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2012: The year in memes

December 24, 2012 2:38pm

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Composite by Analyn Perez

True to form, Pinoy netizens have demonstrated over the past year a unique penchant for making light of almost any situation, spurring the creation of online memes that won the day —and made the year.

GMA News Online lists some of the iconic jokes as told through imagery and witty lines, with a huge serving of Pinoy-bred hirit that marks this year’s collection.
Here's our pick of the litter:

1) DOT turns to memes for tourism campaign
The Department of Tourism opened the local meme parade in January when it unveiled its new tourism slogan: It’s more fun in the Philippines.
Pinoys loved that it trended far beyond the Twitterverse: everyone else made their own versions of the campaign, using the template and actual font of the ad to express what they think makes the country a more fun destination for tourists.
Note how a simple word can change the image’s appeal, despite having similar subjects. Strong in appeal, this meme is. Photo from
Online jokers, however, came up with spoofs incorporating DOT’s new marketing catchphrase, refusing to pull any strings while keeping the spirit of wit, further proving that humor can be more fun in the Philippines

2) Hear no Miriam-Defensor Santiago
Private prosecutor Vitaliano Aguirre did what no other human being —either before him or ever since— dared to do in the presence of an irate Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago: cover his ears as she talked.
“Kung nakasakit ang actuations ko po, I really did it purposely because totoo naman po na shrill ang voice,nasasaktan ang tenga ko,” said Aguirre, who was sent out of the impeachment courtroom after being cited for contempt.
This act of defiance, seen on national television, was so big that not only did it become a hot Twitter topic, but also prompted netizens to troop to their image-editing software of choice and do some "photoplasty", while a handful channeled their inner Vitaliano Aguirre.
Days after the incident, it looked like the private prosecutor could certainly give the Three Wise Monkeys a run for their money.
Atty. Vitaliano Aguirre playfully covers his ears during the grand coronation night of the 2012 Mutya ng Dabaw Karlos Manlupig

3) Santiago vs Tulfo brawl spawns fight posters
A hapless Ramon Rulfo being mauled by Raymart Santiago, Claudine Barreto, and a dude in pink got immortalized not only through a viral YouTube video but also through memes after their NAIA 3 brawl received the DPWH treatment.
Netizens lined up the Tulfo Brothers against the Santiago Brothers with the addition of Miriam Defensor-Santiago to complete the 4 vs 4 line-up (much to the senator’s amusement). They also scheduled a Claudine Barretto-Manny Pacquiao bout in one of the posters.
4) Jeepney on boat is PHL’s deployment to Scarborough Shoal?
A photo of a precariously-perched jeepney over the waters of Batanes took on a life of its own just as the Philippines was in the middle of a stand-off with China over Scarborough Shoal.

Poking fun at the huge disparity between the Philippines' and China’s maritime capabilities, some Pinoys used the photo to comment on the territorial dispute.
5) Bayo’s bad ad copy: Do the math!
When clothing brand Bayo ran an ethnicity-themed ad in June, Pinoy netizens thought it was done in bad taste.Then everyone made memes using the controversial ad’s template, suggesting various combinations of a perfect mix:
We lost count too.
6) Thor S-Thor-ms social media
Marvel movie Avengers did so well in the cinemas that Pinoys made a meme out of character Thor, whose pretty hair drew a stark contrast to his macho godly persona.
Thor pushed the boundaries of Photoshopped puns and became so famous that the public thought there would be no end to it.
He shallt never cease to smite thee wrongdoers with his blessed hammer.
Other characters such as the Hulk and Hawkeye also got the localized meme treatment, but nobody knows why Captain America, Iron Man, and Black Widow were left out in the cold.   
7)  Sotto becomes a verb
Senator Vicente "Tito" Sotto III drew fierce criticism for his alleged plagiarism of US bloggers and of former US Sen. Robert Kennedy. He decried the public outrcry as "cyberbullying" —but not before his detractors had made a meme out of his name.

Before long, to "sotto" had been firmly enshrined in the local lexicon as a verb synonymous with "to copy" or "to translate".
Netizens had a treasure trove of quotes to Sottocopy . Image from

8)      ████████████████████████. [SUBHEAD ʙʟᴏᴄᴋᴇᴅ.] (ʀᴀ ɴᴏ. 10175).
When online free speech was seriously challenged by the Anti-Cybercrime Act, netizens brought self-censorship to a whole new level by changing their profile photos to black and blocking possible critical statements on social media.
The blackout, which was done to protest RA 10175’s online libel provision, continued until the Supreme Court issued a temporary restraining order, which lapses in January.
9) Vintage photographs brought up to date
The black-and-white memed photo that started it all.
Put together late 19th-century photographs and 21st-century pop culture, and this is what you get: a series of throwback memes spiced up for modern tastes —at least for those who still remember their Wika subject from school.
Facebook page Anyare? put up a series of undated period photos and decided to give them an entirely new spin by putting in naughty lines and song lyrics written in formal Filipino.
It’s a variation of the #Sinotto, but it presents the lines as delivered by the photo subjects and not as authored by the senator.
10)  Kontrabida Angelica: She's baaaaaack! 
Facebook page Anyare? struck again with another resurrected meme, this time by giving life to Mexicanovela Marimar’s titular character’s nemesis, Angelica Santibañez..
This image of a haughty Angelica started a whole series of exaggerated rich-girl problems and snooty retorts that define the kontrabida. (From Anyare? Facebook Page)

Kontrabida Angelica now has her own Facebook page  ,Twitter account , and Memegenerator, showing signs that the Donya’s lines flaunting her extravagance won’t die anytime soon.
Yuletide Bonus:

Pinoy humor does not take Christmas breaks, so the pun-ny streak continued with this Lion King meme that went viral at the start of the traditional 9-day dawn masses.
Get it? Image originally posted on Facebook by 8List

—With A. M. Marzoña and Jasmine Shewakramani / TJD, GMA News
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