Best of 2008

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Top Films of the Year

Foreign films rule among the year's best

(Newser) - With most year-end movie lists bask in the glow of award-season contenders, Dana Stevens grudgingly runs through her unranked, alphabetized top 10 on Slate, despite being "allergic to hierarchies, lists, and ranking."
  • A Christmas Tale: A French film about a crazed family that's "a glorious feast
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This Year's Fashion Felonies

From Madonna to Michella Obama, the year's big misses

(Newser) - Sure, we like seeing pictures of chic, perfectly styled celebrities. But the worst-dressed fashion misses are way more fun. The Los Angeles Times' Elizabeth Snead snarks on her least favorite looks of the year:
  • Sarah Jessica Parker's "fashion nut case" acorn hat at the SATC premiere
  • Janet Jackson's "
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Cruise, Obama Top List of 2008 Viral Videos

(Newser) - In the vast, fragmented online universe, videos tend to entice some and disgust others. But every year offers a list of viral vids enjoyed by all. The Washington Post runs down 2008's best:
  • Tom Cruise on Scientology: A rambling, fervent Cruise extols his religion, saying he's the "only one
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Bright Spots for Tech in 2008

(Newser) - 2008 wasn’t a great year for tech or the economy, but some gadget-makers did invest in innovation, the San Jose Mercury News reports. Areas where tech made more than token gains:
  • Digital cameras grow up: Not only are consumer cameras getting sharper, but some professional models can now record
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Year's Top 10 Moments of Celeb Activism

Oprah, Paris, make a difference

(Newser) - It’s been a big year for celebrity activism—so big that it deserves its own year-end top 10 list, Tina Daunt writes in the Los Angeles Times. Some famous faces that made a difference in 2008:
  • Oprah Winfrey fought hard for Barack Obama, including hosting a traffic-stopping garden party.
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Best Political Scoops of '08

(Newser) - Traditional media outlets and on-the-spot amateurs alike captured the year's biggest US political moments. Here is Politico's look at some of the biggest scoops:
  • Palin meets Couric: Interviewed by Katie Couric on CBS, Sarah Palin fumbled with softball questions such as which publications she reads. Democrats and Tina Fey pounced.
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Best Sports Stories of 2008

Evil Bill, golden Michael, ailing Tiger, and hapless Lions held our fascination

(Newser) - Every fan has favorite storylines from the year in sports, but a few were universally intriguing, Reid Cherner and Tom Weir write in USA Today:
  1. Michael Phelps' eight golds in the 08/08/08 Olympics gave America a reason to root.
  2. Our favorite hoodied villain, Patriots coach Bill Belichick, finally got his
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Best Overlooked Albums of '08

Catfish Haven and El Perro Del Mar in top 10

(Newser) - Catfish Haven's Devastator tops Spin's year-end list of overlooked albums. George Hunter's "old-soul blues exposes other rock'n'roll kings as pretenders to the crown." The top 10:
  1. Catfish Haven, Devastator: Hunter's voice is "a husky amalgam of Joe Cocker's world-weary croon and Bill Medley's baritone bombast."
  2. El
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2008's Hottest Ladies

Fox News names the best bods

(Newser) - You didn't think Fox News would forget about the ladies, did you? Here's a sample of its choices for hottest bods of 2008:
  • Karolina Kurkova: She has no bellybutton, "but that didn't stop magazines from Photoshopping one on her for their photo spreads."
  • Angelina Jolie: "
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2008's Hunkiest Guys

Jackman, Beckham ... and Obama highlight Fox list

(Newser) - Fox News has a holiday gift for everyone: The hottest men of 2008. Here's a sample:
  • Barack Obama: "Slated to become the president with the meanest six-pack in history."
  • David Beckham: "Wow. We want to say something but just ... wow."
  • Brad Pitt: "Even that three-piece
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Top New Phrases of 2008

Schott compiles list of 2008's most memorable neologisms

(Newser) - 2008 will be remembered not only for a historic election and financial gyrations, but for the words and phrases that came into use this year. Ben Schott, author of Schott's Almanac, lists some of 2008's most interesting neologisms in the London Times.
  • Terrorist fist jab: A blunt Fox News-ism to
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2008 Hall of Infamy Inductees

A month-by-month gallery of the year's most ignominious figures

(Newser) - As we look back at the great people who made their mark this year, let us not forget to document the schlubby, the sneaky, and the just plain criminal. Vanity Fair has done the legwork, rounding up a month-by-month rogue's gallery. Some highlights:
  • January: Rudy Giuliani's Florida strategy was
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Best 2008 Movies You Probably Missed

Salon's critic's favorite flicks are an eclectic bunch

(Newser) - Behold: a top 10 movies list that doesn't include The Dark Knight. In a year that's hard to sum up, Stephanie Zarachek pulls together an eclectic mix of great flicks for Salon:
  • Even repeated viewings don't betray any flaws in Happy-Go-Lucky, a "luminous" tale of a London school
... More »

The Year in (Wiki) Questions

Month-by-month, WikiAnswers lists the top questions of 2008

(Newser) - Need a primer on 2008? TechCrunch runs down common questions from each month on WikiAnswers:
  • January: When was the last time snow fell in Baghdad?
  • February: Why did the Hollywood writers go on strike?
  • March: Why did Bear Stearns fail?
  • April: Which races has Danica Patrick won?
  • May: How successful
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Journal's Year in Pictures

See the year again, for the first time

(Newser) - Rupert Murdoch always said he’d make the Wall Street Journal more visually interesting, and it doesn’t get much more visually interesting than the 2008 “Year in Photos” feature the paper began today. You can see many of the Journal’s selections, spanning global conflict, the financial crisis,... More »

Biggest Media Gaffes of 2008

(Newser) - Politico runs down a list of some of the worst media mistakes of 2008:
  • New Hampshire primary: Just about everyone predicted Hillary would lose by double digits, ending her campaign. Not even close.
  • McCain-Iseman: The long-awaited New York Times story alleging an improper relationship between McCain and a lobbyist had
... More »

The World's Worst Humanitarian Crises

Civil war and displacement fuel tragedies across the globe: aid group

(Newser) - Aid organization Doctors Without Borders has released its annual list of the world's worst humanitarian crises. Here's a sample:
  • Somalia: Increased friction between insurgents and the government unleashed some of the worst violence in a decade. One in five children there dies before turning 5.
  • Congo: Hundreds of thousands have
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Celebs' Stupidest Moves of 2008

Atlanta Journal-Constitution lists the year's worst celeb incidents

(Newser) - Celebrities broke new ground with their moronic bungles this year, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. And, let's face it, they're fun to watch:
  • Lil Jon: The rapper reacted to questions about his opening a winery: “I'm not like an expert, so don't ask me no questions. This is not some
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10 Best Albums of 2008

Infernal visions, playful funk, unflinching examinations top Rolling Stone list

(Newser) - Dear Science tops Rolling Stone's year-end best list with an album “that sounded the most like America in 2008." The top 10:
  1. TV on the Radio, Dear Science: "Infernal visions of war and economic desperation," but "amid the fear and loathing" is "defiance."
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2008's Top 10 Singles

Beyoncé heads Rolling Stone list of the year's best tunes

(Newser) - When it comes to belting out the single of the year, Beyoncé ran (wedding) rings around the competition, says Rolling Stone, which lists its top 10:
  1. Beyoncé, Single Ladies: "Irresistible and exuberant."
  2. Santogold, LES Artistes: "New Wave guitar hook of the year."
  3. MGMT, Time to Pretend:
... More »

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