These 2016 Table Topics Will Save Your Awkward Holiday Dinner

Photo: Snap Stills/REX/Shutterstock.
A special kind of magic happens when an entire family gathers together. I'm talking grandmas, grandkids, aunts, nieces — the whole crew. Multiple generations sitting around the same table, trying to catch up on a year's worth of news, gossip, and accomplishments. But, if your family is anything like mine, all of that can be covered in about an hour. Once you've talked school, jobs, and relationships, there's that dreaded, boring lull.

Dinner drags on and you have nothing to talk about.

So, what do you do? Well, you can start a nice round of ice-breaking with this handy list of awkward silence-squashing table topics, drawn from pop culture by yours truly. Who doesn't want to know what their great-aunt thinks of Brangelina's breakup? Or if dad has streamed Lemonade on HBO? Or what grandma thinks the rom-com classic Love Actually is REALLY about?

I think it's about time you found out. Ahead we bring you 14 trusted table topics to help you and your family have the most memorable holiday dinner yet. Cheers to that.
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Photo: Gregory Pace/REX/Shutterstock.
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Photo: Ben Rosser/BFA/REX/Shutterstock.
What was the most heartbreaking celebrity split of the year?
There have been so many shocking breakups this year, some of them messier than others. From Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber to Diane Kruger and Joshua Jackson, and the most upsetting of them all: Brangelina.
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Photo: Dave Allocca/Starpix/REX/Shutterstock.
Who's the most surprising couple in Hollywood?
Comedian Jenny Slate and superhero hunk Chris Evans top our list (and we love it), but what other pairings shocked you? Which didn't at all?
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Which former star had the biggest comeback?
If anyone at the dinner table is woke enough to have seen American Honey, then go give them a high-five. The indie film marked Shia LaBeouf's long-awaited comeback. Joining him on the list of this year's resurrected stars were Britney Spears, JoJo, and maybe... Mel Gibson? That's TBD.
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Photo: Jim Smeal/REX/Shutterstock.
Has Taylor Swift's image been ruined?
This year has been a doozy for the 26-year-old performer, starting with her public breakup from DJ Calvin Harris, continuing with the whole Tom Hiddleston romance, and ending with her Snapchat scandal with the Wests. Is her reputation still as golden as it was in 2015?
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Photo: David Fisher/REX/Shutterstock.
Is Kanye West an artist?
For years, West has said that he is a visionary, that his purpose is closer to that of Albert Einstein's than say, Snoop Dogg's. Did he finally convince you that he is worthy of being listed with the greats of the past (like Steve Jobs, Walt Disney, and Einstein)?
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What are the biggest Oscar contenders of the year?
Not all of the future Oscar-nominated movies have been released yet, but there is already major buzz, both negative and positive, around a number of films (Birth of a Nation, Moonlight, and La La Land to name a few). Pull up some movie trailers and plot summaries and go to town talking about the milestone films we've seen this year, and what you wish you saw more of in Hollywood.
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Photo: Snap Stills/REX/Shutterstock.
What onscreen family reminds you most of your own?
Quirks, jokes, flaws, imperfections, and all — are you a Family Stone family? An Addams Family? A Fuller House family? Are you more Tyler Perry's Madea or The Waltons? The options are endless.
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Video via YouTube.
Is Love Actually the best Christmas rom-com ever, or totally the worst?
Fire up this controversial trailer and get to debating. I'm personally Team Best Rom-Com, but after a rewatch, it's hard to deny that parts of the film are literally the worst.
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Photo: via Tumblr.
Blond or Blonde?
Basically, you should all talk about Frank Ocean's album. Do you think there were different meanings associated to the different album titles and covers? Which do you prefer? What's your favorite song?
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Photo: David X Prutting/
Lemonade or Anti?
Not to pit two amazingly committed fan bases against each other, but...pick one. Defend it. What's the best track? Who is the better dancer? What does Grandma have to say about it all?
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Photo: Jim Smeal/REX/Shutterstock.
Who are the funniest women in comedy right now?
This has been a great year for funny women. Emmy-winners Kate McKinnon and Julia Louis-Dreyfus immediately come to mind, but we can't forget about tastemakers like Lena Dunham and Amy Schumer (polarizing as they may be).
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Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO.
Who is a robot and who is real on Westworld?
Westworld is totally the new Game of Thrones. In the likely chance that some family members aren't familiar, then you have at least an hour's worth of conversation in explaining the plot right there. If you're lucky, your uncle might even have seen the 1973 original, leading to opportunities for comparison.
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Photo: via HBO.
What are your Game of Thrones predictions?
Will Jon Snow marry his sort-of sister Sansa Stark? Will there be an ice dragon? Are all these season 7 spoilers fake?
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