Female doctor applying vaccine to a patient arm during Corona pandemic.

Pfizer vs. Moderna: TikTokers Battle It Out Over the Superior Vaccine (But Seriously Just Get One, Any One)

At this point in the pandemic, the best Covid vaccine is the one you have access to. (Except the Johnson & Johnson one; sounds like there are some newfound blood clotting issues with that.) Whether your shot in the arm comes courtesy of Pfizer or Moderna really shouldn’t matter; both are better at protecting you from the deadly coronavirus than forgoing vaccination.

Ah, but try explaining that to TikTokers, who have mounted a war between the two major brands of vaccine and won’t shut up about each’s so-called superiority. Pfizer vaccine recipients point to its slightly higher efficacy rate, while Moderna name-checks one of the vaccine’s financial backers, Dolly Parton. As for the now “paused” J&J vaccine, it unfortunately became known as the “Walmart vaccine.”

“Um, only hot people get the Pfizer vaccine,” TikTok user @idrinkurmilkshake recently posted on the social media platform. “If you got Moderna then, I don’t know what to tell you, queen. This message is brought to you by Pfizer gang.”

@idrinkurmilkshakePFIZER GANG ASSEMBLEEEE#covidvaccine♬ The Girl From Ipanema – Stan Getz

Other “Pfizer gang” members echoed this sentiment, which has spread like, well, coronavirus in a crowded, unventilated room.

@bzunipfizer gang wya? (they’re all great, btw, just get one when you can!) ##covidvaccine ##getvaccinatedcovid19 ##pfizergang ##pfizervaccine♬ call out my name – chillytunees

@queen.lenanothing hurts anymore i feel kinda FREEEEEEE ##vaccinated ##pfizergang ##moderna ##pfizervaccine♬ Imjusykiddingyouareallhot – Jessica SIMPson

@itsmandssya girl got vaccinated ##covid19 ##covidvaccine ##pfizer ##pfizervaccine ##pfizergang ##fyp ##foryou♬ Imjusykiddingyouareallhot – Jessica SIMPson

Of course, the Moderna vaccine recipients wouldn’t take this lying down. Here are some of their responses:

@lilkabobi am TIRED of the moderna SLANDER on my fyp, if you got pfizer, please shut up ##modernagang ##dollypartonisqueen♬ original sound – roz

@knitpurlLet’s gooooooo ##modernagang ##dollyparton♬ Jolene – Dolly Parton

@redhedgodss##stitch with @malmucho ##badbitchesgotmoderna ##modernagang ##covidvaccine ##GoForTheHandful♬ original sound – Geneva Hilder

We won’t even bother looking for proud J&J recipients. (Are there any?)

But seriously, people, there are no losers when it comes to Covid vaccines. Any vaccine is a godsend in this pandemic in which over 31 million have been infected and 562,000 have died from the virus. Vaccine rivalries, while fun and snarky on the surface, could potentially keep people from getting the vaccine available to them. (And we repeat: any vaccine is better than no vaccine.)

Currently, only 9.5 percent of the Americans who have received at least one dose of the vaccine were between 18 and 29. That means we have a long way to go to herd immunity – aka, life getting somewhat back to normal (aka getting drunk together in public and having casual sex with strangers).

So shut up about the brand name of your vaccine. Just get your shot and tell your friends how to get theirs, too. It’s about your – and your community’s – health and safety, not about which company name is slapped on the packaging. Stop flexing and roll up your sleeves.

Cover Photo: JoannaBoiadjieva (Getty Images)

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