‘#RP612FIC’: Independence Day memes return featuring Jose Rizal’s beloved Josephine Bracken

June 12, 2024 - 12:12 PM
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Josephine Bracken
Josephine Bracken, wife of Dr. Jose Rizal, national hero of the Philippines, wearing a traditional Filipino dress. (Austin Craig, Public domain via Wikimedia Commons)

It’s that time of the year when Filipinos celebrate the 126th anniversary of the declaration of Philippine independence, and on X (formerly Twitter), they gather to commemorate this momentous occasion through bayanihan memes.

This all began in 2009 when Pinoys exchanged funny photo and video edits of celebrities, historical figures, and memes relating to Philippine culture and history.

Fifteen years later, this trend continues to resurface on social media, serving as a comedic lens through which Philippine history and literature are revisited and reimagined.

READ: #RP612FIC: Filipinos’ hilarious retelling of their history

Josephine Bracken takes center stage

Traditionally, X users have mostly shared memes highlighting Philippine national hero Jose Rizal, showcasing his life and contributions.

This year, the focus online has shifted to Josephine Bracken, Rizal’s wife and a key figure in his last relationship before his execution in 1896.
Bracken is now the talk of the #RP612Fic community on X, overshadowing Rizal’s other past relationships.

Elements of pop culture intertwined with the trend. A user on X shared a breakup photo of Rizal and Bracken, similar to an Instagram post made by actress Kathryn Bernardo in 2023.

Some memes would take a few trips back to one’s Araling Panlipunan class. For instance, an X user mentioned that Bracken’s relationship was once questioned by Rizal’s relatives.