El Filibusterismo

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El Filibusterismo is the sequel to Jose Rizal's Noli Me Tangere. Thirteen years after Crisostomo Ibarra's apparent death, a mysterious man named Simoun appears, quickly gaining favor with the Spanish rulers and high society of 19th century Manila. Called Cardinal Moreno (Dark Cardinal), he was the informal adviser to the colony's Captain-General and tours the islands apparently as a jewel merchant. Basilio, the young boy from the previous book, is now a medical student at the college of Ateneo, and he gets drawn into a web of lies and deceit.

Like its predecessor, it is considered an important part of Filipino literature.


Tropes used in El Filibusterismo include:
  • Attempted Rape: Done on Juli by Father Camorra. She prevents it by jumping off the church balcony.
  • Badass Beard: Simoun has one.
  • Banned in China: Obviously banned in the occupied Philippines.
    • Subverted in the current times, as the book and its prequel a required reading for High School students, and a course about the Author's life and works is a prerequisite in College.
  • Batman Gambit: Nearly everything Simoun does.
  • Best Served Cold: Simoun's revenge.
  • Betty and Veronica: Isagani and Juanito are this to Paulita. Juanito wins.
  • Bilingual Bonus: The title itself is Spanish for "The Filibuster." Which aptly describes the nature of this novel.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Paulita Gomez, Isagani's sweetheart, is a stunningly beautiful orphan with immense riches, is intelligent, witty, and has a fondness for art. And then she dumps Isagani because his being put in prison stripped him of his "appeal" and goes of to marry Juanito.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Simoun dies, but not before atoning for his sins.
  • Blade on a Stick: Old Man Selo. Especially after his granddaughter's death.
  • Bolivian Army Ending: Basilio. It is unknown what happens to him after the wedding of Juanito and Paulita.
  • Book Ends: Father Florentino appears in the Bapor Tabo story arc (first three chapters) and in the final chapter (where his house is visited by Simoun and throws the jeweler's chest into the sea).
  • Break the Cutie: Juli, Basilio's girlfriend, is raped (by the parish priest) and commits suicide. Basilio himself is too, after suffering setback after setback.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Remember when Maria Clara gave her necklace to the leper in the first book? One of the earlier chapters in this book reveal that the leper gave it to Basilio as thanks for treating his illness. Basilio then gave this to Juli as a present. Later on, her father, Cabesang Tales, uses this same necklace to pay Simoun for the revolver he took from him for his Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Continuity Nod: See Chekhov's Gun above.
  • Corrupt Church
    • Although the book does go out of its way to show more sympathetic clergymen like the Jesuits and Father Florentino.
  • Darker and Edgier: Than its prequel.
  • Dean Bitterman: Father Hernando de la Sibyla, the Dominican curate of the town of Binondo in Noli, becomes the vice-rector of the University of Santo Tomas in the sequel. He then proceeds to make life hell for the students.
  • Dirty Old Woman: Dona Victorina whose husband ran away from her and successfully evaded her for thirteen years, becomes the caretaker of Paulita Gomez, and is heavily implied to have the hots for Paulita's suitor, Juanito Pelaez.
  • Driven to Suicide: Juli
    • Also Simoun, after his revolutionary plot is discovered by the Guardia Civil.
  • Dying Alone: Maria Clara
  • Expy: Father Camorra of Tiani is very similar in personality to Father Damaso who died at the end of the first book.
  • The Gay Nineties: El Filibusterismo is most likely to be set in this decade because the abolition of the tobacco monopoly in the early 1880s is mentioned in Chapter 1 of Noli Me Tangere.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: It's implied Juli's brother goes insane after learning that the man he killed was his father and the man his comrades shot down was his grandfather.
  • Good Shepherd: Father Florentino
  • Heroic BSOD: Simoun has one after he finds out that Maria Clara is dead.
  • Ill Girl: Maria Clara.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Ben Zayb.
  • It's Personal: Basilio, embittered about Juli's attempted rape and suicide, eventually joins Simoun's uprising.
  • Jade-Colored Glasses: Simoun's. They're blue!
  • Jerkass: Father Camorra.
  • Karma Houdini: Camorra's rape of Juli is hushed up and he's trasferred to another parish.
  • Kill'Em All: Subverted. The bomb never detonates.
  • Late Arrival Spoiler: Pretty much every Filipino knows that Simoun is Crisostomo Ibarra.
  • Market-Based Title: The English translation was titled The Reign of Greed.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: When Basilio sees Isagani watching his beloved Paulita from a window at Capitan Tiago's house, he warns him to go away lest he be killed by an explosion (as part of Simoun's Batman Gambit). Because of this, Isagani is horrified by at the thought of seeing her beloved die right before his eyes that he came inside the house to take away the lamp and throw it into the water, thereby foiling Simoun's plan. Nice job breaking it, Basilio.
  • Not So Different: Basilio is this to Ibarra. Which is something that Simoun/Ibarra himself notices all too clearly.
  • The Ojou: Paulita.
  • Pedophile Priest: Father Camorra.
  • The Philosopher: Arguably, Sandoval.
  • Put on a Bus: We hear no more of Juli's brother Tano when the civil guard marches him off to wherever. Until his grandfather dies.
  • Rape as Drama: Juli
  • Redemption Equals Death: Simoun
  • Ripped from the Headlines: At least a sizable portion of the book was written in the context of Spain's increasingly unstable rule in the Philippines by the 1890s. In addition, Simoun's touched-on backstory as the exiled Ibarra in Spanish-ruled Cuba implied that he was involved in the revolutionary turmoil there leading up to Spanish-American War.
  • Romantic Runner-Up: Isagani
  • Scarpia Ultimatum / Sadistic Choice: Juli realizes that the only way to save Basilio from a lifetime of prison and/or forced slavery is to have sex with Father Camorra, although to be fair he doesn't tell her this herself. She tries, and is Driven to Suicide because of this.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Tano, Juli's brother. To be fair, he didn't know that the man he shot down was his own father.
  • Sequel Hook: A less-obvious one in current times, but the jewelry casket of the dead Simoun thrown by Padre Florentino into the sea will be a Chekhov's Gun in another novel by another author: Philippine National Artist Amado V. Hernandez's Mga Ibong Mandaragit.
  • Shout-Out: The phrase "Mene thecel phares" is used in a similar context to the original.
    • Ibarra's fate is pretty much a shout out from a certain Edmond though Ibarra/Simoun dies in the second book. It also helps that it's one of Rizal's favorite novels.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Tends more towards the cynical end of the scale than Noli.
  • Spanner in the Works: Isagani spoils Simoun's plans by throwing the bomb-lamp away.
    • And he gets bonus points for basically saying that had he known what Simoun was up to, he wouldn't have done it.
  • Sunglasses at Night: A very important piece of disguise.
  • Time Bomb: A 19th-century version. It's the gas lamp - once the wick runs out, the gunpowder hidden everywhere will explode, killing all of society's higher-ups.
  • Time Skip: Takes place 13 years after the events of Noli Me Tangere.
  • Uncle Pennybags: Makaraig. He financed the would-have-been school with his huge hoard of cash.
  • Villain Protagonist: Simoun. Revealed to be the Not Quite Dead Ibarra.
    • Before his death, he narrates to Father Florentino about his actions from the events of Noli Me Tangere until his downfall, feeling sorry about the failure of his would-be uprising.
  • Whole-Plot Reference: To The Count of Monte Cristo.
  • What the Hell Hero: Basilio is legitimately surprised when his petition to have Spanish taught to the indios is outright rejected, in part because of the supposed troublesome notions that might get introduced. Things go very downhill from there.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Basilio. Then he gets broken.
    • Isagani, Basilio's best buddy, plays this straight until the end of the book.
  • Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters