A new commercial from Pfizer characterized young children who participated in the COVID-19 vaccine trial as "superheroes." The controversial commercial from the multinational pharmaceutical and biotechnology corporation has been described by some as "creepy" and "propaganda."
On Monday, Pfizer released an ad on its social media accounts with the caption: "Superheroes come in all sizes. Watch as real kids express thanks to their superheroes; the 5-11 year old #Covid19 vaccine clinical trial volunteers. We're incredibly grateful to the trial participants and their families."
The commercial from Pfizer features young children wearing makeshift superhero outfits. The video is narrated by a child who says, "All of us want to be superheroes, and the most important heroes are those that help others."
"This year, thousands of kids like us around the world joined the COVID-19 vaccine trial, and when they did, they became our superheroes," the child says. "To all the kids who volunteered, we'd like to say, "Thank you!'"
Then various children are seen on the video thanking the kids who participated in the pediatric vaccine trials. The children thank the vaccine trial participants for their "courage," trying new things," and "the ability to save people."
One little girl calls the COVID-19 vaccine a "superhero shot."
"Fight coronavirus and help others," a little boy says in the ad.
"Thank you. You are our superheroes," the commercial concludes before the Pfizer logo appears.
Thank You! 5-11 Year Old Covid19 Vaccine Clinical Trial Volunteers www.youtube.com
Pfizer may have anticipated some backlash on YouTube, where the comments were disabled on the video.
RedState managing editor Jennifer Van Laar simply said, "Brainwashing."
Economic researcher and futurist Chris Martenson wrote on Twitter, "This is awful. The message is beyond creepy ('you're special if you agree to allow adults to experiment on you'). I hate everything about this."
British political commentator Calvin Robinson stated, "Sinister. 'They're after your kids', another conspiracy theory proven to in fact have been a spoiler all along."
Last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 through 11. This week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) then recommended children get the vaccine. On Wednesday, a San Francisco health official said the city plans on enacting a vaccine mandate that would require children ages 5 to 11 to show proof of vaccination in order to enter various settings.
A Kaiser Family Foundation poll released last week found that only 27% of parents of 5-11 year-olds are "eager to get a vaccine for their younger child as soon as one is authorized, while a third say they will wait a while to see how the vaccine is working." There were 30% of parents who declared that they will not get their 5-11-year-old vaccinated against COVID-19.
"Parents' main concerns when it comes to vaccinating their younger children ages 5-11 have to do with potential unknown long-term effects and serious side effects of the vaccine, including two-thirds who are concerned the vaccine may affect their child's future fertility," the KFF stated.
In U.S. children ages 5-11, there have been 94 COVID-19 deaths (1.7% of all deaths among U.S. children ages 5–11) between Jan. 1, 2020, and Oct. 18, 2021, according to the CDC.