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We love underdogs. We love renaissances. We love that scene from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets where Dumbledore’s phoenix bursts into flames and is reborn from the ashes. So naturally, we love comebacks. There were a lot in 2015, keep reading to find out which five we loved.
Before there was Nicki Minaj, there was Missy Elliot. Ten years passed after her last full-length release of The Cookbook, and while she hasn’t been completely AWOL, she’s only had a handful of features since. Fast-forward to Novemeber, she dropped WTF (Where They From) and reminded the world that she’s still at the top of her game.
She topped the charts at the young age of 13 with your 2000s faves Leave (Get Out) and Too Little Too Late, but then JoJo disappeared from the music scene without a trace. Caught in a legal battle with her record label, she was unable to release new music for almost 10 years. But this summer after winning her case and signing with Atlantic Records, she dropped three singles. The three singles—better known as a tringle—proved to us that after all these years, JoJo is still a vocal powerhouse. It’s been a long time coming, but she’s not going anywhere, except to the top of our list for most-loved tracks.
Although Zayn was not gone for that long, his comeback is more of a rise to the top (where he rightfully belongs). After a tumultuous year in the eyes of the media, Zayn (allegedly) cheated on his fiance, left the band that made him famous, ended his engagement and then faded into the shadows. Come September, he’s on Interview Mag’s #ME issue despite only making an Insta account a few days earlier. Then, conveniently timed with the release of his ex-bandmate’s album Made In The A.M., Zayn was FADER magazine’s cover star with a huge tell-all feature accompanied by snippets of his first solo song Befour. Nicely done, Mr. Malik. Whether or not his absence was long enough to warrant a comeback, Zayn’s here. He’s back and badder than ever.
Adele’s return was only second to Frank Ocean’s in terms of how much the public demanded it (on that note, where the album at, Frank?). Following the worldwide success of her second studio album 21, Adele disappeared from the scene, released no new music, gave no media interviews and was barely seen by paparazzi. Then, October came around and the singer decided to bless us with a single, (you might have heard of it, it’s called Hello) and release date for 25. Internet-breaking ensued, and the rest is history. Welcome back, Adele, the world is still obsessed with you.
The story of Justin Bieber is a comeback tale almost as good as Rocky, Jesus or the Blue Jays in the 2015 playoffs. After years of being booed and berated, Bieber is finally being taken seriously. He cleaned up his act, stopped peeing in buckets, dropped the song the of the summer, went on a successful apology tour, and released an album that everyone loved. Noisey, Complex, and the rest of the Internet finally admitted it: It’s okay, and even cool, to like Justin Bieber again.