You might not have heard the Latin phrase annus horribilis, but you’ve probably had one this year. Meaning literally ‘horrible year’, the term has been used intermittently throughout modern history to describe – unsurprisingly – years that have been truly dreadful. In 1992, the Queen had one. In 2004, the UN Secretary General announced they’d had one. In 2016, the entire world had one.
And perhaps no one has summed up how shit 2016 has been better than John Oliver. Recently on his program, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, the English comedian took 2016 to task for being “a shitty year”.
In case you forgot, here’s a list of all the awful things that happened during 2016:
- David Bowie died
- Prince died
- Alan Rickman died
- Leonard Cohen died
- Harambe died
- Muhammad Ali died
- Gene Wilder died
- The Zika outbreak
- 2016 likely the hottest year on record
- The ongoing Flint Water Crisis
- The Syrian refugee crisis worsened
- The Bastille Day terror attacks in Nice
- Baghdad suicide bomber killed 292 people
- The Orlando nightclub shootings
- The Brussels bombings
- The Istanbul airport bombings
- Pauline Hanson was re-elected
- And of course Donald J. Trump was elected President of the United States
As well as recapping all the messed-up, shit things that have happened since January, the video also features celebrities such as Amy Schumer, Larry David, “Weird Al” Yankovic, Nick Offerman and Megan Mullally. There’s really nothing like a comedian telling 2016 to “go punch itself in the dick” to make you feel better about the terrible year.
While we’ve still got over a month left for the year, it’s unlikely that we can turn it around. And given that 2015 was no barrel of laughs either (the Bataclan attacks anyone?), let’s take some of Oliver’s advice and “try harder next year”.
Here’s to you 2017. Don’t fuck things up.