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Useful Notes / The New '10s

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Useful Notes applying to the culture of the 2010s. Due to the length of this page, real life events have their own page.

Culture & Media

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     In General 
  • The pop culture of this decade has been a product of both the Iraq War and the Great Recession. Escapism returned to the media spotlight, with superheroes, music, fantasy and new talents taking over the place of the sardonic comedies (i.e., The Office (US)), Reality TV shows and Police Procedurals that dominated the previous decade. Even movies of The '90s and 2000s have received "shiny reboots", getting rid of the despair that marked the originals.
  • The escapism trend also brought a retro craze more prominent than that of other decades, amplified by social media, that was primarily focused on the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s.
    • Hasbro and Discovery Networks launched The Hub (now known as Discovery Family), a TV channel featuring updates of many iconic franchises from The '80s, such as My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, which gained a major Periphery Demographic fandom that no one saw coming, and Transformers: Prime. It also gained publicity with the comical gender bending Super Hero spoof import, SheZow.
    • Starting in 2010, following the CN Real era, Cartoon Network started airing more TV-PG shows such as Adventure Time, Regular Show, and Steven Universe, all three of which were enjoyed not only by older kids, but people who were kids in The '90s (now college-age or just past it) and The '80s (now full-grown adults). "Tamer" shows such as The Amazing World of Gumball and We Bare Bears have become successful. At the same time, the network launched reboots of ThunderCats, Teen Titans, The Powerpuff Girls and Ben 10.
    • The Looney Tunes Show and Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, while receiving mixed reactions, sparked a trend for more cynical reimaginings of several cartoon and comic book franchises such as DC Comics' graphic novels featuring Hanna-Barbera characters and the prime time soap Riverdale, based on the Archie universe.
    • Speaking of prime time soaps, Dallas got a revival on TNT in 2012, though both the oil business (understandably) and Larry Hagman's iconic "JR" largely became minor playersnote , while the 2017 version of Dynasty gained a positive reception.
    • Hawaii Five-0 (an updated version of the 1970s series) became as successful as the original. Unfortunately, updated versions of Charlie's Angels (2011), Ironside (2013), The Odd Couple (2015) and One Day at a Time (2016) didn't have such impact.
    • 80s (and early 90s) pop culture in general has returned with a vengeance: Popular franchises of the era have been turned into blockbusters (with varying degrees of success). Synths and turntables have replaced guitars and boomboxes as the driving force in the music industry. Fashion-consciousness has returned to the runways. And the cars and technology of the era have turned from rust buckets to much-sought "vintage". This has been especially true for video games, with a "retro gaming" scene gaining followers.
    • In this era of digital music, analogue media storage has gained attention: In 2011, vinyl discs represented just 0.1 percent of all music sales, mostly catering to niche markets such as audiophiles. However, LPs have seen an unexpected resurgence, mostly attributed to the rise of indie rock and electronic music, the two genres that have extensively used vinyls since 1990.
    • Even the Roaring Twenties have had their slice of the cake, with The Great Gatsby's "shiny reboot" being financially successful (both in tickets and books, with 180,000 digital copies sold since the movie's release), though it divided critics in regards to the use of 3D and the replacement of jazz in favor of hip-hop, electronic and alternative rock music in the soundtrack while praising the acting.
    • Downton Abbey has practically been for the golden 20s/tepid 30s what Mad Men has meant for the fabulous 50s/swinging 60s, with both eras becoming an important part of this nostalgia wave.
    • Retro Studios revived the beloved Donkey Kong Country series from The '90s for a new installment. The Kunio-kun series, too, looks to be on the verge of revival.
    • Scott Pilgrim vs. The World wasn't a blockbuster, but it opened The '90s up as the new nostalgic decade, a testament to how time has passed.
    • Paul Reubens revived the Pee-wee's Playhouse stage show and in 2016, released Pee-wee's Big Holiday on Netflix, while The Muppets made a big-screen comeback bid, followed by a new TV show.
    • Star Trek (2009) and Rise of the Planet of the Apes, two iconic franchises of The Sixties, have also been revived on the big screen after a long period of being left in the dust. The former has also gotten a new series greenlit, Star Trek: Discovery.
    • Following Disney's acquisition of Lucasfilm in late 2012, plans were announced that the long-anticipated Star Wars sequel trilogy will be made with J. J. Abrams as director. The first film, The Force Awakens, premiered in December 2015 to great success. Meanwhile, spin-off films Rogue One was financially successful and Solo had modest success. The Last Jedi, released in December 2017, while both critically and financially successful, was polarizing among the fandom.
      • Tragically, in December 2016, Carrie Fisher, who'd returned to play Princess Leia for the new trilogy, died shortly after she finished filming her scenes for The Last Jedi. To make matters worse, her mother Debbie Reynolds died the following day. Kenny Baker (R2-D2) died in August of that year, while Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) passed away in April 2019.
    • After sitting in Development Hell since 1997 and notably being the butt of many jokes within the gaming community, Duke Nukem Forever was handed over from 3D Realms to Gearbox Software of Borderlands fame and released in 2011.
    • After the steady supply of (primarily indie) Retraux video games, a trend of homaging the general look and feel of media from the 80s also started in late 2012, spearheaded by games like Hotline Miami and later followed by larger profile games like Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon.
    • Animorphs enjoyed a short-lived revival from Scholastic. Rumor has it that Sony Pictures is currently working on a movie adaptation of the series.
    • Anime's offerings include the revival of the Dragon Ball franchise in the Re-Cut series Dragon Ball Z Kai along with the renaissance of the Sailor Moon franchise, with the reprinting of the manga along with a new series released in Summer 2014 and the reboot of the Ghost in the Shell franchise with the announced Arise series. And speaking of anime from this decade, the genre has regained popularity overseas (see below).
  • British culture saw a resurgence in popularity overseas during the first half of the decade, having its biggest impact over American culture since the 1960s-era "British Invasion" (the "Cool Britannia" boom of the 1990s never became very popular in part of the foreign public), as well as spurting a renewed interest on Victorian/Edwardian culture.
  • Within Eastern culture, South Korea began to spread its culture more aggressively into the West, matching Japan's cultural influence in some aspects. China and Russia have also attempted to compete with Hollywood by making their own blockbuster-like films, although these are little known in the West.
  • The hedonistic attitudes of the past two decades (last immortalized by Jersey Shore) have become increasingly mocked and frowned upon as these became so commonplace to the point of becoming utterly uninteresting and the recession changed priorities towards more austerity. Nevertheless, Moral Guardians' voices have become louder. In 1998 or in 2008, "Blurred Lines" would not have made much of a stir; in 2013 it got labeled as grossly immoral (especially after the singer Robin Thicke's infamous performance at the MTV Video Awards show). Conservatives criticized it as "debauched" while feminists called the song misogynistic. And Marvin Gaye's estate sued for plagiarism.
    • Explicit sexuality has lost momentum not only by the prevalence of less revealing clothes and that sex has mostly been relegated to apps like Tinder, but also the end of the symbols of the "sexual revolution" of the 1960s: The Sun dropped its Page Three Stunna in early 2015, while Playboy announced that its iconic centerfold would be no more by its February 2016 issue, which introduced a style more akin to "lads' mags" like Esquire and GQ (though they have since reversed this decision). Retailers such as Abercrombie and Fitch and perfume companies have also reduced their ads' sexual content. Carl Karcher Enterprises, which runs the American hamburger chains Hardee's and Carl's Jr., was once known for going straight to sex appeal in their advertisements with models and former porn stars eating their food in bikinis and lingerie, but in mid-2017, in response to falling sales, the focus shifted to the lives of fictional CEO Carl Hardee Sr. and his hedonistic son.
    • This decade, particularly from 2014 onwards, was marked by an important push towards political correctness among Millennials and Zoomers (Gen Z), primarily from collegiate students.
    • This moralistic climate might have reignited the "Religious Right", bringing it back to the forefront. However, the popularity of Pope Francis, known for his progressive stance, has pushed religious politics, as well as a lot of Catholics into the province of liberals, something unthinkable just a decade ago. In any case, both the new religious right and left reject the prosperity theology traditionally associated with the capitalist right in favor of distributist economics and liberation theology socialism in order to preserve economic collectivism alongside the social bonds religion brings.
    • As for atheism, the decade started out with the "secularism wars" prevalent in the last few years of the previous decade at least in America. Scores for the non-religious were gained by increasing awareness of the pseudoscience promoted by the religious right in the anglo-world and more people began rejecting creationism with a full-on embrace of progressive social values. This declined towards the middle of the decade, however, as atheists split between more libertarian types and politically correct progressive types. The old distinction between religious equalling right-wing and atheist being left faded as multiple atheists aligned with the right for economic or other reasons. Furthermore, new religious movements such as paganism began appearing for those wanting spirituality, but not from Abrahamism. These new faiths were embraced by both nationalist and progressive camps with the neo-pagans wanting their faith to remain ideologically pure in some way. Meanwhile, Christian groups willing to embrace rationalism and collectivist economics lead to the newer religious right and left as listed above. As New Atheism fades on one side and creationist prosperity theology falters, the lines between atheist and religious blurred by the end of the decade.
    • This "house cleaning" in turn has increased the popularity of Web Original content, even in Hollywood as some filmmakers now find themselves with a suddenly more stringent censorship stifling much of their creativity. Should there be no backlash at home, higher ups will call for censorship in order to appeal to more conservative countries like China. Said censorship does the opposite of political correctness at times however, as LGBT content also has to be censored, much to the chagrin of the left.
  • This move towards more correctness and rectitude is the result of backlash against the "Baby Boomer" generationnote , now portrayed by later generations as selfish, immature freeloaders with an unrealistically simplistic (and overtly utopic) vision of the world. It hasn't helped that the reputations of many of the boomers' most important symbols and idols have been shattered overnight. On the other hand, Gen Xers and Baby Boomers also accuse Millennials of being selfish, immature freeloaders with an unrealistically simplistic (and overtly utopic) vision of the world.
  • But Darker and Edgier works also took advantage of the environment: The last Harry Potter films were noted for being much darker than their source novels, at the same time the dystopian The Hunger Games and Divergent series replaced vampires and the supernatural as the headliners of Young Adult Literature. Some video games (Modern Warfare, Watch_Dogs, Grand Theft Auto V) and TV shows (Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones, House of Cards (US), Homeland, The Walking Dead) have become notorious for their lack of sympathetic characters or good outcomes. Even fairy tales have gone gritty with such films as Snow White and the Huntsman and Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, two Darker and Edgier retellings, while Django Unchained and Zero Dark Thirty have denounced the inherent climate of political correctness. A few reboots have focused on grit in response as well.
  • May 2017 marked the very last performance of the Ringling Bros./Barnum & Bailey circus after 146 years, putting an end to the traditional circus on nationwide tours. Reasons are varied, ranging from animal activists cracking down on animal abuse in circuses (whether real or perceived) to the fact people on YouTube and social media have done all kinds of unusual stunts to death (apart from popularizing those that would not work on wide venues), rendering the circus as "old hat" entertainment resorting to stale routines. While "premium" circuses such as the Cirque du Soleil have all but displaced the traditional circus in the developed world, big tops still enjoy great popularity elsewhere, in Latin America and Asia they have become recognized as cultural heritage.
  • With the widespread economic disparity and greater free will of big businesses, some have dubbed the decade "The New Gilded Age".

    Anime & Manga 
  • While Asia is having something of a golden age, the Land of the Rising Sun on the other hand has had less to cheer about with the after-effects of the Lost Decade continuing to rear its ugly headnote , a devastating earthquake and tsunami ravaging the Tohoku region in March 2011, and Japan's international and cultural reputation receving a hit with Shinzo Abe, who have left a negative reputation in the Far East Asian sphere with his xenophobic and conservative actions.

    The effects of this was felt with The Japanese Invasion seeming to reel back from some foreign shores, with the anime, manga, and Japanese video gaming industries considered to have suffered a crash similar to the TheGreat Video Game Crash of 1983 at the beginning of the decade due to a combination of general oversaturation and an ever-greater focus in Japan on pandering to the Otaku market at the expense of casual and foreign fans, although as the decade moved along, said industries have largely been seen to have recovered.
    • The decade started out poorly for anime, with the collapse of Toonami still lingering, the closeout of many prominent dubbing companies, and a string of poorly-performing shows. However, since 2012, Anime has been enjoying a massive revival in the west, thanks to the revival of Toonami, the success of streaming services like Neon Alley (which would be absorbed into Hulu) and Crunchyroll, new dubbing companies like NIS America and Sentai Filmworks Films rising to the fore, and a multitude of smash hits such as Attack on Titan, My Hero Academia, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, One-Punch Man and Sword Art Online, just to name a few.
    • The revival of Toonami deserves special mention. An anime and action cartoon block on Cartoon Network whose efforts lead to the last anime boom, it eventually saw its end when the CN Real era became prominentnote . But on April Fools' Day 2012, viewers tuned into [adult swim] expecting to see The Room again — but instead saw the beloved anime block returning for one night - then after a huge Twitter campaign by anime fans, permanently on May 26. Out of the gate, it's done its part to help revive anime in the west, as it has cemented such hits as Bleach, and Naruto as well as the shows mentioned on this tab, and even turned Deadman Wonderland - a program that tanked badly in Japannote  - into a hit with a bonafide fanbase. The block has even rescued shows that were screwed by the parent network such as the reboot of ThunderCats and Sym-Bionic Titan, though time will tell if either or both shows will eventually see continuation. And perhaps because of this success, they've even gotten the privilege of showing Space Dandy at the same time it is being broadcasted in Japan.
    • Perhaps as a response to the industry’s abusive retention of "traditional and at times controversial conventions", the Tokyo government went as far as passing Bill 156, which would essentially restrict titles with such questionable content from being sold to minors. Not surprisingly, the industry and anime fans have largely opposed it, citing concerns of free speech and that governments shouldn’t be trying to force such cultural shifts in such a matter. The broadness of the law also leave it open to abuse and some have said that the restrictions can also bring further detriment to the industry like The Comics Code did to western comics. While the law was passed in December 2010 and was supposed to take full effect in July 2011, due to the various lawsuits to try and stop it as well as concerns over enforcement, time will only tell how this will go.
    • Eastern video games (especially in regards to the JRPG) have fallen deeply, as the most recent offerings by Square Enix, such as Mindjack and Lord of Arcana, failed to impress a Western gaming community that has written them off, and Final Fantasy suffered its greatest failure to date with its fourteenth installment (though [[the following installment was heralded as a return to form). While Idea Factory and [1] have tried to pick up the slack, they weren't well-received, with the growing differences between Japanese and Western tastes in gaming often cited as an explanation. This is in addition to sites like Polygon and Kotaku publishing articles with an anti-Japan bias, though these have mellowed down over time as other games were well-received. Still, this inadvertently had a chilling effect on games being brought over from Japan, ranging from refusal to localize certain games like Dead Or Alive Extreme Beach Volleyball 3 and Omega Labyrinth Z to censorship of fanservice content. However, just like anime, Japanese video games are still a formidable force due in part to the resurgence of the Fighting Game with titles like BlazBlue, as well as the arrival of Nintendo's Wii U in 2012 and Sony's Playstation 4 later in 2013. While the Wii U did poorly at first, it soon made its mark with a string of strong hit games, and the PS4 has been doing even better. However, the effort is muddled with frustrating issues such as increased censorship of newer PS4 games has proven to have been met with a harsh reception.
    • Music is also having a difficult time crossing over the pond as the market is still physical media dominated rather than digital, unlike K-Pop which used Youtube to become internationally popular, Japan still maintains a firewall over their media as J-Pop is slow to accept Youtube as a publicity. Along with vast cultural differences even between K-Pop, it has created a negative impact on Japan's international reputation. Though that said, Visual Kei and folk/modern bands have seen a resurgence in recent years. The surprise success of Love Live School Idol Project with its overseas localization however helped slowly shift the perception of Idols for the foreign audience with foreign fans playing a role in the anime's success and being the standard for idol culture.
  • Manga, following its Western counterparts, is undergoing a transition of sorts into digital, online and doujinshi-style self-publishing to cope with the changes in technology. This continues a trend from the Turn of the Millennium with works like Hetalia: Axis Powers, though more traditional and established manga giants like Shonen Jump continue earning profits despite print media publishing in general being on the decline. Then again, Shonen Jump did go digital in 2012. Also, Kodansha did lose several high-profile properties due to high-handedness of its editors — like the decades-long cult classic Battle Angel Alita and Attack on Titan, which was plainly refused by the editor because "it wasn't JUMP!"
  • The anime industry in general for that matter has increasingly embraced digitization and online distribution/streaming as a viable, alternative platform to the decades-old direct-to-TV modelnote . Coincidentally, this has helped in legitimizing sites like Crunchyroll while attracting both international and domestic fans.
  • In relation to the aforementioned digitization of the anime industry, some companies and animators have already started exploiting new media more directly. Examples include Production I.G's anime Kick-Heart being Kickstarter-supported and Sunrise/Bandai Entertainment streaming at least some of its Gundam shows (including the Unicorn OV As episodes) for free on YouTube.
  • Sports anime and manga, while traditionally not big sellers in America, has seen a slowly growing resurgence in popularity in America thanks to the popularity of Free!, Haikyuu!!, and Kuroko's Basketball to the point that many licensors such as Funimation and Sentai Filmworks started picking up sports titles in their catalogs and even dubbing them. It also doesn't help to note that many of these titles have a Cast Full of Pretty Boys (which is also relatively popular in America thanks to the popularity of many romantic Shoujo titles) which leads to Periphery Demographic (as many sports anime and manga usually geared towards younger boys and teenagers). Not to mention, American audiences are growing tired of many Schoolgirl Series Slice of Life works as many of them use the same cliches over and over again.
  • A number of Long-Runners and otherwise iconic manga series ended or reached their finales over the span of 2015-2016, such as Assassination Classroom, Fairy Tail, Naruto, Nisekoi, Bleach, Kochi Kame, Toriko, Golgo 13, Chi's Sweet Home, Gin Tama, Billy Bat, and Squid Girl, some of whom have been in continuous publication for up to 40 years. This leaves One Piece as the only series left of Weekly Shonen Jump's Big Threenote  to still be running.
  • Thanks of the popularity of Death Note and Fullmetal Alchemist from the previous decade, Darker and Edgier shonen works that incorporate themes seen from seinen works have become increasingly more popular. Titles such as Attack on Titan, Seraph of the End, Deadman Wonderland, and Akame ga Kill! are shonen works that fall into the more cynical side of the Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism and have more complex Character Development that is often seen in many seinen works note . Even Hunter × Hunter, a manga series that uses a lot of traditional action shonen tropes, happens to deconstruct many of the common shonen tropes, with the storyline shifting from an idealistic end until the Chimera Arc where it shifted towards a more cynical mood. That being said, traditional idealistic shonen action works still remain popular such as My Hero Academia, Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic, and Black Clover that bring in a new generation of shonen fans both in Japan and abroad. In addition, the revival of the Dragon Ball series on cable television with Dragon Ball Z Kai and Dragon Ball Super have brought a new generation of Dragonball fans.
  • Light Novels, which were initially exclusive to Japan in the 2000s, had begun to gain traction in the west during the latter half of the 2010s. Prior to this, previous attempts to market light novels in the west have failed, but Yen Press came up with a brilliant strategy to market light novels as just Young Adult Literature to readers outside the Otaku sphere, and it worked. Sword Art Online also helped to put light novels in the spotlight, showing marketers that light novels can be just as profitable in the west as manga. Since then, other publishing companies like Seven Seas Entertainment had jumped on the bandwagon of distributing light novels overseas, and many popular series that didn't get localizations previously like Haruhi Suzumiya, A Certain Magical Index and Toradora! had finally seen the light of day on western shores.
  • As opposed to the Light Novel genre, this decade is widely considered to be the decade where the Humongous Mecha genre underwent a decline. With the conclusion of the big renaissance mecha titles in the last decade: Code Geass, Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, Mobile Suit Gundam 00 and Macross Frontier, the next titles were considered to be more or less lacking or more controversial than the rest.
    • Gundam itself hit a roadblock even in Japan thanks to the decried third part of Mobile Suit Gundam AGE, therefore reducing Gundam into doing OVA of the UC timeline, which by itself, may inflict Archive Panic, and while the newest AU title, Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans, were more well-received, it still had a substanstial detractors, thus not bringing it back to prominence like 00. Gundam as a franchise is still standing tall, but that's because they discovered a way to channel their other venue of entertainment into anime: Gundam Build Fighters, combining their Gunpla building hobby into a series of shows, although it was no longer the similar format of Humongous Mecha combined with drama like the other usual Gundam shows.
    • At the very least, several older titles like Code Geass ventured a new alternate continuity with the movies whereas Mazinger Z continued its very first anime continuity with its Distant Finale, Mazinger Z: Infinity, which was well received, but didn't shake the scene of the mecha genre further.
    • New IPs such as Aldnoah.Zero, Valvrave the Liberator, Cross Ange and Darling In The Fran XX received a lot of flak for the unexpected twists and controversial direction. The most received new IP by Studio Trigger, Promare, while well received by viewers, didn't create such a widespread effect compared to Gurren Lagann.
    • Harmony Gold once again renewed its license for the Macross franchise which expanded to more to the next decade, which further doomed overseas release of Macross and it is mostly receiving silent sequels.
    • With all being said, while the mecha genre isn't completely dead, it was already clear that the genre struggled much more in this decade to the point that fans thought that the genre could be dead, with their safe haven only within the Super Robot Wars franchise which also celebrated the old school mecha shows (and hoping that these controversial series were rectified via the series' tendency to fix narrative problems.)

  • Western fashion in this decade has been heavily affected by the Great Recession, having to wait for a change until around 2012, being influenced by a rise in aesthetic nostalgia for the elegant(ly) austere "yuppie" fashions of The '50s, The '60s and The '80s, as the result of a general reaction against the informal, monochromatic, distressed and borderline sleazy styles that marked the 1990s and 2000s, reflecting a change in social attitudes and paradigms. To sum it up, Simple, yet Opulent is the style.
    • Slim-fit became the choice buzzword for a sharp silhouette: From skinny jeans and shirts evoking the 1980's "new wave silhouette", to suits inspired from Mad Men or Miami Vice and, to a lesser extent, interbellum-styled clothing with the return of patterned styles such as tweed, pinstripes and checkers. Suits, dress shirts and neckties all became much thinner, and collars and lapels shrank as well. Suspenders have also become more common.
    • Bowties and hats have also become common after five decades of obsolescence (sans for some limited popularity in the 80s). Sweaters have seen a resurgence as well as plastic glasses. Rolled-up sleeves and off-the-shoulder dresses have become mainstream too. The black-lapel blue tuxedo has made quite a fashionable comeback, as well as shoulder pads.
    • After two decades of forcing the slim figure as the epitome for beauty, the "Real Women Have Curves" phenomenon came back, bringing with them voices of concerns about the increasing obesity rates and the dangers coming with it. The extremely tanned and barefaced looks of the 2000s have also rolled back and heavy make-up has gradually regained popularity, especially influenced by Instagram.
    • After a decade and a half of skinny jeans dominating bottomwear everywhere, flared, bootcut, and wide leg jeans started to make a comeback in 2019.
  • Make-up in this decade had been developed to fit in with the advancements of HD cameras and is classified into three styles; the vintage look, characterized by contouring, winged eyeliner, and red matte lips; the no makeup-makeup look, which, by name, is heavy makeup disguised as barely-there makeup; and the Korean or ulzzang style, which emphasizes a youthful look through big eyes, dewy skin, rosy cheeks, gradient lips, and narrow chins. Each style shares a common theme of thick eyebrows.
  • Women's dress silhouettes turned a bit dressier with vintage-themed prints complete with a flowing waterfall or handkerchief-like patterns topped with a high waistline. Hemlines slightly dropped from the 2000s-era miniskirts to above-ankle around 2013-14 before rising to mid-thigh in fall 2016. More casual dresses come in "maxi" length (that is, floor length).
  • Women's footwear in this decade had two extreme flavors: the ballerina-style flats, as well as high-heeled platform stilettos and boots continue to be popular, although not being as prominent as in the last years. While Ugg boots continued to be popular, the company started to make waves with other products during the decade, especially moccasins. Also making a fast rise is Toms Shoes, a slip-on shoe based on Argentine Espadrilles. It is notable for its "Buy One, Give One," campaign, in which impoverished children are given shoes for every pair bought. Although almost exclusively a women's shoe in the U.S., Toms are popular with both sexes elsewhere.
  • After 15-to-20 years' of mostly unisex styling, haircuts have become more gender-specific once again: Men's hairstyles have been strongly modeled on the punk movement, with cuts such as the "Ramone cut" and the "Fauxhawk" being increasingly popular as a backlash against the 2000s-era long hair spread, as well as "undercuts". Women's hairdos have also gotten shorter or, if still long, more extravagant akin to the '80s Hair looks. During the recession, many young women stopped dyeing their hair altogether, which has led to a marginal vogue for grey hair (being constantly mocked as a sign that young people are acting too old-fashioned).
    • Beginning at the second half of the decade, a small but increasing number of young women have shaved their heads, either partially or entirely, mostly as a reaction to societal conventions about female hair, bar from a number of cases done to support high-profile cases of cancer.
    • For men who wished to have their hair long, they would have them pulled it back, either as a pseudo-mullet or into a ponytail or a samurai-like bun (known as "the man bun").
    • Also, facial hair has regained acceptance after a decade of slow resurgence. The full beard became extremely common in North America and Europe in the late 2000s and early 2010s as razors were seen to be an unnecessary expense, though the more moderate Perma-Stubble has gained greater acceptance due to the full beard becoming now associated with jihadists. Mustaches have also become pretty common, although you are more likely to find a "pencil-thin" one or a "Magnum" one instead of the "handlebar" mostly sported by hipsters (and for that matter, mostly on their T-shirts).
  • Hipster-influenced clothing came in vogue in this decade. Ironic glasses, knit caps, scarves, plaid shirts, vintage prints, wacky dyed hair, obscure and incomprehensible tattoos, just to name a few, stepped to the catwalk.
  • The spring-summer of 2015 saw a minor resurgence of hippie-inspired clothing, with flowery prints, platform shoes, and flares becoming a limited trend. Rounded sunglasses have become popular in their own right. "Boho-chic" fashions then became mainstream beginning in 2019 particularly because of the rising popularity of the "VSCO girl", which has been labeled as an updated version of the New-Age Retro Hippie.
  • The decade gave us the most notable dresses and other articles pressed down to fashion history:
    • 2010 gave us Lady Gaga wearing a beef jerky dress for the 2010 VMAs, causing outrage from PETA.
    • 2011 gave us the simplistic yet elegant fairytale wedding dress of Kate Middleton to Prince William, created by Sarah Burton under the Alexander McQueen label. Prince William's similarly austere suit became as well a turning point for fashion as up until then, there were no rules about how to wear an smoking (however, since we're speaking of royalty...)
    • The red carpet for the 2012 Academy Awards became a buzz when Angelina Jolie wore a thigh-high split black evening gown, and the Internet had a field day with it.
    • Rihanna caused quite a stir when she wore a very diaphanous 1920s inspired dress at the 2014 CFDA awards.
    • The winter of 2014-2015 introduced sweaters with a keyhole-shaped Cleavage Window in it.
    • The last week of February 2015 gave us a heated debate all over the internet of the colour on a Roman Originals dress as seen in a Scottish woman's photo as either white and gold lace or blue and black lace. It's actually royal blue and black lace, but the picture's severe glare made it easy to be interpreted as white and gold lace.
    • In 2017, rompers note  became a relatively popular fashion trend among adult men thanks to the success of a Kickstarter project.
    • 2018 gave us the Catholic-themed MET Gala with Rihanna wearing a papal inspired frock topped with a mitre and Zendaya wearing a Joan of Arc-inspired dress; and the simplistic yet elegant wedding dress of Meghan Markle to Prince Harry, created by Clare Waight Keller under the Givenchy label. Meghan's 5 metre veil was laced with flowers representing the members of the Commonwealth and of Meghan's home state.

    Films — Animation 
  • The popularity of computer-animated features on the big screen continued apace from the Turn of the Millennium and has greatly benefited from the 3-D Movie revival.
    • While Disney's attempt to bring back 2D animation to movie audiences became a failure, their shorts Paperman and Feast feature 2D aesthetics while being produced in CGI.
  • The Disney Animated Canon had its biggest hits since The '90s with Tangled, Wreck-It Ralph, Frozen (2013), Big Hero 6, Zootopia, and Moana, while Ralph Breaks the Internet and Frozen II arrived six years later. The first and especially the third one and its sequel became extremely popular and revived the Disney Princess franchise after a decade.
  • On the other side, Dreamworks Animation's reputation improved with more story-driven, less-jokey efforts beginning with Kung Fu Panda in 2008 and How to Train Your Dragon in 2010, however the studio's movies became increasingly intellectual and/or cloying since then, hurting its financial position to the point it almost went bankrupt after a series of failures (Pacific Data was closed in December 2014). DW returned to the old formula with 2015's Home, which became a major commercial hit, as it happened to Kung Fu Panda 3 and The Boss Baby. The studio itself was purchased by Universal for 3.8 billion dollars and they will start distributing their films in 2018. Jeffrey Katzenberg will no longer have control of the studio once the purchase is complete (he will stay at the company as head of Dreamworks New Media). Instead, control will be overseen by Illumination CEO Chris Meledandri.
  • Pixar, which dominated the previous decade, has continued to churn out box-office hits but has found its prestige slipping since the Tough Act to Follow of Toy Story 3, with Cars 2 getting a poor critical reception, and Brave got mixed notices and underperformed worldwide in spite of winning an Oscar. Monsters University did do well with critics, though audiences were divided on it as well. After not releasing films in 2014, Inside Out, the studio's first 2015 release received a standing ovation at Cannes and became a surprise hit, competing with Jurassic World on even terms. The same year though, they released The Good Dinosaur which became their first Box Office Bomb. Their fortunes though seem to have begun rebounding. Finding Dory became a big critical and financial hit while Cars 3 was considered to be an improvement on the previous one. Coco was met with critical acclaim and was a commercial success, and also scored 2 more Oscars for Pixar (Best Animated Feature and Best Song). Incredibles 2 has also been meant with acclaim and its huge 182 million opening weekend has giving it the record for best animated feature debut. It has since grossed over 1.2 billion dollars worldwide, making it Pixar's highest grossing film to date. They went out with a bang with Toy Story 4, which was just as well-received as any other entry in the series and scored yet another Best Animated Feature Oscar.
  • Illumination Entertainment and Universal's Despicable Me series have also charmed mass audiences, crowding the market even more alongside Warner Bros. Animation Group (The LEGO Movie), Laika Animation (ParaNorman) and Industrial Light and Magic/Paramount Animation (Rango). CGI films' international popularity even made titles that weren't huge hits in North America, such as The Adventures of Tintin and the continuing Ice Age franchise, into blockbusters — a sign of the increasing importance of foreign audiences to Hollywood.
  • Sausage Party became the first successful R-rated animated movie since 1999, and the first since 1981 not to be based on a TV series. It was followed by a number of other animated movies aimed at adults, such as Loving Vincent, Isle of Dogs, and an upcoming film adaptation of Bob's Burgers.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • James Cameron overturned his own record with Avatar, which with Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland (2010) started a 3D craze in 2010. While a few films had been already released in the format for some years, it was not until then when it became standard for blockbusters and animated films to be released in both stereoscopic and 'flat' prints. Nonetheless, by the second half of the decade, 3D became relegated to family fare, due to audiences preferring larger, higher-resolution systems in the vein of IMAX instead.
  • Excessive use of Jitter Cam became a Discredited Trope, due to being overused by a ton of movies and shows during the end of the previous decade and the first half of this one. Movies like Jack Reacher, The Raid, and John Wick are establishing clearly-shot, meticulously choreographed fight scenes as the new "cool" thing to do in action movies.
  • The Blockbuster Age of Hollywood is still going strong, in spite of the fact competition from premium cable and streaming services have meant a shift towards an improved movie-going experience, which has translated into Hollywood posting ever higher box-office numbers in spite of admissions decreasing on a sustained basis since the late 1990s/early 2000s (Steven Spielberg and George Lucas are among those predicting that the business model will eventually evolve into one similar to theatre and concerts). The critical and financial failures in the domestic market of numerous blockbusters between late 2010 and mid-2014, and franchise-based films beginning in 2016, have made movie studios rethink their strategies — especially as foreign revenues have dropped due to the growth of Netflix and rampant piracy in developing countries.
    • Meanwhile, a new "indie wave" emerged during the second half of the decade, featuring a personal feeling reminiscent of the 70s-era "auteurs", drastically different from the sentimental "Sundance style" or the "kitchen-sink" realism that marked "indie" filmmaking during the 2000s. Ironically, streaming has given people a higher awareness for less "commercial" fare, and films like Moonlight, La La Landnote  and Manchester by the Sea became popular with the mainstream audience, while Baby Driver and The Big Sick competed with blockbusters on even terms for the summer box office in 2017. Not even superhero films could escape this trend, Logan being one of the darkest films of the genre, while Wonder Woman and Spider-Man: Homecoming aimed straight to young adults and mostly ditched the "epic battle" scenes associated with these movies.
  • The Marvel Cinematic Universe hit its stride in this decade, with 2010 and '11's Iron Man 2, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger setting up its big 2012 crossover The Avengers. It has maintained success throughout the decade and has since become the highest grossing film series of all time with a total worldwide gross exceeding $22.5 billion! (Black Panther (2018) also became the first superhero film to receive a Best Picture Oscar nomination while Avengers: Endgame beat out Avatar to become the highest grossing film of all time) Its success has led to rival studios attempting to launch their own Shared Universe series or modify existing franchises into one, including the DC Extended Universe, The Amazing Spider-Man Series, the X-Men Film Series, the Universal Horror Dark Universe, the Godzilla/King Kong MonsterVerse, and a Harry Potter prequel/spinoff series. As of yet, none have replicated Marvel's success, with many of them being so caught up in setting up future films with their initial installments that said films suffer for it.
  • Beginning in 2010, the MPAA (Motion Pictures Association of America) enacted stricter guidelines for its ratings in response to criticism about content seen on films rated "PG" or "PG-13". This move led to a situation where, 8 of every 10 films released in a given year carried either rating (with about half of all films being rated PG-13), while it became nearly impossible to get a film rated "G" (which had already become associated with films aimed at very young children) except for documentaries and some animated films (generally the ones that were prequels or sequels to previous g-rated films) — 2016 was the first year in which not a single non-documentary film (theatrical or DTV) released that year was rated "G". In 2018, two films did fit the description (The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales and Zoo Wars) but both had very limited theatrical releases and were among the lowest-grossing films of the year. The fact the 2019 version of The Lion King got a "PG" rating in spite of being basically a shot-for-shot remake of a G-rated 1994 film became a sign the "G" rating was all but done in the mainstream.
  • Gender politics have become a constant theme inside Hollywood, as actresses began speaking out against their lower wages compared to those for their male counterparts. Cases of sexual abuse and other indiscretions (some of them hidden for several years) began to draw high levers of anger beginning in the middle of the decade.
  • Depending on who you ask, horror cinema has either undergone a new renaissance or is stuck in a Dork Age. Whereas the previous decade was defined primarily by Torture Porn movies, J-horror remakes, and remakes/reboots of horror franchises from the 1970s and '80s, this one has seen a slew of low-key Found Footage movies and teen-oriented flicks that consist largely of Jump Scares. While some of these films have received critical acclaim (most notably the works of James Wan, who is considered by some to be this generation's answer to John Carpenter), most have been dismissed by critics who view them as being manufactured, hollow films that fail to leave any sort of lasting impression. On the other hand, the past few years have seen a plethora of smaller, auteur-driven indie horror films such as It Follows, The Babadook, Get Out, The Blackcoat's Daughter, and The VVitch, all of which have received acclaim for emphasizing smart writing and creepy atmospheres over cheap scare tactics, also capitalizing on a climate of apparent general hysteria not only hitting paydirt, but also making critics notice a genre long snubbed by critical and academic circles. Many of the most commercially successful horror films in this decade came from Blumhouse Productions, who were able to produce a number of successful horror franchises with most of the films having a rather low budget. The 2017 adaptation of the Stephen King novel It became the highest-grossing horror film as well as the third highest grossing R-rated film of all time, while Black Swan and Get Out (2017) both received Best Picture nominations, a rare feat for the genre.
  • The decade has seen an increased backlash against bad CG effects in live-action movies; many have derided it as lazy and visibly fake, and will mention its use (or over-use) in critical reviews. Films made with many Practical Effects advertise the fact, recognizing that it's now a positive selling point for many viewers. (Mad Max: Fury Road garnered widespread praise for keeping its use of CGI at only fifteen percent).
  • By the end of the decade a debate between movie buffs and creatives over whether the American film industry has become "infantilized" with its emphasis on animation, musicals, and particularly fantasy-based blockbuster films and franchises, especially comic book-based ones, took root. Where non-fantastical films (dramas, romances, comedies, real-world action thrillers), often modestly-budgeted, thrived up through the previous decade, the American film industry now builds release schedules almost entirely around "tentpole" movies that easily lose tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars if they aren't blockbuster hits, and demand the bulk of screen space in theaters (especially outside coastal metropolises), thus limiting the reach of non-Summer Blockbuster fare.
    • To detractors, including New Hollywood-era talents like Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola, the content of such films consists of Strictly Formula, Status Quo Is God, corporate-mandated fare that focuses primarily on elaborate action setpieces rather than plot, Character Development, and atmosphere, and is removed from real-world concerns and complex/adult human emotions. To win the favor of conservative markets such as China (and even reactionary U.S. audiences) content is apolitical and minority characters are few: The Marvel Cinematic Universe took 10 years to introduce a non-white lead and almost 11 for a solo female lead, with no significant LGBTQA+ characters at all in that time — though that's accepted as being down to conservative CEO Ike Perlmutter, with immediate moves being made to get Captain Marvel and Black Panther onscreen being made as soon as Kevin Feige managed to take control of Marvel Studios — and Bloodless Carnage to secure PG-13 ratings and draw in audiences that would not watch films with a lower or higher rating. The films thus end up with a lack of thematic weight and artistic flair and won't endure the way even the poppiest blockbusters of previous decades did.
    • Supporters argue that those complaining are stuck in the Sci Fi Ghetto and jealous that audiences prefer "popcorn movies" to angst and artiness, that these have essentially saved a business everybody thought was on the road to inevitable extinction at the beginning of the decade, and that they are not giving these films proper credit for their dramatic and intellectual depth. (While Darker and Edgier R-rated superhero-related films such as Logan and Joker have gained critical acclaim, these aren't considered superhero films so much as dramas happening to feature characters from comic books, and the latter has been criticized for being The Theme Park Version of a New Hollywood drama by way of escaping the ghetto.)
    • A related issue is that originality is seen as near-dead in a more cost-conscious Hollywood in the aftermath of the 2008 WGA strike, with all-new concepts virtually impossible to greenlight as potential tentpole productions. Studios instead raided their pre-established catalogs for material (i.e., Disney remaking/revamping many films in its animated canon as live-action or CGI-centric productions). In 2018 none of the top ten domestic grossers in the U.S. were original concepts or even first-ever adaptations of other media. They were all direct sequels, spinoffs, entries in cinematic universes, a musical based on the career of the group Queen, or a second big-screen adaptation of a famous Dr. Seuss story. Also not helping was that most of the few original IP tentpoles released in the decade (Transcendence, Gods of Egypt, Skyscraper) were met with mixed-to-negative critical reception and lackluster box office numbers. The key exception was the aforementioned resurgence of horror movies, but the niche appeal of that genre makes their audience reach limited compared to animated features and superhero films.
  • The industry's increasing dependence on foreign markets also led to the de-emphasizing of the films' performers in favor of High Concept premises and franchise brands; few performers who came to fame as superheroes were able to translate their success into other projects (unless it was another franchise), while people who were already names risked seeing their highbrow work being overshadowed by Character B in Franchise C (for instance, Eddie Redmayne went from winning an Oscar for portraying Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything to becoming associated with Fantastic Beasts' Newt Scamander). As a result, many publications have commented on the so-called "twilight of the movie star" and shining light on the fact practically all of the marquee performers of the Turn of the Millennium were forgotten by the mid-2010s (with the exceptions of Tobey Maguire and Brendan Fraser, even if only to remind how their lives circled down the drain after their peaks) and that filmmakers who saw huge success in previous decades, such as Tim Burton or Robert Zemeckis, became close to box office poison as they struggled to adapt to the new paradigm. (By comparison many 1990s stars, such as Jeff Goldblum and Keanu Reeves, are still finding steady work in both tentpoles and smaller titles, while Johnny Depp and Will Smith still have significant cachet with foreign audiences.)
  • The Academy Awards faced an increasing number of controversies. Many hosts for the annual ceremony proved incredibly unpopular, while most Best Picture winners got their awards unexpectedly (with many an Award Snub),note  particularly in the cases of The Artist in 2011,note  Birdman in 2014,note  and 2015's Spotlight.note  The latter year's ceremony would be overshadowed by complaints about the representation of non-white voters, with many black actors and filmmakers sitting out. The 2017 ceremony ended with another Best Picture upset, as the critical darling Moonlight ended up beating the popular front-runner La La Land in an embarrassing fashion. This snafu only cemented the notion that the Academy was shunning popular genres such as superhero, animated and fantasy features in favor of Oscar Bait. The Academy proposed a "Best Popular Movie" award for the 2019 ceremony, but quickly ditched it when that received complaints for being either just a nicer way to snub commercial movies or the "selling-out" of the last bastion of artistic integrity in awards. Plans to give out technical awards during commercial breaks for the 2019 event also ended up getting scrapped as many in the industry felt it was disrespectful to people who work in those categories. Kevin Hart, who was supposed to host the 2019 ceremony, dropped out after a number of his bigoted, raunchy gay jokes resurfaced, making the show the first without a host in thirty years as no one in Hollywood was available or wanted to take over; contrary to all expectations (and the memory of the infamous 1989 Oscars), the host-less Oscars went over well and other award shows decided to take a similar route. That year's ceremony ended with Green Book becoming one of the most controversial Oscar Best Picture winners in the awards' history for being yet another White Man's Burden narrative marginalizing a black Deuteragonist's side of the story to gain more attention than minority narratives, beating as it did higher-profile nominees including that year's front-runner, Netflix's Roma. There was criticism over the multiple nominations and wins awarded to the musicals Bohemian Rhapsody and A Star is Born, with many fearing the AMPAS — long considered to have become too pretentious for its own good — was now taking a path leading to a potential "Grammyfication", as well as the Marvel film Black Panther being nominated receiving complaints that it was made to have a more commercial blockbuster appeal (ironically, the idea for a "Best Popular Film" category, which would have most likely have had films like Black Panther as nominees, was also criticized as treating them as "separate but equal"). In spite of the lack of female and minority nominees, and a Twitter screw-up, the 2020 ceremony (again host-less) ran without any major hitches, with the South Korean black comedy Parasite becoming the first film not made in English to win Best Picture, with films such as 1917, Joker, Ford v Ferrari, Once Upon A Time in Hollywood and Jojo Rabbit receiving multiple awards, while The Irishman, Marriage Story and The Two Popes (among others) led Netflix to outnumber the Hollywood majors in nominations in spite of winning few awards.
  • After having success in producing their own television shows, streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon begun producing their own films. The results tend to be mixed though both have at times been able to gain critical success and some relative popularity. Amazon Prime's Manchester by the Sea helped them become the first streaming service to get a film nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture while Netflix won a Documentary Feature Oscar with Icarus. Whereas Amazon tends to give their films a standard theatrical release before uploading it to their service, Netflix tends to give their films a very short release before quickly placing it on their catalog. This has gotten Netflix some scrutiny from people in the film industry, even preventing them from competing at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival and receiving backlash from numerous people working in the film industry, especially from cinema owners. This has prevented them from acquiring rights to certain films even if they offer more money than traditional studios (ex: the rom-com hit Crazy Rich Asians). Netflix did give a small theatrical run to Roma, which ended up becoming their first film to get a nomination for Best Picture at the Oscars, but a couple of major theatre chains refused to screen it due to the small amount of time between the start of the theatrical run with the film's release on the streaming service. Some filmmakers — such as Martin Scorsese, whose The Irishman had a similar rollout to Roma the following year — have defended Netflix, claiming they were willing to at least produce films, especially from underrepresented groups in Hollywood, that many major studios won't touch anymore in favor of those blockbuster tentpoles.


    Live-Action TV 
  • The Internet grew as a major player in not only television distribution, but creation. Netflix in particular hit paydirt with Marvel tie-in shows like Daredevil (2015) and Jessica Jones (2015), other original smashes like House of Cards (US), Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Stranger Things, and Orange Is the New Black, and the revival of Arrested Development. House of Cards was the first series without a network to compete for the Emmy awards in 2013. Conversely, this has led to cable TV being the next medium due to fall to the Internet's overwhelming power with "cord-cutting" becoming a steady new trend as people realize that their cable TV subscriptions are too expensive and limited a service compared to the sheer versatility of their internet connections. A related trend that is even more worrisome for cable TV is the rise of the "cord-nevers," young adults striking out on their own and having no intention of subscribing in the first place in favor of their internet connections and maybe using over-the-air antennae. So far, only live TV content like sports, that internet feeds cannot reliably supply at present, is proving a good enough lure for subscribers. It certainly explains why the Canadian media company, Rogers Communications, bought the exclusive Canadian TV broadcast rights to the games of the National Hockey League for $4.9 Billion (2.45 times the amount NBC bought for the American rights and in a country that has only 10% of the US population). There are a few exceptions that buck the trend, most notably Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad, the latter of which only became a commercial juggernaut near the end of its run, after the earlier seasons had been placed on Netflix, which most analysts say was the contributing factor for its astronomical rise in live-viewer ratings, in addition to superb word-of-mouth following its huge gains at the Emmys during its run.
    • By the end of the decade though, other companies had begun preparing their own streaming services to compete against the dominance of Netflix, beginning what has been called "the streaming wars". While Amazon Prime Video and Hulu (the latter now primarily owned by Disney with Comcast still having a 33 percent stake) have already existed as a competitors, some new services began to launch near the end of 2019 such as Apple TV+ on November 1 and Disney Plus on November 12 with even more being scheduled for release in the next decade.
  • Science Fiction is thriving in the film world with Prometheus, Avatar and the like, but struggled on television in the first half of the decade with only Falling Skies and the Doctor Who revival winning people over. Additionally, long-running world-building sci-fi series of yesteryear (The X-Files and the Stargate franchise) were off the air without new series to replace them. In the span of a few months, Syfy cancelled many Science Fiction shows such as Stargate Universe and ABC gave up on a V revival. Some blame this on trying to grab new Battlestar Galactica's fans. The genre thrived in the second half with big hits such as Star Trek: Discovery, The Orville, Lost in Space (2018) and Final Space. Around the same time, Who got another wind after Peter Capaldi's acclaimed but lower-rated run as the Doctor was followed by the headline-making arrival of Jodie Whittaker as the character's first female incarnation.
  • Fantasy and medieval period pieces, on the other hand, begin to thrive. This is primarily thanks to the monumental critical and commercial success of Game of Thrones and its imitators, such as Vikings.
  • The popularity of film superheroes has also translated to TV: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. sparked a slew of successful shows such as Gotham, the Arrowverse (Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl), and the [[ shows]], and the Marvel Netflix shows (Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Defenders and The Punisher), with Arrow having premiered one year before Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.). The Walking Dead has also become a testament on how influential comic books in general have been during the decade.
  • Miniseries have become a new mainstay on TV, ranging from the classic 3-4 episode format to full 22-26 episode seasons. TV movies and anthology series have also become a trend.
  • In Australian TV, the National Indigenous Television (NITV) was integrated with SBS so that the indigenous station could broadcast free-to-air for all Australians to see. Speaking of SBS, it's second channel SBS2 was rebranded as a youth channel, bringing with it shows like Community, Unbeatable Banzuke, and Aqua Teen Hunger Force after 6pm.
  • HBO's venture into Asia, HBO Asia, released its first ever original series, Serangoon Road, a fast-paced crime fiction drama co-produced with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, set in 1960s-era Singapore.
  • In April 2014, David Letterman announced that he would retire in 2015, after more than 30 years in television, with his final show airing on May 20, 2015. A week after his announcement, CBS announced his Late Show successor would be Stephen Colbert, who ended his own show, The Colbert Report, on December 18, 2014, after 9 years. After 15+ years of being oddly one of the most trusted names in news with a humorous tone, Jon Stewart of The Daily Show stepped down on August 6, 2015, succeeded by South African comedian Trevor Noah. Fortunately, the newer series, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, with the Daily Show alumnus providing his more focused wry eye on current events has become a big hit in its own right.
  • Saturday Night Live remained a major American cultural institution, hitting its 40-year anniversary in Fall 2015. Notably, the show underwent a major renaissance during the 2016 US Presidential Election and the ensuing Trump presidency, regularly offering up-to-date humorous commentary on major political developments in its cold open segments. While this certainly wasn't new (the show has always been known for its political humor), it won SNL unprecedented media attention after the producers managed to snag several high-profile guest stars to play public figures who regularly made headlines. Alec Baldwin won major acclaim for his portrayal of President Donald Trump, while Larry David made multiple appearances as Senator Bernie Sanders, Melissa McCarthy played White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, Scarlett Johansson played Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, Matt Damon played Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Robert De Niro played Special Counsel Robert Mueller, Bill Murray played Steve Bannon, Ben Stiller played Michael Cohen, and Michael Keaton played Julian Assange.
  • Late-night television took a very sharp political turn once Donald Trump was elected president. Political humor previously consisted mostly of lighthearted jabs at political figures, Republicans and Democrats alike, and was often reserved exclusively for the president. With Trump, late-night hosts were more likely to call him, his administration, and Congressional Republicans out on unpopular policy and poor behavior. They were also much more partisan, often explicitly framing the story with the Republican side being in the wrong. While Democrats would still get typical light-hearted jabs, it would never come close to the hell the hosts rained down on the GOP, to the point that late-night hosts would, for the first time ever, treat them positively.
  • Awards shows also become noticeably more political after Trump took office, with celebrities beginning to use them as platforms to speak out about progressive causes like equal pay, the #MeToo movement, or immigration. Even ones aimed at kids would have implicitly political messages about unity and love.

  • After two decades' worth of Alternative Rock, Hip-Hop and Adult-contemporary Idol Singers heavily inspired by jazz and soul, Electronic Music became a hot spot in the American public eye, after years of mild-to-moderate popularity in the club scene (already being popular around the rest of the world, especially in continental Europe). deadmau5, David Guetta, and Skrillex, among others, have become global celebrities. The latter has become particularly notorious for popularizing Dubstep, a part-aggressive/part-melodic genre copied by other producers, spreading many subgenres like "deep house" and "electroswing" (which became popular a little earlier than its parent genre with 2010's "We No Speak Americano"). Although deadmau5 doesn't consider himself to be and dislikes being called a DJ, he is an electro house producer known best for wearing his iconic mouse-head mask. Guetta is a French house music artist who released his obscure debut album in 2002 and hit worldwide fame with 2009's "When Love Takes Over". The ponderous success of Lady Gaga ended up becoming the crucial piece in the puzzle.

    Likewise, with other electronic music genres, many a pop star has cashed in the craze at least once, with mixed results: Both Adele and Taylor Swift relaunched their careers by adopting the genre with considerable success. Earlier on, Justin Bieber commonly incorporated synths and digital instruments with guitars, trumpets, and pianos.
  • If any one genre defined the sound of mainstream music for the 2010's, it was Trap Music. At the very start of the decade, artists like Waka Flocka Flame and Gucci Mane made waves in hip-hop's mainstream, and producers outside the original Southern scene adopted the "808's and rattling hi-hats" production style as a contrast to the polished excesses of the decade before—most notably in Chicago, where Chief Keef headed up a new regional sound of Drill Music. This quickly led to trap becoming the default sound of mainstream rap for the rest of the decade. By 2013, trap began its ascendance in the EDM world, where it effectively took over brostep's spot as the build-drop 140 BPM genre of choice, and many of brostep's biggest names, up to and including Skrillex, switched over to it. That opened the door for trap to take over pop music, to the point that by 2015, even Katy Perry was using trap beats and song structures. And rather than peaking there, the trap takeover just kept going—by 2018, names like Migos were among the biggest in all of music, and the offshoot fusion genres just kept coming, with everything from Latin trap to emo-rap making an imprint.
  • Boy bands, mocked in the 00s as the epithome of late 90s-era corporate-crafted pop, made a comeback cashing in Bieber's astronomical popularity, but beacuse of it, few of these boy bands were able to attain much success worldwide.
    • One Direction, comprised of five British-Irish X Factor alumni who finished third on the show's 2010 series managed to gain popularity. After conquering the UK in 2011, One Direction started to rapidly grow an international fanbase, and when they released their "Up All Night" album in the US, it debuted at number-one on the Billboard 200, a feat unheard of for a British band's debut album. One Direction became so massive that not only did other boy bands that struggled in Bieber's presence get further hammered down, but Bieber's own popularity was dramatically hemorrhaged (his personal scandals didn't help either). The quintet was neck-a-neck with him the entirety of 2012, have completely surpassed him by the summer of 2013, and by the end of that year "Bieber Fever" was all but extinct.
    • In 2015, Bieber decided to embrace the "shocker" persona he had been known for in the previous years, adopting an urban-oriented sound, also teaming up with DJ duo Jack U, their song "Sorry" becoming a big hit that summer. Meanwhile, the British ensemble saw a series of upheavals (including Zayn's exit in 2015) that led to their break-up in 2016. Some of the members though have since begun successful solo careers.
  • Urban music has remained popular in spite of the fact Glam Rap and other popular genres of the 2000s have fallen out of favor and replaced with the renascent West Coast style. Newer takes on hip-hop come in three different flavors: a) Revisiting R&B, jazz and other "black" genres, often with some social commentary, b) Crossing over with EDM, with some "featured" performances alongside pop artists (some artists, like Kendrick Lamar, have managed to do both), or c) "mumble rap", Trap Music consisting of indecipherable mumbled lyrics, coupled with simplistic lyricism. Much like the rock example below, hip-hop fans argue about whether or not the above is actual hip-hop or "gentrified Hip-Hop", with some fans saying traditional Hip-Hop/Rap is dead in the mainstream. Highlighted by the fact that 2017 marked the point when the divisive sub-genre surpassed rock in sales and has come on top in popularity surveys since 2013, dominating the music industry to the point Paul Anka, of all people, has told of his intention to enter the scene.
  • "Sunshine pop", popular in the 1960s, saw a sudden revival during the decade, becoming an important genre in the urban field. While the ever-optimistic "Motown sound" predominates, there have also been notorious influences from 80s-era funk and disco music, with songs like Daft Punk's "Get Lucky", Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines", Pharrell Williams' "Happy"note , Meghan Trainor's "All About That Bass", Bruno Mars' "Uptown Funk!"note , The Weeknd's "Can't Feel My Face" and Justin Timberlake's "Can't Stop the Feeling" topping the chartsnote . Maroon 5, which in the 2000s had personified the funk-rock movement, morphed their sound, scoring a hit with 2014's "Sugar".
  • The rock scene became dominated by British acts (and Brit producers) and strong EDM influences after the previous decade had been marked by raw sounds and an inescapable American feel. There has been debate among rock fans not only because of its dependence on synthesisers (verboten on American rock), but also because of the fact many artists have adopted a squeaky-clean, "goodie-two-shoes" image in contrast to the traditional rocker persona, leading to some fans and critics to call it "rock In Name Only", "guitar pop", "festival music", "Instagram rock" or "gentrified rock". "Indie" rocknote  is a combination of 1960s-era mod, soul and "jangle" pop with new wave, with some urban tinges becoming common by the middle of the decade. The more EDM-flavoured "fire pop", a mix of power ballad and club beats, became synonymous with YA "dystopia" movies. Notable exponents include The Black Keys, Imagine Dragons, Twenty One Pilots, Lana Del Rey, Florence + the Machine, Bon Iver, The 1975, Foster the People, Mumford & Sons, Adele, Ed Sheeran, Gotye, Magic!, and fun. note , among others. Older UK acts such as Coldplay and Muse, both pioneers of the "fire pop"/"crossover" genre have remained popular.
    • And in spite of being hit by decreasing album sales and lack of chart success and radio airplay, most trad rock acts (particularly bigger ones like Metallica, Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Avenged Sevenfold, Slipknot, and Linkin Park just to name a few) are bigger than ever in the concert field, drawing four- to five-figure crowds with no difficulty whatsoever: Guns N' Roses' "Not In This Lifetime" reunion tour has so far managed to be the third-highest-grossing tour of all time, while Slipknot had a simultaneous US and UK #1 album with 2019's We Are Not Your Kind (their third US #1 in a row).
    • Speaking of Guns, Rose became the vocalist for AC/DC in 2016 as Brian Johnson was forced to retire on account of his deteriorated hearing.
    • After 20 years of inactivity (save for a brief reunion performance at Live 8 in 2005), Pink Floydnote  regrouped to publish what would be the band's final album in a discography spanning 36 years: The Endless River. Released in 2014 and composed primarily of unused instrumental recordings from the sessions for 1994's The Division Bell, the album received a mixed reception from critics and fans due to its nature as an instrumental album. However, the album's sole vocal track, "Louder Than Words," would be regarded highly among Floydians as a fitting grand finale for one of the biggest and most influential prog rock bands of the 20th century.
    • Probably the biggest victim of the market's shift is Post-Grunge, which was one of the most popular rock genres of the 2000s, but completely fell out of favor with audiences, with most of the bands falling out of favor (they were also hit particularly hard by the fall of physical sales), with "garage rock" taking the same path. Only a handful of groups kept their chart success on rock radio alive by changing their sounds; unfortunately, they're now playing to far smaller crowds than before, with only the biggest bands still pulling in thousands of people per concert. Foo Fighters, Shinedown, Godsmack, and Breaking Benjamin are the only acts who can still consistently pull huge numbers without having to headline festival or massive package tours, and even Godsmack has steadily seen their live draw creep down over the course of the decade.
    • On the flipside, extreme metal is actually experiencing its greatest peak since the Nineties; not only have multiple long-defunct big names (At the Gates, Carcass, Gorguts, etc.) released their long-awaited comeback albums and returned to the touring scene, but numerous established acts are experiencing the greatest sales of their careers and there are just more options for fans as a whole than there ever have been. That being said, extreme music is still largely unknown to the mainstream; unless you're Cannibal Corpse, The Black Dahlia Murder, Behemoth, Amon Amarth, Cattle Decapitation, Napalm Death, or one of a select few others, you still may as well not exist to mainstream listeners.
    • Also, Nu Metal, of all genres, is beginning to see a resurgence with bands like Issues, Of Mice & Men, Hollywood Undead, Islander, King 810, Butcher Babies, In This Moment, and From Ashes to New all gaining popularity, while older bands that previously abandoned the style such as Slipknot and Staind made albums that hearkened back to their old sound. Bring Me the Horizon, who was once one of the poster boys for metalcore, ditched it in 2015 for a new style incorporating nu metal, giving them their biggest success.
    • Hardcore Punk and its derivatives have done very well over the course of the decade. After the fall of melodic metalcore in the late 2000s, modern metalcore/"scenecore" took over for a while, but that too died out around the middle of the decade (aside from "too big to fail" acts like Asking Alexandria, Motionless In White, and Falling in Reverse), and hardcore saw a major renaissance. Aside from the continued major success of Hatebreed, new acts like Knocked Loose, Code Orange, and Nails have managed to carve out large followings of their own, while acts like Sanction, Jesus Piece, and Kublai Khan have also seen a substantial degree of success in the underground (helped in no small part by The Acacia Strain, who have settled into a new role as a smaller act that primarily caters to more niche punk audiences that regularly breaks in up-and-coming acts). Overall, hardcore is far less niche than it was in the 2000s, and events like the July 2019 comeback show from Have Heart (which drew over 10,000 people, the largest hardcore show in history) would have been unfathomable in the previous decade.
    • After emerging as the new kid on the block for heavy music in the mid-2000s and hitting its stride in the late 2000s, Deathcore has settled into a more stable role over the course of the decade, both in terms of acceptance by metal as a whole and its own acceptance of and friendliness with death metal. While many of the established acts from the 2000s have abandoned the genre (particularly Suicide Silence and Whitechapel), assumed Part-Time Hero status (Despised Icon, Winds of Plague, I Declare War), or fallen off the map (All Shall Perish, As Blood Runs Black), the void left by the mainstream faces of the genre has largely been filled by Thy Art Is Murder, Carnifex, and Oceano, while acts like Fit For An Autopsy, Slaughter to Prevail, and Rings of Saturn have taken over the tier below them.
    • Technical Death Metal started to see a major rise in popularity in the middle of the decade that blossomed into one of the fastest-growing scenes in metal towards the end. While the popularity and influence of Necrophagist and the widespread success of The Faceless' Planetary Duality and Obscura's Cosmogenesis in the 2000s planted the seeds for its success (and the latter two arguably also planted the seeds for it as an actual scene), it wasn't until 2014 that it really began to take hold. The widespread success and popularity of acts like Revocation, Beyond Creation, Rivers of Nihil, Fallujah, and Archspire manifested around the end of the decade, while Inferi and its mainman Malcolm Pugh's label The Artisan Era also saw major underground success starting around 2018, and the attached Facebook group became a central hub for the genre. Overall, tech is a thriving genre and scene in the 2010s, rather than the incidental curiosity that it was in the 2000s.
    • This is also the decade that mainstream rock music vanished from the airwaves of mainstream pop and adult contemporary stations. This largely had to do with demographics: Pop radio always targeted very young audiences and tended to skew towards women, whose taste in music was seen as more universal compared to fringe genres that boys and men liked. In this decade the format’s listener base became increasingly nonwhite and dependent on female and younger audiences, thus quickly diverging from the base of conservative white males who typically listened to mainstream rock. No song has successfully crossed over from that format since Shinedown’s Top 10 hit “Second Chance” in June 2009, and even the alternative radio format had a near-complete blackout of crossover hits in 2010 and 2011 as the format struggled to find songs with mass appeal. The fact that alternative radio increasingly diverged from mainstream rock may have also had something to do with it; as the former had much more overlap with pop radio demographics than the latter, it was better positioned to cross over.
    • While Rock was still the most consumed genre in the first half of the decade, it was eventually overtaken by Hip Hop in the second half, largely due to the latter's success on audio streaming services.
  • Pop Punk, one of the defining genres of the past decade, experienced a huge drop in popularity during the early 2010s, becoming a source of mockery, mainly being kept alive through older acts like blink-182 and Sum 41 still having a large fandom, while newer bands have enjoyed a crossover fandom with Metalcore and Post-Hardcore, with bands like The Wonder Years, Knuckle Puck, and Transit forming the Defend Pop Punk subgenre, categorized by heavier, downtuned guitars and loud/soft dynamics with very personal lyrics. By the second half of the decade, the genre has witnessed an unexpected bout of nostalgia (primarily through mentions from celebrities who grew up/came-of-age during pop punk's heyday), although more for its subversive stance (coincidentally or not, these Shout Outs began during the 2016 election campaign and the rise of the anti-establishment campaigns of Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump, the former of who had strong support amongst the genre’s musicians and fans) rather than for the music itself.
    • Emo Music has gone back to being the domain of twentysomething hipsters like in the 1990s and bands that have started during the decade such as Foxing, The World Is A Beautiful Place And I Am No Longer Afraid To Die and La Dispute seem to take a heavy undercurrent from Indie Rock, Post-Rock and Math Rock. Several older acts such as Brand New and Motion City Soundtrack as well as Yellowcard announced they would be disbanding.
  • In terms of Asian music, the effects of The Japanese Invasion seemingly reeling back from foreign shores (as mentioned in the Anime section) has also affected Japanese Pop Music's once-sterling reputation in the Asian music scene; with their relatively-closed borders and peculiar approach to exporting their culture, especially since it has given South Korea, widely considered as its cultural rival, a golden chance to shine in the global stage, perhaps replacing almost every other nation as the cultural capital of Asia in the processnote .
    • Korea's success with its popular dramas and cinema is debatable, not to mention its animation and comics still pales in comparison to Japan's, but Korean Pop Music blows those industries out of the water in terms of international success. Compared to Japan, which has retained traditional roots in their musical trends, South Korea is more than willing to blend in American and Western cultural aspects to its own music and has done so with extreme success, both in the broader Asian region and to a lesser extent, in the West, especially among fans of Korean/Asian culture and some fringes of the urban music fandom.
    • Among some of K-Pop's highlights, US artist Akon paired up with Korean group Wonder Girls for the hit single Like Money, and PSY's Gangnam Style has broken the world record for being the most viewed song on YouTube, reaching #1 on the music charts in the UK and Australia, and #2 in the USA. PSY even paired up with MC Hammer of all people, performing a mash-up of Gangnam Style. K-Pop has made inroads on Australian radio, and dominates the nation-wide channel SBS PopAsia. When the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) decided to have its first ever TV Song Festival in 2012, featuring eleven performers across the Asia-Pacific,note  it chose Korea as the host nation.
    • It's a telltale sign that you've made success when even North Korea has gotten in on the actnote .
    • Nothing lasts forever though, as K-Pop is much more sensitive to political waves than other genres. When South Korea accepted hosting the THAAD system in its territories, China was quick to enact sanctions on K-Pop and the Hallyu which crippled its influence in China. The foreign exposure attempts also started to backfire, as foreign exposure proved to be have a detrimental effect on the popularity of certain groups due to time constraints and fatigue. When BTS won a Billboard award in 2017 they decided not to directly focus on the Western market like Wonder Girls or CL of 2NE1 did to avoid making the same mistakes. While it remains somewhat popular overseas, it no longer enjoys the same influence it had during 2012.
    • K-pop have a strong popularity in the West to the point that BTS was scheduled to perform in Saturday Night Live on April 13th, 2019, making them the first K-Pop band to preform in a mainstream late night American show. They also had significant chart success in America with their Love Yourself: Tear album peaking at number one (the first Korean album to do so) and their single Fake Love reaching the top ten (a first for a Korean group).
    • Of course, Japan has managed to have its own considerable international success with AKB48; which has gone from a humble girl-group to a powerful media giant in Japan, Vocaloid, and the similarly memetic PonPonPon music video on Youtube. The K-Pop vs J-Pop dichotomy has become a source of Misplaced Nationalism on both sides, but K-Pop's global success is undeniable, and it remains clear that it has promising days ahead.
    • Japanese Pop also saw the passing of music mogul Johnny Kitagawa at the age of 89. His influence over Japanese boy bands was known to be so monopolistic to the point that many companies refused to consider their male acts idols in fear of being crushed as competition. While most of the Japanese music industry mourned the loss of an icon who managed to resist modernization yet maintain a stranglehold over the Male Idol groups and winning the hearts of female fans, Western reception was much less warm towards his death, viewing him as a sexual predator who got away with his acts due to his power and influence. Regardless of his controversial actions, the loss of an icon had left a ripple across his company and the music industry at large, who emulated his business practices of restricting music to domestic sales and refusal to accept digital advertising with rigid enforcement being a fact of life during his reign and after.
  • Japanese Hard Rock and Heavy Metal music, and in particular Visual Kei, is undergoing somewhat of a resurgence. Visual Kei and Japanese metal bands, among them X Japan, BUCK-TICK, Loudness, and Luna Sea, have reunited and/or are actively touring. The Oshare and Host-kei trend that defined much of Visual Kei for the Oughts is beginning to die out, with "indies" or newly-signed Visual Kei acts returning to a harder rock sound—among them being Vagu*Project, DALATH, Diaura, Matenrou Opera, Trick, and similar new or newish bands. While Versailles has disbanded (as have many other Visual Kei bands; 2011 and 2012 were actually known as the "years of death and disbandment", as many bands broke up and famous artists of the genre died), Jupiter re-formed with a new vocalist.
    • Seremedy was one of the first breakout non-Japanese Visual Kei bands (though it disbanded in 2013, with Yohio beginning a solo career and vocalist Seike forming Kerbera), and there are other non-Japanese based Visual Kei acts beginning to form once again. X Japan, BUCK-TICK, Loudness and others that began in The '80s are actively recording and touring to popular reception (if not among the mass media), and Yoshiki Hayashi was tapped to write the score for the 2012 and 2013 Golden Globes award ceremony.
  • In Japan, the Group Sounds type of hybrid rock music/folk music has experienced a revival in popularity after fading for much of the past few decades, with even Japanese teenagers taking notice of them again, with many groups such as The Tigers and The Wild Ones (under the leadership of Kenji Sawada of The Tigers) reuniting and either touring again or writing/recording new material, and like Visual Kei, has also seen some notice taken of it in foreign markets, with Kenji Sawada's fandom in foreign countries reaching unprecedented heights with the rise of Youtube and social media.
  • Bachata, electropop (coloquially known as "tropipop"), and reggaeton have become dominant genres in the Latin music field.
    • Early on the decade, major reggaeton stars such Don Omar and Daddy Yankee had begun to to shift from reggaeton to electropop music, the former scoring a hit with "Danza Kuduro" (based on Angolan music) and the latter with "Limbo". The popularity of reggaeton resurfaced quickly thanks to artists from Colombia such as J. Balvin and Maluma.
    • Romeo Santos (former lead singer of Aventura) and Prince Royce (who released his debut album of the beginning of the decade) have continued to expanded bachata's popularity with a younger audience in the urban crowd. Their songs have even topped the Spanish pop charts despite the music being usually being labeled as tropical.
    • Bachata's popularity has gotten to the point that most major Latin pop singers will release a bachata version of their singles just to capture a wider audience.
    • Cuban-American rapper and producer Pitbull has bridged the gap between Latin music and hip-hop, establishing crossovers between artists of both genres, while by the middle of the decade Spanish-language tunes like "El Taxi", "La Bicicleta", "Chantaje", "Vente P'acá", "Mi Gente" and "Echame a Mi La Culpa" cracked the Billboard Top 40. The most successful example of this was "Despacito" by Latin singers Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee, which became a smash hit after a remix featuring Justin Bieber was released. The song quickly became an anthem of Hispanic pride, with several commentators describing it as a rebuke against growing anti-immigration sentiment during Donald Trump's presidency (in fact, Bieber's manager Scooter Braun said the political climate was the reason he pushed for the remix in the first place), as well as the first global music phenomenon since 2015's "Uptown Funk". The song topped the charts throughout Latin America, Spain, Portugal and Italy in late 2016/early 2017, taking off in continental Europe shortly afterwards, and upon the release of the Bieber remix it became the first Spanish-language song to reach #1 on the U.S. and U.K. charts since the "Macarena" remix in 1996. Trap music has also gained popularity on both sides of the Atlantic thanks to the success of Latin artists of the genre, with Balvin and the Puerto Rican trap singer Bad Bunny topping the Hot 100 in 2018 with "I Like It" (also featuring Cardi B).
  • Music Streaming services have risen in popularity, with large services like Spotify, Pandora, iTunes Radio and premium Youtube services becoming very popular, as well as smaller ones like Bandcamp and Soundcloud. In late 2014, Billboard revised their ranking methodology so that music streams from the major streaming service are now counted in their album and song charts (they still have charts though for "pure album" sales) to account for this thread. The Official Charts Company, which handles music ranking charts in the UK, made similar changes to their rankings in 2015. In 2017, the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) even reported that streaming had made up over 50 percent of music consumption in the UK.
    • Ironically, the biggest figures in pop music have waged war on the streaming industry over the low royalties paid by Spotify and the like, with many joining premium services like Apple Music and Tidal in response, most of them releasing their works only in this platform... aside from physical formats. The result: physical music sales picked up after having fallen out of favor by the turn of the decade, with most labels still producing cassettes of new albums in small quantities, and Sony announced the issuing of select titles on limited vinyl runs beginning in 2018, having abandoned the format in 1990, when the company considered the format "dead" after acquiring Columbia Records. The CD took a major hit as a format between the increasingly common omission of CD players in cars and the general hollowing out of physical sales, but is still unlikely to die any time soon; country still sees strong CD sales (as many of its listeners are older, live in rural areas, and do much of their listening in their cars), while the increased importance of touring across many genres has also helped keep the format alive, as CDs are cheaper to produce, take up less physical inventory space on the road, and are less fragile than vinyl, all of which have made CDs something that almost all touring acts still view as a reliable revenue stream.
  • FM radio has narrowed formats after the late-2000s crisis, and along with the decline of physical sales, this new environment became a reflection of the new musical landscape: most stations are now top-40 oriented (CHR, Hot AC, Latino) with the odd "soft AC"/"middle-of-the-road" station in between as well as urban and/or rock in some markets, the three being a mix of formerly widespread formats, now mostly found on digital radio and the Internet, with services such as Sirius and TuneIn becoming popular.
  • With lower royalties coming from streaming, most acts have resorted to touring in order to keep going. This has heralded a "golden age" of music festivals, often competing fiercely to get the most popular artists on their line-ups. Not all that glitters is gold however, as the much-hyped Fyre Festival in the Bahamas during early 2017 turned out to be a poorly-planned fiasco (the headlining DJs were replaced by... local musicians, and that was just the tip of the iceberg; read more about the disaster here).
    • Due to the increased amount of time that all but the very largest acts can expect to spend on the road, coupled with the increasingly decentralized nature of many acts due to members living far from one another and only ever getting together for recording or live shows, album turnaround times have increased across the board. Unless you utilize staff or guest songwriters or are otherwise an incredibly rapid and prolific writer, an album every two years is the absolute fastest that most acts can put something out, and in many cases, it's closer to three, while four and even five-year gaps (something previously only seen with massive acts with large song catalogs who didn't necessarily have to tour on an album, or in troubled acts who couldn't hold down a lineup or get their shit together for long enough to write enough new material for an entire album) are not unheard of with acts who already write slow, especially when they have been touring heavily or have had major lineup changes.
  • Late December 2015 witnessed the passing of Lemmy Kilmister and Scott Weiland. 2016 saw the deaths of rock legends David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Leonard Cohen, and Prince, among others.
    • The deaths of Chuck Berry and Fats Domino in 2017 were regarded as the demise of "rock-and-roll", as Jerry Lee Lewis and Little Richard (both over 80 years) are now the only surviving stalwarts of the pre-Beatles era.
    • The sudden suicide of Soundgarden's Chris Cornell on May 17, 2017, only hours after his last show, stunned the music world. His passing made Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder the last surviving major grunge singer of the early '90s. His friend Chester Bennington of Linkin Park took his own life on what would have been Cornell's 53rd birthday on July 20. And on October 2, singer Tom Petty passed away from a cardiac arrest (a week after wrapping up The Heartbreakers' 40th anniversary tour), taking "the soul of rock" with him. The apparent lack of a "next generation" of rock music compared to previous eras has become a source of deep concern for fans and musicians alike. John "J." Geils (of The J. Geils Band), Greg Allman (of The Allman Brothers Band), Donald Becker (of Steely Dan) and Malcolm Young (of AC/DC) died on April 11, May 27, September 3 and November 18 respectively.
    • On January 15, 2018, Dolores O'Riordan of The Cranberries was found dead under mysterious circumstances. In September 2018, it was revealed that she drowned in her bathtub while under the influnce of alcohol. "Fast" Eddie Clarke (of Motörhead) passed on five days earlier.
    • Other musicians that passed away during the decade include Ronnie James Dio, Lena Horne and Alex Chilton in 2010; Johnny Pearson, Roger Williams, Phoebe Snow, Gerry Rafferty and Amy Winehouse in 2011; Whitney Houston, Donna Summer, Hal David (Burt Bacharach's main lyric writer) and Dave Brubeck in 2012; Patti Page, Eydie Gormé, Lou Reed and George Duke in 2013; Joe Cocker and Polly Bergen in 2014; Cilla Black and Ben E. King in 2015, Robert Stigwood (Bee Gees producer), Rudy Van Gelder (engineer on many jazz albums), George Martin (The Beatles/Wings producer) and George Michael in 2016; Al Jarreau, Allan Holdsworth (jazz/prog guitarist), Buddy Greco, Dave Valentin (jazz flutist), Cuba Gooding, Sr. (of The Main Ingredient), Robert Miles (trance producer, best known for the 1996 hit "Children"), Lil Peep, and Glen Campbell in 2017; and as of 2018, Vic Damone, Hugh Masekela, Ray Thomas (of The Moody Blues), Yvonne Staples (of The Staple Singers), XXXTentacion, and Mac Miller. Swedish DJ and House Music producer Avicii was found dead on April 20, 2018 from an apparent suicide. Keith Flint from The Prodigy was found dead, which also seemed to be the result of a suicide, on March 4, 2019.
  • In early 2018, Neil Diamond, Paul Simon and Elton John announced that they would retire from touring days apart from each other.
  • On a minor, yet positive note, after decades of copyright protection, on 22 September 2015, the song "Happy Birthday to You!" has now entered the Public Domain. note 
  • The patents for MP3 expired on 23 April 2017. Some thought that the MP3 players and/or the format itself is dead, but according to the creators, it's not.

  • If you were to sum up the National Football League this decade, the first word that came to mind would be "concussions". Head injuries have been at the forefront of the game for the past several years, particularly after several beloved veterans such as Dave Duerson and Junior Seau committed suicide. They were later revealed to have brain trauma, no doubt related to their years of playing. The horrors of the Chris Benoit murder-suicide in 2007 still being fresh in people's minds might have also had an effect. There was also a marked uptick in concussions at the high school level, suggesting that the NFL's bad behavior has a trickle-down effect. Things got markedly worse when the New Orleans Saints were revealed to have been running a bounty systemnote  that marked out specific targets. (The Bountygate scandal also revealed Commissioner Roger Goodell's penchant for overreaction after the Saints players allegedly involved in the scandal had their penalties vacated, with some legal analysts saying that the Commissioner had overstepped his authority by trying to make an example out of the Saints.)
    • The NFL also flirted with having a lockout in 2011, but they were able to resolve things just in time (the only game that was canceled was the Hall of Fame game, a preseason game). However, in 2012, the league dealt with the referee lockout, in which for three weeks, the league used replacement referees to replace the regular refs. After backlash from the players, fans, and commentators, culminating with the "Fail Mary" game between the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks on Monday Night Football, a controversial win for the Seahawks resulting from a touchdown via simultaneous possession by Seahawks Wide Receiver Golden Tate and Packers defender M. D. Jennings that was complicated by Tate shoving Packers cornerback Sam Shields with both hands, which should have resulted in a pass interference but didn't. The NFL subsequently brought back the regular referees, ending the lockout.
    • The New England Patriots, led by QB Tom Brady and head coach Bill Bellichick, continue their successful run throughout the decade, as they would make eight consecutive AFC Championship appearances, winning five of them, and making five Super Bowls, winning three of them: XLIX, LI (which they won in overtime after coming back from a 28-3 deficit), and LIII, tying the Pittsburgh Steelers for most Super Bowl titles at 6. The Patriots also had to deal with the Deflategate scandal (in which Brady allegedly played with underinflated footballs during the 2014 AFC Championship Game against the Colts), which resulted in Brady getting suspended for the first four games initially in the 2015 season, but after several appeals, was pushed back to the 2016 season. With their Week 12 victory over the Dallas Cowboys in 2019, they secured their 17th consecutive 10+ win season, finishing off a decade of sustained success.
    • After missing the entire 2011 season due to him undergoing multiple neck surgeries, Peyton Manning was released from the Colts, and he signed with the Denver Broncos as a free agent. This was seen as risky, as many people wondering if he can still play at a high level. Manning answered his critics when he helped guide the Broncos to consecutive winning seasons, winning the 2012 Comeback Player of the Year, and was named the 2013 NFL MVP (his fifth overall) after setting new season records with 55 touchdown passes and 5,477 passing yards, while the Broncos offense scored 606 points (the most in NFL history). Manning's Broncos would make two Super Bowl appearances, winning one (50). Following his Super Bowl 50 victory, Manning announced his retirement on March 7, 2016 due to his declining health and playing ability.
    • The Seattle Seahawks, coached by former USC coach Pete Carroll, became one of the most successful NFC teams, on the strength of their defense, helmed by their vaunted "Legion of Boom" secondary, which featured cornerback Richard Sherman and safeties Earl Thomas III and Kam Chancellor. Their offense, helmed by QB Russell Wilson and RB Marshawn Lynch, also performed well. The Seahawks would win two NFC Titles and make two Super Bowls, winning Super Bowl XLVIII, in which they defeated the Peyton Manning-led Broncos (who became the first team to score 600 points in a season) 43-8.
    • The Green Bay Packers were another successful NFC team, with Aaron Rodgers replacing longtime veteran Brett Favre in the 2008 season. Under Rodgers and head coach Mike McCarthy, the Packers would win Super Bowl XLV, and Rodgers became a two-time NFL MVP (2011, in which he set a new season record for the highest passer rating, as well as guiding them to a franchise-best 15-1 record, and 2014).
    • The Philadelphia Eagles, coached by Doug Pederson, won their first Super Bowl at Super Bowl LII in 2018, defeating the highly-favored New England Patriots 41-33 (a rematch of their Super Bowl XXXIX showdown from 2005). The Eagles' star quarterback, Carson Wentz, suffered a season-ending injury during the last weeks of the season, getting replaced by Nick Foles, who rallied the team to victory and got named the Super Bowl MVP.
    • The Cleveland Browns, the perennial Butt-Monkey of the NFL, finally hit rock bottom during this decade. In 2016, they went 1-15, with their sole win against the San Diego Chargers only happening thanks to a missed field goal attempt. But in 2017, they became the second-ever team to finish a regular season without any wins (the first since the 2008 Detroit Lions), finishing 0-16 and bringing them the 2-year record of 1-31, the worst ever in NFL history. However, the 2018 season started looking better for them. They opened the season by tying the Pittsburgh Steelers 21-21, ending their 2-year losing streak and also marking the first time since 2004 that their season opener wasn't a loss. And then, in their week 3 game against the New York Jets, quarterback Baker Mayfield made his NFL debut leading the Browns to a 21-17 win, ending their winless streak. The Browns would finish 7-8-1, their best record in 4 years, with Mayfield setting the new record for most touchdown passes by a rookie QB, and for the first time since their 1999 revival, Cleveland fans feel a real sense of hope.
    • The NFL's officiating, already a touchy topic, turned into a serious issue in the decade. In 2012, NFL referees had gone on strike, which prompted the league to use replacement officials, until the aforementioned "Fail Mary" game. But it soared to new heights of infamy in the 2018-19 NFL playoffs, when both the NFC and AFC Championship Games were affected by questionable officiating. In the NFC Championship Game, a case of pass-interference by the Los Angeles Rams, which should have given the New Orleans Saints an automatic first down, got missed, forcing the Saints to settle for a field goal and go into overtime, which the Rams ended up winning. In the AFC Championship Game, the Kansas City Chiefs were hit with a highly specious pass-interference penalty halfway through the fourth quarter when Chris Jones lightly brushed Tom Brady on the shoulder; the resulting penalty helped the New England Patriots drive for a touchdown to take a 24-21 lead, and also ultimately winning in overtime. These events left many people, especially Saints fans, feeling that neither team deserved to play at Super Bowl LIII. On March 27, 2019, the NFL created new rules allowing head coaches to challenge pass-interference calls on both offense and defense, but some think this still isn't solving the problems with NFL officiating.
  • The dominance of the English Premier League by the Big Four (Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool) was broken by perennial joke team Manchester City, backed by Qatari Sheikh Mansour, bought their way first to Champions League status, then to the Premier League title. Liverpool slipped out of the top four, dropping as low as 8th in 2011/12, before new manager Brendan Rodgers and mercurial striker Luis Suarez nearly propelled them to the league title in 2013/14. Things seemed to settle back into the status quo in 2014/15 when Chelsea, led by the notorious Jose Mourinho, won the title, but the entire footballing world was stunned in 2015/16 when tiny Leicester City (who were given 5000/1 odds before the season) lifted the trophy. At the same time, teams like frequent also-rans Tottenham Hotspur took advantage of the newly installed FFP (Financial Fair Play) rules which prevented clubs from spending beyond their means in pursuit of success to level the playing field. However, towards the end of the decade, a new mini-league formed, the 'Big Six' (Manchester City, Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea, Tottenham), which dominated the European places. Manchester City posted a record-breaking 100 point season (the maximum possible is 114) in 17/18, followed by 98 points in 18/19 - and in the latter case, every one of those points was necessary, as a resurgent Liverpool under Jurgen Klopp posted 97 points and won the Champions League. In that same season, while there was a 1 point game between 1st and 2nd, there was a 25 point game between 2nd and 3rd.
    • In Europe, the backlash against Premier League dominance began, with the new Galacticos at Real Madrid, a Barcelona team lead by Lionel Messi (widely considered to be the best player on the planet), Neymar, Brazil's wunderkind and controversial former Liverpool striker Luis Suarez and scrappy underdogs Atletico Madrid winning La Liga and the Champions League, a dazzlingly successful Bayern Munich team under former Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola (who later moved to Manchester City) sweeping all before them, Borussia Dortmund under Jurgen Klopp (and later Thomas Tuchel after Klopp moved to Liverpool) challenging the bigger clubs and Paris St. Germain spending their way to success all managed to break the dominance of English clubs. Italy's Serie A, still haunted by the ghosts of a vast match-fixing scandal, continued to decline. In the latter half of the decade, however, the English clubs bounced back, with five managing to not only qualify for the Champions League (the normal limit is four, but Manchester United qualified by dint of winning the Europa League) and reaching the Last 16, at least. Liverpool then reached back to back Champions League finals, in 17/18 and 18/19, winning it in the latter. 18/19 was also when all the finalists of both the Champions League and the Europa League (the former's lesser counterpart) were English, with Liverpool and Chelsea, respectively, triumphing.
    • At an international level, Spain's dominance continued with victories in the 2010 World Cup, the first held in Africa, and the 2012 European championships, crushing Italy 4-0 in the final. Then, they were eclipsed by a resurgent Germany, who won the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, thrashing the hosts 7-1 in the process, marking another new disappointment for Brazil, which hasn't caught a break since 2002. England plunged to new depths of failure as well, reaching its lowest point in a loss on penalties to Italy in the 2012 Eurocup quarter-finals. They were thrashed 4-1 by Germany in the 2010 World Cup in the second round after limping out of the group stage and then failed to even get that far in 2014, finishing bottom of their group with only a single point.
      • The US, by contrast, managed to get out of the so-called 'Group of Death' composed of eventual winners Germany and footballing superpowers Portugal and Ghana by beating Ghana 2-1, giving Portugal one hell of a fright in a 2-2 draw and losing 1-0 to Germany (which, considering how the Germans thrashed just about everyone else, is rather impressive). In the second round, they pushed a much fancied Belgium team to extra time, with goalkeeper Tim Howard's performance reaching Memetic Mutation proportions when his article on The Other Wiki was changed to name him as 'Secretary of Defence', something which newspapers, comedians and internet commentators gleefully ran with.
      • The 2016 European Championships were rather surprising, not just because of the long awaited Portuguese victory, but because of the astonishing success of Iceland, who became widely beloved for their passion and their unique celebrations (the 'thunderclap' from the Icelandic fans needs to seen to be believed), reaching the quarter-finals and beating a lacklustre England side along the way. Wales, the tournament's other dark horse team, in their first appearance at an international tournament since the 1958 World Cup, reached the semi-finals before losing to eventual winners Portugal.
      • The 2018 World Cup became controversial not only because of its being held in Russia (both because of the country's reputation and FIFA's corruption scandal that saw the ousting of Sepp Blatter), but also because of the fact many of the teams survived (primarily the group stage) out of sheer luck rather than merit (ironically, the "seeds" were set in a way to avoid the plethora of "death groups" that led ultimately to Brazil's humiliating 7-1 defeat in 2014) and the myriad of games ending on penalties. The Cup was finally won by France, who not only stood out for its team being comprised mostly by players of immediate African descent, but also played the finals with Croatia, who "Les Bleus" had beaten the 1998 semi-finals before winning their first championship (with both victories, Didier Deschamps became only the third man to have won a World Cup as both player and manager). On another surprising note, a young and unfancied England side under inexperienced manager Gareth Southgate (who had previously managed the England under-21 team) stormed to the Semi-Finals, before ultimately losing to Croatia.
  • The popularity of women’s football/soccer has risen dramatically over the decade. At the beginning of the decade, the sport was second-tier in popularity, languishing deeply in the shadow of the men’s game. In 2015, the U.S. Women’s Soccer team won the World Cup in what was the most watched soccer game of all time in that country. Despite the success, the team is still paid less than their male counterparts, despite the fact that the men’s team is considered mediocre at best and have had little World Cup success. The women’s team has filed a pay equity suit, which has in turn both boosted support for the team and the cause of equal pay. By 2019, after winning back-to-back titles, the women’s game was seen as just as big a deal, if not more so, than the men’s game.
  • The National Basketball Association recently underwent a changing of the guard in both of the conferences, dramatically shifting the landscape of the entire league. In the summer of 2010, LeBron James, the greatest player of the current generation, decided to leave his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers and join the Miami Heat, teaming up with Miami superstar Dwyane Wade and former Toronto Raptor Chris Bosh to become the contemporary "Super Team". In the West, the upstart (and not even a decade old) Oklahoma City Thunder established themselves as a legitimate powerhouse on the backs of young talent in Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden, challenging (and even dethroning) such names as the San Antonio Spurs in 2012 to make it to the Finals. The Chicago Bulls, led by Derrick Rose, and the Indiana Pacers, led by Paul George and Roy Hibbert, have returned to form as beasts of the east, while the Boston Celtics enjoyed a stint where they were the go-to rivals for the Miami Heat. As for LeBron himself, his loss in 2011 to Dirk Nowitzki made many question whether or not he could ever get a championship... and then he followed it up by winning back to back in 2012 and 2013. In 2015, he headed back home to Cleveland and completed his redemption arc, toppling the 73-win Warriors in 2016 and delivering the Cavs their first-ever championship.
    • The Golden State Warriors went from longtime basement dwellers to one of the most dominant teams of the decade. Led by the Splash Brothers duo of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Golden State steamrolled to the NBA title in 2015 and followed it up by breaking the regular-season wins record with 73 in 2015-16. Their quest to repeat fell short at the hands of LeBron and the Cavs in the Finals, but just a month later the Warriors pulled off the biggest free agency coup since LeBron assembled his Miami Dream Team, luring Kevin Durant away from Oklahoma City to form the next great superteam that would define the latter years of this decade.
    • In the 2018-19 NBA Finals, the Toronto Raptors defeated the Golden State Warriors to win their first title and the first for a Canadian-based NBA franchise.
  • Baseball has also recovered some popularity after the doping scandals of the last decade, primarily in the football-heavy West Coast as the San Francisco Giants embarked on an "even-year three-peat", winning the World Series in 2010, 2012 and 2014 (their first titles since 1954, when they were still the New York Giants).
    • The MLB saw two "strength rallies" in 2013 and 2017, both leading into World Series victories, the first by the Boston Red Sox after the Boston Marathon massacre, while four years later the Houston Astros managed to upset all pre-season predictions after the city became struck by Hurricane Harvey.
    • After 71 years, the Chicago Cubs finally won the National League pennant in 2016, also having ended the Giants' "even year magic" in the Division Series. On top of that, they got their first championship in 108 years after overcoming a 3-1 game deficit in the best-of-7 matchup against the Cleveland Indians.
    • In 2017, the Houston Astros triumphed in a seven-game series against the Los Angeles Dodgers to win the first World Series in franchise history (they joined the league in 1962 alongside the New York Mets).
    • In 2019, the Washington Nationals defeated the Houston Astros in seven games to win their first World Series (also the first appearance for the 50-year-old franchisenote ). This was the first World Series where the visiting team won each game.
    • On the other end, the 2010s were the first decade since the 1910s that the New York Yankees did not make any World Series appearances.
    • Nevertheless, the MLB ended the decade in another scandal as the Houston Astros were accused of engaging on sign-stealing (using technology to help hitters predict coming pitches) to win the 2017 World Series and the 2019 pennant, with the team being sanctioned for the former. The Boston Red Sox were similarly accused of doing this during their WS-winning 2018 season.
  • The National Hockey League saw the end of multiple decades-long championship droughts as the 2010s opened. The Chicago Blackhawks, whose previous championship had come in 1961, won the Stanley Cup in 2010, 2013, and 2015; the Boston Bruins, who had not won a championship since the Bobby Orr era in 1972, triumphed over the Vancouver Canucks in seven games in 2011; and the Los Angeles Kings, who were one of the first six expansion teams to join the NHL in 1967, finally won their first Stanley Cup in 2012, and added a second in 2014. In the final years of the 2010s, the Washington Capitols and St. Louis Blues also won their first Stanley Cup championships, with the former winning in 2018 against the Vegas Golden Knights and the latter winning in 2019 against the Boston Bruins.
    • Also, this decade saw first-time appearances in the Stanley Cup Finals of two teams that have never reached the Finals in their respective franchise histories. The first being the San Jose Sharks in 2016, and the second being the Nashville Predators the following year in 2017. Sadly, for both of those teams, they were eventually defeated by the Pittsburgh Penguins in their respective Finals appearances.note 
    • The NHL also saw its first expansion franchise since 2000 when the Vegas Golden Knights took to the ice in 2017, and stunned everyone — themselves included — by reaching the Stanley Cup finals in their first season, a feat that hasn't been accomplished since the St. Louis Blues in 1968. Plans were laid to add another franchise in Seattle to begin play in 2021, with the necessary 10,000 season ticket orders being placed in just 12 minutes.
  • A nasty stretch of sports-related scandals over 2011-13 broke many fans' faith in stars once acclaimed as role models and even heroes — Multiple Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong turned out to be doping all along in what was just the most high-profile of the steroid-related scandals of the era, beloved college football coach Joe Paterno's career (and, as it turned out, life) ended in disgrace when it was revealed that his assistant Jerry Sandusky was a serial pedophile and Paterno may have willfully covered it (an seemingly eternally delayed trial of three other school officials is likely to reveal more information), and the touching story of up-and-coming football player Manti Te'o and his leukemia-stricken girlfriend was revealed to be a hoax gone awry (the girlfriend didn't exist). But things can get even worse than those —double-amputee Olympic-caliber runner Oscar Pistorius of South Africa murdered his girlfriend, leading to doubts about his sanity, and NFL player Aaron Hernandez was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life without parole, a sentence that ended when he hanged himself in his cell in 2017.
  • Some of the biggest programs of college football had been hit with scandals. Not only did Penn State have to vacate many of their wins dating back to the time of Paterno's alleged discovery, which nullified his status as the winningest coach in the sport's history, it led to the athletic program and the university itself overhauling their leadership and postseason bans for the football team until 2016 (all sanctions other than a $60 million dollar fine and two years of the postseason ban have been reversed owing to evidence revealed in 2015 that the NCAA seriously mishandled the investigation), not to mention a nationwide effort by universities to step up their anti-molestation policies. The University of Southern California had also been hit with scandals when it was discovered that in the mid-2000's many USC players had accepted money from agents, which led to a 2-year postseason ban from 2010-11, a vacation of several wins, including the 2005 National Championship rout over Oklahoma, and famed running back and alumnus Reggie Bush handing back his Heisman trophynote . The University of Miami also faced probes over financial scandals that led to self-enforced bans on the 2011-12 postseasons, and the University of North Carolina and Ohio State University football programs each faced a one-year postseason ban in 2012 for a violation of NCAA rules.
    • Backlash against the Bowl Championship Series had continued into this decade, with among the reasons including the 2010 Fiesta Bowl matchup between "BCS Busters" Boise State and TCUnote , which denied both a chance to challenge a power conference. Effective 2014, the BCS was replaced with a playoff system involving the top four teams, and a set of four major New Year's Day bowls with a guaranteed slot for each of the five power conferencesnote  and a guaranteed slot for a "Group of Five"note  team.
  • The tradition of sports champs visiting the White House that dated back to the Reagan years was shattered after Donald Trump's arrival at 1600 Penn. Some players of the Super Bowl-winning New England Patriots decided not to pay the President a visit (including Tom Brady, who withdrew for personal reasons), while the 2017 NBA Champions Golden State Warriors boycotted Trump altogether after Trump withdrew their invitation. Stanley Cup winners Pittsburgh Penguins went to the White House without controversy while the Chicago Cubs returned after greeting Obama during his last days (they were playing the Washington Nationals that week), the players opting not to cited professional reasons rather than personal opposition to Trump for their absence. On June 4, 2018, President Trump withdrew the Super Bowl LII Champions Eagles' invitation, partly due to the aforementioned anthem protests, and partly due to the Eagles stating that they would only send in at least 10 players, including SB52 MVP quarterback Nick Foles.

    Theme Parks 
  • Universal Orlando Resort opened up The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in 2010, a new area that was immediately praised for its extreme attention to detail, immersion, and authenticity; so much so that it was seen as a major game-changer for not only Universal, but for theme parks altogether. It was also a move that caused Universal to at last be seen as worthy competition for the Disney Theme Parks, and a travel destination in its own rights.
  • The Disney Theme Parks have also opened or is planning to open a number of new theme areas based on films.
    • Pandora – The World of Avatar, based on the hit movie Avatar, opened at the Animal Kingdom in 2017, replacing Camp Minnie-Mickey.
    • Toy Story Land, which initially opened in the Hong Kong park in 2011, had been added to the Shanghai and Hollywood Studios park in 2018.
    • Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, based on Star Wars, opened in 2019. The Oga's Catina is notably the first location in Disneyland to serve alcoholic drinks to the public.
  • Shanghai Disneyland was opened on June 16, 2016 and ended up being a big success, showing that Disney had learned from the past failures of Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland.

    Video Games 
  • The subscription MMORPGs had fallen out of favor by this time; World of Warcraft, while still being popular, has seen a decline in subscriber count, Final Fantasy XIV was severely botched on launch, All Points Bulletin quickly tanked and Star Wars: The Old Republic adopted a free-to-play scheme mere months after release due to extravagant budget issues. Rift has seen some success after being launched in March 2011, although it too adopted a limited free-to-play model the next year, as did World of Warcraft earlier on. Free-To-Play games using a microtransaction model have been flourishing at the start of the decade, especially with the great popularity of games like League of Legends and Team Fortress 2. Other no monthly subscription MMORPGs such as Ragnarok II: Legend of the Second, Guild Wars 2, and Fiesta Online are relatively popular.note 
  • The Sonic the Hedgehog series appeared to be making a comeback, with 2010's Sonic Colors and 2011's Sonic Generations both receiving the most critical and fan praise of any game in the franchise in a decade. However, the series hit a slump when 2013's Sonic Lost World was met with mixed reception, with Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric being outright panned the next year (although its 3DS counterpart Shattered Crystal and follow-up Fire and Ice were better received). 2017 saw two major releases of differing reception: Sonic Mania was met with high acclaim, recieving the most positive critical reception since 1994, while Sonic Forces was met with mixed reception.
  • The Fighting Game genre is undergoing something of a renaissance. The success of Street Fighter IV, Tekken 6, and BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger in the late 2000s led to announcements of expansions and sequels, among them The King of Fighters XIII, Arcana Heart 3, Soulcalibur V, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Dead or Alive 5, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, and Street Fighter X Tekken, though the latter two are particularly divisive and possibly contributed to Capcom's decline. The Super Smash Bros. series released its fourth installment(s) as well and its fifth came out four years afterwards. In addition to established titles, there's also some new blood in the fighting arena, like Skullgirls, Daemon Bride, and Rivals of Aether, as well as spin-offs for non-fighting games like Umineko: When They Cry fighting game and Persona 4: Arena. The decade so far also saw the revival of the Mortal Kombat franchise with its newest installment/reboot and its two [2], in addition to a pseudo-spinoff starring DC Comics characters and a sequel to that later, winning back fans who'd been disappointed by its brush with the Polygon Ceiling. And of course, Arc System Works, the company behind BlazBlue, has continued to grow thanks to its now-flagship series, with the possibility of becoming the next top Fighting Game company following fan disillusionment towards Capcom.
  • The decade has also showcased a growing divide between "casual" and "hardcore" gamers, with many citing the advent of motion-control gaming as part of the debate: The Wii, the Kinect, and the Move have given gamers new ways to play, but only a handful of titles have taken full advantage of these motion-control devices, and most of them are "casual" games like Just Dance, Dance Central, and the ever-popular Wii Sports series, causing many diehard gamers to deride motion-control as a gimmick. At the same time, cellular phones and handheld computers have seen tremendous growth, with many of its games, like the famous Angry Birds, proving to be a prime attraction for the casual gamer. As phone-based games became increasingly popular among casual gamers during this period, they began drifting away from traditional retail video games. On the other side of the extreme, let's not even get started on the "exclusivity" PC gamers want their format to go, with the increasingly intense hardware requirements and the perceived "Stop Having Fun" Guys attitude regarding the format. All this has left fans and analysts to wonder if there can ever be a middle ground again. Nintendo however, often credited/Mis-blamed for starting this trend, attempted to re-bridge the gap by catering to both casuals and diehards this time around with the Nintendo 3DS and the Wii U, with both underperforming, the Wii U becoming the death knell for motion control. The Nintendo Switch eventually recaptured the casual market at the same time the company began a belated incursion into the mobile game business.
  • On July 11, 2015, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata passed away from a bile duct tumor, abruptly ending his 13 years tenure. Shigeru Miyamoto and Genyo Takeda briefly served as acting representatives for Nintendo in his absence, until former Nintendo of America president Tatsumi Kimishima was eventually appointed as Iwata's successor on September 16. Kimishima stated that Nintendo would continue to utilize the blue ocean strategyExplanation  that Iwata adopted and will be continuing Iwata's unfinished plans for the company, most notably its entrance into mobile phone gaming. Iwata's passing was highly publicized, with condolences being heard even from rivals Sony and Microsoft; new information about Iwata's multiple contributions to Nintendo also resurfaced during this mourning period, and his once-divisive reputation among gamers quickly became almost entirely positive.
  • By 2015, the mobile gaming boom began to decline, with no newer "killer apps" matching the popularity Angry Birds or Candy Crush got upon their releases. In response, developers began pushing "freemium" schemes, introducing microtransactions on games of all stripes. Many of these games have begun to sell "Loot Boxes" that provide Randomly Generated Loot. While generally tolerated in free games as a sort-of Necessary Evil, especially if the items are cosmetic in nature and/or the game provides ways to buy them without real money; when done improperly they enable a particularly nasty form of Bribing Your Way to Victory where just one bribe is probably not going to be enough for you.
    • While Lootboxes as we know them had begun with Team Fortress 2, many other games started to slowly hop on the bandwagon not long after, PAYDAY 2 in particular got mocked for its Crimefest 2015 event, essentially being based about the safe/ drill system implemented into the game, despite the developers claiming that the game would never feature such mechanics, which then caused the developers to make changes to the system not even six months later to make all safes free to open. Overwatch launched in 2016 with Lootboxes in tow, much to the chagrin of a fair amount of players, with defenders coining the phrase "It's Just Cosmetic!" as justifications for purchasing them, which meant, for the longest time, Overwatch escaped criticism of its Lootboxes on a larger scale.
    • The issue came to a head in 2017, when game-changing loot boxes were included in Star Wars Battlefront II despite it, like previous examples listed here, already being a full-price AAA title. The backlash against this was so severe that even the mainstream news media outlets had picked up on it, which had the knock-on effect of various World Governments to begin investigating whether loot boxes violated gambling laws. In April 2018, The Belgium Gaming Commission made a ruling that loot boxes are considered gambling and thus effectively banned in Belgium under their gambling laws. As a result many of major video games modified their games that barred microtransactions in Belgium to comply with their gambling laws. Similarly, the Dutch Gaming Authority made a similar ruling effectively banning loot boxes in video games. The United Kingdom also started to query the matter, and after questioning EA about the systems in Parliament, which led to EA claiming that they call them "surprise mechanics" (which went down as well as one might expect), and after opening the query up to the public for feedback, the sheer number of responses condemning EA's words and attempted stonewalling got politicians agreeing that, on September 2019, Lootboxes should be regulated like gambling, justifying the decision in this House of Commons Report by pointing out that while the actual mental effects of Lootboxes haven't been fully conclusive, the amount of horror stories of kids draining their parents' bank accounts by accident making the news on such a regular basis led them to act on that alone. The report ends with Parliament strongly suggesting in-game measures being put in place in games in the near future.
    • Japan seems to have a good following in this point, with RPG using gacha-based system like Granblue Fantasy and Fate/Grand Order. Both games, however, continued to improve themselves to the point of becoming a force to be reckoned with, with Fate/Grand Order becoming the new Gateway Series for the Nasuverse. 2017 is another turning point for this: Nintendo released what would be their most successful mobile game, Fire Emblem Heroes, internationally, to the point that they at times topped the download chart. This eventually pushed FGO to release the game in English language, and along with Granblue, the three competed as the top Mobile Gacha RPG in the market, possibly ushering a new age of gacha.
  • Indie gaming has garnered widespread popularity due in thanks to the proliferation of the internet, given most of these are distributed online and a majority of the industry's revenue comes from downloads, as with thatgamecompany's Flower and Journey, initially available on the Play Station Network to strong digital sales and critical acclaim and, along with flOw, eventually rereleased on a one-BluRay disc compilation titled Journey Collector's Edition. Sony and Nintendo show interest in indie video game developers, including thatgamecompany. Indie games, initially known in shareware circles during the 1990s, became increasingly profitable after the late 2000s saw numerous critically praised titles such as Braid. They came to be characterized as relying on innovative gameplay mechanics and unusual art styles. Monaco, Fez, Papers, Please, Outer Wilds, Undertale, and Cuphead won plenty of positive reviews and decent sales for such approaches, but a growing number of developers have also created horror games including Amnesia: The Dark Descent. By far the most successful of these games is the notorious(ly addictive) Minecraft created by a Swedish programmer named Markus "Notch" Persson. It uses pixellated graphics, the point is you mine blocks and build any imaginable thing out of them, and you have to defend yourself from hostile monsters by not just finding supplies, but using a shelter made from scratch. It even has been constantly updated by Mojang who ported it to iOS, Xbox 360, Wii U, and the Google Android. Other notable indie games include the aforementioned Angry Birds series, League of Legends, and a pair of unlikely 2014 sleeper hits in Flappy Bird and Five Nights at Freddy's.
  • The decade has seen two major breakthroughs in video games as free speech. In the United States, the Supreme Court ruled in 2011's Brown (formerly Schwarzenegger) v. Entertainment Merchants Association that video games are guaranteed the same free speech protections that other forms of media have, rendering bills to restrict sales unconstitutional. It did(n't) help that many shops do in fact already have such regulations in place without the need for government intervention anyway. Meanwhile in Australia, after some long, controversial years of South Australian Attorney General Michael Atkinson denying the unanimity to introduce the R18+ rating to games the same way that films are rated, the Australian Attorneys-General had finally decided upon it in the summer of 2012. The implementation took effect at the end of the year.
  • The Visual Novel genre continues on in the background in comparison to other game genres, but received an unexpected boost in popularity in 2012 with Katawa Shoujo, created by members of 4Chan. The game was well received by almost everyone who reviewed it, and its effects on the VN genre are still being felt as more VNs are released to growing popularity. When CLANNAD, already the subject of a popular anime adaptation, finally received an official English translation, it immediately became one of the top-selling games on Steam.
  • Crowdfunding, particularly through Kickstarter, has become a popular option for indies and even some established developers to get funding without having to go through publishers. The trend was started by Double Fine, who achieved massive support for "Double Fine Adventure" (later titled Broken Age) when traditional publishers were wary of backing an old-school adventure game. However, there has been increasing amounts of controversy over the use of Crowdfunding. Starting with Mighty No. 9 created by Keiji Inafune at Comcept, it was initially the most successful Kickstarter related to Video Games at the time. However, it was followed by two campaigns for the pre-emptive spin-off Red Ash and the resulting anime leading to discontent that the system could be abused by AAA studios, especially after it was announced that Red Ash found a publisher and that the resulting money would instead be used for undetermined stretch goals.
  • After decades of being little more than a recurring theme in sci-fi works, Virtual Reality reached consumer availability in a form that people actually took seriously, in the kickstarted the Oculus Rift CV1, and the HTC Vive; shortly thereafter Sony would bring their own version in the PlayStation VR. Given the pedigree of all three systems (Oculus having a lot of videogame talent in its staff roster, and the Vive being little more than a consumer-targeted refinement of prototypes built by PC gaming juggernaut Valve Software), it's not surprising that the uses and software library of all three consist almost entirely of videogames.
  • While League of Legends gained dominance amongst the Multiplayer Online Battle Arena genre (MOBA), around this era, the open beta and eventual release of an update of the game it was based on, Dota 2, sparked an intense rivalry that would define the scene of competitive gaming and e-sports and sparked the wave of many MOBA-like games to be released. While many of them failed and ended up closing, League and Dota continued to be the most heated top game rivalries, with only two games aside of the top 2 still standing strong in the scene of MOBA: Smite by Hi-Rez Studios and Heroes of the Storm by Blizzard Entertainment.
    • Even mobile gaming gets on the MOBA scene with games such as Vainglory, though that later spiraled out to another beast. Thing is, Vainglory used a traditional MOBA control scheme with touch screen. This was proven to be a decent carryover from normal MOBA to mobile MOBA. But around mid-late of the era, Chinese company Tencent Games (which has bought out Riot Games) unleashed Arena of Valor, an internationalized version of their local MOBA Wangzhe Rongyao (translated as Honor of Kings or Kings of Glory), which provided a pseudo directional pad for MOBA movement and simplified their attack/skill system to facilitate the mobile platform better. While Vainglory still held the throne of mobile MOBA dominance in the west, AOV proved to be a great success in the Asian market (WZRY itself became the top selling mobile game in China); this is also taking factors that WZRY is very Chinese; including characters from Chinese history, folklore and mythology; the international AOV used a Western design while also throwing in characters from the DC Comics (such as Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman) to appeal to the west. This also sprung in some 'copycats', one of them that proved to be a success despite the 'cloning' stigma (and lost lawsuit case) is Mobile Legends: Bang Bang
    • The success of MOBA would spark another new genre based on another popular Valve game, Team Fortress 2. After years of development, Blizzard unleashed Overwatch, which would define the genre of Hero Shooter, a combination of First Person Shooter and MOBA, taking cues from TF2. A lot of games based on that genre continue to be produced and also fall, although Hi-Rez Studios' own Hero Shooter Paladins managed to stay and become the only force that could stand against Overwatch and Team Fortress 2's popularity.
  • A minor trend has developed over this decade involving settings and themes normally associated with children and childishness repurposed into action or horror video games, making it the medium equivalent to the Subverted Kids Show. Standouts of this subgenre include Epic Mickey, Five Nights at Freddy's, Bendy and the Ink Machine, Doki Doki Literature Club!, and Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning, all of which have caught on to one degree or another.
  • 2017 was seen as a renaissance for Japanese video game development and their reception in the West, which coincided with the above stronger interest in japanese media as noted in the anime and manga section above. Resident Evil 7 gained back a major level of prestige amongst fans that were seeing a sharp decline in the franchise's quality over the previous half of the decade, which hit a nadir with Resident Evil 6 and Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, with the 7th given praise as the best in the franchise since the the fourth game. Yakuza 0 and the later released Yakuza Kiwami led to a Newbie Boom for the franchise, having the best sales for the series in the west in its history. Tales of Berseria was critically acclaimed as the best in the series since Tales of Vesperia after a string of many dissapointments amongst the fans. Nioh, a Team Ninja-developed project that was infamously stuck in Development Hell since 2004 finally released to a high universal claim as well, garnering the best western sales in the history of Team Ninja's career. NieR: Automata not only managed to make Yoko Taro as household name with gamers, but saved PlatinumGames from the brink of collapse after several bad licensed titles with Activision and the tragic cancellation of Scalebound earlier that year. Persona 5 became the best selling game from Atlus in the company's history, and managed to make an already successful ranchise even more mainstream as a result. The biggest winner, however, was Nintendo, whose release of the Nintendo Switch was met with universal acclaim, with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild being seen as one of the best launch titles in console history, Splatoon 2 cementing the Splatoon IP as one of the company's most lucrative properties, the unanimously well received Super Mario Odyssey being further proof that Nintendo's dark days with the Wii U were over, and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 giving Monolith Soft their big break after years of making acclaimed but underperforming games. These trends for well recieved and commercially successful japanese games continued into 2018, with titles like Dragon Ball Fighter Z, Monster Hunter: World, and the remake of Shadow of the Colossus among others showed that Japanese gaming has made a true comeback. This video in particular explains this phenomenon. 2019 has only seen this train of success continuing, with Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, Resident Evil 2 (Remake), and Fire Emblem: Three Houses all being acclaimed by audiences and critics, while the successes of Devil May Cry 5 and Astral Chain marked a resurgence for the Stylish Action genre.
  • 2012 saw the release of Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure, a new type of game that involved physical toys that could be "brought to life" within the game itself. Some other developers played Follow the Leader and released their own "toys-to-life" games, and eventually major retailers would have entire aisles devoted to these toys. Unfortunately, this proved to be a passing fad; as the three major series (Skylanders, Disney Infinity, and LEGO Dimensions) all ended by 2017. Nintendo's amiibo line continued on for a few years after that but noticably slowed down, while the next big push for a toys-to-life series, Starlink: Battle for Atlas, flopped at retail and soon abandoned the toy aspect in favor of purely digital updates.
  • Crossovers and Guest Fighter concept within video games has became MUCH more common in the latter years of this era. The first phenomenon of this is most probably Super Smash Bros. Brawl, which included not just Sonic the Hedgehog, but also Solid Snake into the roster. The next Smash Bros game went above that, bringing back Sonic and also adding Mega Man, Pac-Man, Ryu, Cloud Strife and Bayonetta. Afterwards, adding Guest Fighter from another company in one game became a lot more common and outlandish choices started popping up more. For instance, Tekken 7 features Akuma, Geese Howard, Noctis Lucis Caelum and Negan; Injustice 2 features the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Fighting EX Layer featured Terry Bogard, Dead or Alive 5 bringing in four Virtua Fighter characters, two more Ninja Gaiden characters to join NG protagonist and DoA mainstay Ryu Hayabusa, plus Naotora and Mai Shiranui as DLC, Do A 6 bringing back the Ninja Gaiden characters and Mai while introducing the latter's fellow Ko F fighter Kula Diamond, and several collaboration projects by gacha games (example: Ryougi Shiki appearing in Fate/Grand Order note , Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger and Space Sheriff Gavan appearing in Super Robot Wars X-Ω, 2B and 9S appearing in Final Fantasy Brave Exvius, and later joined with A2 in Star Ocean: Anamnesis, while 2B herself would appear alongside Geralt of Rivia and Haohmaru in Soul Calibur VI (after Ezio Auditore appeared in its predecessor), a lot of event characters from many other series within Granblue Fantasy, a game that started out as an original setting... This is topped with Super Smash Bros. Ultimate bringing all of the guest fighters from Brawl and 4 as part of its "Everyone is Here" theme, while also adding Simon and Richter Belmont from Castlevania and Ryu's longtime Moveset Clone Ken Masters, and even more so with the DLC roster bringing in the protagonist of Persona 5, several from Dragon Quest, the return of Banjo and Kazooie to Nintendo consoles, and another guest appearance for Terry Bogard). And beyond the base roster, franchises like Bomberman, Virtua Fighter, and Monster Hunter have all been given recognition through Assist Trophies, and indie icons like Sans and Cuphead have appeared as Mii Costumes through DLC.
  • The Super Robot Wars franchise began shedding its No Export for You stance, something that they attempted to do since the GBA releases of Super Robot Wars Original Generation 1 & 2 in the 2000's, but ended up not going through with it due to releasing their Updated Re-release on the Playstation 2 when Sony had their "must include dub" policy running. Their first attempt was to translate Super Robot Wars Original Generation The Moon Dwellers, but as it was the beginning of a newer era of translation, it was considered by many to be kind of sloppy while still passable to tell the story. Bandai Namco took these at heart and then announced Super Robot Wars V, the first Super Robot Wars game to be fully translated to English and the translation quality was vastly improved from Moon Dwellers, fixing the mistakes they did. This trend continues with Super Robot Wars X, and eventually topped with the announcement of Super Robot Wars T, which not only would be translated to English language, but also introduced several new entries very much familiar with the English-speaking audience, beginning a new international era for the massive anime robot crossover game.
  • Towards the end of the decade, an entirely new genre of gaming began working its way into the mainstream: the "Battle Royale" genre (named after the novel and film of the same name, from which the genre draws its core concept). Introduced by Player Unknowns Battlegrounds (or "PUBG" as it's more commonly known)note , the concept is as simple as they come: a massive number of players (typically 100) skydive onto a massive island littered with weapons, equipment, and other various tools and items, and proceed to fight one another as a damaging energy ring slowly encloses around the players, forcing combatants to group closer together as the game progresses. The goal is equally simple: be the last player (or team, in some games) left alive. Not long after PUBG saw widespread success, it quickly spawned a slew of imitators each bringing their own twist to the genre, such as Apex Legends, Realm Royale, and Call of Duty: Black Ops 4's "Blackout" mode. However, one member of the genre in particular, Fortnite, took off like a rocket to become one of the most popular games of the decade, and overall the genre as a whole shows no signs of slowing down.
  • The Collect-A-Thon Platformer had made a comeback after getting pushed by the wayside in the 2000s due to declining interests and Donkey Kong 64 being considered the game that stretched the collecting aspect way too far. What helped to bring Collect-a-thons back was the nostalgia that many developers had from playing these types of games when they were young, so many of these developers showed genuine interest in bringing this genre back from the dead. This resulted in remakes of older IPs (like the Spyro Reignited Trilogy), and the birth of entirely new IPs (like Yooka-Laylee, A Hat in Time, and Super Lucky's Tale), but the high point for the genre came from Super Mario Odyssey where it showed that collecting and exploration can be fun again, and it marked a new point for future Collect-a-thons to prosper from.
    • Perhaps the most unexpected Cinderella story for 3D platformers of the decade, however, came from a 2003 Licensed Game about a yellow sponge who lives in a pineapple under the sea: SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom. Originally a Cult Classic with a niche following, the game was largely ignored in the 2000s due the stigma of licensed games it carried with it despite being the opposite, but in 2011, the Speedrunning community discovered it. Pioneered by speedrunners KT, Nathan, Hazel, and former world-record holder Coel (who found most of the glitches and exploits), throughout the years, they molded the game into something else with a lot of potential, creating a lot of attention for it, and by 2015, the community and the fanbase had expanded at an astounding rate. It was by that point that speedrunner SHiFT emerged, becoming the next world-record holder and championing the game's legacy on Twitch and at Games Done Quick events. In the wake of SHiFT's success and the game's newfound popularity, their efforts eventually paved the way for THQ Nordic and Purple Lamp Studios to give the game the remake treatment, leading to the release of SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom Rehydrated in 2020. This is one of the rare instances where a licensed game rose from the shadows of obscurity and got a modern remake, and also a case where speedrunning forged an identity of a game rather than the other way around.
  • The Electronic Entertainment Expo, once the premier trade event of the video game industry, began to wane in influence as the 2010s dragged on. Nintendo (in 2013) and Electronic Arts (in 2016) elected to stop making keynote appearances at E3, in favor of pre-recorded content and live events hosted on streaming platforms (though both parties continue to host floor booths). In 2019, Sony Interactive Entertainment not only chose to adopt the same strategy, but elected to skip E3 entirely for the first time since the event's debut in 1995. Some analysts believe that E3 will eventually be rendered obsolete, as more and more companies opt to appeal directly to consumers via the internet and social media, rather than through expensive (and notoriously clumsy) annual stage shows primarily attended by industry insiders.
  • The decade proves to be an interesting decade for veteran video game companies. Some managed to bounce back and winning back the crowd, some managed to go to a downward spiral, losing the goodwill of a huge portion fandom. Here are some of the examples:
    • The Downs:
      • Konami experienced a shift of management in the middle of 2010's, in which they started an utterly radical changes that made the fandom lose trust on them, at least their modern form. They started with a change of focus, from AAA games to cheaper mobile games and pachinko machines, turning a lot of their beloved video game franchises into pachinko machines and to further compound on this, their relations with Hideo Kojima began to sour and this culminated with their mistreatment towards Kojima in regards of his final Metal Gear game, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, including not allowing him to take the awards the game achieved. The mistreatment of Kojima not only made Kojima quit and eventually formed his own studio which was taken under Sony's wing and created the highly acclaimed Death Stranding (and that's not including the mistreatment or cancellation of another Kojima-related franchise Silent Hill), but it also revealed a most damning piece of news that they have been utterly mistreating their employees. Added to that, shortly afterwards, Japan itself enacted a new law that would limit profit in the business ventures, and Konami had to go back to video games... after their new policies reduced their video game developer manpower, which resulted 'worst games' candidates like Metal Gear Survive or Contra: Rogue Corps. What few defenders of Konami could argue that sometimes they did hit right on the spot, with the likes of Super Bomberman R and allowing Simon Belmont and Richter Belmont to appear in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and at the very least, their soccer simulator Pro Evolution Soccer were still well received. While some people might be ready to let Konami move forward and try to fix things, some were justified in feeling Once Done, Never Forgotten route on Konami. Both sides seemed to agree that the past Konami was great, the current Konami by the end of the decade, not so much.
      • Blizzard Entertainment and their decision to merge with Activision back in 2008 has started to show its flaws, one that would be damaging to the company on whole, but especially Blizzard, once known as an iconic figure in the previous decades. They became very aggressive in pushing on the e-sports scene, though not with long-term success, thus modifying many of its games to make sure they are 'competitively eligible', but at the cost of the fun-loving non-competitive gamers. They could no longer reach the golden age of how StarCraft: Brood War became an e-sport icon, with their other e-sport scenes not that successful, and this ends up with them taking away support for one of their multiplayer titles Heroes of the Storm, knocking it down from being one of the best Multiplayer Online Battle Arena games, and overall also damaging the experience with Overwatch. They also damaged their playerbase with the reveal of Diablo Immortal mobile game at Blizzcon, revealing Diablo IV at a latter Blizzcon as a late damage control, but that didn't sit well with their western player base which were less attuned with mobile games. However, their biggest damning moment was the incident with the Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft player Blitzchung, whereas after hearing him showing support for his struggling country at Hong Kong, and in order to appease their marketbase at China, at that time under the rule of Xi Jinping, Blizzard decided to ban Blitzchung and all of its casters and taking away his achievement prizes. The news went viral fast and many fans turned against Blizzard for its rather political-driven decision. For further insult to the injury, Blizzard's remake of one of its classics, Warcraft 3 Reforged, turned out to be very polarizing and garnering negative reaction (Technically this happened in January 2020, but it was close enough). A majority of all these were related with the decisions made by Activision, and so Blizzard closes the decade as a company that used to be beloved, but now considered to be catching up with EA in terms of 'badness'.
    • The Ups:
      • Capcom in particular has probably had one of the best success stories of the decade. Initially starting off the decade as reviled by the gaming community for aspects of their games that seemed poorly thought out and some poor corporate decisions (many will point to the disastrous launch of 2012's Street Fighter X Tekken as one of their absolute lowest points in recent memory, particularly due to the substantial amount of on-disc DLC). Starting with Resident Evil 7 as shown above, they have released at least one nearly universally acclaimed game a year. Monster Hunter: World in 2018 was the next one, and Mega Man 11 was considered to be a great return to form for their Platforming mascot, to the point where it was called "Mighty No. 9 done right". But 2019 had the back to back successes of Resident Evil 2 (Remake), which garnered even better praise then Resident Evil 7 did, and Devil May Cry 5, which not only garnered similar acclaim, but was a shot in the arm that the Devil May Cry fanbase needed after Dm C Devil May Cry demoralized and divided the fanbase prior. It also garnered the highest PC release in the companies history, right after Monster Hunter World, in fact, and 2012's Dragon's Dogma also became something of a Sleeper Hit despite low initial sales due to word of mouth, and is now acclaimed as one of the best action RP Gs on the market. While their Fighting Game Division is still a bit off in terms of quality, many have claimed that Capcom as a whole has found their footing and might even be doing better both critically and commercially as a company than they have ever had. Though that is not to say they had their own blunders in this decade (such as Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite), but they came out much better than the last decade.
      • In the previous decades, the company SNK was known as the underdog company that could go toe-to-toe against the company juggernaut Capcom in terms of fighting games. Unfortunately, they had to file for bankruptcy and stay out of the limelight while trying to re-gather their resources after they sold it out to Aruze and Playmore, eventually re-forming under the name 'SNK Playmore'. They continue to release their games in mostly spin-off titles and several hit-or-miss games and even Pachinko titles (the same venture that doomed Konami, read above), but eventually in this decade, it has gathered enough resources to return to its original name (just SNK) and unleashed several hit fighting games that brought them back to the limelight after their long absence: The King of Fighters XIV and Samurai Shodown (2019), which continued to be given post-release contents and also earned them spots in the EVO tournaments, and also lent their characters as Guest Fighter in other games (most notably Geese Howard in Tekken 7, Haohmaru in Soul Calibur VI, Mai Shiranui in the fifth and sixth Dead or Alive titles alongside Kula Diamond in the latter, and Terry Bogard in Fighting EX Layer and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate). In this decade, SNK has finally completed its 'risen from the grave like a Phoenix' story phase.

    Web Original 
  • Despite the economic downturn, technology marches on. Facebook, Twitter, and the smartphone have revolutionized the social experience, spurring some commentators to predict the end of privacy. The Internet is also proving to be even less hospitable to the preservation of media than the newspapers and film reels of past decades, with once-well-known virtual media of the 2000s, like Homestar Runner, Kid Radd, Bob and George and several MMOs either lost or on their way to oblivion, although a few have undergone the website equivalent of Keep Circulating the Tapes, with projects that relocate webcomics to still-supported websites.
  • Internet piracy has quickly drawn the ire of the United States Congress, and Congress' attempts to curtail it have even more quickly drawn the Internet's ire as the proposals offered often went far beyond what was necessary and instead were seen as putting internet freedom at risk:
    • It began with the proposition of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) bills, which many said would grant the government the power to shut down copyright infringing websites. The Internet exploded in massive protests, with The Other Wiki blacking out in solidarity, and Anonymous banded together with big website creators to protect the free Internet, all to ensure the bills did not pass. They didn't, but the US Senate shows no signs of completely giving up.
    • The situation worsened when, a day after The Other Wiki blacked out, the FBI had taken measures to shut down popular filesharing site MegaUpload, which caused a chain reaction of filesharing sites like Fileserve, Filejungle and many others making their sites for private-uses only.
    • Following behind SOPA is the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), rumored to be much worse, though many said the rumors are usually exaggerated. With the backlash in Poland and elsewhere, it seems unlikely that it would be ratified, let alone implemented, in the foreseeable future especially after the European Parliament voted against it.
    • In 2011, there was the Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act (PCIPA), the US equivalent of existing European data retention laws. However, given the Internet's previous rallying to defeat the more imminent threats of SOPA and PIPA, and already delaying and weakening the more slow-burning ACTA, we have more than a few months to prepare for PCIPA. On top of that, PCIPA is a remake of legislation that already failed to make it to a full vote. These factors, and the fact that the media actually denounced PCIPA/HR 1981 in 2011, makes for a bill that, like previous US data retention bills, is doomed to an ignoble failure.
    • 2013 saw the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), a bill with the aim of fixing cybersecurity problems but would create privacy problems as it did so. The bill was dead on arrival in the Democrat-controlled Senate thanks to its formally bipartisan support splintering among party lines. Barack Obama promised to veto it, the NDAA, which was an annually-passed bill that just happened to have a nasty set of riders attached. In addition, the bill has been improved: some of the privacy issues have been resolved through numerous amendments that make it so the government cannot mine data gleaned, and that they cannot condition ISPs to give up information, and other amendments have clarified that intellectual property is not something it can be used to protect.

      Now, according to the CDT, the big flaws that haven't been addressed, and which are likely to be addressed by Senate Democrats, assuming they don't scrub it outright, are the flow of information directly to the NSA, and the use of information for "national security." Also, the much-maligned Quayle amendment, which amended CISPA to be able to affect cases involving "the exploitation of children" and "threat of bodily harm or death to an individual," is, in fact dictated by existing laws, in which ISPs and other entities can, and already do, voluntarily give information related to these to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the US government, and law enforcement agencies. ISPs and the government may not search for such things under CISPA or current law, but if information related to the exploitation of a minor or a threat of bodily harm is also found in cyberattack data, the Quayle amendment allows it to be used.
    • And there're also the two big elephants in the room, The Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement and an equivalent treaty with the European Union, a pair of trade agreements being written in secret with only a few being allowed to look at them, which promise to make several parts of SOPA and PIPA into international law amongst many other awful things, the former having being entered into force, albeit without the US, in December 2018 and negotiations for the latter having seemingly become stuck.
  • A (relatively) new form of entertainment appeared this decade: The Abridged Series - edited videos of anime, video games, or cartoons that are significantly pared down, but have a brand new - often humorous - script. While at first the only decent creator was LittleKuriboh with his popular Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series, throughout the years several other quality abridged series have popped up - culminating in the massively popular Dragon Ball Abridged. As a result of the popularity of these works, some of the creators of these works have found their way into legitimate voice-acting gigs.
  • Although not quite as big as Facebook, Tumblr became massively popular since its formation in 2007, and houses countless communities, the most popular being referred to as "social justice bloggers", "hipster bloggers" and "fandom bloggers".note  Yahoo! bought Tumblr for $1.1 billion in May 2013.
    • Generally, one social network would blow up every year. In 2011, the photo-sharing application Instagram took off. Having been launched only a couple of months before the beginning of the new year, Instagram would have over 100 million users by April 2012 and was bought by Facebook the same month. Around the beginning of 2012, Pinterest, another photo-sharing website with a pinboard-style gimmick, underwent a quick rise in popularity. 2013 brought rise to Vine, a Twitter-owned mobile app that allows users to create six-second video clips. 2014’s breakthrough was Snapchat, which allowed people to upload photos online that would disappear after ten seconds.
  • VS debate webshows which put emphasis on the Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny between fictional characters had grown in popularity in the decade. While the general idea is Older Than They Think, the idea really took off with the emergence of Death Battle, which managed to take the premise that Deadliest Warrior pioneered earlier and expanded it even further, becoming ScrewAttack's flagship show in the process. Other shows such as Cartoon Fight Club, Superpowered Beatdown and 1 Minute Melee (which was originally a spin-off of Death Battle before becoming its own brand following its departure from ScrewAttack) had emerged in its wake, and communities dedicated to VS debates had sprung up all over the internet, becoming Serious Business. Perhaps the biggest name of them all, however, did their battles in a very unconventional manner: Epic Rap Battles of History.

    Western Animation 

  • Commercial space travel thrives in fiction, as in the movies Avatar and Prometheus, but official scientific exploration of space has almost completely vanished; not surprising, given that manned exploration has never ventured past Earth's orbit following the Apollo program, the Columbia shuttle disintegrated after two decades of service, and the shuttle program itself was retired in 2011 without an immediate replacement program, leaving only the venerable Soyuz capsules, active since the late 60s, to manage an increasingly budget-shrinking International Space Station. The impression held in The '70s, that by the turn of the century mankind would be roaming the sands of Mars, now seems a bit further away.
  • Despite setbacks in human space endeavors, commercial exploration of space has turned out to be a good investment for NASA, with no less than five separate manned capsulesnote , four human-rated launch vehiclesnote , and two unmanned resupply vesselsnote  under development, for deployment some time between now and the early 2020s. Of these, Orion and Dragon are capable of going beyond Low Earth Orbit and potentially to Mars, while the rest are to be LEO ferries. The era of commercial space transport can be fairly said to have begun some time in 2012, when the Dragon completed testing, including the all-important retrieval note , and began operationsnote . Every-day citizens are closer than ever to affordable space trips, and space travel itself could be a big boom for science and the economy. Last but not least, a consortium of super-rich entrepreneurs, among them, James Cameron, have started a company aimed at mining asteroids.
  • Unmanned exploration seems even more promising. The Dawn, New Horizons, and Juno probes reached their targets (Vesta in 2011 and Ceres in 2015 the first one to end its mission in 2018, Pluto in 2015 the second one, and Jupiter in 2016 the third one), to say nothing of the successes of the landing of Curiosity on Mars in August 2012, the European Rosetta, sent to the comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko in 2014, or the European/Russian ExoMars orbiter which arrived at Mars in 2016. Among Long-Runners, the two good ol' Voyager probes keep working after more than forty years in space and have reached interstellar spacenote  and Cassini, that danced around Saturn since 2004 and sent in 2005 the successful European lander Huygens to its largest moon Titan, was deorbited into the ringed planet in 2017 and the Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity, that arrived to said planet in 2003, kept chugging on until 2010 and 2019 respectively, the latter having been knocked out only after a massive dust storm, while the nuclear-powered Curiosity that arrived to Mars in 2012 keeps going on even after the end of the decade. On the other hand... we'll let's not mention the Russian Phobos-Grunt and Indian Vikram disasters.
  • Alternative fuel sources continue to grow in availability, albeit slowly, and energy-efficient appliances are on the cusp of becoming the norm. They may have to hurry, as nuclear power, the only workable alternative to fossil fuels at present, is under scrutiny due to the earthquake/tsunami combo critically damaging atomic energy plants in Japan, most notably the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. While not nearly as severe as Chernobylnote , it's had a similarly chilling effect, and the outcome could shape nuclear power policies for the rest of the decade as countries rethink their nuclear programs. Germany led the way on this one, with the government of Angela Merkel doing a 180 on nuclear policy, announcing plans to eliminate all nuclear power in Germany by 2020note , shortly after the accident, in a desperate attempt to keep voters on their side; while her CDU/CSU has taken a drubbing, her coalition partners, the libertarian FDP, has been wiped out, or nearly so, from at least two state legislatures, and the Greens have officially become a prospective party of government. On the other hand, France and, more significantly, India and Britainnote  continue to press ahead in their plans to preserve and expand their nuclear power base, so the future remains extremely muddy on this one.
  • Apple released the iPad in 2010, turning the tablet from a curiosity to a must-have item, but not before everyone and their brother mocking it as the dumbest thing ever. With the iPad a runaway success, other companies followed suit. General users started migrating away from conventional PCs to these devices.
    • In August 2011, Steve Jobs stepped down as CEO of Apple, appointing longtime executive Tim Cook as his successor. On October 5th, Jobs died after a long battle with pancreatic cancer at age 56. Since his death, some have expressed concerns over whether Apple can carry on or still be innovative without him.
    • After the December 2015 shooting in San Bernadino, California, the FBI tried to urge Apple to assist them in unlocking the iPhone belonging to one of the shooters. Tim Cook adamantly refused to cooperate, citing an overreach of privacy, the fear that the program to unlock the iPhone could be stolen by hackers and subsequently used for criminal or terrorist purposes, or fall into the hands of foreign governments to gather intelligence. as well as setting a dangerous precedent that could force other major manufacturers into serving government agencies like the FBI. In March 2016, the FBI announced that they'd found a way of accessing it without Apple's help, which seemed to confirm Cook's suspicions. And then, in April, the FBI found no incriminating data on the phone.
    • In 2016, Apple introduced the iPhone 7, which eliminated the industry standard 3.5 mm headphone jack, though this decision has been criticized as being both as a very hasty and shameless ploy for marketing their own wireless earphones (dubbed AirPods), which were then delayed because of technical issues.
    • In 2017, Apple introduced the iPhone X, which drew some mockery for a failure in the security system during its introduction.
  • In 2012, Microsoft released Windows 8, later updated to Windows 8.1 in late 2013. While its new UI and overall design language eventually become a source of new trends of flat design user interface, it was heavily criticized by PC owners for replacing its longstanding system if toolbars and menus with the unintuitive and unfitting "Start Screen" interface, to the point they had to rename their Windows 9 (which was replaced with Windows 8.1) into Windows 10, a much-needed return to form that would work on all devices andbe perennially updated (although these have proven to be an annoyance for most users) rather than be replaced eventually by a "Windows 11".
    • The company has also entered the manufacturing game after acquiring Nokia, with its existing lines of smartphones, tablets, and the high-end Surface line of computers slowly becoming credible rivals to Apple (the Surface Pro desktop computer was lauded as more innovative than many Apple projects of recent years), though the manufacturing divisions future remains shaky outside of the Surface line with Nokia's long standing cell phone business being spun-off into Finland-based company HMD Global in 2016 and the canciling of the Windows Mobile project towards the end of 2017.
  • Samsung emerged as Apple's chief rival in the mobile field. It has its occasional problems as well, like the exploding Galaxy Note 7's, which were supposed to be the Korean giant's big seller for the 2016 holiday season.
  • Go has proven for decades to be notoriously difficult to program good AI for compared to other board games due to the large amount of choices per turn. This changed in 2017, when Google's AlphaGo defeated Ke Jie, the human champion of Go, with 3 wins and 0 losses, at the Future of Go Summit near Beijing. Other professional Go players at the summit challenged AlphaGo, but AlphaGo remained undefeated, cementing the program's absolute mastery of the game. As Go is considered the toughest board game for a computer to understand and play well, the AlphaGo versus Ke Jie match is largely considered by computer programmers as the last time there will be a Man Versus Machine board game match to test the cutting edge of artificial intelligence.
  • It would appear that, as of 2017, desktop computers are falling out of favor with general consumers. The main reason for this is functionality and technological slow-down. Smartphones and tablets have advanced to such a degree that they can now comfortably handle many of the functions that previously required a desktop PC: need to check your e-mail, see the latest news, chat with your friends, read/study from an e-book or word file? Smartphones and tablets have you covered, and with all those available on the go too! The same goes for laptops, especially for more complex tasks. The second reason is the seeming slowing down of Moore's Law (number of processors on a chip double every 2 years). This is most evident when you consider the differences in your first through maybe third computers, which had the feel of being manufactured decades, not years apart from one another, and between a PC made in 2012 and 2017 where the difference is much less radical. To be clear, the desktop breed of PC will not disappear any time soon, but will be pushed into sidelines of gaming, enterprise applications, and high-end systems for PC enthusiasts (one more proof for the falling-out of desktops is the explosion of gaming PCs made available, as the gaming market is considered to be the last area in which the sales of desktop computers can still expand and grow).
  • In the aftermath of the 2008 crisis, tech companies recovered their place at the top of the corporate pyramid, with Apple, Microsoft, and Google being joined by Amazon and Facebook, the five becoming the largest companies in the world. Naturally, there have been numerous concerns across the political spectrum about their dominance of the global economy, including the displacement of numerous business, with accusations of tax dodging. These companies' interest on charity and other social issues has also given way to cries of hypocrisy and legitimate fears about social engineering, especially after it was discovered in 2018 that the British firm Cambridge Analytica had collected the personal data of millions of users through a Facebook game and aimed news content towards them to allegedly influence political elections, while other games in the social platform collected sensitive information without the users' knowledge. Facebook's stock value fell as much as 10 percent thereafter while founder Mark Zuckerberg testified before the U.S. Congress. The scandal also led to user growth stagnating among numerous websites in spite of their changes of "terms and conditions". This also has led to the U.S. Government proposing stricter guidelines for Facebook and Google, while services such as Amazon, Netflix, Uber and Spotify among others would have to pay as many taxes as their non-digital counterparts as decreed by the Supreme Court in June 2018.
  • Towards the end of the decade, the looming specter of Internet censorship became an extremely pressing issue, especially with such a small number of companies holding disproportionate control over the online blogosphere. Fears of the Big Five tech companies listed above becoming a de facto Thought Police ran rampant as popular social media profiles and digital media channels started disappearing left and right, without warning, and with vague explanations given as to why (if, indeed, there was any explanation at all). Furthermore, the inconsistent enforcement of these sites' terms of service gave off the distinct impression that those of certain political leanings were being targeted and silenced, while other political stances were being protected. YouTube in particular has been hit especially hard by the censorship boogeyman thanks to its extremely-flawed copyright claim algorithm, which can be easily exploited to allow anyone to order the demonetization or even the outright removal of any video, for any reason, simply by making a false copyright claim, even if the content used in said video falls under Fair Use, or the complainant has no claim whatsoever to any content contained in the video. While such false claims can be disputed, the process is so convoluted and biased in favor of the complainant that most channels simply don't have the resources to see it through to the end. All of this has led to much heated debate about the role private corporations, especially those who peddle primarily in the exchange of information, play in the protection of free speech, but so far no clear solution has been forthcoming.
  • The 'Internet of Things' developed even further from the previous decade, with networking capabilities being added to household appliances like kettles, refrigerators, central heating controls and even light bulbs. This, combined with the introduction of 'home assistant' devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home, which allow users to control their 'smart' devices through voice commands (e.g.: "Alexa, turn the lights on in the kitchen"), brought Automation and Smart Homes into the mainstream consciousness.
  • The electric car has finally broken into the mainstream after a very, very rocky start. 2011 saw the launch the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt, followed by the Tesla Model S and Renault Zoe in 2012, BMW i-series in 2013, Tesla Model X in 2015, and the Tesla Model 3 and Chevrolet Bolt in 2017note . So far, adoption is pretty good, helped by hefty tax breaks for buyers and a steady stream of government funding for manufacturers (though both of those may end soon, at least in America), and increases in battery technology have allowed for lighter, cheaper cars with higher top speeds and longer ranges. And with places like Germany and California planning to phase-out traditional gasoline and diesel cars over the next few decades due to the looming threat of climate change and the fallout of Volkswagen's "Dieselgate" scandal, electric cars are on their way to becoming commonplace.
  • Boeing has gotten into a lot of scrutiny with their Boeing 737 MAX models when two related airplane crashes, Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, crashed into the ground without any survivors. This has led to various governments across the globe to ground all Boeing 737 MAX models due to safety concerns. Investigations revealed that its anti-stall system, Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), was primarily responsible for both crashes and the pilots struggled to control its anti-stall system, even when following the instruction manual given by Boeing.

And Finally...

  • After all this, we have to remember, the 2010s paved way for the revival of the Space Program, a tightroped economic recovery in the West and a flourishing economy in the East, and various other conflicts and developments that arose throughout this wild decade. Stay tuned for more in The New '20s.


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