Best Nine of 2016: KQED's Most-Read Pop Culture Posts of the Year

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The end of the calendar year is a time to look back on what was, to resolve to do even better moving forward... and to document your best nine Instagram photos and post them all in a grid, while humble-bragging about the total amount of likes you've received that year.

The latter phenomenon got me wondering what KQED Pop's best nine would be, so without further ado, here's what you all loved from us this year:

9. Kate Bush: A Crash Course for the Non-Believer


Too many people don't know who Kate Bush is. That ends now.

8. Beyoncé’s LEMONADE Isn’t the First Time She’s Used Divorce to Play with Our Emotions



If all of the cheating and breakup vibes in Beyoncé's LEMONADE felt familiar, it's because it's all happened before.

7. Sexy Harambe? The Most Popular (and Problematic) Costumes of 2016


This year, people dressed up as everything from the cast of Stranger Things to sexy Harambe and a bound-and-gagged Kim Kardashian.

6. ‘Virtual Insanity’ At 20: Did the Internet Kill the Music Video Star?


In 1996, one music video had the power to captivate a country. And it wasn't just about the hat.

5. Will Our Next President Be Hillary or Trump? Astrologers Think They Know

astro vote

One way to deal with being stressed over not knowing the outcome of Election 2016: watching hours of YouTube astrologers attempting to find answers in the sky.

4. Bette Davis v. Joan Crawford: The Hateful History Behind Old Hollywood’s Nastiest Feud

Cause baby now they had bad blood. Photo: Emmanuel Hapsis
Cause baby now they had bad blood. Photo: Emmanuel Hapsis

This Old Hollywood rivalry makes Mariah vs. Jennifer Lopez look like child's play.

3. Rosemary Kennedy: The Tragic Story of Why JFK’s Sister Disappeared from Public View


Why did the Kennedys want to keep Rosemary a secret? The answer reveals a lot about mental health stigma in America.

2. Nipplegate Revisited: Why America Owes Janet Jackson a Huge Apology

Janet, chained to the stake. (Photo: Emmanuel Hapsis | Wiki Commons)
Janet, chained to the stake. (Photo: Emmanuel Hapsis | Wiki Commons)

The story of how, in 9/16th of a second, Janet Jackson's career was ruined and our country's worst facets were revealed.

1. Meet Walburga, the Married Woman Who Hid a Secret Lover in Her Attic for a Decade


We're used to not batting a lash at most scandals, but this retelling of one from the early 20th century shocked half a million readers, broke all kinds of KQED records, and even got a mention from The New York Times.

Honorable mentions to a few posts that also did super well, but weren't written in 2016:

Which Star Wars and Harry Potter Characters Fit Your Myers-Briggs Personality?

2 Weeks Notice: The Strange Reality of Your Last Days on the Job

8 Things To Do Solo In San Francisco

How to Play Mafia: An In-Depth Guide to the Perfect Holiday Game

A Local’s Guide to the Perfect Day in San Francisco