by Alan Robles
I've been reading Marcos comics. These are gripping black and white short untitled cartoon strips, circulated on social media, that supposedly show significant moments in the life of Ferdinand junior, aka Bongbong aka Baby, aka Mini Me.
The strips are drawn in a simple, cute way and are totally honest. For instance they depict the young Marcos with an oversized pumpkin-like head, which is exactly how people have always pictured Marcos junior. Should the unknown artist title the comic, he or she might consider naming it “Balloon Head” or maybe “The Life of Lobong Marcos Jr.” Me, I'd go with something punchier: “The Adventures of Plunderer's Boy.”
You'd probably think this is a crude propaganda ploy to humanize Marcos junior as he runs for the vice presidency. You're correct. But what's wrong with that? After all Bongbong Marcos is really just like all of us, assuming all of us have parents who presided over a brutal regime that killed thousands, tortured thousands more and plundered US$10 billion.
The first strip, which came out a few weeks ago, concerns Marcos junior's birth, with his parents looking proudly at their firstborn son. Call me nitpicky but I feel the artist missed a great chance when he failed to write some appropriate word balloons. For instance, the proud mother could be thinking, “I wonder if he'll have my rapacious avarice?”, while the smiling dad would say, “will he be brutal crook like me?”
The second strip shows the Marcos boy playing like every normal kid, having the run of the presidential palace. Again I feel the artist missed out some crucial detail: the heavy fortifications of Malacañang, the extravagant expensive furniture bought by his mom and paid for by plunder.
The third has the young Marcos eagerly attending a school, apparently abroad, and proudly showing up every student in his class by being able to say how many months in a year have 31 days. That's right, the highlight of his academic career is the moment he shows he knows a calendar, and based on this accomplishment we should apparently vote him vice president.
Clearly his dad was grooming him for great things. Maybe he needed to master the calendar in order to keep track of the maturation dates of those hundreds of millions of plundered dollars stashed in illegal Swiss accounts.
I can hardly wait to read the future strips of Balloon Head. Will it include the part where his dad appointed him to head a telco and he didn't show up for work but collected a salary that ranged from $9,000 to $90,000 a month? Will it mention that the telco remitted millions of dollars to secret bank accounts abroad? So thrilling.
In the meantime, somebody dissatisfied with a few things about the second strip has rewritten the word balloons. Now they're perfect . Just click on the graphic below and you'll see.