“The father is on”: it was with this phrase that Neymar celebrated the classification of Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) for the semifinals of the Champions League, on August 12th. It didn’t take long for the expression, used by the player to show that he is “turned on” and ready for the match, to leave the football field and go viral on social networks. Popular with famous and anonymous people, the meme is used with the meaning that the person is prepared for everything.
The expression “The father is on” comes from “the father is online” and is usually used as a synonym for “I am in the area” or “I am ready for whatever comes”. There are also those who use the term to flirt on the Internet. Phrases like “Chama na zap, pai pai on” indicate that the person is online on WhatsApp and that the contact can call them to talk.
Data from Google Trends, a tool for monitoring Internet searches, show that searches for the catchphrase “the father is on” have been on the rise since August 12, when PSG beat Atalanta in the final minutes by 2×1, with the goal Neymar’s victory.
The Google platform also indicates that the peak search for the phrase occurred on August 18. On that day, Neymar published on his Twitter: “Passing to warn that the FATHER woke up ONLINE ✌🏽 save for the general and let’s go … ALLEZ PSG”. Shirt 10 referred to the PSG game against RB Leipzig, which happened that afternoon. The match was won by the French team, 3×0.
Passando pra avisar que o PAI acordou ONLINE✌🏽🤪
salve pra geral e vamo que vamo … ALLEZ PSG
— Neymar Jr (@neymarjr) August 18, 2020
The meme’s success doesn’t stop there. In Instagram Stories, users created filters to illustrate the expression. In general, the effects display the phrase “the father is on” over the person’s head and add Oakley juliet style glasses to the face. The accessory is not by chance: before the match that took PSG to the Champions League finals, on August 12, Neymar posted on his Twitter that he had “Mohawk done, separate julliete and the speaker carrying”.
The look is a registered trademark of funkeiros in Brazil. Not for nothing, Neymar’s meme received special attention from this group. On August 18, MC WM released the song “O Pai Tá On”, which makes reference to the equipment mentioned by the Brazilian player. A few days later, on August 21, the staff won another funk, this time by MC Kekel. The song pays homage to Neymar and narrates the athlete’s trajectory.