2454: Fully Vaccinated
Title text: "You still can't walk into someone's house without being invited!" "What? Oh, I see your confusion. No, this vaccine is for a bat VIRUS. I'm fine with doorways and garlic and stuff."
This comic is another in a series of comics related to the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically regarding the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has stated that once people are fully vaccinated, they are able to visit other people's houses (and not risk spreading/catching coronavirus). The implication, of course, is that you can visit people that you would also have visited before the outbreak. The humor in this comic comes from Megan who is just going to visit a random stranger's house. She explains this is okay because she is fully vaccinated, telling the person in the house that she is two weeks past her second dose. This was part of the topic of the last vaccine comic 2450: Post Vaccine Social Scheduling.
Restrictions to socializing, brought in as various governments reacted to the emergent COVID-19 pandemic, often disallowed or discouraged visiting family, friends, etc, beyond a mutually isolating 'support bubble', which meant that many house visits that might have occurred beforehand were no longer advisable. With the development and distribution of vaccines, and the eventual receiving of a second dose as applicable, the rules have been modified to allow those vaccinated to once again resume some degree of their prior outgoing behavior where the risks have been mitigated.
In this instance, though, Megan has taken the advice even further. Rather than opening back up to a situation closer to the 'old normal', she has taken it as an official sanction to exceed the old social limits and pester complete strangers. Alternately, this is what she always used to do, and only stopped 'for the duration', this unlucky householder being (one of) the first to be subjected to this 'guerilla visiting' now that there seems to be no reason not to continue.
In the title text, the owner of the house explains to Megan that just because she has been vaccinated she just can't enter into someone's house without being invited — a commonly understood form of property law.
But due to the vaccine type Megan thinks the owner has mixed this up with a commonly understood element of vampire lore, that vampires must be invited into a home before they can pass through the doorway. In vampire lore, vampires are often able to transform into bats, and these two are thematically associated with each other. Since the coronavirus is likely a bat virome that has entered into humans, Megan misunderstands the owner's objection to her entry, believing that the homeowner thinks that she has become a vampire. (The virus, and thus elements of the vaccine, having ultimately originated in bats and therefore 'possibly' actual vampire stock.)
Megan thus begins to explain that the vaccine works on a bat virus and has nothing to do with bats. And since she is thus not a vampire she has no problems entering a doorway uninvited, and further explains that she is also not repelled by garlic or other classic weakness of vampires. Vampire lore states that they are repelled by garlic, crosses, holy water, sunlight, and wooden stakes through the heart (the last being a problem for humans in general, vampiric or otherwise).
The owner is attempting to explain that Megan does not have the legal or moral right to enter simply because she is vaccinated, but this seems to not register with Megan.
Doing ridiculous things that were never allowed, even normally, after being vaccinated or low-risk, was also the theme of 2434: Vaccine Guidance. 2391: Life Before the Pandemic also dealt with a similar theme, with Cueball and Megan reminiscing about activities they missed doing but which had not been allowed or possible before the pandemic.
- [Megan is standing in front of a three-step stair leading up to an open door. She has one hand in the air while talking to someone inside the house, who replies. The ground outside has small tufts of grass.]
- Megan: Hi, I'm here to visit!
- Voice, from inside the house: Do I know you?
- Megan: No, it's cool, I'm two weeks past my second dose.
- [Caption below the panel:]
- Remember, once you're fully vaccinated, the CDC says you're free to visit other people's houses.
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Is there a category for overgeneralizations like this? There have been many comics where a character interprets "you're allowed to do X" outside the specific context that the authorization was intended. Barmar (talk) 15:48, 23 April 2021 (UTC)
- No I do not think so, but I also think this is a concept of comics, that are very broad and maybe could be used for a large fraction of the comics (any comic for that matter) so I think it is not good for a category. --Kynde (talk) 16:22, 23 April 2021 (UTC)
Kynde, it didn't warn me about any edit conflict between my original Incomplete Template change (no matter, go with yours) and the appending of my few paragraphs. Sorry, would not have let it post straight if I'd known you were working on it too. Also would have immediately removed it, but I see you already got stuck into Americanizing my Anglicised prose (maybe other things) so silly to revert my own thin again. (This one's early for Randall... A good 6 or 7 hours before I'd normally have expected to see a new Next button on the prior comic.) 220.127.116.11 16:15, 23 April 2021 (UTC)
- The transcript is complete. If it is that. If there are some minor tweaks it did not make it incomplete before. The page is using American English since it is an American comic. I do not care that much being Danish, but thinks it makes sense with Randall living in Boston. There are a lot of edits right now. Usually I first see it the day after due to the late release for me in Denmark. --Kynde (talk) 16:20, 23 April 2021 (UTC)
- I don't particularly care to write in the Mothertongue rather than the Colonial version native to our intellectual patron (arguments about the primacy of Msrs Johnson and Webster, aside), I just do it automatically because it feels right. ;) Anyway, you (and at least one other AnonIP out there) have done far more to build this explanation up (never mind adding the Transcript, which I usually fear to get wrong) than my single most meaningful post of several paragraphs did only while I thought there was still a vacuum waiting to be filled. Skål! 18.104.22.168 16:34, 23 April 2021 (UTC)
Alternate interpretation: the homeowner is Cueball, suspicious of anyone (friends or not) who may be potentially infected with CoVID-19, which is why Megan reassures him that she's been fully vaccinated. 22.214.171.124 21:40, 25 April 2021 (UTC)
- Granting that the identities of and relationships among the characters in XKCD can vary, I don't think this strip would be funny if Megan knew the homeowner; the point of the strip is that Megan is interpreting the CDC guidance to mean that she is free to visit anybody's house, whether or not she actually knows the person. --126.96.36.199 04:07, 26 April 2021 (UTC)
- Given that he literally ask if he knows her, and she literally says "no", I find this interpretation completely unfounded. Funny speculation, but not much more relevant than a speculation that he has a dead bird in the house because he put a mask on it and forgot to let it drink/eat. 188.8.131.52 13:09, 26 April 2021 (UTC)