Something about the past couple of years has made many of us really embrace our wild side. As crisis gripped the world and populations were forced into an isolated existence, we began to shake off the shackles of pointless societal expectations. A lot of people no longer had to make small talk, or wear pants without an elasticated waistband. They could drink wine alongside their daily bread baking session at 10am, and hold a dance party at three in the morning on a Tuesday. We were in the lawless land of lockdown, baby, and things would never be the same again.
This undoubtedly influenced how we processed things on the internet; more of us were willing to be less polished, or at least flirt with that side of ourselves as we proclaimed that we were unhinged, or going feral. Even as so-called normality resumed, we held on to these ideas. Something had escaped, never to be kept under wraps again; we had all gone Goblin Mode.
The meme may not have emerged until the start of 2022, but it had definitely been waiting to happen for some time. It stemmed from a doctored headline about the breakup of Ye and Julia Fox (yes, the year has been that long that he wasn’t completely canceled and she wasn’t a cult icon). The internet quickly began to apply the concept to their own lives, and the rest was history.
Its influence has clearly resonated. By choice of general public, the phrase has become Oxford English Dictionary’s Word of the Year. Winning a massive 93% of a public votes, it’s obvious that we don’t intend on giving up our goblin ways any time soon. Judging by the reaction on social media, that is exactly how it should be.