10/08/2012 09:32 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

WATCH: 60 Seconds of Social Media

The first 2012 presidential debate was the most Tweeted-about event in U.S. politics history. And what were we Tweeting about?

Big Bird, largely. When Mitt Romney said he loved Big Bird but would cut spending for PBS if elected, there were 17,000 Big Bird Tweets per minute. According to CNN, Big Bird mentions spiked 800,000% on Facebook. It spawned parody Twitter accounts and Facebook pages. And that's just a sample of the waves of online content inspired by the debate, which also included scores of animated gifs created in real time by the folks at Tumblr.

Take a look at how the debate lit up social media in the latest episode of Freshwire's "60 Seconds of Social Media" below.

You can catch last week's episode about hashtags gone rogue right here.