scale as of recent, it seems only fitting that we take a moment to reflect on a simpler, more easy time in history - 2008. Here's a look at some of the biggest pop culture events turning 10 years old this year:
1. The Dark Knight
On July 18th, 2008, the second instalment in the newest Batman series was released. What many described as “thrilling” and “chilling to the bone”, this film proved its worth in cinematic excellence through its gripping character portrayals, highlighted by Heath Ledger’s execution of the infamous Joker. Released a mere seven months following the actor's sudden death via overdose, Ledger's performance gripped the attention of viewers across the world, awarding him an Oscar for Best Performance in a Supporting Role.
2. High School Musical says goodbye
With its third and final instalment, the then senior wildcats bid their final adieu. What began in 2006 with Troy and Gabriella sharing the stage for the first time to ring in the new year, the High School Musical franchise came to an end in 2008, as we said goodbye to our favourite wildcats as they headed out into the world outside of East High School.
3. iPhone who?
Not Apple, not Samsung, not even Google Pixel – in 2008, the hottest phone on the market was the infamous Motorola RAZR. Accounting for 9.3% of all mobile phone subscribers, the Motorola RAZR was the phone to have. Not only was it sleek and stylish in design, but it was most known for its renowned "SLAP" when closing the phone, used to end any conversation in a dramatic fashion.
4. Zack and Cody's suite life ain't so sweet
After an eventful three years at the Tipton Hotel, Zack and Cody say goodbye to their hotel suite, and hello to their new room aboard the SS Tipton ship. September 1st of 2008 marked the final episode of the Suite Life of Zack & Cody, with the new series of The Suite Life on Deck beginning on September 28th of the same year. From travelling to an parallel universe to hunting the ghost in suite 613, twins Zack and Cody gave us 90s kids a glimpse into the elaborate world of hotel-living.
5. Before Logan Paul, there was FRED
What began more than a decade ago in early 2005, YouTube in its first years of launching was much different than it is now. Prior to giving fame to celebrities like Justin Bieber and Lily Singh, otherwise known as Superwoman, YouTube introduced the world to the life of FRED - a young boy with a low attention span and an incredibly high-pitched voice. The fictional character of Fred was portrayed by American actor Lucas Cruikshank, who created over a dozen viral videos viewed more than 258 million times from people across the world. One of FRED's most popular videos raking in a whopping 73 million views known as "FRED Goes Swimming" will turn 10 years old on April 30th.
6. Bolt and Phelps make history in Beijing
Beginning on August 8th and concluding on August 24th, the 2008 summer Olympics in Beijing was one for the record books. Among the many memorable moments of these Olympic games, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt and American competitive swimmer Michael Phelps seemed to dominate the leader board, having conceded nearly a dozen medals in total. Truly giving meaning to the name Bolt, Usain embraced the role of fastest man in the world, by breaking three world records and winning three gold medals in Beijing, and in the process becoming the only man in Olympic history to win both the 100 and 200 metre dash in record time. Phelps on the other hand brought home 8 gold medals, breaking the previous record of 7 gold medals held by American swimmer Mark Spitz. Phelps has since become the most decorated Olympian of all time.
7. We were rocking apple bottoms jeans, and boots with fur
Claiming the number one spot on the Billboard 100,"Low" by Flo Rida featuring T-Pain was the hit song of the year, despite being released in late 2007. "Low" skyrocketed to number one and remained there for ten consecutive weeks, and became the longest-running number one single of 2008 in the United States. As Flo Rida's debut single from his debut album "Mail on a Sunday", "Low" took the world by storm with its catchy hook and infectious beat. If you weren't rocking the classic look of apple bottom jeans and boots with fur, you sure as hell were singing about it!
8. "Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist."
Recognise those words? They were said by the one and only Tony Stark, who made his grand debut as a Marvel's Avenger in 2008 with the release of "Iron Man". As the first film to enter the Marvel cinematic universe, "Iron Man" introduced the world to the life of Tony Stark - a playboy and visionary mechanical genius who revolutionized his entire life following his capture and torture in foreign lands. Since 2008, "Iron Man" has led to two sequels, as well as multiple appearances in other Marvel movies, such as "The Incredible Hulk", "The Avengers", "Avengers: Age of Ultron", "Captain America: Civil War", and "Spiderman: Homecoming".
9. Vampire or werewolf?
What began with Isabella Swan's blind curiosity and Edward Cullen's infectious desire to consume anything with a pulse came the tormentful and agonising love story of Twilight. On November 21st of 2008, "Twilight" was released to theatres, beginning the long journey of Edward and Bella's trilogy-long romantic endeavour. Grossing more than $3.3 billion dollars worldwide, the Twilight series quickly became one of the decade's most renowned love stories, and not to mention love triangles.
10. Yes, He Could and He Did!
Last but not least and definitely one of the biggest moments of 2008 was President Barack Obama's inauguration, witnessed by millions across the world on January 20th. On a cold Tuesday morning in Washington D.C., Barack Obama was officially sworn into office, becoming the 44th president of the United States and very first black president to hold this seat. Momentous and historic are words that cannot come close to describing the importance of this day, and yet, even ten years later, the same fire shines bright. Over the course of his two-term Presidency, President Obama and his family have proven to that through hard work and resilience in the face of adversity, all things are possible; or, more simply, "Yes we can".
September 10, 2018
August 17, 2018