The 12 best memes of 2015: Runaway llamas, The Dress, Adele ...

12. What are thooooose!A police officer. A cheeky dude (Brandon Moore) yelling what are thooose? at the officers functional, ugly footwear. Millions of loops and views and copycats later, a meme is born. The first urban dictionary entry for the phrase and practice appeared in 2011, but it was 2015 when the sport of pointing at some awful shoes (preferably Crocs) and shouting what are those?!! entered the mainstream. The best example is the wonderful take on the Jurassic Park theme tune (see below, 50 million Vine loops so far), which I like because its less mean-spirited than real life examples. In fact, the man who started the whole thing back in the summer seems kind of rude and is now in jail. Um.11. Duck Army It stormed collective internet consciousness in early September. Norwegian Kevin Synnes decided to embarrass his girlfriend in a store by pushing down on a bunch of toy ducks which, when pressed, emitted a loud aaarghh! noise. The video was then appropriated by Vine star Charlie Murphy and subsequently looped millions of times, spawning multiple variants. There has even been a mash-up with the what are those? meme. My person favourite versions are those which pay tribute to Adele and Taylor Swift.However, a Guardian investigation revealed that that the toy was not a duck, but a pelican. Listen to our interview with Kevin here. Read more: How the duck army stormed the internet[embedded content]10. Hello, its meIt took just a 30-second snippet of Adeles new single, Hello, debuted during the advert break of the UK television show, The X Factor, to have the singer trending worldwide on Twitter. And while the haunting piano and hushed, smoky tones beloved of millions of fans induced much excitement among those desperate to hear the full song, the clip also inspired plenty of memes.Hello, its me is a pretty meme-able phrase, and the internet did not disappoint. When the sepia-tinged video dropped, featuring the singer in an amazing coat, using a flip-phone and hanging out in an abandoned house, the memes just multiplied. Especially re: the flip-phone. One woman even texted her ex the entire lyrics to Hello, without him catching on at all.Read more: Hello, its me. On a flip-phone. Samsung unveils clamshell model chuck (@charlubby)October 23, 2015you know it's the emotional part of the song when adele doesn't stop touching her face pic.twitter.com/dkQvHRmL76 9GAG (@9GAG)November 8, 2015#Hello, it's me. https://t.co/82PU9WzQHG pic.twitter.com/1y7xUrARvQ9. Miley, whats good?A lot of people characterised this as Nicki Minaj throwing shade at Miley Cyrus, which is a fundamental misunderstanding of the concept of shade. Minaj didnt throw shade she directly called Cyrus out, in front of a TV audience of millions. If anything, that is the direct opposite of throwing shade. The incident happened at the MTV Music Video Awards in response to an interview Cyrus gave in which she called Minaj not very polite. While accepting an award Minaj called Cyrus this bitch who had a lot to say about me in the press the other day, before ending with the perfectly passive aggressive, Miley, whats good? Cue memes. Lots and lots of memes. John Liacopulos (@john_liac_97)November 3, 2015When Miley Cyrus takes you to her favorite restaurant that you've never been to before and you ask what to order pic.twitter.com/qoGDlgHmuQ KK (@_ColeHeartedX)October 9, 2015I hate whoever room this is #iup #MileyWhatsGood pic.twitter.com/Peh3f3Yq4b8. Confused Nick YoungNick Young is a basketball player who shoots for the LA Lakers. His internet fame, however, is courtesy of a confused reaction face meme. At one point during a day-in-life-of documentary, Thru The Lens, posted on YouTube, Young pulls a huh? face when his mother calls him a clown. His quizzical expression towards the camera has spawned probably the best reaction macro of 2015 and can be used for disbelief, surprise or a thousand other reactions.Photograph: Instagram/@Daquan7. Why you always lyin?The 21-year-old college student Nicholas Fraser became an internet sensation when he decided to perform, in his yard, perched on a toilet, as one does, a quick cover of Nexts Too Close, but with the lyrics changed to why the fuck you lyin? / why you always lyin?) Given that people lie all of the time, and we know about it, guys, and we all want people to know that we know, Frasers vine caught on and inspired multiple cover versions of his cover version. Now, when your mate texts to say she is five minutes away but you know she probably hasnt left the house yet, theres a perfect means of responding. Thanks Nicholas.Read more: When people say Nicholas Frasers vine isnt the best of 2015: why you always lyin?6. Fifty Shades of GreyAfter the Fifty Shades of Grey series of bookssold so poorly, it was a punt for Universal Pictures to have taken on a film adaptation. But oh, brave souls it was brought to the screen in summer 2015 with Sam Taylor-Johnson at the helm and Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson starring. Given that the book had already resulted in a lot of cultural cache, it was inevitable that the film would inspire memes and jokes. The internet delivered. In particular, the my tastes are very singular line (altered to my desires are unconventional for the internet) proved a rich seam. The Beast (@KrystalSim)February 9, 2015pic.twitter.com/m5Tpb21XRfPhotograph: BuzzFeed5. Hotline BlingOne of the best tracks of 2015, the video for Drakes Hotline Bling didnt drop until October three months after the songs release. But it was worth the wait. A minimalist clip, Drake shows off his unusual dance moves against different coloured backdrops inspired by artist James Turell. The rappers moves and pained impression inspired multiple parodies shared on YouTube, Vine and Twitter.Included below are some of the best: a dancing and adorable shiba inu (aka Doge), the Man From Another Place from Twin Peaks and perhaps best of all, some tennis backhand action. Chai Goth (@Abid_ism)October 20, 2015The hotline is filled with secrets pic.twitter.com/5zS0WZhGCG4. The DressThe most viral of viral phenomenons. A young woman took a picture of a dress in a clothes store and uploaded it to Tumblr. Why is this interesting? Because the internet was genuinely divided as to whether the dress was blue and black, or white and gold.The original Tumblr post posing the question racked up an enormous 73m page views, and a BuzzFeed piece on the dress has more than 38m page views to date. #TheDress trended for days on social media. Scientists were hauled in to explain how people could be seeing different colours. Rods and cones were mentioned. British current affairs programme Newsnight even offered its own vote. The Guardian waded in, with the definitive take. michael (@1975NIGHTMARE)February 27, 2015when you don't know the color of the dress pic.twitter.com/sQI7YLnjk1BBC Newsnight (@BBCNewsnight)February 27, 2015A live on screen vote on tonight's Newsnight - what colour is #thedress ? Get out your phone and go to http://t.co/dRffVZfw0P at 10:30pm3. Poot LovatoI dont think Ive ever laughed so hard as when I discovered the Poot Lovato meme. A Tumblr post featuring an awkward fan photograph of singer Demi Lovato posited the theory that the snap was not of Demi herself, but her secret twin sister, Poot Lovato, who had been trapped in a basement her entire life. The fable took hold and soon the internet was ablaze with hilarious and creative Poot memes. Fan-fiction was written, fan art drawn, Instagram and Twitter accounts were established and even Demi herself addressed the joke (she wasnt amused). Then, rather, brilliantly, a sleuth dug out a paparazzi photograph of Demi-as-Poot right at the moment the fan pic was taken. Its still funny.Read more: Poot Lovato: has the internet discovered Demis secret sister? A selection of the best Poot Lovato memes. Photograph: Guardian composite2. Llamas on the runOn THE SAME DAY AS THE DRESS, the internet exploded with one of the great police chases of our time two llamas on the run. The llamas, one black and one white, ran loose in Sun City, Arizona. The whole internet followed, glued to the ABC15 live stream of the runaway beasts and tracking updates on Twitter. The llamas, true heroes of freedom and an inspiration to all, had escaped from their day job in an animal therapy centre. The black llama was caught first, its emancipation ended with a cruel lassoing. The white llama ran on, but eventually, it too was caught. Still, these two were the internets favourite llamas since Serge, the French llama who travelled by subway. HannahJane Parkinson (@ladyhaja)February 26, 2015NOOOO. BLACK LLAMA CAUGHT. STAY STRONG WHITE LLAMA.Matthew Baldwin (@matthewbaldwin)February 26, 2015LLAMA 1: We're escaping this afternoon. LLAMA 2: Alpaca bag.1. Dead RaccoonMy personal winner for meme of 2015 is the dead raccoon, an unfortunate soul, found deceased on a Toronto street. After a man tweeted the relevant city authorities to tell them about the raccoon, the poor critter was left for hours in the same spot. Over the next 12 hours, a vigil was set up for the raccoon, documented online. A note was left, a framed photograph, notes were written. Someone gave the raccoon an unlit joint as a mark of respect. It got dark. Candles were lit. The raccoon was named Conrad. Eventually, the authorities turned up and unceremoniously dumped Conrad in a rubbish truck. Such a lack of respect. Shauna Pollock (@misspollock)July 9, 2015Don't quite know what to say about this sidewalk discovery except that it really brought ppl together. #deadraccoonto pic.twitter.com/BJ7efipLvq Norm Kelly (@norm)July 10, 2015The sidewalk memorial is growing, @311Toronto. H/T @jasonwagar. #DeadRaccoonTO pic.twitter.com/3vTUf9xB7b Kris Pangilinan (@KrisReports)July 10, 201510:46pm #DeadRacoonTO is still here. pic.twitter.com/D9JbEuxJol