I believe Dumbledore once said ‘Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light’. Well, 2020 was like a year long power cut.
There is no escaping the fact that it has been a difficult year. For many people, it has been a year of change and uncertainty. Of financial and emotional instability. Of grief and of loss. The phrase ‘unable to catch a break’ comes to mind.
When faced with what seems like a never-ending tunnel of darkness, pain and misery (I promise this’ll get more light-hearted just bear with me), it is important to reflect on some of the more positive moments from this year. They may have been somewhat overshadowed by the doom and gloom of natural disasters, global pandemics, and painstakingly questionable politics, but they did happen and are therefore worthy of celebration. Not only worthy, but necessary, as when life is at its most trying, we must hold on tightly to those small moments of positivity. So, with that being said, here are 5 positive things to come out of 2020. You may disagree with me, but really, what is the point in that? This year has already been trying enough. Don’t be difficult…
Reunited Apart- Josh Gad’s Youtube Series
American actor Josh Gad began a series on his YouTube channel where he virtually reunited casts of famous films. We’re talking Lord of the Rings, Back to the Future, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off…some real classics. His video with the Lord of the Rings cast now has over 5.7 million views, and also raised lots of money for charity. As a real film buff, Josh Gad excitedly sits and welcomes in cast members and asks them questions about the filming process, and then gets the actors to read parts of the script. I would highly recommend giving the series a watch. It was monumental to have the casts of these films reunited, albeit virtually, and provided a bit of life relief during the trying summer months.
From a densely populated student area of Nottingham, to the London tube, Banksy’s graffiti works have popped up all across the UK and caused quite the stir. His coronavirus inspired artwork on the underground was promptly removed but showed him supporting the notion of people wearing masks, and pieces also cropped up in Southampton General Hospital, celebrating health care workers. I think it speaks to the escalation and importance of a situation if Banksy considers it worthy enough to create artwork for. With tragedy and sadness comes the opportunity for artistic exploration and expression, and Banksy has epitomised this this year.
If any person could salvage some good from 2020, it was going to be this man. David Attenborough joined Instagram and broke the record (previously held by Jennifer Anniston) for the quickest time to reach 1 million followers. He is the social media influencer we never knew we needed, and the one who will be able to reach millions of young, impressionable teenagers, to educate them on the climate crisis and amplify the conversation about conservation online.
On 30th May, Space X launched the first commercial space craft. Now I don’t know a lot about space, so I won’t go on too much. However, the launch of the Dragon rocket was pretty cool, and was a massive step in the start of private space exploration. It is quite mad to consider what we may see achieved in our lifetime. I already feel old and out of touch, and I am only twenty-two.
A Tik Tok Musical- Ratatouille
I must say, this is one of my favourite things to come out of 2020 (disclaimer- of course, finding and successfully administering the Covid-19 vaccine was impressive. But prepare yourself, because this is pretty ground-breaking.) The creation of Ratatouille the Musical, on the social media app Tik Tok, shows the determination, talent, and drive of the younger generation. After an initial video, proposing a musical adaptation of the 2007 Disney animated film Ratatouille, people began writing musical scores, creating choreography, set designing, merchandise branding, the list goes on. And before you know it, a Tik Tok community has created a collaborative musical which has been recognised by famous figures within the musical theatre sphere, and has now secured its own Playbill, with the Broadway production company Seaview putting on a digital event to premier people’s Tik Tok creations. What began as an internet meme is now a fully recognised musical spectacular, and if that doesn’t save 2020, I am not sure what will.
While it may seem trivial, and obviously doesn’t hold the importance of most things currently in the news, things like a musical made about the film Ratatouille DO matter. Not only does it showcase the talents of people within the art and entertainment industry, who have been forced to concentrate their skill set online, but reminds us that humans really are quite resilient creatures. When faced with unprecedented (surely the word of the year?) events, we carry on. And not only that, we make a collaborative musical on Tik Tok. So, I think that is surely worthy of celebration.