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Thrillist's Best, Most Popular Stories of 2017

We’re constantly reminded that the most popular things in life aren’t always good (we’re talking of course about Coconut La Croix), and the good things in life aren’t always the most popular (Blade Runner was NOT appreciated in its day). This tends to be doubly true on the internet.

In some special and most-fortunate cases, however, the internet hive mind trains itself on something truly great, and the Viral Story of the Day also happens to the Best Story of the Day. That rare convergence gets us at Thrillist high-fiving each other. So by way of one final celebration, we put together a list of 10 of our best stories of 2017 that were also 10 of our most popular.

We can’t thank you enough for reading, watching, eating, and drinking with us in 2017. Here’s hoping 2018 brings you all the best things in life.

Daniel Fishel/Thrillist

21 Unwritten Rules of Flying You're Probably Breaking

The secret to sloshing a billion people through terminals, security lines, and airplanes without utter chaos breaking out? A complex, unspoken social code nearly everyone observes. This list needs to be distributed at every airport in America.

Cole Saladino/Thrillist

You Probably Haven't Heard of America's Best Fried Chicken Chain

Krispy Krunchy Chicken might be the most underrated item in fast food today, and it’s likely hiding right under your nose. The 28-year-old company has 2,200 locations in 41 states, and its poultry goes toe-to-toe with the best, but most people mistake it for some podunk Mom & Pop.

Jason Hoffman/Thrillist

The 100 Greatest Props in Movie History, and the Stories Behind Them

At a time in history when details go painfully overlooked, we slid movie history under a microscope to honor the simple joy of a perfect prop. A staggering amount of reporting went into this piece, to bring you the stories behind some of our most iconic movies.

Daniel Fishel/Evan Lockheart/Thrillist

I Ate Tom Brady's Insanely Weird Diet for a Week. Here's What Happened.

The ageless Tom Brady, possibly the greatest NFL quarterback of all time, does not eat fruit. Or dairy. Or freakin’ eggplant. Thrillist writer Wil Fulton put Brady’s fantastically weird diet to the test, to see if he, too, could reach peak performance.

Daniel Fishel/Thrillist

Military Packing Secrets That Will Make You a Better Traveler

Packing, the worst part of any trip, is a pain because nearly all of us just make it up as we go along. But you know who are taught to pack, and who treat it like a high art? Marines, soldiers, airmen, and sailors, that’s who. And their tips make so much damn sense.

Daniel Fishel/Thrillist

The Creepiest Urban Legend From Every State

America is a country rich in folklore, a place where cautionary tales have always been mixed into the pot and sprinkled into our collective nightmares. Yet some of our nation's eeriest and most persistent stories don't travel far. This macabre batch of stories is sure to freak you out, no matter where you live.

Daniel Fishel & Evan Lockhart/Thrillist

The Oral History of John Titor, the Man Who Travelled Back in Time to Save the Internet

November 2, 2000 saw the first online post by the individual who would come to be known as "John Titor." Titor claimed to be a man from the future, sent to the past to retrieve... a portable computer. His instructions on what society would look like in his version of the future kicked off a frenzy of investigation, speculation, and deception that has lasted nearly two decades.

Jason Hoffman/Thrillist

The 100 Best Burgers in America, Ranked by our National Burger Critic

Kevin Alexander traveled to 30 cities and ate more than 300 burgers. These are the best.

Jason Hoffman/Thrillist

The Most LGBTQ Friendly Cities in Every Red State in America

The trench work for equality is happening in cities many blue-staters couldn’t find on a map. The stories here are a reminder that the United States, and so many of the places within it, can’t be painted with just one brush.

Jason Hoffman/Thrillist

The Real Origin of Slenderman, the Internet’s Worst Nightmare

The haunting art in this story, created by Thrillist illustrator Jason Hoffman, was selected into the Society of Illustrators’ annual exhibit. And the story, too, is pure nightmare fuel.

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