A terrorist attack, a volcanic eruption, smoke billowing for days from an inner-city landmark, a global pandemic and the most outrageous US President in living memory - over the past 18 months they have all conspired to deliver a chaotic news cycle unlike anything seen by even the most experienced journalists.
But with swift progress being made towards a vaccine rollout and Donald Trump's presidency (presumably) coming to an end, at least some of the chaos looks set to subside in 2021.
So where does this leave the media, which remains reluctantly entwined in its complicated relationship with chaotic events?
There's a reason for the old adage that "bad news sells" – and it's been proven true yet again.
In the United States, we saw the "Trump Bump" leading to New York Times digital subscriptions hitting record levels.
Local media has also broken audience records, with New Zealanders desperate for information to help process the unfolding events.
These impressive numbers might show the public tends to turn to trusted sources of information when things go awry, but the worrying corollary is that a large contingent of that audience is only interested when things are incomprehensibly bad.
Provided that the world calms down to its regular mild panic in the coming months, we can expect the Covid and Trump bumps to subside for both local and international media.
News brands are in many ways subject to the same consumer forces that we see in other industries. A major event like Black Friday, for instance, might bring thousands of extra people to your establishment, but you can't rely on them sticking around once the sale is over.
Given the run of luck the world has had in 2020, there's every possibility we could see another extraordinary event in the coming months – but the media industry can't rely on that to keep numbers up.
The flip side of any news lull is that it would offer the opportunity to again focus on the stories that have been cast aside over the past 12 months.
Those smaller, but important yarns, many of which have gone ignored, will again be brought into focus as journalists return to the beats that were buried under the chaos.
It will likely also lead to a reset in the relationship between journalists and public relations professionals.
It has never been easier for a journalist to say no to a PR pitch, simply because a "world first pivot using number 8 wire thinking" just doesn't measure up to what else has been going on in the world.
As the news cycle returns to something that resembles normality, the nation's spin doctors will again look to pull the interest of journalists their way.
And the pressure will likely be greater than ever, as PR professionals look to make up for lost time, and fewer journalists than before try to wade through the spin to find legitimate stories.
The final takeaway we have from the end times of Trump's tenure is that it seems journalists have finally worked out how to interview those who like to use mainstream media channels to distribute misinformation.
Locally, we saw political wannabe Billy Te Kahika denied opportunities to appear on numerous media platforms, and his outlandish views not spreading as far as they could have. After a dismal election result for his party, Te Kahika's co-conspirator Jami-Lee Ross was then promptly cut off by Newshub political editor Tova O'Brien when he tried to express his views on Covid-19 during an exit interview.
Some of the most important interruptions of rambling politicians came out of the United States, where some news anchors cut off Trump and many of his acolytes mid-sentence when they began spouting unsubstantiated claims about voter fraud.
Let's hope this approach is maintained when the audience bump starts to subside and that the media doesn't fall back into the old trap of chasing numbers in the most outrageous statements they can find.