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The Worst Attempts at the Mannequin Challenge

Hold still.

by Brenden Gallagher

by Brenden Gallagher

In the Information Age, with every season comes a new ridiculous viral Internet challenge. This fall brought us many things—mostly bad—but it also brought the Mannequin Challenge. Unlike the former titan of dumb viral memes, the Ice Bucket Challenge, the Mannequin Challenge isn’t explicitly about activism (though some have tried to make it so). The Mannequin Challenge is about staying completely still, usually while Rae Sremmurd’s “Black Beatles” plays in the background. When done correctly, it can be a thing of beauty.

Some of the Mannequin Challenge videos have been funny. Some of have been impressive. Some of have been made in the name of a good cause. but many of them have been terrible. Here are the worst attempts at the Mannequin Challenge so far.

Josh Smith and Allen Iverson

The ex-NBA stars have far more skills on the court than they do at saying still. Smith’s Chinese teammates picked some poses that were difficult to hold, such as a mid-bench press flex. Iverson either doesn’t get what the Challenge is all about or doesn’t give a damn. Either way, these are two of the worst Mannequin Challenges on record.

Dallas Cowboys Brass

Even if you’re a diehard Dallas Cowboys stan, you have to admit that Jerry Jones doing practically anything is annoying. Watching a bunch of millionaires attempt an incredibly half-assed version of the Mannequin Challenge on their private plane while they down Papa John’s is not really what this challenge was meant to be.

Also, they did this after beating the Browns, and beating the Browns isn’t really an occasion for excessive celebration.

Tween Boys at a Sleepover

If you’ve ever been a tween boy, you know that sleepovers are the site of some embarrassing shenanigans. That’s why the first rule is not to put said shenanigans online. These boys regretfully did not follow that rule and the result is a weird mix of Mannequin Challenge, awkward role-play, and clearly working out some emotional issues. The best thing we can say for it is that it isn’t bad enough to prevent one of them from holding office some day.

Hillary Clinton and Staff

The attempt wasn’t actually terrible, but as this video was taken on Nov. 8, it is hard to look at this as anything other than the 21st-century version of fiddling while Rome burned. To look at all of their assured, smiling faces now produces some very real emotions, and none of them are the ones you’re supposed to feel while watching the Mannequin Challenge.

4,000 Rabbis

Getting 4,000 rabbis together sounds like the beginning of a dirty joke you’d hear at an Irish dive bar, but it is not the recipe for a great Mannequin Challenge. Whether some of these venerable holy men don’t understand the challenge or just don’t care, this may be the worst attempt you can find on the Internet. Some rabbis are shuffling around, chatting, and one even waves at the camera. Oy vey!

A Group of 4-Year-Olds

The children at the One Step Ahead Learning Center learned a valuable lesson when their attempt at the Mannequin Challenge went viral. Sometimes, something can be so bad it’s good. The children cannot stand still, and they may not even understand what the Mannequin Challenge is. But, damn if it isn’t the cutest thing you’ll see all day.

Gun-Wielding Alabamians

Though this massive attempt at the Mannequin Challenge conducted by nearly two dozen men in Alabama was actually quite well done, the results were as bad as can be. The video of the men staying completely still in the middle of a posed shootout went viral—and caught the attention of local police. So far, two arrests have been made, guns have been seized, and a new slew of people have learned the crucial lesson of the Internet age: Going viral isn’t always a good thing.


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Brenden Gallagher

Brenden Gallagher works in television and writing in Los Angeles. He worked on Revenge, Heartbeat, and Famous in Love. His writing has appeared at Complex, VH1, and MERRY JANE. Follow him on Twitter @muddycreekU



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