We can all agree that 2016 has been a gigantic, smelly trash fire, right? Well, there’s good news: The year’s almost over! Hooray! But before you write off the last twelve months completely, don’t forget that in between all the crap were a few gold nuggets of awesomeness. Whether it was through talent, charm or sheer badassery, these 15 celebs were rare bright spots in 2016, and their greatness deserves some kudos:
The Canadian hunk is hilarious on Twitter, and he was absolutely perfect in Deadpool, making us laugh and cheer as the sarcastic superhero kicked butt. And even the Hollywood Foreign Press agrees, as they nominated both the film and the actor for Golden Globes.
With his sci fi drama Passengers due out at Christmas, we got to see the delightful Pratt back on the media circuit in 2016 – and we got to see him perform a pretty wonderful magic trick.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine is a show that will never fail to make you smile, and much of that is thanks to the brilliantly deadpan performance of Braugher, who somehow inserts a ton of comedy and nuance into a monotone delivery.
The Taylor-Kanye feud
Regardless of your opinion of either Taylor Swift or Kanye West, you have to admit that we were all eagerly eating up the drama when video of West’s phone call to Swift was released online. Taylor might want to be excluded from this narrative, but we don’t.
The brilliant comedian put out her latest comedy special, Baby Cobra, this year, and in the process, hilariously highlighted the sexism against female comics when they decide to have kids. Preach!
In 2016, the Jane The Virgin star continued to be a role model to girls everywhere, speaking out against racism and sexism and encouraging women to be strong.
Hamilton. Moana. Drunk History. The Broadway genius brought nothing but light into our lives in 2016, and we can wait to see how much awesomeness he has in store for 2017.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
The Rock showed off his musical stylings this year, providing the voice for the demigod Maui in Disney’s Moana. Who knew Johnson had such a great voice?
Only Bey could drop Lemonade, her insanely brilliant album about Jay-Z’s (alleged?) infidelity. Not to mention the equally genius 60-minute film that made Bey fans the world over pump their fists.
Following Donald Trump’s shocking win of the U.S. election, Lawrence penned a passionate and much-needed letter to Hillary supporters who were feeling despondent. “Do not let this defeat you – let this enrage you! Let it motivate you! Let this be the fire you didn’t have before,” she wrote.
Toronto’s golden boy brought us his latest album, Views, in 2016, and if you didn’t have “Hotline Bling” stuck in your head at least once this year, you’re a liar.
Everybody and their dad was obsessed with Westworld, and a huge part of the HBO drama’s success was Newton’s strong, bad-ass portrayal of Maeve, the robot who became self-aware and plotted her escape from her wild west prison.
The Canadian YouTube star soared to even bigger fame in 2016, and there are too many of her best moments to list all of them. But one high point was Singh’s “How To Make A Sandwich For Sexists” video, in which she clapped back at negative commenters.
As if T.Hanks weren’t already perfect, he gave us the wonderful Halloween gift of David S. Pumpkins. If nothing else, at least 2016 had this. Any questions?