- Charles McQuillan / Getty
- Google has unveiled its Year in Search for 2018.
- The annual compilation contains the top worldwide Google searches of the year.
- This year’s list includes several tragic deaths as well as the World Cup.
As 2018 draws to a close, Google is looking back on the top searches of the year.
Google narrows down the top-trending searches in the world over the past 12 months, terms that had the highest spike in traffic this year compared with 2017. These are not necessarily the terms that were searched the most often.
The year has been rife with tragedy – with the high-profile deaths of Anthony Bourdain, Kate Spade, and several others. But 2018 also brought a royal wedding and an exciting World Cup.
Here are the top-trending Google searches of 2018:
10. Kate Spade
In June, the fashion designer Kate Spade was found dead at 55 in her New York City apartment, apparently of suicide.
Spade launched her namesake brand in 1993, a year before she married her husband, Andy. Over the following years, the couple ran the business together out of their apartment in New York’s Tribeca neighborhood, transforming it into a $27 million business by 1998.
The couple eventually sold the business to Neiman Marcus in 2006, but their love of handbags didn’t end there. Years later, after the birth of their daughter, they made a second foray into fashion, launching Frances Valentine, a handbag-and-shoe company, in 2015.
- Read more about the life of Kate Spade:
- Here’s the story behind the rise of Kate Spade’s handbag empire
- Kate Spade’s close friend and business partner says the late designer left 4 seasons of completed work for her handbag company
- Kate Spade was detached from her namesake brand at the time of her death, but nostalgic shoppers have flocked to its stores. Here’s what the brand’s future could be.
9. Stephen Hawking
- ANDREW COWIE/AFP/Getty Images
In March, Stephen Hawking died at the age of 76.
The theoretical physicist made several discoveries that transformed the way scientists viewed black holes and the universe. Though he had Lou Gehrig’s disease – the neurodegenerative malady also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS – which impaired his motor functions, he went on to become a mathematics professor and eventually the director of research at the University of Cambridge’s Center for Theoretical Cosmology.
Hawking was also known to bridge the gap on complicated subjects by infusing humor and wit during his lectures. His character and personality produced several anecdotes and references in pop culture, including appearances on various TV shows.
- Read more about Hawking’s life and career:
- 15 of the most remarkable and memorable things Stephen Hawking ever said
- A brief history of Stephen Hawking’s time on planet Earth in one chart
- Stephen Hawking was only expected to live a few years after being diagnosed with ALS at age 21 – here’s what the disease is
In June, the rapper XXXTentacion was shot dead in his car after leaving a motorcycle dealer in South Florida.
At the time of his death, XXXTentacion – whose real name was Jahseh Onfroy – was awaiting trial for a 2016 domestic-abuse case. He faced charges of aggravated battery of his pregnant girlfriend, domestic battery by strangulation, false imprisonment, and witness tampering.
Onfroy rose to fame off of his 2016 single “Look at Me!” His debut studio album, “17,” reached No. 2 on the Billboard 200 album chart and was certified gold in 2017. Onfroy’s second studio album, “?,” debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard album chart in March.
By August, four suspects accused of killing Onfroy had been taken into custody.
7. Anthony Bourdain
- Larry French / Stringer / Getty Images
Anthony Bourdain, the host of CNN’s “Parts Unknown,” was found dead in June in what was ruled a suicide.
In 2000, Bourdain wrote “Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly,” which detailed his life as a chef. The book, which became a best-seller, marked the beginning of his breakout as a crossover star. Bourdain went on to become an author, TV host, and the winner of four Emmys and a Peabody Award. He often spoke about his earlier struggles with drug use and his rocky path to stardom.
- Read more about Anthony Bourdain’s career rise:
- Take a look back at Anthony Bourdain’s incredible career from dishwasher to celebrity chef
- Inside the friendship between Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert, the famous chef who was in France with the TV host when he died
6. Meghan Markle
- Charles McQuillan / Getty
On May 19, England’s Prince Harry and the American actress Meghan Markle married in what was probably the most discussed wedding of the year. Markle, a 36-year-old Los Angeles native, began quietly dating Harry in October 2016, subsequently giving up her acting career and moving to England.
In October, Kensington Palace confirmed that Markle was pregnant and due to give birth to a royal baby next spring.
- Read more about Meghan Markle and the royal wedding:
- Meghan Markle is about to leave behind a surprisingly relatable life to become Britain’s first-ever American princess – see her former house, car, and wardrobe
- All the details you need to know about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s fairy-tale wedding
- Here are the first photos of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle as a married couple
- Insiders say George Clooney is a ‘shoe-in’ to be the godfather of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s baby – here’s a closer look at the royal’s friendship with the Clooneys
- The biggest royal drama of 2018
5. “Black Panther”
In January, “Black Panther” hit theaters. It was the first superhero movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe starring a black lead, and critics almost universally loved it.
By March, “Black Panther” became the highest-grossing superhero movie of all time at the domestic box office.
- Read more about “Black Panther”:
- 15 things even die-hard fans may have missed in ‘Black Panther’
- Michael B. Jordan added 15 pounds of muscle after ‘Creed’ to play the villain in ‘Black Panther’ – here’s how he did it
- ‘Black Panther’ star Chadwick Boseman is sick and tired of doing the Wakanda salute all the time
- The 7 biggest questions we had after watching Marvel’s ‘Black Panther,’ and hope are answered in the sequel
4. Stan Lee
- Mario Anzuoni/Reuters
Stan Lee died in November at the age of 95.
The former president and chairman of Marvel Comics had become the beloved face of the Marvel universe, popping up in cameos for the past decade in many of the big-screen adaptations starring the characters he helped birth in comic book form.
- Read about the life of Stan Lee:
- Stan Lee, Marvel legend, dead at 95
- Sebastian Stan told us the memory of Stan Lee he always thinks about with a smile
- Stan Lee spent a lifetime condemning racism, most prominently through the heroes in his comic books
3. Mac Miller
In September, the rapper Mac Miller died of an overdose of drugs and alcohol at the age of 26.
The rapper and producer, a Pittsburgh native, had been open about his struggles with substance abuse in the past. In May, shortly after the end of his two-year relationship with the pop singer Ariana Grande, Miller was charged with a DUI after the police said he hit a utility pole with his car.
Following reports of Miller’s death, condolences and grief poured out from the music community. Grande wrote on Instagram: “I can’t believe you aren’t here anymore. I really can’t wrap my head around it.”
- Read more:
- Ariana Grande remembers Mac Miller: ‘He is supposed to be here’
- 22 musicians reveal how Mac Miller impacted them – from Chance the Rapper to John Mayer and SZA
- Mac Miller’s close friend defended Ariana Grande and praised her for helping him sober up
- Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images
In April, the Swedish DJ and producer Tim Bergling, known by his stage name, Avicii, died at the age of 28.
Bergling retired from touring in 2016, citing a series of health concerns that included acute pancreatitis, in part because of excessive drinking, he told Billboard at the time. While Bergling’s cause of death was initially undetermined, later reports indicated that his death was a suicide.
Bergling released numerous hit singles in the past decade, including the 2011 EDM hit “Levels” and the six-time platinum song “Wake Me Up,” featuring the singer Aloe Blacc, which peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 2013.
- Read more about Avicii:
- Celebs and friends react to the death of DJ and producer Avicii
- DJs like Laidback Luke say their mental health is being damaged by the brutal pressures of the music industry
1. World Cup
- Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
In June, 32 countries headed to Russia to compete for the biggest prize in international soccer: the World Cup.
After a remarkable victory over Croatia, France became the 2018 FIFA World Cup champion.
Searches for the World Cup saw the biggest year-over-year spike in 2018, because of both the event’s popularity and the fact the tournament occurs only once every four years.
- Read more:
- Brilliant Mbappé, insane Varane, and a Floyd Mayweather spirit – this is everything you need to know about how France won the 2018 World Cup
- The most mesmerizing photos from the World Cup
- France’s 19-year-old wunderkind is donating his World Cup winnings to charity – and the total could be more than $500,000
If you or someone you know is struggling with depression or has had thoughts of harming themselves or taking their own life, get help. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people in distress, as well as best practices for professionals and resources to aid in prevention and crisis situations.