What Trended in November?

by Selene Ashewood ‘22

For every election year that has coexisted with the internet, people comedically extend it to the non-voting world. This means personifying things like fictional characters, dog breeds, candles, etc., then theorizing which American party they’d lean to and who they would hypothetically vote for. On Sunday, the phrase “Gaston” reached the number six spot of trending on Twitter. When clicked, thousands of posts commented on “The Beauty and The Beast” villain and his likely right-wing affiliation. Most of what people said was humorous, but there were a few handfuls of accounts having in depth discussions or arguments about the topic. Many users including myself like to think that Gaston didn’t vote red, but rather voted for himself. Things and characters with a more concrete consensus are Pitbull dogs voting for Biden specifically in support of prison reform, Bath and Body Works’ line of summer candles loving all things Fox News, and the Cocoa Puffs bird mascot being a registered independent. While discussing politics might not sound like escapism, it is when Pixar and cereal is involved, and it sure is more lighthearted in the face of the recent election.

Video edits for popular internet users are always big. But with easier video software constantly appearing in the app store, and TikTok making “#fanedit” a trending hashtag early this month, it became more widespread. The dominating categories of these vary from platform to platform. On Instagram, your explore page might often recommend minimalist edits, consisting of popular movie clips or just well-known shots from them stitched together. Strangely enough, due to the weeks the country spent watching them during the election, multiple anchors of CNN and other news sources have acquired a fan base, who make similar edits of them.The general consensus is with rhythmic camera movement and heavy filters, anything and anyone can look desirable.

Pop sensation and near generational icon Ariana Grande released her sixth studio album “Positions” around Halloween. Of course her fans were quick to react pretty positively, but the songs reached a much larger audience at the beginning of November. The songs and overall ambiance of the album explores a more sensual side of Ariana as she grows out of older eras of herself and her music. Stand out tracks are the single “positions”, and a slower more vocal song called “pov.” Both have, you guessed it, spawned TikTok trends. Mostly done by teenagers, they range from using your bed to transition between clips of someone in different outfits, show off a significant other, perform a complicated dance, or just look conventionally attractive and lip sync the lyrics.