Who knew that the TIME Person of the Year announcement would become such an annual television event? Yet, here we are, and on The Today Show earlier today the entire shortlist was officially revealed.
Take a look at some of the following candidates: Donald Trump, separated families, Russian leader Vladimir Putin, investigator Robert Mueller, Black Panther director Ryan Coogler, Brett Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford, slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the March For Our Lives Activists, South Korean leader Moon Jae-in, and former Suits star turned Royal Family member Meghan Markle. There were likely dozens more people considered at one point, but this is ultimately what the list was narrowed down to. One of these ten presumably is going to have the title, really regardless of whether or not they want it.
Out of this group, who could end up getting the title? Khashoggi seems to be a top contender, mostly because of the recent headlines revolving around his killing. However, TIME has also shown a willingness over the years to go with groups of people rather than just the individual — that’s why the Silence Breakers ended up winning Person of the Year last year, and we’ve also seen them go in some unconventional directions in the past. Remember when they declared that “You,” accompanied by a mirror on the cover, won the title?
As for people like Trump and Putin being on the list, one thing to certainly remember here is that Person of the Year does not always mean the most popular person — it’s an honor tied to just how important someone is in shaping the cultural makeup of the entire year. It’s hard to deny that controversial people often do define a year and that is why some of them may be in consideration. Controversial people have absolutely received the honor at some point in the past.
The one person who we’re a little surprised is on the list is Markle — while we certainly do agree that she was in the headlines for a rather-long time because of her wedding to Prince Harry, it’s hard to imagine that she will be chosen as Person of the Year because those often have a larger, more-widespread message beyond just the individual. They end up bringing about some change on a little bit of a greater level.
The cover for TIME Person of the Year 2019 will come out tomorrow, so at least the magazine isn’t going to make anyone wait too much longer for the results? We don’t know why, but this has become a rather-fascinating tradition when you think about how we reflect and look at the past twelve months.
What do you think about the shortlist of candidates for TIME Person of the Year? Be sure to share some of your thoughts right now in the attached comments. (Photo: NBC.)