The late dictator Ferdinand Marcos just made a cameo in the fourth season of Netflix's sci-fi hit series Stranger Things—days after his son and namesake Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. was proclaimed as president-elect.
In "Chapter One: The Hellfire Club," a character is reading the March 1986 issue of the Newsweek magazine featuring Marcos Sr. on the cover with the headline, "SHOWDOWN: The Last Act in Manila."
The cover story, "The Showdown," details Marcos Sr.'s last days in office before his family got booted out of Malacañang through the EDSA People Power Revolution.
The Newsweek in Stranger Things, however, changed the original photo, i.e., a close-up shot of a brooding Marcos Sr. in formal attire looking faraway with a pointed finger.
Instead, the series used a photo of the ousted president in a colorful shirt, cracking a smile as he appears to be doing a peace sign.
During the 30-second cameo, the character is reading aloud an article about tabletop role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons, which was featured as "The Devil's Game."
"Studies have linked violent behavior to the game," the character says, while the camera pans across the magazine cover showing Marcos Sr., "saying it promotes satanic worship, ritual sacrifice, sodomy, suicide."
The character then jokingly slams the magazine on the table and makes face. "And even... murder!"
Netizens have had a field day with Marcos Sr.'s surprise appearance.
"Dictator Ferdinand Marcos appears on Stranger Things Season 4, in a Newsweek cover, while a character talks about satanic worship, etc," said screenwriter Jerry Gracio, who also ran as first nominee of the Kapamilya party-list in the May 9 elections.
Dictator Ferdinand Marcos appears on Stranger Things Season 4, in a Newsweek cover, while a character talks about satanic worship, etc.— Jerry B. Grácio (@JerryGracio) May 27, 2022
"Not the former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. being portrayed in the new series of Stranger Things," a user said, attaching a clip of the scene.
Not the former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. being portrayed in the new series of Stranger Things. 😭😂😂🤚🏻 pic.twitter.com/6PXmwE7TkC— karentupas. (Taylor’s Version) (@tupasshakur) May 27, 2022
"the ferdinand marcos sr. feature on #StrangerThings4 oh my god i feel embarrassed he's the true demogorgon!" another user said, referring to the humanoid monster in the series.
Meanwhile, there were some Internet users who expressed joy over his appearance on the show. "Angaz huhu si Ferdinand Marcos asa Stranger Things 4," one wrote in a post.
angaz huhu si Ferdinand Marcos asa Stranger Things 4 waaaa lupet— pot•~•pot (@kmzpot19) May 27, 2022
A Twitter user also said she thinks the Marcos Sr. cameo was "so cool."
But for one Facebook user, the portrayal was supposedly a smear campaign: "Wala ng Epek yan.They have seen their worst attack from their countrymen’s crab mentallity.But their attackers did’nt succeed."
Other netizens also pointed out that there are other shows that have referenced Marcos Sr.'s wife Imelda, who's infamous for her ostentatiously extravagant lifestyle which led to the coinage of the term "imeldific." For one, Imelda reportedly owned 3,000 pairs of shoes.
In royal drama The Crown, the fictional Princess Margaret told her family about meeting with Imelda, who wants to show off her "shell collection." A family member pointed out that it should've been "shoe," but Princess Margaret insisted, as they proceeded making fun of the former first lady's accent.
A character from American comedy-drama Gilmore Girls also mentioned that her grandmother's shoe collection rivals that of Imelda's.
British sitcom Ideal, meanwhile, has a character trying on hundreds of pairs of trainers, and his friend said he has been "possessed" by Imelda Marcos.