The Top 25 Cracked Articles of 2012

The views have been tallied. The critics have been ignored. Nothing but the hits: The 25 most crazy popular articles we put up this year.

#25. The 10 Most Satisfying Cases of Hecklers Getting Destroyed

A live stand-up comedy show audience is the closest real life gets to the Internet mentality. Maybe it's the booze. Maybe the atmosphere puts off an "act however you want without repercussions" vibe. But whatever the reason, every show ends up with some socially inept, attention-starved audience member talking back to the comic and fucking it all up for everyone else. I hate hecklers. I can't imagine being the type of person who sits in the dark while a professional with a microphone is trying to perform and immediately thinks, "You know what this situation needs? My annoying fucking voice."

So, I collect YouTube videos of comics giving hecklers a verbal beat-down. They're tremendously satisfying, to the point that I would consider going into stand-up comedy just so I could some day shit all over a heckler. Until then, I'll just have to admire the work of the masters ...

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#24. 5 Actors Who Do the Exact Same Thing in Every Movie

Everyone assumes that directors and writers decide what happens in a movie, but many times the movie star is the most powerful person involved with the project. For instance, when Jim Carrey wanted to make a movie about his favorite number, The Number 23 hit theaters across the country. A much more entertaining abuse of this star power occurs when huge movie stars decide they look awesome doing something, and proceed to force that something into every movie they make. For instance ...

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#23. 6 Fictional Places You Didn't Know Actually Existed

Part of what makes fantasy and sci-fi appealing is that it's not just a bunch of characters -- it's a whole world. One you want to live in.

That's true even if it's an objectively bad place -- Gotham City looks like a shithole, but who wouldn't trade their current life with a chance to go there and fight supercriminals with Batman? Of course, that's part of the frustration, too -- we'll never actually see the Shire or Mordor firsthand. But you can come pretty close, because it turns out a lot of these fantasy settings were based on real places. For instance ...

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#22. 8 Ordinary Photos Hiding Mind-Blowing Details

We live in an age where we're constantly bombarded by images from every conceivable direction, and as a result we rarely stop to look at them for more than a few seconds, unless they come with the promise of a visible areola. However, sometimes a photo that looks completely boring and mundane at first glance can reveal mind-blowing details once you bother to take a closer look at it. Like two visible areolas.

The next time you're absent-mindedly scrolling down your Tumblr feed, keep in mind that one of those photos you're ignoring could be hiding something that will change the world ...

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#21. 6 Insane (But Convincing) Fan Theories About Kids' Cartoons

For every innocent cartoon out there, there's at least one obsessive fan on the Internet who managed to crap out a semi-coherent theory finding something disturbing about it, like that Tom & Jerry was actually Nazi propaganda, or that Barney & Friends is a metaphor for the Watergate scandal. But just like a broken watch, even the Internet is right every once in a while: The most disturbing fan theories are the ones where you just can't help but agree with them ...

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#20. 6 Creepy Things You Never Noticed About Famous Kids' Cartoons

The longer and harder you look at something, the more grotesque it's going to get. Which is why you should never examine private parts or innocent TV shows too closely. Unfortunately, we did both.

Here are six more classic kids' shows that are actually set in terrifying universes ...

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#19. 6 Horrible Aftermaths Implied by Movies With Happy Endings

It's amazing how you can ruin a movie's perfectly happy ending with a little bit of analysis (as we've previously shown here and here). For instance, in the following films, the ending turned out just fine for the main character, but totally screwed characters who were left conveniently off-screen.

For instance ...

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#18. 18 Images You Won't Believe Aren't Photoshopped (Part 9)

As we've demonstrated many times before in our most popular feature on Cracked, the forces of the universe love the sound of people shouting "Fake!" at their computer screens, and photographers love to capture the proof. In case you missed the previous episodes, here's Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, the gritty reboot that doesn't acknowledge the previous editions, Part 6, Part 7, and Part 8.

And now ...

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#17. The 7 Most Baffling Things About Women's Clothes

There are a lot of annoying things about being a woman, like periods, childbirth, and not being able to play basketball in a way that keeps spectators awake. But near the top of the list has got to be buying clothes.

I know one way to fix it is just to be ballsy and wear men's clothes, and that's a bold choice. But you take a social hit for wearing "masculine" clothes, and most women don't want to take that hit. So they go to buy clothes made specifically "for women," and generally find a set of the most impractical, low-quality, high-maintenance crap that a sweatshop can make.

Here are a few of the many, many awful things about the clothes that manufacturers want women to wear ...

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#16. 5 Things Nobody Tells You About Living in Japan

Two years ago, I achieved alpha-geek status among my friends by moving to Japan. Since then, all I've been hearing from them is how lucky I am and how they would murder any endangered species still clinging tenaciously to existence in exchange for permission to live in my closet. And I totally get it, because come on, it's Japan -- the wackiest, most interesting place on the planet. Who wouldn't want to live here?

Well ... you might not, actually. Because while there are plenty of great reasons to live in Japan, such as the low crime rate and the amazing public transportation system, there are a few things you should know before you decide to pack up your manga and hop on a jet across the Pacific, wearing rabbit ears and flashing peace signs at everyone who makes eye contact with you. For starters ...

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#15. The 6 Creepiest Lies the Food Industry Is Feeding You

As we've talked about before, the food industry is based almost entirely on a series of lies that, quite frankly, most of us just prefer to believe ("'All natural?' Sounds healthy to me!"). But we have to draw the line somewhere, right? Especially when the food you buy has nothing to do with what it says on the label ...

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#14. 5 Ridiculous Sex Myths Everyone Believes

What do you know about sex? Surely there aren't many of you who would answer "nothing." Even if you're the most inexperienced or inept lover of all time (which we've been assured you are), you at least have some preconceived notions about sex based on the stories and anecdotes and stand-up comedy you've heard over the years.

But here's the thing -- even with all of that going for you, the real and correct answer is still probably "nothing." For instance, you probably think ...

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#13. 9 Actors Who Do the Exact Same Thing on Every Movie Poster

You wouldn't think there'd be many specific rules for movie posters beyond "make the star look cool" and "don't show any dong." But as we've mentioned before, certain actors seem to have amazingly specific and arbitrary elements that must be included at all costs, logic be damned. For instance ...

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