This is written and set in late 2020. Much like Netflix' Glass Onion, it uses COVID in the backdrop, and then gets onto its main bit. This is about as much COVID as I want in a book.
Equally you get the feeling that Scalzi has a lot to say about US politics and is resisting only dropping a few things before getting back to his main hobby of dropping his favourite nerds in as backing mentions (or ship names in Old Man's War).
This was exactly the right amount of silly for me, I didn't quite get into Redshirts. It gets a bit close when they discuss how kaiju are tropes but then follows with a Peter-Hamilton-level exposition dump about how the pretend science works.
Who cares, there are kaiju, and also a bunch of characters who respect others' chosen pronouns. It's like a much snarkier Becky Chambers book.