The vice presidential debate between Mike Pence and his rival, Senator Kamala Harris, was almost certainly not going to be as electric as the previous week’s hot mess of showdown between Donald Trump and Joe Biden. And despite kicking off with questions about Trump and Pence’s mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic, it has remained mostly calm and civil. In fact, the most shocking thing wasn’t so much anything that was said but how one of them looked. That is to say, a lot of people couldn’t stop staring at Pence’s curiously bloodshot eyes.
— ALT-immigration 🛂 (@ALT_uscis) October 8, 2020
It was really mostly the left one, whose left side was very red and creepily engorged. What was it? Was it pink eye? Was it some nervous tic? He didn’t seem particularly sick, and he was articulate and clear-headed. But it sent Twitter into wild speculating.
Y'all if your kindergartener had pinkeye like this you'd keep them home from school. https://t.co/fnyMz24FXg
— Justin Hendrix (@justinhendrix) October 8, 2020
Pence absolutely has pinkeye these mofos are spreading all kinds of contagion everywhere they go #VPDebate
— rabia O'chaudry (@rabiasquared) October 8, 2020
‘Pink Eye' Often a Symptom of COVID-19, and Infection Via Tears Possible https://t.co/Jncx7bZj0K
— Daniel Uhlfelder (@DWUhlfelderLaw) October 8, 2020
Is Mike Pence coming down with COVID symptoms live on this debate stage? I haven't seen eyeballs this red on NBC since that time Bob Costas got pink eye at the Olympics.
— Heather Hogan (@theheatherhogan) October 8, 2020
— Laurel Brooks (@LEBWC98) October 8, 2020
And people had jokes.
Mike Pence popped a blood vessel in his eye ball when he realized he had to talk to a woman that wasn’t his mother pic.twitter.com/TzM4iodsXn
— Joanna Hausmann Jatar (@Joannahausmann) October 8, 2020
Mike Pence's tie really brings out his pink eye.
— Michael Ian Black (@michaelianblack) October 8, 2020
— john r stanton (@dcbigjohn) October 8, 2020
Why does Pence look like Emperor Palpatine tonight? pic.twitter.com/cJToK4boMP
— BaltimꪮreTom🇺🇸🌊 (@BaltimoreTom) October 8, 2020
Even Pence’s eyeball is trying to get away from him.
— Margaret May (@MamaBearRoars31) October 8, 2020
— Mrs. G (@MelGtz) October 8, 2020
— Sarinebeane (@sarinamichelleb) October 8, 2020
Even Mike Pence's eye doesn't like Mike Pence.
— Mark Harris (@MarkHarrisNYC) October 8, 2020
Some people were reminded of La Chiffre, Mads Mikkelsen’s bleeding-eyed Bond villain from Casino Royale.
— Garrett Karp (@garpo3000) October 8, 2020
— Jennifer M. Wood (@j_m_wood) October 8, 2020
Or Charles Dance’s baddie from Last Action Hero.
Why does Pence look like the bad guy from Last Action Hero?
— Hank Forrester in Akron 🏆🥇 (@HankF330ToGo) October 8, 2020
Or Schwarzenegger from the original The Terminator.
Pence looks like the fake Arnold Schwarzenegger head that cuts its own eye out in The Terminator pic.twitter.com/gfZgIymhit
— Aaron Stewart-Ahn (@somebadideas) October 8, 2020
Or Gus Fring.
If you were unable to get past Pence’s freaky eye, you may have missed him wanly trying to defend allowing over 200,000 Americans die from a rampaging pandemic, with no end in sight. But then again, perhaps Pence has to worry about his own health issues first.