Peter Foley / EPA
By Patrick Kevin Day, Joseph A. Kapsch, Stephanie Lysaght, Todd Martens, Denise Martin and Jevon Phillips, Times Staff Writers
The presidential campaign sure has been a long, strange trip full of lots of highs and lows. It's almost hard to fathom that just months ago most Americans had never even heard the name Sarah Palin.
And Palin is hardly the only overnight phenom to emerge from this race to the White House. The cast of characters includes Gayle Quinnell, a.k.a. "crazy McCain lady"; Samuel "Joe" Wurzelbacher, a.k.a. Joe the Plumber; and many more.
In this retrospective, we take a look back at some of the best speeches, worst gaffes and biggest shockers of this election season.