When returning Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce was sworn in for the third time on Tuesday, the photo op took a decidedly cooked turn when his son ran into shot.
Joyce was standing beside a TV video link with Prime Minister Scott Morrison – who’s quarantining after his trip to the UK – when his two-year-old son Thomas ran into the shot.
Instead of embracing his youngest child during this proud moment, or even just acknowledging him and then asking him to hop out of the shot for just a second, Joyce instead planted his palm firmly on his son’s head without even looking away from the cameras.
The Prime Minister proper, who you’ll remember was on TV and not actually in the room, appeared to smile his way through the whole ordeal as if he was trying to stealthily let out a fart.
Cannot get past this photo pic.twitter.com/Qtv6Fan5eI
— David Milner (@DaveMilbo) June 22, 2021
The whole ceremony was cursed. The Sydney Morning Herald called the Deputy PM’s weird interaction with Morrison via a TV “a moving Joycean touch,” while we could only describe the moment Joyce grabbed his son’s head as “normal, actually.”
That seemingly aggressive shove juxtaposed with a grin that’s clearly evil, even by Australian political standards, became an instant meme.
Some people couldn’t help but note that there are still heaps of unanswered questions about Joyce’s past conduct, particularly regarding sexual harassment allegations from 2018.
Joyce denied those allegations at the time but nevertheless stepped down. The fact that he’s back as the leader of the Nationals for a third time shows that cancel culture isn’t real, folks.
But the meme format quickly saw use beyond just Joyce’s own world.
How about that shitty new statistic that almost half of all Aussies wouldn’t date a bisexual person.
Let’s just palm that stat off to the side for the time being while we continue to adore our beloved bi kings/queens/enby monarchs.
How about “Australia Stops Talking”? pic.twitter.com/vfCbS3y2k8
— Matilda Boseley (@MatildaBoseley) June 22, 2021
And hey, why not zoom out a bit and include Scott Morrison as the third character in the meme format.
Here we see a takedown of the recent Critical Race Theory panic that’s swept conservative circles around Australia.
If you’re afraid of Critical Race Theory, that probably says more about you than the rest of society. Go reflect on that.
The meme is just too perfect. You can’t make this stuff up.
Oh wait… maybe you can.
— Mark Humphries (@markhumphries) June 22, 2021
Only Barnaby Joyce could manage to orchestrate such chaotic and cursed pageantry at his own swearing-in ceremony.
And if the memes are anything to go by, the man delivered.