The Top 10 Viral Videos of 2009

December 23, 2009

Another year is drawing to a close and you know what that means. It's time to wrap up a year of hilarity with our picks for the best viral videos of the year. From flubs and freakouts to mishaps and mayhem, these are the videos that guys just couldn't stop watching in 2009.



10. Women's Soccer Player Makes Mincemeat of Her Opponents

When University of New Mexico soccer player Elizabeth Lambert made headlines for some ridiculously unsportsmanlike conduct against an opposing player from Brigham Young, the world of women's soccer was thrust into the spotlight for the first time since Brandi Chastain stripped off her jersey after the U.S. team won the 1999 Women’s World Cup. Which just goes to show that despite soccer being the world's most popular sport, the only time Americans care to show any interest is when you interject a little of the ol' sex and violence.


Despite profuse apologies, Lambert was suspended indefinitely following the incident. Not only did she face the scorn of the entire sporting world, she apparently was on the receiving end of hate mail and death threats. Which is a little harsh, admittedly, but it's not like she can't hold her own.


9. Most Unbelievable Waterslide Jump Ever

Real or fake? That seems to be the endless, repeated question whenever a viral video make the rounds on the internet, particularly when it involves a seemingly impossible (or just plain bizarre) stunt. So it was no surprise that when a waterslide stuntman in a neoprene suit propelled himself hundreds of feet through the air into a tiny pool people were just a wee bit skeptical.


As the cold-hearted cynic inside each of us may have guessed, it's a fake. The daring stuntman known as "Bruno Kammerl" was a concoction of Microsoft Germany and designed to promote new video editing software. Given the rather remarkable video, we'd say this one was a success.


8. Brilliant Woman Solves All of California's Problems

It's no surprise that California, even more than most states, is in quite a bit of financial trouble these days. With a budget shortfall eclipsing the GDP of several former Eastern Bloc nations, the state is facing the herculean task of having to find money where it doesn't even exist. Which is why it's so amusing to find a potential solution to these problems not in the Governor's mansion or in the hallowed halls of Sacramento, but in a simple City Council meeting in the hippie enclave of Santa Cruz.


You see, California? It's all about the food. It's free, after all.


7. Kate Gosselin: Worst Mom Ever?

With the exception of the past month's coverage of the Tiger Woods sexfest brouhaha, there was probably more ink spilled on the endless family dramas enveloping the Gosselin clan of Jon & Kate Plus 8 this year than for any other couple in recent memory. From Us magazine to Entertainment Tonight and everything trashy in between, you couldn't really escape the goings-on of the reality TV couple for most of 2009. So when Kate Gosselin paid a visit to Access Hollywood with her numerous spawn in tow, it's not much of a surprise that things got a little out of hand. And by "out of hand" we mean that one of her children made the entirely reasonable request for a simple drink of water while waiting to tape a TV segment.


Wow, that's pretty cold. Interestingly enough, fast forward six months and Kate has somehow become the more sympathetic of the Gosselin pair. Apparently, tooling around on an ATV in an Ed Hardy t-shirt will take your "career" into nosedive faster than you can say "Douchechill."


6. Your Business Card is CRAP!

Quick, dig into your pockets and pull out your business card. What does it say?  Vice President?  Director of Marketing?  Even better yet, CEO?  Pretty impressive, huh?  WRONG. Self-proclaimed "infotainer" Joel Bauer is here to school you on why that business card is nothing more than a glorified scrap of mediocrity.


I don't know about you, but "Strathmore stock" is my new favorite insult.

If you're not suitably impressed by Bauer's prowess and expertise, then please take your weak ass business card and sit the hell down. But if you're fortunate enough to understand the wisdom of Bauer's gospel, proceed to his highly informative (and possibly life-saving) tutorial on how to pack a suitcase. Really, it's quite an eye-opener.

Did we mention that it just might save your life?

5. Dumb Girl Owns Herself with Voicemail

Think your girlfriend is a little nuts sometimes? Be thankful you're not JD. While traveling abroad in Europe, JD's girlfriend inexplicably forgot he was going to be gone for two whole weeks and wouldn't be able to return her messages while he was gone. Yeah, you can see where this one is heading. Hilarity ensued when he returned, only to find an inbox full of increasingly erratic emails and a cell phone overloaded with increasingly desperate pleas for attention.


As JD wisely notes at the end of the video, "when you go to Europe for two weeks, leave your f***ing phone on."  You almost have to wonder if this viral video was commissioned by AT&T or Verizon.


4. Joaquin Phoenix on Letterman

Though flatly denied by the actor when it was first announced in January, the public was wisely skeptical of Joaquin Phoenix's intentions when he announced he was embarking on a career in hip-hop. After all, it's not often than an Academy Award-nominated performer gives up a lucrative career in film in favor of one in which he seemingly has no aptitude whatsoever.

So when the actor/rapper (or, let's face it, "performance artist") appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman to present himself to an intrigued nation this past February, it had all the makings of truly great television. And, thankfully for all involved, the ensuing trainwreck was everything we hoped it might be...and then some.

Whether or not this whole "career in rap" thing is a hoax or not, one thing's certain: Joaquin Phoenix is certifiably bats**t insane.


3. David After Dentist

Clocking in with nearly 40 million views on YouTube alone, the video of drugged-up seven-year-old David DeVore returning from a visit to the dentist was easily one of the funniest videos of 2009. Facing a new and strange world, David asked questions that philosophers (and stoned college freshman) have pondered for years, such as "Is this real life?" and "Is this going to be forever."


Food for thought, indeed. But more than anything else, this video proves one fact above all others: Giving drugs to children is hilarious.


2. Kanye West is a Tremendous Douche

It's long been known that Kanye West has a bit of a wild streak. From attacking former President Bush to flipping out on radio DJs to warning Grammy voters about why they need to vote for him, Kanye is never one to shy away from speaking his mind. This isn't even the first time he's taken the stage at an MTV award show to trash-talk the winners.  Happy just to be nominated? Aw, hell no!  Not for Kanye.

But when he stormed the stage after Taylor Swift's upset victory over Beyoncé at this year's VMAs, pretty much all hell broke loose. The crowd immediately turned on the self-anointed one, who in turn left the ceremony without performing as scheduled. The Twitterverse blew up with condemnations of the singer, and even President Barack Obama weighed in, calling Kanye a "jackass." Damn.

For better or for worse, within hours, you couldn't go a minute without someone making their own "I'mma let you finish" joke. There's even an entire website devoted to the meme. After a week or two, it got pretty old but we're guessing this fiasco is going to follow Kanye around, well into 2010 and beyond.


1. Play Him Off, Keyboard Cat!

Though it was actually recorded way back in 1984, the phenomenon of "Keyboard Cat" didn't really come to the Internet's attention until this year, when it stormed the world in its numerous permutations. Though first coming to the attention of many sometime around the time The Daily Show and Colbert Report featured him, this was only the beginning of Keyboard Cat and his penchant for punctuating all things FAIL with his inimitable keyboard stylings.


You can now find a Keyboard Cat video for pretty much every occasion. Want a Three Wolf Moon-inspired Keyboard Cat  t-shirt?  You got it. How about an 8-bit Keyboard Cat for the Marioheads?  Served right up.  Perhaps the only thing missing now is Keyboard Cat's inevitable foray into advertising. Oh wait, that's already happened too.

If only for the fact that the Keyboard Cat phenomenon is still going strong, we salute him as our top viral video star of 2009. Well, for that and the sweater he's wearing. You have to admit he looks pretty damn snazzy.


Honorable Mentions:

Best Wedding Entrance Dance Ever
David Hasselhoff Drunk at the 2009 EMAs
Bret Michael Gets Taken Out at the Tonys
Denmark Wants You To Sleep With Its Loose Women
Auto-Tune The News
Seth Green Totally Freaks Out
Worst Video Dating Candidates Ever
Engineering Student Owned by Automatic Door
Spoiled Kid Totally Loses It Over Birthday Present
Eighth Grader Nails Amazing Flip Shot From 80 Feet