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Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey’s moments and the memes and GIFs that keep these celebrities on top

Social media is the greatest at taking situations to a new level

By now, everyone has seen, heard of or talked about singer Mariah Carey’s lip sync fail as she attempted to bring in the new year with a performance on ABC’s Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve.

Carey’s performance was almost nonexistent. She told Entertainment Weekly that Dick Clark was “an incredible person.”

“I was lucky enough to work with him when I first started in the music business. I’m of the opinion that Dick Clark would not have let an artist go through that and he would have been as mortified as I was in real time.”

Before Carey broke her silence, it didn’t take social media long to weigh in.

If you missed it all because you’ve been living under a rock, no worries! We’ve got you.

Folks, as social media loves to do, are having a field day. The San Antonio Spurs‘ coyote mascot even got in on the fun alongside Spurs dancers during Tuesday night’s game against the Toronto Raptors. Wearing a leotard and tights, he couldn’t quite get himself together while trying to lip sync Carey’s tune Emotions. He too had a meltdown.

There is a whole generation of people who may not know how AH-MAZING Carey is and how her music has inspired generations.

Folks may not know that she is Columbia Records’ top-selling artist — ever. Her song One Sweet Day with Boyz II Men still holds the record for the longest-running No. 1 song in the United States, and she was the best-selling artist of the 1990s. Carey belted out the song Vision of Love, released in 1990, and her high octaves have been catching notice since. Never mind that her more than 200 million albums sold makes her one of the best in the best-selling category. Carey has earned her dues.

While Carey’s marriage to and divorce from actor and TV host Nick Cannon may be known to the younger generation, her songwriting, singing and producing ability may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Yet she is still quite well-known through other means: GIFs and memes. And when it comes to Carey, specifically, this one in particular is a crowd favorite.

When asked about singer Jennifer Lopez, Carey said she didn't know her.

When asked about singer Jennifer Lopez, Carey said she didn’t know her.

This, dear friends, is a list of stars, whose celebrity extended far and wide during their heyday, but who are now known for their social stardom. Kind of like how chokers are making a comeback, but I digress.

Michael Jordan

Meme origin: The crying Jordan meme became famous after Michael Jordan gave his Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame speech in 2012.

Primary use: This meme has been used primarily to poke fun at the misfortune of others or teams that lose in fantastic or heartbreaking fashion. (Cc: the way UNC’s basketball team lost the national championship in April.)

What made the celebrity famous in the first place: Well, Jordan is quite possibly the greatest basketball player of all time. He managed to go to six NBA Finals and was a perfect 6-0 in those games. He holds a plethora of NBA and Chicago Bulls records — league MVPs, a Defensive Player of the Year, the list really does go on with him. A star at North Carolina and the centerpiece of the 1992 Olympic Dream Team, Jordan has won pretty much every major accolade one can aspire to in his or her chosen field. Did I mention he owns a billion-dollar industry in his Jordan Brand? He’s also the owner of the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets, as well.

Kermit the Frog

Meme origin: Considering there are four different Kermit the Frog memes, let’s say it has been a progression over the last four years.

Primary use: There’s stunned — did you really just say that? — Kermit, sipping tea — that’s none of my business — Kermit, road rage — I pull up, and hop out at the red light — Kermit, and there’s me-to-me Kermit. All four illustrate different real-life scenarios one may encounter on any given day. Lord knows I go through all four in one way or another daily.

What made the celebrity famous in the first place: If you’re a 1990s baby, then you grew up with Kermit on The Muppets Show. Kermit was the protagonist of this series. If you’re also a Maryland alum, then you know Kermit from the statue outside of the Adele H. Stamp Student Union, where visitors can take a photo with Kermit and creator Jim Henson.

Wee-Bey from the Wire

Meme origin: This GIF originates from the HBO series The Wire, which was a five-season series that took an inside look at the inner workings of Baltimore from the perspective of drug dealers, the working-class man, city officials, the schools and cops.

Primary use: When the light bulb goes off in one’s head. Usually in matters of common sense when one examines a situation closely and can clearly see the forest for the trees.

What made the celebrity famous in the first place: The Wire, duh. And if you haven’t seen the show, I strongly recommend watching it. This is an extremely addictive series, so don’t blame me if you take my advice and watch it. I gave you a very fair warning. This particular scene is hilarious, and I have provided it below. You’re welcome.



Spike Lee

Meme origin: Spike Lee was watching his beloved New York Knicks and decided to wear this fit out for the evening. Having friends is supposed to prevent a situation like this from happening, because Black Twitter had a field day with this one.

Primary use: To make mom jokes. (I wish this was a GIF showing his foot taping, because that would really seal the deal.)

What made the celebrity famous in the first place: Lee is a filmmaker and producer who has produced more than 30 films through his production company, 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks. One of his most popular movies is the 1989 movie Do The Right Thing. The most common theme among Lee movies is their portrayal of the black community through political issues, race relations, poverty, life, colorism and crime.


Rhiannon Walker is an associate editor at The Undefeated. She is a drinker of Sassy Cow Creamery chocolate milk, an owner of an extensive Disney VHS collection, and she might have a heart attack if Frank Ocean doesn't drop his second album.