It was a bummer of a year in world news, but let’s look beyond that for a moment. It was also, weirdly, a year in which entertainment news frequently bled over into front page headlines. Even our escapism couldn’t escape from the general sludgy state of affairs in 2014. Bill Cosby is allegedly not the beloved icon most remember, #gamergate underscored the rampant, aggressive misogyny of many male video game enthusiasts, and The Interview brought about an actual international incident–and that’s all just been the past few months! Perhaps all this negativity helped us appreciate the brights spots even more, though.
Despite the surging stream of head-desk moments discussed on TV or about TV, creativity still thrived in 2014. Visionary directors unveiled cinematic experiments they’d been tinkering with for over a decade. Two funny ladies from the Internet made a Comedy Central series and proved that a show about being young in New York could still get people talking. And in the perfect culmination of entertainment news colliding with world news in a positive way, a sitting president appeared on Zach Galifianakis and Scott Aukerman’s web series.
Look through the slides above to see 20 more of our favorite movies, shows, music, and moments that made getting through this tough year easier.