The Biggest Geek Culture Moments of 2020

Chris Pratt as Star-Lord

“Crisp Rat”

It was a big year for Chris Pratt on social media, despite the fact that he didn’t really do much of note except have a baby and finish filming Jurassic World: Dominion. The fallout from 2019’s accusations that the actor attends an anti-LGBT church was the blood that pumped through the veins of Twitter’s 24/7 cancellation machine, refueled by Pratt’s non-appearance at Joe Biden’s virtual fundraiser alongside other MCU castmates.

Some saw this as “evidence” that the actor was deserving of a cancelation, and he was dubbed “the worst Chris” in Hollywood. Robert Downey Jr. and other Marvel stars jumped to his defence, declaring Pratt “a real #Christian who lives by #principle” and who has “never demonstrated anything but #positivity and #gratitude”, but Twitter had made up its mind, and it was soon recasting Jack Black in every role Pratt had filled to date. – KH

Star Wars: The Mandalorian Grogu

His Name …Is Grogu

It’s rather surreal to think that The Mandalorian’s powerful pop culture impact was mostly attributed to a character who had no proper name, only officially referred to as “The Child,” and colloquially—for lack of a better term—dubbed “Baby Yoda.” However, this year’s Chapter 13 would see Rosario Dawson’s debuting live-action version of animated favorite Ahsoka Tano use the Force to child-whisper the name of “Grogu.” In doing so, fans, Star Wars-driven SEO, and the Disney merchandising apparatus received an early Christmas present. However, even with the emotionally evocative Season 2 finale in the rear-view mirror, breaking the habit of calling him Baby Yoda is going to be a process as tough as worrying about his safety, especially given his new destination, and with whom it will likely have him come into contact. – JB

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Tenet-cious C

Christopher Nolan was the butt who wouldn’t quit in 2020 as he sought to Save Cinema with his highly anticipated blockbuster about time travel, heists and many guns going pow-pow-pow. Whether it was his intention or not, he seemingly encouraged punters to ignore escalating scientific evidence to avoid indoor public spaces and trot along to their local theatre to watch the film. Nolan’s heart was probably in the right place, but it was a bad look for the director overall, compounded by Tenet’s eventual release on streaming, when the majority of keen audiences finally got a chance to clap their eyes on what turned out to be …well, let’s just say “not exactly a masterpiece.” – KH

Actual footage of people responding to Nolan’s pleas.

DC FanDome

Fandom has collectively been at a loss as far as how to replace the convention experience during the pandemic. And so far, attempts by heavy hitters like San Diego Comic-Con and New York Comic Con to replicate the buzz of a weekend packed with fan experiences and big news drops were tremendous disappointments. Pre-recorded Zoom panels don’t excite when all we do all day as a society is stare at that cursed app, buggy launches make it worse, and the fact that studios/networks/publishers didn’t really help put their best foot forward didn’t help.


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