Top 10 Pop Culture Moments of 2015

It’s been a busy year for pop culture, and we’re counting down the biggest moments of 2015. Here they are!

10. Hamilton Musical is a Phenomenon


– Rap musical about founding father Alexander Hamilton with lyrics/music/book by Lin Manuel Miranda – completely sold out through September 2016


9. Empire Ratings Increase

– Saw a ratings & number of viewers increase in all 13 episodes of Season 1 (season premiere: 9.9 million viewers/season finale: 17.62 million viewers)
– The Lyon family runs a hip-hop entertainment industry called Empire (Emmy-nominated performance from matriarch Taraji P. Henson)


8. Zayn Malik Leaves One Direction

– After five years with the British group, departs in March, citing, “I want to feel like a normal 22-year-old.”
– Shortly after, announces solo career and makes band angry
– As of today, One Direction recently released their fifth studio album; Malik is still MIA


7. Mad Men, Parks & Recreation End Runs

– AMC drama ends after 7 seasons, four-time Emmy “Outstanding Drama Series” winner, three-time Golden Globe “Best Television Series- Drama” winner
– NBC comedy ends after 7 seasons, centered in fictional city of Pawnee, Indiana, launched careers of Amy Poehler (post-SNL run), Chris Pratt, Nick Offerman


6. Netflix, Amazon, Hulu Content

– Netflix’s first feature film (Beasts of No Nation) is gaining Oscar buzz
– Netflix standouts “Orange is the New Black” and “House of Cards” continue to impress
– Amazon’s “Transparent” brings current topic of transgender forward in a dry comedy starring Jeffrey Tambor (Golden Globe winner for “Best Television Series-Comedy”)


5. David Letterman Signs Off

– The Late Show with David Letterman ends on May 20th after 22 seasons & over 4,000 episodes
– Indiana native, Ball State alum, David Letterman Communication and Media Building at BSU


4. US Women’s Soccer Team Wins World Cup

– Defeated Japan 5-2 in final on July 5th in rematch of 2011 final (U.S. lost in penalty shoot-out)
– First title in 16 years and first team to win World Cup three times
– Midfielder Carli Lloyd had a hat-trick


3. The Force is Strong

– Shattered North America box office record of opening weekend gross of $247 million (Jurassic World broke the previous record this summer with $208 million)
– Biggest single day and opening days ever


2. Adele Sells 3.38 Million in Week

– Biggest selling album in a single week (broke previous record holder- *NSYNC- No Strings Attached- by nearly 1 million albums)- highly anticipated follow-up to multiple Grammy-winner “21”


1. Welcome, Caitlyn Jenner!

– Came out as a trans woman to Diane Sawyer on 20/20 in April
– ESPY Arthur Ashe Courage Award recipient, Vanity Fair cover debuted her transformation, Barbara Walters’ Most Fascinating Person of 2015

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