By Rjay Zuriaga Castor

PHOTO: Steven Pabalinas

In what was supposed to be his gesture of downplaying the now-viral online movement titled “Tumindig,” a digital artist has made himself a figure of fun after his artwork says otherwise––mocking no one but the presidential daughter Sara Duterte. 

The digital art made by Steven Pabalinas was altered twice after netizens underscored the artwork clearly derides the Duterte administration and the presidential daughter, who mulls for a presidential bid in the 2022 polls. 

"Wow! Your original 'art' implies that violence towards critics should be normalized? Typical D*mbDogSh*t mentality," a Facebook user said. 

"More important questions: what does she want to do with the gauntlet? How is she worthy of Mjolnir? Why does she keep a sword in a backpack? What's with the COVID on a stick? Why is she so white?" asked another user emphasizing the problematic features of the artwork. 

"A DDS artist tried to downplay the #Tumindig campaign by making their own version of Sara Duterte as Thanos. The first version showed Sara killed all those who joined #Tumindig. After receiving flak, he changed it without the blood. Like father, like daughter? Kill, kill, kill? " said a Twitter user posting alongside the original and edited artwork. 

"Dito na ba napunta ang P70 million budget ng PCOO? Is Steven Pabalinas one of your hired graphic artist contractors?" he added. 

The artwork originally had blood dripping from Sara Duterte’s chainsaw while donning the Infinity Gauntlet––an armor used to wipe out humanity by the fictional supervillain Thanos, which suggests her annihilating the “fist people.”

Following the flak from the netizens, Pabalinas then edited the original artwork by swapping the chainsaw to a gavel.  Another edit was made again, replacing the gavel with a metal hammer––a facsimile of the Mjølnir, a powerful enchanted war-hammer of the thunder god Thor in Norse mythology. 

The artwork also bears a speech balloon with the text: "TINDIG-TINDIG. LECHE!" which implies the online social movement that inspired Filipino netizens to take courage to dissent nonsense. 

Pabalinas also had several revisions on the posts' caption and finally worded it: “Art by kalbong tarantado, various artists and me... Satire/parody, with some revisions for the fainthearted wokes who take things too literally."

"Art_final_LastNa_FinalNaTalaga_PramisFinal.docx," another Facebook user commented as the posts' revisions finally concluded. 

Pabalinas have joined the 'Tumindig', which was started by Kevin Eric Raymundo, a satirical cartoonist behind Tarantadong Kalbo, that made a crowd of people drawn as fists representing the supporters and allies of the Duterte administration and one fist person, referencing the raised fist used by activists worldwide.

This has inspired several Filipino artists, slowly populating the artwork with more “dissenters" who are now standing up for what they believe in as they edited their fist people to the drawing, filling up more “raised fists people” than those who bow down in silence.

"Wala sa plano 'yung may ‘magtutuloy’ nung artwork ko. Kaya din nagulat ako nung may nagdagdag ng kani-kanilang mga sarili dun sa likha," Raymundo said in an interview with ABS-CBN News. 

"Natutuwa ako na nag-resonate 'yung ginawa ko sa maraming tao. In a way, nabuhayan ako ng loob. Naisip ko, may pag-asa pa tayo, basta sama-samang tumitindig," he added.

Report source: ABS-CBN News