It’s the biggest event of Christmas. 2018 marks the third annual Didn’t Happen of the Year Awards (DHOTYA). If you don’t know what it is, you should. And if you’ve not kept up with the best “Didn’t Happens” of 2018, you’re in the right place.

The market on the next elimination sees Ben Hanlin considered the most likely celeb to leave this Sunday, albeit there is little between him at 7/4 and Maura Higgins who is 9/4 to go next. Upsets in this kind of market are rare and the betting is normally a great barometer, so it’s unlikely it will not be one of these two.

Both achieved personal best scores last weekend and there is little in it regarding their average scoring. But I’m a great conspiracy theorist and as elimination for Maura would see a lot of Irish viewers switch off, and leave just two female contestants in the show, I think this one might be manufactured to tip the scales towards an exit for Ben.


Tom Zanetti’s anger with a “jobsworth” that wouldn’t let him on a train led to his mate allegedly giving him a free ride in his helicopter and coined the now immortal phrase “F**k you ya lil jellybean.”

While the tweet itself would not usually be enough to win the award, Tom’s reaction and insistence that it is true and subsequent meltdown over being called out for it has made it a front-runner. The fact that Virgin Trains, the other part to his story, publicly tweeted from their official account that large parts of his story were untrue adds another layer to what opened as the favourite for the Didn’t Happen of the Year Award.

Didn't Happen of the Year


Now, for me, this one shouldn’t even count as a “Didn’t Happen”. For me, a didn’t happen should at least be believable on the surface. However, Nombini’s assertion that her father swam 13km after a ship to save her and her friend from being trafficked, losing an arm in the process could simply never be true. The fact that it is still her pinned tweet and she continues to defend make it even more preposterous!

Didn't Happen of the Year

There are just too many questions.

How did she know where they were being trafficked? The alleged traffickers simply said “aye, we’re off to Iraq with yer, love.”

How did her dad swim fast enough to chase down a ship?

How did he do that WITH ONE ARM?!

How did he get them off the trafficker’s ship?

How did he get them back 13km to safety, that’s two traumatised girls, with, again, ONE ARM?!

Don’t worry though, she’s attached two pictures. Never mind that they’re both watermarked as stock photos. Never mind that one of them is from a news story about a 25-year-old surfer who was killed (which she insists her father was not). Never mind any of that. Nombini sticks by her story. Like a toddler in a playground trying to convince you their dad is a superhero.

Despite opening at 16/1, this one has been backed right in to at the time of writing. In fact, there’s been more bets on “Sharks” than any other DHOTYA entry so far.


Supermarche is one of the few entries not from Twitter. This one came from Facebook and falls under the “agenda” category of someone telling a story that pushes their own beliefs. In 2018, plenty of us are annoyed by those who are offended at the most basic of things. Doubly so when that person calls a supermarket a “supermarche”. We all did Year 8 French love, knowing that word is not special.

This “Didn’t Happen” asserts that the doorman who said “Good Morning Ma’am” was fired on the spot, because the manager of said “Supermarche” had a child who is struggling with gender identity. The anonymous poster user this as a reason to “always stand up for what you believe in”. DHOTYA fans believe in one thing – things not happening. And this definitely did not happen. It’s a shot to win this year’s award.

Didn't Happen of the Year


Wolves was the early frontrunner for this year’s DHOTYA. Now, I consider myself to have been a pretty smart kid, truth be told. But I don’t know a three-year-old on earth who could have said the following quote:

“Everyone dies one day. Everyone. Even Wolves. But now books. Not words. Words don’t die.”

A poignant, well-articulated point and one that the author of this Didn’t Happen attributes to her 3-year-old son.


Woke Cup

Woke Cup was the first of a number of excellent World Cup Didn’t Happens. It was based on the assertion that Ben Stephens 10-year-old needed to know who had the better human rights record between Russia and Saudi Arabia before picking one to support when they played each other in Russia this Summer. It concluded with the now infamous hashtag #WokeCup. That hashtag also kickstarted a number of excellent parodies which helps this one to live long in the memory.

The Best of the Rest for the Didn’t Happen of the Year

We can’t write about all 32, but there a handful of other popular entries which deserve a mention here. A late entry was “Shaking Hand” a video entry of an MP’s violently shaking with rage at the last few weeks of Brexit debate in parliament. Strangely, the hand holding the phone is perfectly still…

Also in the running is “The Audi”, a LinkedIn entry. The story is about a dad picking up his son who tells him he needs to go to the office because he’s designed a “growth mindset app”. But the need to announce that the car the author owns is an Audi and that “Proud Dad Moment” have become memes of their own.

The final popular choice in the betting market is Headstand. Sadly, this one was swiftly deleted, but the image of the note remains and I will post it here in all its glory. It’s a wordy one, but well worth the read. Enjoy!

Didn't Happen

There are so many more we could tell you about, but rather than do that, you can read them all yourself on this thread from the official DHOTYA Twitter page and find out which group they’re in.

Odds are correct at the time of posting

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