Does Chris Pratt's New Navy SEALs 'Terminal List' Series Contain an Anti-Vax Mandate Message?


There is certainly a lot of negativity among the reviewing class about the new Amazon Prime “The Terminal List” series starring Chris Pratt.

One intriguing question that arises from it is whether the filmmakers were seeking to communicate an anti-COVID-19 vaccine mandate message.

Minor spoiler alert: I’m about to reveal some aspects of the plot, but these are early revelations in the series, so I don’t think I’m giving much away.

Something that is not mentioned in bevy of critical reviews, but is central to the series’ plot is that a team of Navy SEALs was injected with an experimental drug, which Defense Department leaders hoped would prevent Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Instead, it caused brain tumors.

Jack Smith Runs to Judge Chutkan, Claims Trump Violated Terms of Release with Gun Video

In the show, the Food and Drug Administration approved administering the shot based on an emergency use authorization.

However, the SEALs chosen for the experiment did not give their informed consent to take the drug. In fact, they were not told they were being given it at all. Instead the injection was passed off as routine and deployment-related.

Should military members be separated for not taking the COVID-19 vaccine?

“The Terminal List” series is based on the 2018 Jack Carr novel of the same name, which of course pre-dates COVID-19.

However, filming on the series began in March 2021 and continued into the summer of last year, so well into the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

In February 2021, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin strongly encouraged members of the military to get vaccinated. By August, he mandated they do so or face possible separation from service.

The mandate did not come down until after the FDA approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine the previous day.

Biden Lashes Out After People Begin Doubting COVID Shots

So on this point, “The Terminal List” plot diverges from the COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

Tens of millions had taken the vaccine at this point and while some had adverse reactions including myocarditis and death, the vast majority appear to have tolerated it well, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Interestingly, some Navy SEALs and others in the Naval Special Warfare community sued the Biden administration in November 2021 over the vaccine mandate saying it violated their religious liberty.

The 35 who had requested religious exemptions cited their opposition to the use of aborted fetal cell lines in the development or manufacturing of the vaccines and their belief that “modifying one’s body is an afront to the Creator,” among other issues.

After winning a preliminary injunction in federal district court against enforcement of the mandate in January, the U.S. Supreme Court sided with the Navy in March restoring the military service’s ability “to consider the vaccination status of 35 of its service members in decisions about where they should be assigned or deployed,” the New York Times reported.

U.S. Naval Institute News reported last month that the Navy is separating members who have not been fully vaccinated.

But, “The Navy cannot currently separate anyone who submitted a religious exemption against the COVID-19 vaccine due to a legal ruling in the Fifth Circuit.”

Does “The Terminal List” contain an anti-vax mandate message?

One can certainly view it that way. At the very least, the series says even members of the military have a right to know what’s being injected into their bodies and give their consent.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

, , , , , ,
Randy DeSoto has written more than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Graduated dean's list from West Point
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith