We've Asked The Pros: What Are The Best GIFs Of All Time?

18 comments

Apparently, we have all been pronouncing "GIFs" incorrectly, which is something that GIF-inventor Steve Wilhite likes to remind us of, over and over again. The problem with this is, of course, "jif" sounds horrible, and like a mass-market peanut-butter product. We don't say "jift," we say "gift;" we don't want to eat "jifilte fish" over Passover, but "gefilte." Maybe it is time to admit that the power of the hard "g" in GIF has surpassed the creator's intent. And perhaps, this is the death of the author Roland Barthes has been talking about.

To celebrate the emotional power of the GIF, we've asked some true internet jockeys, those of us who have dug deep to find the best three-second emotional experience they can find, to share with us.

Oh, also, since Google has made finding GIFs easier, let us know some of your favorites, too.

Raymond Sultan, associate editor at Buzzfeed

MY GIF

"This is my favorite GIF ever. It is the purest and most luminous form in which the ineffable experience of happiness has ever been expressed. Also, I like the wine bottle."
Lillian Ruiz, social media editor at Flavorpill Media.

tatas

"Dolly Parton and Jackee shaking their ta-tas. I like to believe that this is what my Saturday nights look like to the outside world."

bees

"And, of course, bees."
Thomas Houston, features editor at The Verge

tumblr_ljoxxm3mjL1qzpal4o1_400

"Every element here is perfect. Pancakes. A horse perfectly flipping said pancakes. A goat watching on the side. A cow wearing a chef's hat."

tumblr_mbhp8fFpxd1r3gb3zo2_250

"He might not be the bravest Batman — the dog is in hot pursuit, though — but this kid takes the sharp turn like a freaking pro.".
Katie Notopoulos, senior editor at Buzzfeed

tumblr_mhk952rFNI1qed514o1_400

"It's Fred Durst on a razor scooter. I don't think I need to justify why I love this so much. I actually made this one myself from the 'Faith' video because I was surprised as the dearth of Durst GIFs out here." —

1280403633_cool-dog-mowing-the-lawn

"I like this because not only is the dog very cool, but he's very helpful. I imagine that it would be a great trick to teach your dog to mow the lawn."
Sam Biddle, editor at Valleywag/Gawker.com

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"The truth is that I can't pick my absolute favorites of all time. It's like choosing between children, and they're all beautiful prodigies. This one I like because it's mysterious. I found it somewhere during the London Olympics, so I think it might be an Olympic soccer player (footballer). I have no idea really. I like the expression on her face. Sometimes I make it back at her on the screen."

vernacul7ar2dl

"This is good for a laugh. Kennedy/McNamara doing the A Night at the Roxbury thing. C'mon. Speaks for itself. I've had that on my hard drive for years."
Richard Lawson, senior writer at The Atlantic

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"This is called 'bee cat falling off sofa.' I like how absurd it is, I like the odd resignation that tumbles, literally, into silliness. It's an effective illustration of a bad day."

Warning: This GIF contains graphic content.

suicide

"Is this Black Dahlia suicide GIF too grim? I first saw it on Videogum and it really clued me into the expressive power of GIFs."
Leah Chernikoff, editorial director at Fashionista

kuApA

"This is my favorite GIF of all time. It's totally mesmerizing and has this calming effect on me and it spreads joy to everyone I send it to."

cat-jumps-into-bean-bag-chair-13668470915

"Obviously, my second favorite is another cat GIF. This is basically what i feel like doing at the end of every day."
Caity Weaver, staff writer at Gawker

mama-b

"Like all of the best GIFs, this one was made by my friend and colleague Rich Juzwiak. Judging by the file name he gave it (momma_dee.gif), I'm guessing this is a woman named Dee who is also a mother. I'm not sure which reality show it's clipped from, which I love because it makes it seem like stock footage — a woman sipping red wine through a straw on a television program that looks real-ish, but actually doesn't exist. A good way to respond to someone else's comment without really saying anything."

beyonce-solo

"This is the perfect GIF to use any time a friend receives an accolade or promotion."

caity-club

"Super embarrassing GIF of me at the club. I didn't even have time to do my hair or makeup or anything. Whatever, I guess that's just how I look!"
Matt Silverman, editorial director at Mashable

stop-girl

"The first one is known as The Stop Girl. It's from a video taken at some college sports game, where a cute girl says "stop!" to the cameraman filming her. It's not so much the GIF itself that I love, but the fact that there's a popular subreddit dedicated exclusively to this one GIF: http://www.reddit.com/r/thestopgirl. Every single post in this sub links to the same GIF, but with a different caption:
'When I see people texting while driving...' STOP!
'When I see people putting ketchup on their steak...' STOP!
'When I realize people are still submitting to this subreddit.' STOP!

banana

"Another fave is one my colleague just sent me. It's a kid dancing in front of a banana shaped like a dolphin, and I like it because REASONS."
Lastly, our R29 special mentions:

sloth

"You know that scene in American Beauty where the kid describes seeing so much beauty in a plastic bag that he simple cannot bear it? That's what's going on here."

"dog-pulls-blanket

"After a lot of debate, there is nothing more simple than this 'drop-mic' dog moment. It's a great way of saying, 'Look guys. I'm out.' Bam."